Saturday, January 25, 2014

Wear Sunscreen

Half a lifetime ago I graduated from high school.  I was reminded of this today when I was speaking to a few study abroad students.  The U.S. sends over 100 students to the University of Botswana on exchange each semester.  I’m not sure I had ever heard of Botswana when I was in college.  But I can understand why American universities encourage students to come here; it is the safest place in Africa and the students can have the real African, safari experience.

As the new study abroad students were asking questions about what to expect regarding classes, professors, course requirements, etc. one of them asked me if I had any advice.  I recommended they wear sunscreen, at all times.  One of the little blonde girls sort of laughed it off and said she was looking forward to working on her tan.  I looked her square in the eyes and said, “wear sunscreen.  You will still get a tan, even with the sunscreen.  I promise.”  She turned away and rolled her eyes.

The week I graduated from high school the Number 1 song on the radio wasn’t really a song.  It was a graduation speech set to music entitled, Everyone’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen).   Since that was 17 years ago I reckon most of my younger blog readers have never heard it.  The song recites all the best advice a young person should hear, though seldom listens to or appreciates until they are older, until they hit about their mid-30s or so.  I fondly recalled the song when I saw the blonde girl’s reaction to my “wear sunscreen” comment.  I silently shook my head and thought, “wait until you’re my age.”

Since we can never hear good advice too often I hope you enjoy Everyone’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen):

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