June 12, 2011 - 10:40 PM
Well, I was trying to decide how to go about writting my final blog about graduation, and I feel like there's nothing more to say that hasn't already been said. Earlier today my friends and I held our very own McAlister & Friends Graduation Celebration in Alton Baker Park, and although the real graduation is tomorrow morning I wouldn't feel right ending my blogging career without placing my friends and family as the centerpiece. For my last post I've transcribed the speech I gave at our graduation celebration and embedded the actual video (courtesy of my father) below. Enjoy!
Good morning. Once again, I would like to thank everyone for coming out today... not that there was any chance you would miss this. We hope you've been having fun because we've been having fun for the past four years or so and I think this celebration is a pretty good example of the fun that we've been having.
For those of you that don't know me, my name is Trafton Bean and I am today's Keystone Speaker. That's not a typo. We just enjoy celebrating our favorite cheap beer... a lot.
The speech I'm about to present to you today, I originally wrote it for tomorrow's graduation. I submitted it to the graduation committee, and they turned it down [crowd boos]... their loss.
I would like to speak to you today about "legacies." What does it mean to leave our legacy? And, well, my friends in front of me know what I'm about to say next so I might as well get it out of the way....
YES, I AM THE GUY FROM THE U OF O HOMEPAGE.
And, because she never get's enough credit, Lizzy Kay is the girl from the homepage. She has just been blessed with not having red hair or a beard. But for those of you who were wondering, we were known as "those people from the webpage" for a full 348 days, and I was actually a bit mad because if you do the math that's about a week and a half short of one full year. We were going to have a celebration party for it, but they didn't even give us that respect.
For 348 days, we were the online poster children, the faces of this University. We were recognized by everyone. By professors, by friends, by Dough Co. delivery guys. There's even the story of when we were at a party at the Compound, which for those of you that don't know was the guys' old house last year, and Kelsey overheard one person say to a friend, "Oh my god I just saw the guy from the homepage," and his friend whispered back, "Oh my god I just saw the girl, I think she's here too!!" So, as you can tell, we're a little bit famous I guess.
I thought it would be over after that 348 days when we came down from the webpage, but alas it was not. We just became "the people that used to be on the homepage." It was a simple change in verb-age. Even better, after we were done, it was our own Cam and Trey Norris that replaced us. If you would like to see either of those two pictures you can just open up the McAlister Graduation yearbook. Cam is the one with a, uh, dashiki over his face. Trey is the only one you can actually make out in that second photo. They did in fact climb Mount Kilimanjaro.
The reason I'm mentioning this is because a few weeks ago when I was thinking about graduating, I was wondering is this going to be my legacy? Is this going to be our legacy, as the guy and the girl from the homepage? Is this all I'm going to be remembered for five and ten years down the road...? Probably. I mean I'd like to be remembered for some other things like... a good student, a nice guy, even in the winter...especially in the winter. But, no, it doesn't doesn't work that way. To a lot of people we will always be known as "those people on the webpage."
That's when it donned upon me that you can never really choose your legacy. It just sort of happens. You sort of fall into it, so to speak. For example there's a lot of us that have our own little legacies. I'll start with my own father...
Bruce Bean, the man behind the camera, became "Brucer" after the night when he was seen taking a paint stick and an ice luge and drinking beers with my roommates...on the roof. Brucer, that's his legacy.
How ‘bout Randy, Randy Loftesness. We know him as the tailgate king, but there are some other people that he went to school with that him as the bartender in town that would chug a bottle of Tabasco just for the heck of it...and for money. [Randy, "it was for money."] Okay, for money.
Cam Norris, who you already heard from, holdS the record for the shortest throw in University of Oregon history to actually score points. Check that, world record. Last year in the Oregon-UCLA Duel meet, Cam came down with a bad case of mono, and with a throw of a whopping four feet, six inches and three quarter inches, which if you measure it out is about the length of his arm, he got third place. Legacy.
How about Ross Richards... the winning-est Club Bass Fisherman in University of Oregon history. I don't know if that's true or not, but just go with it. And let's not forget how Ross joined myself and our friends Emma and Kelsey to become the first and only, as of now, Beerylympic Champions! I know that I said the only, but there's still next year.
The U of O is full of legacies. Phil Knight...the shoes and now the sugardaddy. SupWitUGirl, who knew they were going to be such a hit with "I Luv my Ducks." Ashton Eaton and Andy Wheating, world record holder and both Olympians...we partied with them. LaGarrette Blount and Jeremiah Masoli...eh...legacy.
Like I said you never get to choose your legacies. You just fall into them. They may be good ones. They may be not so good ones. Legacies of fame and infamy. But for better or for worse, we have no choice but to embrace them because they are our own personal legacies that we've left here in Eugene and at the University of Oregon.
But now what about ‘us'? Those are personal legacies. What about us together as McAlister & Friends. I was thinking about it, and "legacy" just doesn't cut it. We need a better word, and the only one that I could think of that gets even close to describing us is "LEGENDARY."
We are University of Oregon LEGENDS. We've garnered awards and honors. We've traveled to Cal and Stanford, Bumbershoot and Bainbridge, Sasquatch, Dave, the Country Fair, Pasadena and Glendale, and soon to come is Dallas for the LSU game next year. We've come from California and Boston, Seattle, Portland, and Chicago. We've partied at the Compound. We've spun the drink wheel at Agate Alley. We've danced at Taylors. And, yes, we've closed down Max's. For the past four years, we have won the day...EVERY DAY. These are the Legendary Tales of McAlister & Friends.
Some of us will leave after this year. Some of us leave after next year. A select few of us will leave after five years. But the Legends of McAlister & Friends will live on forever, and no one can ever take away from us.
We hope, once again, that you have a wonderful time today and thank you all for coming.
Thanks again to Annual Giving for providing the opportunity to capture these great stories of my college experience over the past two years. Thank you to my family for supporting my educational journey. And, of course, thank you to all my friends for the four best years of my life. It's been an absolute honor to share these moments with you all, and I cannot wait to see where each of us ends up in the future.
Once last time, good night and Go Ducks!