Graduation is an exciting time in your life, and like most exciting times, it’s bound to be accompanied by a fair amount of awkward moments. While it’s sure to be an unpredictable few days, we can absolutely guarantee that a few things will definitely happen:
1. One of Your Relatives Will Say Something Racist, Then Make an Apology That’s Even More Racist
Most relatives are like Will Smith movies: You see them once a year and they preach to you for two hours about something anyone with half of a brain already knows. Unfortunately, there’s always one relative whose world-view is a little behind the times, and when you’ve come to greet your family after graduation with some of your friends, they’ll say something like, "We couldn’t find you down there, then I saw that you were behind that big chinaman. There’s so many of them! It’s like they’re takin’ over!" Then, the Chinese family behind you will all turn their heads toward your family, causing your relative to say something like, "Nah, I mean takin’ over in a good way, y’know, ’cause they’re good at math and science and laundry and stuff."
2. Someone in the Crowd Will Have a Dumbass Sign
Graduations are like WWE events; There’s a bunch of people grabbing a mic and talking, and everyone in the stands is holding up a sign that only makes sense to the four people they’re sitting next to that helped them make it. Usually it takes six people standing up to display the sign, and since they’re never sure when you’re coming on stage, and every graduate is dressed the same, they end up getting up and sitting down like they’re club goers at the jersey shore, and someone stepped on their shoe, then quickly apologized.
3. You Will Be Annoyed By Drunken Graduate Sorority Girls
Remember that group of loud, obnoxious sorority girls that ruin every college bar you’ve ever gone to by getting too drunk and talking loudly about how everyone else isn’t attractive enough to talk to them? Well somehow, they got to graduate too, and you’d better believe that they’re showing up completely plastered. They’re easy to spot, thanks to the hodgepodge of inside jokes puffy-painted onto their graduation caps and accessorized with all sorts of annoying, attention-grabbing glitter and pipe-cleaners and shit that only a drunken idiot would find cool. If you happen to have the misfortune of being blind, and your echo-location skills don’t work in the crowded graduation hall, just listen for the high-pitched squeals of mindless whores stumbling over each other, and screaming incessantly to one another about how “their graduation robes are so much hotter than everyone else’s.”
4. Someone You Don’t Really Know Will Introduce You To Their Parents
Remember that kid that you sat two seats down from in your Space Sciences class during the second semester of your freshman year? Of course you don’t, but guess what? He remembers you, and he can’t wait for you to meet his parents. Having your family visit for your graduation is a lot like finding a dead squirrel in your car engine: it’s really not a good thing at all, but you still feel obligated to show it to everyone that you come into contact with for a short time thereafter. The best thing to do when introduced to someone’s family is to smile, be cordial, and get the encounter over with as quickly as possible. Also, for some reason there’s about a sixty percent chance that the kid in your Space Sciences class is named “Kevin.” I don’t know why, but it’s true.
5. There Will Be A Large Applause for a Handicapped Graduate
No matter who they are, or what they did, every time a person in a wheel chair, or with a clear physical disability, receives their diploma, the crowd reacts like that person just sank a three-pointer at the buzzer in game 7 of the NBA finals. This is great, because if there’s one thing handicapped people like, it’s people applauding them solely because they’re handicapped. To really hammer home the point, the audience is tired from loudly applauding, so the next person who gets up, also graduating with the same degree, gets a reaction like it’s the ninth inning of a 12-2 Florida Marlin’s game and someone got a bunt single.
6. Someone On a Cell Phone Will Try to Tell Someone Else Where They Are
No matter how loud, or how large a crowd you’re in, inevitably, there’s someone next to you on a cell phone attempting to shout instructions on how to locate them like it’s the fucking climactic scene of National Treasure and if they’re not found within seconds, a lever will be pulled and they’ll sink into the earth, never to be found again. The worst part is, their instructions usually consist of giving non-descript clues like they’re playing a game of charades and they want people to guess “Chairman of the federal reserve": “I’m sitting next to a bunch of people in suits…a guy next to me has brown hair…um…I’m waving?!"
7. The Keynote Speaker Will Make a Horrible Analogy
The odds are pretty good that your graduation’s keynote speaker is going to be some obscure author or incompetent politician who has absolutely no way of relating to an audience of bushy-tailed, optimistic young adults. In order to compensate for this, the keynote speaker will make an attempt at an analogy of some sort, to try to bridge the gap between what they know and what it’s like to graduate right now. It’s impossible to tell exactly what type of analogy it will be, but there is one thing that you can be absolutely sure of: it’s going to be terrible. Don’t be surprised to hear something like this:
“In 1885, a whale hunting ship got stranded in the polar ice caps. In the dark of the arctic night, they found themselves hopelessly lodged in 30-foot deep glaciers. Despair was all around them, and within weeks, they were starving. Eventually, the whalers began eating one another, until one last, gluttonous sailor remained. He froze to death several days after, because, after consuming his fellow crewmen, he was now too fat to drag himself off of the deck of the ship. But what happened to the whales that the crew was hunting? Those whales survived. Just like you’ll survive…as college graduates.”
(Enormous applause follows)