We heard Katie Couric speak yesterday at Class Day. She is now an honorary member of the Princeton Class of 2009. I had no idea who she is. I mean, I knew the name. But I don’t watch morning television. Or the evening news, for that matter. So I had no idea about the woman herself.
My mistake. You know how sometimes you hear someone speak in public and it feels as though the two of you are sitting in your kitchen, or your office, just talking? And how rare that is? Who knew.
She said at one point, specifically to all the young women, that she imagined they wanted to have families. But, she said, just remember that things don’t always turn out the way you expect. She went on to explain about her husband’s early death, and how she was widowed at a fairly young age with two kids. How being able to make her own living was critical for her and for her daughters. Then she told the story of how many times she failed in her career even as she has succeeded.
I appreciated these messages to my daughter. And the meta-message, that even as you address several thousand people, and talk to millions on TV, you might be able to find a way to keep your authentic voice.
Thanks Ms. Couric.
Signed, Your New Fan.