As the world's foremost expert on school being out, Alice Cooper took it upon himself to shepherd this year's graduates toward success with the WEIRDEST OP-ED EVER. Titled "A Rock Star's Guide to Coping After Not Getting Your Grades at School" (catchy!), the "advice" is like 75% Alice Cooper talking about how awesome it is to be Alice Cooper (if you can figure out how to be Alice Cooper, he recommends it) and 25% TOTAL NONSENSE. Like, a "WTF did I just read" level of nonsense. Like, a "Am I having a stroke or did human language lose all meaning" level of nonsense.
It's kind of endearingly bonkers—if you can distract yourself from the fact that Cooper is a born-again Christian who says he "doesn't care" about politics despite being a vocal Bush supporter, and that right-wing lunatic Dave Mustaine considers Cooper his "godfather." All of that dampens my good will just a bit, and makes Cooper's essay read like the self-centered, myopic ramblings of a privileged millionaire who has never had to face unemployment in his life, and who actively votes against the interests of the young and unemployed people he's trying to "help." But still, I laughed my ass out. Also I greatly appreciated his cameo in Wayne's World.
Sure I think education is super-important, and hopefully the effort you put into your studies will wow the crowd and get you where you want to go.
Sure, education and whatever and work hard and whatever. Whatever whatever. There's obviously a but coming. What's the but? What's the but???
But now I think it's time to tell you a little story about my total complete lack of academic will power. It's this underlying lack of interest in all of the pencils, books, teachers, dirty looks... all of this led me to write a song called School's Out. Maybe you've heard it.
OH, MAYBE I HAVE. And maybe I'm an elegant lady in a grand ballgown. And maybe if your aunt had a penis she'd be your uncle.
As I'm SURE you know, School's Out was released back in 1972 (That means it's the 40th anniversary of its release THIS month in case you skipped out on maths like me). You A-level guys were a long way off being born - but I still think this track stands the test of time, as do I (vampires live forever you know...) - and what I'VE learned along the way might help YOU make sense of the hopefully not disappointing results you've just gotten, and give you an idea of what to do now with whatever it is that you're stuck with.
I literally cannot WAIT to hear what YOU'VE learned along the WAY and I sincerely hope that IT has a LOT to do with VAMPIRES and how much you LOVE GOLFING and also being best friends with a SNAKE.
Okay, then there's like hella paragraphs about the history of School's Out and how Cooper know it would be a hit even though it was super subversive, and then England was mad for a while, but then everyone eventually "got the point that every single kid in the world absolutely HATED school on the last day" because before Alice Cooper nobody knew that at all, not even the children themselves.
This is the craziest thing about me though.
I wrote a song about 99% of the people that hated school. But essentially I was Ferris Bueller, and I basically ran the school.
Dude, quit braggin'.
You have to picture what happened—
I do NOT. I will only do it if there is a python in a graduation cap involved.
we are freshmen and sophomores in high school. We have the number one band in Phoenix, Arizona where a thousand kids from the schools are coming to see us play at clubs on weekends. Also, three guys in the band are on the unbeatable track and cross-country team. We've got the jocks, we've got the rockers, the girls love us because we're in a band and we're also sports heroes and I'm going, "We OWN this school!"
Okay, seriously, at this point we are 3/4 of the way through the article and the only thing I've "learned" about how to get a job is that Alice Cooper wrote a song once.
We had girlfriends doing our homework, and the teachers loved us because we made them laugh. So school was like a piece of cake for me. Not that I ever DID anything, I was just the class clown. When I wrote the song, I was like, "Jeez, this doesn't apply to me at all! I love high school, I'd spend the rest of my life here!"
But in all seriousness, right now, I know getting a job for young people is really tough.
Wow. Way to bring it down, Alice.
I've always said from the very beginning, you should specialise. Don't be a general knowledge guy, be the BEST guy at one thing. For example, be in a position where you've done a vocational course, not necessarily a degree, where you can go to a company and be so good at graphic design, they can't live without you. Make yourself indispensable. Or you're the best chemist, maybe in just one area. If you're in the general work pool, you're gonna get lost—even if you've got a degree. You have to be THE guy/gal.
That's all you have to do to get a job—just be the #1 best person in the world at that thing you want to do! It's that simple! You know all those people who don't have jobs? It's because they aren't best enough. They suck. That's clearly what's behind our crazy unemployment rates—a suckiness epidemic.
So, if you want to be a journalist, go on a journalism course and aim to be the most clever journalist. Be the one that your paper can't live without. Be the feature writer that is so huge that if they lose you, they lose a whole bunch of people.
As we've already established, I'm a guy with absolutely zero qualifications who has never been in this situation—but here's what I would do if I were you! Just be really really good at something, and then have somebody pay you for it! It is a foolproof plan. (Sidenote: Did Alice Cooper just save journalism? Quick—somebody go back in time and tell all the dead newspapers that they just need to be better.)
But wait. What if I don't want to be the "best astronaut" or the "best ballerina" or the "best sexy referee"? Are there any other options?
Or else totally forget a degree or a qualification and create your own company—
or just create your own niche in life.
Or be a bum.
What do I know?
I LITERALLY HAVE NO IDEA.
In all seriousness, I DO think that you are all going to be the most successful kids.
Okey dokey, then. TTYL.