Oh, that face.
I’ve watched that smirk blossom from the cherub-like visage of a 12-year-old boy to the masculine features of a 21-year-old college graduate.
Congratulations, Adored Stepson.
He officially passed through the portal of adulthood today when he graduated from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. (He did it in three years, folks. Count ’em, three. No one graduates with a college degree in three years. OK, some people do, but it took me five. So I’m impressed. But thanks to PSEO which helped him earn college credit in high school and a nose-to-the-grindstone approach to earning credits that meant something, he earned his degree in business administration in record time.)
Back to the face. The one to Caswell’s left.
While we were taking celebratory pictures this morning near the river where River Falls gets its name, we passed this brick wall spray painted with a mugshot. Like a Rorschach test, the viewer assigns its meaning. Stepson saw George Bush. The one with the W.
I see Lyndon Johnson. And I can’t read the hashtag.
But for the sake of conversation (and an ending to this blog post), let me quote from George W.’s commencement speech last year at Southern Methodist University:
It is a glorious day when your child graduates from college — and a really great day for your bank account.
I’m kidding. He really did say that. But he also said this:
To those of you who are graduating this afternoon with high honors, awards, and distinctions, I say, “well done.” And as I like to tell the “C” students: You, too, can be President.
Funny guy, that George W. OK, enough goofing around. Bush also said this, and I share this to encourage my Stepson, who somehow became a bit cynical since the first day I met him when he recounted the entire plot to Eragon by Christopher Paolini while sitting across from me in a booth at Space Aliens cafe (he was so cute telling me all the details of a boy who finds a mysterious stone in the mountains). Maybe this commencement quote from Bush will encourage you, too.
Today, some doubt America’s future, and they say our best days are behind us. I say, given our strengths—one of which is a bright new generation like you—these are not dark days. These are great days.