The website of David F Porteous
For posterity, I include the mock graduation speech I prepared for a contest offered by American author of young adult things to read, Maureen Johnson. In Britain we don't have the tradition of students delivering speeches, but if we did, and if I'd given one, this would not be it.
It's my belief that after submitting this, Maureen blocked me on Twitter.
It was either this speech or the pictures of me wearing only a confused expression.
In either case, here it is.
I have watched you prepare, these last four years, for the war that is to
come. And I am not impressed.
I, who have laid waste to worlds more ancient by far than the tarnished
bauble of this [check note cards] Earth, have seen great civilizations train
their young in a thousand ways. Yet none, I think will prove as inadequate as
Knowing as you must that our attack shall come from the edge of space –
where, even now, our mighty fleet assembles – you must surely realise that your science, your engineering, your mathematics are woeful by comparison to ours. Your study of the history of art seems pointless; almost a parody of reason.
Your art we shall burn – except for the items you have already burned as
artistic statements – these we shall reassemble using advanced technology and put on display. You shall all be made to see these displays. Tickets will be expensive. And the lines shall be long.
Only your swim team seems prepared for the psychological warfare we shall
unleash on you, when our timed-release penis-shrinking drugs kick-in, just
before the Fourth of July weekend.
You believe that because you have endured these scant four years that your
works shall be proud and that in this glorious summer the sting of death will
not touch you.
You are mistaken.
We shall deprive you of all those things you hold most dear. Holiday sales at
electrical goods stores, the beach, apple pie – including combination fruit pies
that contain apple, really good drugs, Dancing With The Stars and almost all
The only place left to eat will be Wendy’s – and not the good Wendy’s, the
And once we have crushed your spirits, we shall install a Vichy government to rule you harshly – as is our tradition. To prevent any feelings of sympathy,
this government will be made up entirely of another species. In Earth’s case,
rule of the planet will be ceded to the bees, and their powerful stings shall
keep you in fear, because that thing about bees only being able to sting you
once and then they die? That’s bullshit. Most bees can sting you as much as they like.
And they like to do it a lot.
Also, the bees who rule you will be Africanised.
Now please stand while Danny plays your new national anthem on the kazoo.