Your Voice by John Legend | Amy, We Need to Talk
March 30, 2014, 10:17 pm · Updated March 31, 2014, 9:52 am·
D ear A my G.,
The other day, I woke up to find 4 voicemails and 3 emails from you asking me to perform at Spring Fling. As much as the idea of being surrounded by intoxicated masses of horny, intoxicated, rolling teenagers appealed to me, I feel compelled to explain my apprehension in this letter.
I was happy to speak at the College graduation five years ago. I was a little unnerved when you requested that I call you ‘Amy G.’ instead of ‘President Gutmann’ or even just ‘Amy,’ but I soon accepted it as one of those quirks that comes with making 2 million dollars a year to spend on spa treatments and hair dye. I was okay with coming back to Penn for your dismally named “Time to Shine” celebration and sitting through rehearsal after rehearsal of that terrible song. I was even okay when you cut me off from singing my Grammy-nominated song “Ordinary People” at the concert for said terrible song. I felt a little uneasy committing to be Penn’s Commencement speaker (wasn’t speaking at the 2009 basket-weaving ceremony good enough?), but I accepted anyway, understanding that you must be in a really dire situation.
But this has gone too far.
Amy, I think it’s time for you to take me off speed dial. What would your husband think? I’m not into you. I thought of saying this last time you called me up to sing me your rendition of “All of Me,” but this has to stop. Also, please stop threatening to launch bioethical investigations into my wife. I don’t even know what that means.
To be honest, I don’t even like your school that much. I am tired of Penn. I’m tired of telling these students year after year that they are the best and the brightest and destined for great futures. If they were really the best and brightest, they would have figured out years ago that we’ve been saying the same thing since I came to Penn as a bright-eyed, honey-voiced 15-year-old and that you say the same thing to every class at Convocation. They’re not the best and the brightest. They might not even have bright futures, especially not after spending 60,000 dollars a year to learn how to BS their way through the “arts and letters” requirement in expensive suits.
I understand that you’re committed to diversity here, but if you ask the same black guy to come year after year, is that really so diverse?
The bottom line is that I can’t keep leaving home and coming to Penn — more importantly, I don’t want to. I mean, have you seen my wife? My time would be much better spent in bed with her. After all, if there’s anything that my repeated visits to Penn have taught me, it’s that the world could really use some more beautiful people.
Yours (but not like that),