Archive for June, 2006

I couldn’t tell you who gave my commencement address, and not just because it happened 9 years ago. But I imagine the 2006 graduates of Knox College won’t quickly forget theirs. I hope the sentiments of that address stick with them as well.

Now will saying “yes” get you in trouble at times? Will saying “yes” lead you to doing some foolish things? Yes it will. But don’t be afraid to be a fool. Remember, you cannot be both young and wise. Young people who pretend to be wise to the ways of the world are mostly just cynics. Cynicism masquerades as wisdom, but it is the farthest thing from it. Because cynics don’t learn anything. Because cynicism is a self-imposed blindness, a rejection of the world because we are afraid it will hurt us or disappoint us. Cynics always say no. But saying “yes” begins things. Saying “yes” is how things grow. Saying “yes” leads to knowledge. “Yes” is for young people. So for as long as you have the strength to, say “yes.”

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I don’t know what’s more ridiculous: CNN’s poll asking if something bad will happen on 6-6-06, or more than 90% answering ‘No’.

One could argue that the poll itself is evidence of the contrary.

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For years now, Cheryl and I have been taking full advantage of the “buy 7 drinks, get the 8th free” deal being offered at Safeways that wisely feature an embedded Starbucks. Our latest Safeway receipt claims that we’ve enjoyed nearly 40 free espresso drinks as part of this program, but I know for a fact that this counter reset a couple years ago, so I’d guess the total is closer to 60 or higher. These gratis grandes were not achieved accidentally; our enthusiasm for this offer was such that we would happily drive past nearer, non-Safewayed Starbucks to get to the enveloped version down the street. Grocery shopping was frequently an anticipated outing, as the trip was usually capped off with a visit to the baristas slinging java next to the table full of used DVDs for sale. We would frequently anticipate that 8th drink and plunder its depths by ordering a venti, putting on a mild show of delighted surprise when the teller informed us that we could put the plastic away.

Two days ago, however, we received a horrifying announcement in the mail. Safeway sent us a flier with a bold announcement that this deal will be ending June 30. They made a weak attempt to head off our inevitable outrage by including a few coupons for free grande drinks. But this served only to fuel our caffeine-free dismay. No longer will our trips out for bananas, hard lemonade, and bagged salad hold the promise of re-invigoration at 7/8ths the price (prorated).

I still have a month left. I’ll be sure to enjoy every free grande non-fat 3-pump mocha (light whip) as if it were my last…

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