Free advice for high school grads

By Helena Rodriguez: PNT columnist

My nieces, Marili and Anisha, will be among the Portales High School graduates on Friday night.

As they modeled their graduation gowns recently, I hummed “Pomp and Circumstance.” You know, “Tahn, tahn, tahn, tahn, tahn …” and started on how “Today is the first day of the rest of your lives …” Yada yada.

Typical graduation speeches include something about following your dreams, shooting for the stars, and going out and changing the world.

Here is my advice:

• Shoot for the stars, but until you perfect your aim, start with more reachable targets.

• Exit out of MySpace and read. Yes, read! After 12 years of readin’, ’ritin’ and ‘rithmatic, the learning is just beginning. Internet has spoiled us with smaller news stories, but we’re not smarter, only less informed.

• Listen to your mom and dad and those who are older and wiser, a.k.a. those of us who have “been there and done that.”

• Listen to Montgomery Gentry’s song, “Back When I Knew It All,” especially the chorus: “Lord I’m learning so much more than back when I knew it all.”

• Set out to change the world, but not by yourself.

• Restore the Sabbath. We need Sundays — not for soccer games, but for God, family and rest.