Sunday, May 22, 2011

Graduation, Randy "Macho Man" Savage, and Harmon Killebrew

Today, Yankton High School celebrates its graduates; here, like nearly every small city in America, graduation is a civic holiday.  The event carries special impact because it marks both an end and a commencement; it's one of the few remaining rites of passage.

This past week saw the passing of Harmon Killebrew and Randy "Macho Man" Savage.  As this year's graduates enter that weird construct called the "real world," they will need to combine what made both men famous if they are to thrive.

Savage, a consummate showman, wore flashy ring attire and colorful sunglasses.  He flew from the top ring ropes and loudly concluded every interview with his trademark "OH YEEAAAH."

Killebrew, a gentle giant, possessed authentic power.  In the last days of his life, he provided a blueprint about how to die with same grace and dignity that he lived.

Today's world requires each of us to a showman. Savage provides a fine model.  In today's world, however, the showmen frequently leave substance and traditional verities behind.  Killebrew reminds us that quiet strength, character, and dignity are more important than high flying antics.  In fact without a strong core to provide substance, one will never put on his or her best show.

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