May 17, 2003

new towels

My muscles and brain are slowly unknotting themselves.

Currently in Madison. The last time I tried to write this entry the computer suddenly shut off when I hit ‘post’. I sat stunned for a moment and shouted downstairs:

“Did you guys throw the circuit breaker?”

Well, of course they did. Tyler and my father were working on the light switches for the stairs, which really haven’t worked since Greta and Tyler got the house. You flip one switch and the stairs appear, and if you flip the other one they’re supposed to disappear. It’s a theft-deterrent, really. If someone breaks into the house you run upstairs and flip the switch so the steps disappear behind you. If the burglar is on the stairs when you flip ’em he’ll slam into the basement floor in a comical gesture, at which point you start dropping flower pots on his head.

Anyways. Today we went to my sister’s graduation ceremony at UW Madison. David Zucker (the genius behind Airplane!, Police Squad, the Naked Gun and Top Secret) gave a commencement speech which was tailor-fit for me. He gave all the fresh graduates two main points of advice. Well, actually he gave five, but I can’t remember them all. Maybe I can remember three. Let’s see…

1. Skip your graduation ceremony.

2. Move out west.

3. Think about the future, but don’t live there. Everything neat happens now. And now. And now. How about now?

4. No one cares about your failures more than you do. Eat pie with John Travolta.

5. Don’t let convention or authority stand in your way. If you’ve got a better idea, preach it, brutha.


Hmm. I guess of his five I can remember six. Well, I’ve taken care of #1, and #2 will come by Tuesday or Wednesday. As for #3, I’ve started ignoring questions that ask how long I’ll be in Oregon, whether or not this is gonna be a permanent gig, whether or not I like my toast buttered and why the heck I’m doing something that has nothing to do with my major. Folks, my path may have nothing to do with my major, but it has everything to do with my life. In the immortal words of Hank Ryanins, spoken on day four of camping in the Oregon backcountry, “YOU DON’T OWN ME, RAIN.” I can do whatever I want, and right now I want to do this. And it’s gonna rock your socks before it’s all said and done, I guarantee you.

As for John Travolta… well, these things take time.

In other news, Funny Cide won the Kentucky Derby. What a great name for a horse. DEATH BY HUMOR. You’ll laugh so hard you’ll DIE. It’ll be like Bill and Teds Bogus Journey after you see Primus take the stage! It’ll be like the Matrix Reloaded after you learn that the Matrix was written in Unix!


You’ll laugh! You’ll cry! You’ll die!

The full text of Zucker’s speech.