I came across this while perusing some fine VH1 programming late last night. I forgot how awesome it was.
Ladies and gentlemen of the class of ’97. Wear sunscreen. If I could offer you only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long term benefits of sunscreen have been proved by scientists. Whereas the rest of my advice will have no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience. I will dispense this advice now.
Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth. Nevermind. You will not understand the power and beauty of your youth until they fail you. But trust me. In 20 years you will look back on photos of yourself and recall in a way you can’t grasp now how much possibility lay before and how fabulous you really looked. You are not as fat as you imagine.
Don’t worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is about as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubblegum. The real troubles in your life are apt to be things that never crossed your worried mind. The kind that blind side you at 4 P.M. on some idle Tuesday.
Do one thing every day that scares you.
Don’t be reckless with other peoples hearts. Don’t put up with people who are reckless with yours.
Don’t waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you’re ahead. Sometimes you’re behind. The race is long, and in the end it’s only with yourself.
Remember compliments you recieve. Forget the insults. If you succeed in doing this, tell me how.
Keep yor old love letters. Throw away your old bank statements.
Don’t feel guilty if you don’t know what to do with your life. The most interesting people I know didn’t know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives. Some of the most interesting people I know at 40 still don’t.
Get plenty of calcium.
Be kind to your knee’s. You’ll miss them when they’re gone.
Maybe you’ll marry. Maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll have children, maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll divorce at 40. Maybe you’ll dance the funky chicken at your 75th wedding anniversary. Whatever you do, don’t congratulate yourself too much. Or berate yourself either. Your choices are half chance. So are everybody elses.
Enjoy your body. Use it every way you can. Don’t be afraid of it, or what people think of it. It’s the greatest instrument you’ll ever own.
Dance. Even if you have no where to do other than your own living room.
Read the directions, even if you don’t follow them.
Do not read beauty magazines they will only make you feel ugly.
Get to know your parents. You never know when they’ll be gone for good. Be nice to your siblings. They’re your best link to your past and the people most likely to stick by you in the future.
Understand that friends come and go. But for the precious few to which we should hold on. Work hard to bridge the gaps between geography and lifestyle because the older you get, the more you need the people you knew when you were young.
Live in New York once, but leave before it makes you hard.
Live in Northern California once. But leave before it makes you soft.
Accept certain inalienable truths. Prices will rise. Politicians will philander. And you too will get old. And when you do, you’ll fantasize that when you were young; prices were reasonable, politicians were noble, and children respected their elders.
Respect your elders.
Don’t expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund. Maybe you’ll have a wealthy spouse. But you never know when either one might run out.
Don’t mess too much with your hair, or else by the time you’re 40, it will look 85.
Becareful whos advice you buy. But be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the disposal, painting over the ugly parts and recycling it for more than its worth.
But trust me on the sunscreen.