Today, I was at the University of Penn Dental School’s wonderful White Coat ceremony for the son of a cousin of a cousin (with an opening line like that, I know I’ve got you on the edge of your seat).
The keynote speaker was the Reverend Chaz Lattimore Howard, the University Chaplain and Vice President for Social Equity & Community. Reverend Howard was an engaging and thoughtful speaker, with just the right amount of humor.
A few minutes into his presentation, he hit the audience with a classic Dad-like joke, and I have to admit, I thought it was perfect. I also have to admit that I should have seen it coming, but I didn’t, since he set it up so well.
He noted near the end of his presentation that he was almost late for the ceremony (it began at 1:00) because he had assumed it started at a different time.
Every dentist’s favorite time.
Yep, he pulled out the classic 2:30 joke in a room filled with more than 150 dental students, several dental faculty, and lots of friends and family of the dental students.
As I said, I thought it was perfect.
The setting. The way he set it up. The way he delivered it. The groans that it got.
It makes me want to come up with a cringe-worthy one-liner for the first day of my classes, which are less than two weeks away.
But if the past is any indication, even if I did come up with something half as good as the tooth hurty joke, the odds are that most of my students won’t be paying attention anyway.
That takes a bit of the pressure off.
The event also got me thinking that we should give all of our new students something cool like a white jacket.
Here’s the first thing that came to mind: