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Before I begin, I must point out that behind me
sits a highly admired President of the United States and decorated war hero.
While I, a cable television talk show host, has been chosen to stand here and impart wisdom.
I pray I never witness a more damning example of what is wrong with America today.
My first job as your commencement speaker is to illustrate that life is not fair.
For example, you have worked tirelessly for four years
to earn the diploma you'll be receiving this weekend.
That was great.
And Dartmouth is giving me the same degree for interviewing the fourth lead in Twilight.
Deal with it.
But don't get me wrong.
I take my task today very seriously.
When I got the call two months ago to be your speaker,
I decided to prepare with the same intensity many of you have devoted to an important term paper.
So late last night I began.
(Applause)
You must stand tall.
Raise your heads high and feel proud.
Because if Harvard, Yale, and Princeton are your self-involved vain name-dropping older brothers.
You are the cool sexually confident lacrosse-playing younger sibling
who knows how to throw a party and looks good in a down vest.
Brown, of course, is your lesbian sister who never leaves her room.
And Penn, Columbia, and Cornell, well, frankly, who gives a shit.
(Applause)
So at the age of 47, after 25 years of obsessively pursuing my dream,
that dream changed.
For decades in show business the ultimate goal of every comedian was to host the Tonight Show.
It was the holy grail.
And like many people, I thought that achieving that goal would define me as successful.
But that is not true.
No specific job or career goal defines me.
And it should not define you.
In 2000...
(Applause)
In 2000, I told graduates to not be afraid to fail.
And I still believe that.
But today I tell you that, whether you fear it or not, disappointment will come.
The beauty is that through disappointment you can gain clarity.
And with clarity comes conviction and true originality.
I've told you many things today.
Most of it foolish.
But some of it true.
I'd like to end my address by breaking a taboo and quoting myself from 17 months ago.
At the end of my final program with NBC, just before signing off.
I said, "Work hard, be kind, and amazing things will happen."
Today, receiving this honor and speaking to the Dartmouth class of 2011 from behind a tree trunk.
I have never believed that more.
Thank you very much and congratulations.
(Applause)
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Conan O'Brien's Dartmouth Commencement Address Highlights

22460 Folder Collection
廖科強 published on June 27, 2017    Annie Kuo translated    Kiara reviewed
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