The Light at the End of the Tunnel

by Tom Mandel | 5/12/11 10:00pm

Dartmouth: Do less.

For those of you who aren't familiar with the idea of "doing less," it comes from "Forgetting Sarah Marshall." In that fantastic film, Paul Rudd attempts to teach Jason Segel how to surf. Before they go out into the waves, they practice on land. Every time Segel stands up, Rudd tells him that he's doing too much, thinking about it too much and that he needs to do less.

While the mantra of "Dartmouth: Do less" passes through my mind often, it reached a critical point where I felt like I needed to opine after reading the online comments section on an article in The D ("Conan O'Brien to deliver Commencement address," May 4)

I can't say which made me fist-pump more: Conan's arrival or Osama's departure. I thought everyone would share those sentiments with me. We're getting one of the funniest men on the planet to speak at our Commencement. And not only is he funny, but he also possesses intelligence and wisdom. Being fired as "Tonight Show" host over a point of principle and then resurrecting yourself into an eponymous TBS show host will teach you a thing or two. I can't wait to hear what he has to say.

But the PC Police aren't going to let this victory go without their seemingly daily dose of criticism. Almost immediately after the announcement was made, anonymous commentors started questioning Jim Kim's populist motives for the decision and whether Dartmouth should be endorsing an anti-Semite.

Wait, what? Conan's anti-Semitic?

Turns out he made one remark about Anne Frank in poor taste backstage after a show. Unfortunately, there was a documentary film crew there to catch his slip-up on tape.

I dare you to find me a single person on this campus nay, this planet who hasn't made an off-hand joke that was offensive and that he immediately regretted. Done looking? Good, now shut the f*ck up. Anybody who's made it through a 20-year career in comedy and has only made one or two minor gaffes is a saint in my book. Conan's the man. Get over it.

So, PC Police of Dartmouth: Do less. Are you familiar with the boy who cried wolf? You're like the boy who cried politically incorrect. After a while, the rest of us are just going to tune you out (if we haven't already, let's be honest). Save your complaining for when there's actually something real to complain about.

When Mahmoud Ahmadinejad spoke at Columbia? That was something worth protesting.

When Michael Richards started liberally dropping the N-bomb on the audience at one of his stand-up shows? Yeah, definitely shouldn't let that one slide.

And for those of you who claim that Kim's decision to ask Conan was just a populist move wow. I'm pretty sure that I heard you complaining yesterday about how Kim was out of touch with the student body. Get your story straight. And then do less. So much less.

THE LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL is that no matter how much politically correct haterade you people might spill, Conan's still going to be the speaker. And he's still going to be the man now, dog.