If you were at this years’ graduation, and sitting on the Eastern side of Old Campus, you may have noticed a particularly scruffy man sitting near you. He was wearing aviators and he looked like a harrier, more masculine version of Maggie Gyllenhaal (see picture above).
Yup, that was Jake Gyllenhaal, in town to see his cousin (some say niece?), Rachel Achs BR’11, as she graduated from Yale College. Even better: along with Jake was his brother-in-law Peter Sarsgaard, and Sarsgaard’s four-year-old daughter Ramona. Rumpus was one of the lucky Gyllenheeks who got to stare at them while they casually talked to Rachel for a good twenty minutes after graduation ended. Not since Isabella Huffington moved out of her dorm room a month ago has Rumpus experienced such a lucrative Old Campus celebrity sighting.
But the presence of two such sexy Hollywood stars begs the question: if there were so many well-connected graduates in the class of 2011, then why didn’t Jake Gyllenhaal give the Class Day Speech instead of Tom Hanks? Instead of discussing Tom’s chosen themes–poverty, technological innovation, and a lot of other topics we couldn’t really follow–Jake would have talked about fun things. Like how he’s the only guy who dumped Taylor Swift and got away with it (she says that she and Jake remain “good friends”). Or how his abs singlehandedly grossed $542,771,772 for “The Day After Tomorrow.” Those are themes that Rumpus finds interesting.
But it turns out that Mr. Hanks may have an excuse for his sub-par Class Day Speech. How do we know this? Well, Rumpus picked up a newspaper for the first time in over a year and it happened to be the London Times. Luckily there was an article on page 2 that told us who was invited to the May 24 state banquet welcoming the Obamas to Buckingham Palace, an event that fell one day after graduation. Included on that guest list–along with the Mayor of London, Hillary Rodham Clinton, David Cameron, and the Chief of M16–was Tom Hanks. Rumpus has a personal theory that Hanks was so excited to meet Michelle Obama that he raced though his Class Day Speech in order to get to England sooner, resulting in sage words of advice like the following:
“Take this [Class Day Speech] and set it to music, and maybe insert some crazy kooky graphics, star in that video yourself, then post it on the web. And if it becomes a viral sensation, you’ll be equal to any cat playing with a paper bag.”
These have to be the wisest words any Class Day Speaker has ever spoken.