Thank you very much.

Madam Chancellor, members of the Board of Trustees, members of the faculty and administration, parents and friends, honored guests and graduates, thank you for inviting me to speak today at this magnificent Commencement ceremony.

There's a story about a man and a woman who have been married for 40 years. One evening at dinner the woman turns to her husband and says, "You know, 40 years ago on our wedding day you told me that you loved me and you haven't said those words since." They sit in silence for a long moment before the husband says "If I change my mind, I'll let you know."

Well, it's been a long time since I sat where you sit, and I can remember looking up at my teachers with great admiration, with fondness, with gratitude and with love. Some of the teachers who were there that day are here this day and I wanted to let them know that I haven't changed my mind.

There's another story. Two newborn babies are lying side by side in the hospital and they glance at each other. Ninety years later, through a remarkable coincidence, the two are back in the same hospital lying side by side in the same hospital room. They look at each other and one of them says, "So what'd you think?"

It's going to be a very long time before you have to answer that question, but time shifts gears right now and starts to gain speed. Just ask your parents whose heads, I promise you, are exploding right now. They think they took you home from the maternity ward last month. They think you learned how to walk last week. They don't understand how you could possibly be getting a degree in something today. They listened to "Cats in the Cradle" the whole car ride here.
你们很久以后才需要回答这个问题。但物换星移,时间飞快流逝,只要问你们的父母就知道。我向你们保证,现在他 们的思绪必定乱成一团。在他们记忆里,彷佛上个月才将你从产房带回家,彷佛你上星期才学会走路,他们不明白你们怎么可能今天就取得某个学位。他们一路听着“摇篮里的猫”前来这里。

I'd like to say to the parents that I realized something while I was writing this speech: the last teacher your kids will have in college will be me. And that thought scared the hell out of me. Frankly, you should feel exactly the same way. But I am the father of an 11-year-old daughter, so I do know how proud you are today, how proud your daughters and your sons make you every day, and that they did just learn how to walk last week, that you'll never not be there for them, that you love them more than they'll ever know and that it doesn’t matter how many degrees get put in their hand, they will always be dumber than you are.
我想告诉各位家长,我在写这篇演讲稿时领悟到的一件事:你们孩子大学里最后一位老师将会是我。这个念头令我胆 颤心惊。老实说,你们也应该有相同感觉。但我是一位11岁女儿的父亲,所以我确实了解你们今天是多么骄傲;你们的儿女时时刻刻让你们 感到多么自豪;他们确实上星期才学会走路;你永远不需要为了参加他们的毕业典礼而来到这里;他们永远不知道你有多么爱他;无论他们拿到多少个学位,他们永远比你笨。

And make no mistake about it, you are dumb. You're a group of incredibly well-educated dumb people. I was there. We all were there. You're barely functional. There are some screw-ups headed your way. I wish I could tell you that there was a trick to avoiding the screw-ups, but the screw-ups, they're a-coming for ya. It's a combination of life being unpredictable, and you being super dumb.

Today is May 13th and today you graduate. Growing up, I looked at my future as a timeline of graduations in which every few years, I'd be given more freedom and reward as I passed each milestone of childhood. When I get my driver's license, my life will be like this; when I'm a senior, my life will be like that; when I go off to college, my life will be like this; when I move out of the dorms, my life will be like that; and then finally, graduation. And on graduation day, I had only one goal left, and that was to be part of professional theater. We have this in common, you and I—we want to be able to earn a living doing what we love. Whether you're a writer, mathematician, engineer, architect, butcher, baker or candlestick maker, you want an invitation to the show.

Today is May 13th, and today you graduate, and today you already know what I know: to get where you're going, you have to be good, and to be good where you're going, you have to be damned good. Every once in a while, you'll succeed. Most of the time you'll fail, and most of the time the circumstances will be well beyond your control.

When we were casting my first movie, "A Few Good Men," we saw an actor just 10 months removed from the theater training program at UCLA. We liked him very much and we cast him in a small, but featured role as an endearingly dimwitted Marine corporal. The actor had been working as a Domino's Pizza delivery boy for 10 months, so the news that he'd just landed his first professional job and that it was in a new movie that Rob Reiner was directing, starring Tom Cruise and Jack Nicholson, was met with happiness. But as is often the case in show business, success begets success before you've even done anything, and a week later the actor's agent called. The actor had been offered the lead role in a new, as-yet-untitled Milos Forman film. He was beside himself. He felt loyalty to the first offer, but Forman after all was offering him the lead. We said we understood, no problem, good luck, we'll go with our second choice. Which, we did. And two weeks later, the Milos Forman film was scrapped. Our second choice, who was also making his professional debut, was an actor named Noah Wyle. Noah would go on to become one of the stars of the television series "ER" and hasn't stopped working since. I don't know what the first actor is doing, and I can't remember his name. Sometimes, just when you think you have the ball safely in the end zone, you're back to delivering pizzas for Domino's. Welcome to the NFL.
当我第一部电影《军官与魔鬼》开拍时,剧组里有位十个月前才修完加州大学洛杉矶分校戏剧表演课程的演员。他很讨人喜欢,我们让他担任一个不是很重要、但十分显眼的角色-一位傻气而讨喜的海军下士。这位演员在Domino披萨担任了10个月的外送员,所以首次获得参与一部新电影演出的机会令他十分兴奋。这部电影由Rob Reiner导演,汤姆.克鲁斯和杰克.尼克逊主演。但如同演艺圈经常发生的情形:在你还来不及完成任何事之前,成功的机会便接踵而来。一 星期后,这位演员的经纪人致电给剧组:米洛斯·福尔曼一部尚未命名的电影邀请这位演员担任主角。他欣喜若狂,虽然他认为应该对第一个机会展现忠诚,但毕竟福尔曼让他担任主角。我们回复说,我们了解,没问题,祝你好运,我们将采用第二顺位的角色选择,我们确实这么做了。两星期后,米洛斯·福尔曼这部影片停拍,我们的第二选择——也是一位职业生涯中首次获得演出机会的演员,这位演员名叫Noah Wyle。Noah之后成为电视影集《急诊室的春天》主角之一,至今仍在演艺圈大放异彩。我不知道第一位演员现况如何,甚至想不起他的名字。有时候,就在你以为自己安全达阵时,却得回到Domino送披萨。欢迎来到野蛮世界。

In the summer of 1983, after I graduated, I moved to New York to begin my life as a struggling writer. I got a series of survival jobs that included bartending, ticket-taking, telemarketing, limo driving, and dressing up as a moose to pass out leaflets in a mall. I ran into a woman who'd been a senior here when I was a freshman. I asked her how it was going and how she felt Syracuse had prepared her for the early stages of her career. She said, "Well, the thing is, after three years you start to forget everything they taught you in college. But once you've done that, you'll be fine." I laughed because I thought it was funny and also because I wanted to ask her out, but I also think she was wrong.

As a freshman drama student—and this story is now becoming famous—I had a play analysis class—it was part of my requirement. The professor was Gerardine Clark. If anybody was wondering, the drama students are sitting over there. The play analysis class met for 90 minutes twice a week. We read two plays a week and we took a 20-question true or false quiz at the beginning of the session that tested little more than whether or not we'd read the play. The problem was that the class was at 8:30 in the morning, it met all the way down on East Genesee, I lived all the way up at Brewster/Boland, and I don't know if you've noticed, but from time to time the city of Syracuse experiences inclement weather. All this going to class and reading and walking through snow, wind chill that's apparently powered by jet engines, was having a negative effect on my social life in general and my sleeping in particular. At one point, being quizzed on "Death of a Salesman," a play I had not read, I gave an answer that indicated that I wasn't aware that at the end of the play the salesman dies. And I failed the class. I had to repeat it my sophomore year; it was depressing, frustrating and deeply embarrassing. And it was without a doubt the single most significant event that occurred in my evolution as a writer. I showed up my sophomore year and I went to class, and I paid attention, and we read plays and I paid attention, and we discussed structure and tempo and intention and obstacle, possible improbabilities, improbable impossibilities, and I paid attention, and by God when I got my grades at the end of the year, I'd turned that F into a D. I'm joking: it was pass/fail.
当我身为戏剧系大一新生时-这个故事已越来越出名-我修了一堂戏剧分析课-这是必修课程之一,指导教授是 Gerardine Clark。如果有人想知道这些欢呼是怎么回事,戏剧系学生坐在那里。戏剧分析课每周上两次,每次九十分钟,每星期得研读两部剧本,每堂课开始时,会举行一场二十题是非题的小考,测验我们是否预习了剧本。问题是,这是早上八点三十分的课,上课地点在East Genesee街尾,我住在Brewster/Boland街 头。不知道你们是否注意到,雪城市的气候经常十分恶劣,我总是得在风雪交加中前往学校上课, 刺骨的寒风简直像从喷射机引擎中喷出似的,这对我的社交生活产生不少负面影响,尤其是睡眠质量。某次小考的内容是关于《推销员之死》,我并未事先预习这出 戏剧,我写出的答案显示,我不知道剧终时那位推销员是不是死了。这门课没有及格。我不得不在大二时重修,这令我十分沮丧、深感羞愧。毫无疑问地,这是我迈向作家之路过程中最刻骨铭心的事。大二时,我孜孜不倦地参与这门课程,用心研读剧本,讨论每一部剧本的架构、节奏、寓意及转折点,反复地 思考探索。我投注了全副心力,确实,当我在期末收到成绩单时,成绩从F进步到D。开个玩笑;这堂课只有过与不过的分别。

But I stood at the back of the Eisenhower Theater at the Kennedy Center in Washington watching a pre-Broadway tryout of my plays, knowing that when the curtain came down, I could go back to my hotel room and fix the problem in the second act with the tools that Gerry Clark gave me. Eight years ago, I was introduced to Arthur Miller at a Dramatists Guild function and we spent a good part of the evening talking. A few weeks later when he came down with the flu he called and asked if I could fill in for him as a guest lecturer at NYU. The subject was "Death of a Salesman." You made a good decision coming to school here.
但当我站在华盛顿肯尼迪表演艺术中心的Eisenhower剧场,观看我的剧作在进驻百老汇之前举行的试演时,心里想着,落幕之后,我就能回酒店房间,使用从Gerry Clark(其著作曾改编成著名戏剧)作品学到的技巧,修改第二幕的瑕疵。八年前,阿瑟.米勒(美国传奇剧作家)将我引介给美京剧作家协会,当晚我们相谈 甚欢。几星期后,他罹患流行感冒,打电话问我是否能代替他出席纽约大学的客座演讲,演讲主题正是《推销员之死》。来雪城大学念书确实是明智的选择。

I've made some bad decisions. I lost a decade of my life to cocaine addiction. You know how I got addicted to cocaine? I tried it. The problem with drugs is that they work, right up until the moment that they decimate your life. Try cocaine, and you'll become addicted to it. Become addicted to cocaine, and you will either be dead, or you will wish you were dead, but it will only be one or the other. My big fear was that I wasn't going to be able to write without it. There was no way I was going to be able to write without it. Last year I celebrated my 11-year anniversary of not using coke. Thank you. In that 11 years, I've written three television series, three movies, a Broadway play, won the Academy Award and taught my daughter all the lyrics to "Pirates of Penzance." I have good friends.
我曾误入歧途。因为古柯碱成瘾,浪费了生命中宝贵的十年。你们知道我怎么会染上古柯碱毒瘾吗?我只是试了一口。毒品最大的问题在于它们确实有用,直到摧毁你人生那一刻。只要试一 口,你就万劫不复。一旦染上毒瘾,你不是吸毒而死,就是生不如死,但总是逃不出这两 种悲惨的命运。我最大的恐惧是,没有它我会失去写作灵感,没有它我根本无法写作。上个月我庆祝了戒毒11周年。谢谢。这11年来,我写了三部电视系列影集、三部电影、一出百老汇戏剧、荣获奥斯卡奖,并教会我女儿整出《彭赞斯的海盗》(音乐剧)的歌词。我有许多好朋友。

You'll meet a lot of people who, to put it simply, don't know what they're talking about. In 1970 a CBS executive famously said that there were four things that we would never, ever see on television: a divorced person, a Jewish person, a person living in New York City and a man with a moustache. By 1980, every show on television was about a divorced Jew who lives in New York City and goes on a blind date with Tom Selleck.
你会遇见许多人,简单来说,总是满口胡言。1970年代,CBS将一句名言奉为圭臬:有四种角色绝不可能出现 在电视屏幕上-离婚的人、犹太人、纽约居民和蓄胡男子。到了1980年代,每部电视节目的内容都是描写住在纽约市的离婚犹太人,并和汤姆·谢立克(知名演员,蓄胡)进行盲目约会。

Develop your own compass, and trust it. Take risks, dare to fail, remember the first person through the wall always gets hurt. My junior and senior years at Syracuse, I shared a five-bedroom apartment at the top of East Adams with four roommates, one of whom was a fellow theater major named Chris. Chris was a sweet guy with a sly sense of humor and a sunny stage presence. He was born out of his time, and would have felt most at home playing Mickey Rooney's sidekick in "Babes on Broadway." I had subscriptions back then to Time and Newsweek. Chris used to enjoy making fun of what he felt was an odd interest in world events that had nothing to do with the arts. I lost touch with Chris after we graduated and so I'm not quite certain when he died. But I remember about a year and a half after the last time I saw him, I read an article in Newsweek about a virus that was burning its way across the country. The Centers for Disease Control was calling it "Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome" or AIDS for short. And they were asking the White House for $35 million for research, care and cure. The White House felt that $35 million was way too much money to spend on a disease that was only affecting homosexuals, and they passed. Which I'm sure they wouldn't have done if they'd known that $35 million was a steal compared to the $2 billion it would cost only 10 years later.Am I saying that Chris would be alive today if only he'd read Newsweek? Of course not. But it seems to me that more and more we've come to expect less and less of each other, and that's got to change. Your friends, your family, this school expect more of you than vocational success.
掌握自己的指南针,并相信它;勇于冒险、不怕失败;记住,第一位冲破高墙的人总不免受伤。我大三和大四时,在 East Adams街尽头和四位室友分租一栋五间卧室的公寓,其中一位名叫Chris的室友主修戏剧。Chris是个可爱的家伙,有着狡黠幽默感,总是在舞台上扮 演阳光男孩角色。他生不逢时,最擅长扮演《百老汇的小鬼》中Mickey Rooney伙伴那种角色。当时我订阅了《时代杂志》和《
新闻周刊》;Chris感兴趣的是一些千奇百怪、跟艺术无关的事物。毕业后,我与Chris失去 联络,所以不确定Chris是何时过世的。但我记得,大约在最后一次见到他一年半之后,我在《新闻周刊》上读到一篇文章,关于某种病毒正在全国蔓延的报导,疾病控制与预防中心称它为“获得性免疫缺陷综合症”,简称艾滋病。他们向白宫申请3500万美元的研究、照护和治疗经费,白宫认为,将3500万美元花 在某种只会感染同性恋的疾病上太过昂贵,拒绝了这项申请。我敢肯定,如果他们知道,比起10年后花在治疗上的20亿美元,3500万美元不过是九牛一毛, 当初就不会拒绝。我的意思是,只要Chris阅读新闻周刊》,今天就能好好活着吗?当然不是。但在我看来,当我们期待越多,了解的就越少,这是必须改变 的现象。你的朋友、你的家人、这所学校对你的期待,不仅是职场上的成就。
Today is May 13th and today you graduate and the rules are about to change, and one of them is this: Decisions are made by those who show up. Don't ever forget that you're a citizen of this world. Don't ever forget that you're a citizen of this world, and there are things you can do to lift the human spirit, things that are easy, things that are free, things that you can do every day. Civility, respect, kindness, character. You're too good for schadenfreude, you're too good for gossip and snark, you're too good for intolerance—and since you're walking into the middle of a presidential election, it's worth mentioning that you're too good to think people who disagree with you are your enemy. Unless they went to Georgetown, in which case, they can go to hell.
今天是5月13日, 你们毕业的日子,代表你必须做出某些改变,其中一个原则如下:挺身而出者才有机会做出改变,别忘了你是这个世界的公民。别忘了你是这个世界的公民,你可以做些提升人类心灵层面的事,这些事并不困难,不过是举手之劳,随时随地都能进行。文明、尊重、善良、品格;你们不会幸灾乐祸;你们不会散播谣言、危言耸听;你们不会心胸狭窄、缺乏宽容。既然你们都可能迈向竞选总统之途,这句话值得 一提:你们不会视反对者为敌人,除非是来自乔治敦大学的人(雪城大学的死对头)。若碰上这种情况,就叫他们下地狱吧!

Don't ever forget that a small group of thoughtful people can change the world. It's the only thing that ever has. Rehearsal's over. You're going out there now, you're going to do this thing. How you live matters. You're going to fall down, but the world doesn't care how many times you fall down, as long as it's one fewer than the number of times you get back up.

For the class of 2012, I wish you joy. I wish you health and happiness and success, I wish you a roof, four walls, a floor and someone in your life that you care about more than you care about yourself. Someone who makes you start saying "we" where before you used to say "I" and "us" where you used to say "me." I wish you the quality of friends I have and the quality of colleagues I work with. Baseball players say they don't have to look to see if they hit a home run, they can feel it. So I wish for you a moment—a moment soon—when you really put the bat on the ball, when you really get a hold of one and drive it into the upper deck, when you feel it. When you aim high and hit your target, when just for a moment all else disappears, and you soar with wings as eagles. The moment will end as quickly as it came, and so you'll have to have it back, and so you'll get it back no matter what the obstacles. A lofty prediction, to be sure, but I flat out guarantee it.
2012年毕业生,祝福你们常怀喜悦,祝福你们健康、幸福、成功,祝福你们拥有幸福美满的家庭,拥有某个你在 乎他胜过自己的人,某个能与你共享生活中一切喜怒哀乐的人,希望你们拥有跟我朋友和同事一样优秀的伙伴。棒球选手说,他们不需要紧盯着球,就能感觉自己击出了全垒打。我期待有那么一天-在不久的将来-你们真正击中那颗球。掌握这个机会,更上一层楼,真正拥有这份感受。当你拥有崇高目标,并尽力达成时,在一刻,一切艰辛都将烟消云散,你将如鹰般展翅翱翔。这个瞬间稍纵即逝,所以你必须继续往目标迈进,你必须继续往目标迈进,不论途中遭遇多少阻碍。这确实是个崇高的目标,但只要付出努力,必定能够达成。

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