Olympus High School
Salt Lake City, Utah
Olympus High School
Salt Lake City, Utah
Ever since I was a little kid I didn't want to be me. I wanted to be Billy Widdleton. And
Billy Widdleton didn't even like me.
I walked like he walked. I talked like he talked. I even signed up for the High School he signed up for...
Which was when Billy Widdleton started to change. He began to hang around Herby Vandeman.
He walked like Herby Vandeman. He talked like Herby Vandeman.
He really mixed me up! All of a sudden I found myself walking and talking like Billy Widdleton walking and talking like Herby Vandeman.
And then it dawned on me that Herby Vandeman was walking talking like Joey Haverlin, and Joey Haverlin was walking and talking like Corky Sabinson.
So here I am walking and talking like Billy Widleton's imitation of Herby Vandeman's version of Joey Haverlin trying to walk like Corky Sabanson.
And who do you think Corky Sabanson is always walking and talking like? Of all people - dopey Kenny Wellington - KENNY WELLINGTON!
That little pest who walks and talks like me.?.
There is a blight that has fallen over our country, People no longer believe! No I don't mean they no longer believe in god or they lost their belief in the country, people no longer believe in themselves.
I have no problem admitting that I always wanted to be as buff as Arnold, as smart as Einstein, handsome as Gere, charming as Connery, rich as Trump and deep down, I always wanted to be like Mike but what I didn't know is that all of those things are already inside of me and you and you and yes no matter how much you try and doubt it even you.
I would like everyone in this room to take a second with me and within your mind picture this. If you had all the time, all of the talent , and all of the money in the world. What would you do? If something immediately pops into your head you already know how to fantasize , to visualize and to imagine. And if it doesn't, well your like me and can learn.
In Reality We are trained out of dreaming, taught out of fantasizing and have grown out of childish imagination. In reality we allow ourselves to fall into the mainstream of a steady pay check a steady job and a steady life. We are scared to take risks, maybe because were scared of loosing or maybe because were scared of winning , that we'll be expected to win again. That's a hard expectation to live up to. In any case, While your on that boat of life looking out across the sea or into the ocean, hum, all I can see is my reflection Staring back at me. I can't see all of the fish or colors or plants or life that is in constant flow and abundance beneath me. But Just because I cannot see past my reflection dose not mean there is no more.
While looking into the mirror some of my closest friends don't see how wonderful they are, their talents, their abilities, their opportunities, how much they mean to me all they see is that zit the size of Venus, Mercury and mars combined. Just because they cannot see past their reflection dose not mean there is no more. We all have a magnifying glass and we can hold it up to the solution and make it bigger or we can hold it up to the problem and make it bigger. Like the zit. I know a lot of people who have problems this big but explain them as such. They argue that their limitations are too great for them to overcome but, as author Richard Bach Once wrote "argue for your limitations and sure enough they're yours."
Over the last few months I started to notice this in myself . There was a play tryout But I didn't make the last one, why should I try again. soccer season , didn't make the cut last year why should I try again. I argued for my limitations and sure enough they were mine. I was my own worst enemy. I closed every door on myself.
You see when I dream of being this much I will probably come close to that goal. but if I let myself dream this much, or this much or this much, I have the possibility of being this much, The opportunity of being this much and I don't close any doors on myself. Now I may not reach this goal but I would rather wish for a million dollars and receive ten then wish for ten and receive one.
Look, I'm a high School Orator. Its my job to within 10 minutes change all of your minds. Make sure that you walk out that door with a new life philosophy and world view. With some of the best speakers and orators in their schools and leaders in their communities. It would be very hard for me to change their minds, Look I can't change the world, Today. And I can't change your minds so I'm just going to have to tell you something that you already know. That your a good person did you know that? that your a powerful person, ya know that don't ya. That your a perfect person your all perfect people. I know its hard to believe. When I first told my friend Steve your a perfect person he scoffed at me. Paul , that's my name Paul, Paul I'm far from perfect look at my grades look at my hair my past girlfriends. Why don't we want to believe that were good enough or smart enough or that "goalie dern it" people like us.
This all starts with what we see when we look in the mirror, can I tell you what I see when I look in the mirror (pause) I am wonderful. No really I am. When ever I look in the mirror and see my crooked little nose or my fuzzy pudgy little face I like it. And If I ever think that I'm Too fat I just look at my writs because I know their skinny. Its hard to believe and it might be difficult to find others like me but I like myself. So a m I arrogant? No am I self confident, not always. I just like who I am So am I perfect? No. I have a lot to work on But I also Have a lot to work with, we all do deep inside of us.
Orator, author and pastor Ralph Waldo Emerson said "what lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters, (when) compared (with) to what lies within us" We each have this ultimate phenomenal power built up inside of us and the only thing stopping it ,the only thing strong enough to be its door is what we think of ourselves.
An ancient Chinese proverb goes on to say "a wise man is one who can see a full grown tree inside of a itty bitty little seed. " An acorn doesn't despair because it is not a full grown tree. It is an acorn , perfect in its possibilities. what lies behind it and what lies before it are tiny matters compared to what lies within it.
As children we know this. We know that we are and can be anything. When you walk into a room of second graders and say who here is an artist everyone will wave there arms and scream I am I can draw. Who here is a dancer I am I can sing I can dance I can stand on my head. I want you to walk into your second period class on Monday and see how many kids can dance and sing and stand on their head. We tell ourselves we can't do these things. that we've tried in the past and failed or that it will change our futures if we fail. .
Being - doing - having. This is something I see a lot in children. Being - Doing - Having- when you ask little girl who she is she might say I am a ballerina and I absolutely believe her. Because she believes she is. she is being.. the ballerina. then she will start to do the things ballerinas do practice audition and work in order to have the things ballerina has. Or a doctor, or a lawyer or a teacher, with a ballerina A little more grace a little more poise The part. Too often we try to live our lives backwards. We try to have more things or more money in order to do the things need to do in hopes that all of this will make us happy. when in all actuality all we have to do is allow ourselves the freedom to be who we actually are in order to do what we need to do to have what we want. Look judge today your going to see a lot of orators or improptuers or LD ers but I can promise you that you will only see one Paul W. Draper, and that's good enough for me.
So with the one minute mark called my conclusion. My conclusion starts with a quote from one of our countries greatest thinkers and philosophers of our time, and my hero. Mr. Rodgers who once said "its not the clothes that bind you not your toys their just beside you. Its you I like."
So don't judge a book by its cover or an ocean by your reflection And whatever you do don't try to be like Billy Widdleton. Just be you, view the power within you , an acorn perfect in your possibilities.
Fieffer,J. (1967). Fieffer's People
Dramatists Play Service INC. New York, New York
Dell Publishing New York, New York
Seldes, G. (1985) The Great Thoughts
Ballantine Books. New York, New York
Tzu, L. (1990) Tao Teh Ching
Shambhala Publications Boston, Massachusetts
Minto, W. (1985). Alpha Awareness Training
Rodgers, F. (10/29/1978). "Mr. Rogers Neighborhood"