ELCA, June 25, 2011

Ravinia Festival

Highland Park, IL

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GK: After this message........


SS (IN MIC): Hello class of 2011. (FEEDBACK) My name is Evelyn Lundberg and I guess probably you were expecting someone big and famous, but famous people are asking big money to come and speak at graduation and as you know this school is flat broke and that's why we replaced the faculty with volunteers, most of them over 80, and they do their best, but they need a lot of naps and most of what they teach is way outdated, and that's why your degree isn't worth the little black frame you're gonna put it in, but you'll find that out soon enough.

Listen up: I'm not here to tell you you're beautiful and gifted and make you feel all warm and happy. I am here to tell you the truth. It's sink or swim time, kids, and you've got a pair of concrete socks on so wake up and smell the Ramen noodles.

You want inspiration? Here's some inspiration: You're in debt $50,000 for a crappy education in the middle of a double-dip recession. Boom boom. This is real life, kids. You can't buy the answers to this test. You were all brought up in Montessori where the prizes were given out like penny candy. That's all over now. You're in trouble.

SS: Your aunts and uncles bought nice homes and retired on beautiful pensions that you are going to be paying for through the wazoo while you fight over the futon with five roommates in a one-bedroom dumpster. Good luck. You don't know who you are? Too late. You want a career that offers you creativity and flexible hours and the chance to do good in the world? Ha. And I'd like a 24-inch waist. Forget about a career. Get a job.

Your big celebrity graduation speaker would've told you, Dare to dream. I'm telling you, Dare to wake up. This is the first day of the rest of your life and I don't mean that in a good way.. And one more thing. Do something about your hair. You look like a homeless person. And cover up those tattoos. We don't want to see those. Sorry about your education. Go out and try to act like you know something. Good luck. You're going to need it. Lord have mercy


GK: Evelyn Lundberg, from the Evelyn Lundberg Counseling Agency. Telling you what you need to hear on your graduation day.

Old Sweet Songs: A Prairie Home Companion 1974-1976

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Lovingly selected from the earliest archives of A Prairie Home Companion, this heirloom collection represents the music from earliest years of the now legendary show: 1974–1976. With songs and tunes from jazz pianist Butch Thompson, mandolin maestro Peter Ostroushko, Dakota Dave Hull and the first house band, The Powdermilk Biscuit Band (Adam Granger, Bob Douglas and Mary DuShane).

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