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                > 英语演讲 > 英语演讲mp3 > 名人演讲 >  第34课

                名人演讲:We Are What We Choose 选择塑造人生[杰夫·贝索斯]






                We Are What We Choose 选择塑造人生

                —— Jeff Bezos 杰夫·贝索斯

                We Are What We Choose 选择塑造人生 Jeff Bezos 杰夫·贝索斯


                [00:02.29]As a kid,

                [00:06.36]I spent my summers

                [00:07.84]with my grandparents

                [00:10.20]on their ranch in Texas.

                [00:12.61]I helped fix windmills,

                [00:14.91]vaccinate cattle,

                [00:16.92]and do other chores.

                [00:20.03]We also watched soap operas

                [00:21.65]every afternoon,

                [00:23.20]especially Days of our Lives.

                [00:27.06]My grandparents

                [00:28.88]belonged to a Caravan Club,

                [00:31.68]a group of Airstream

                [00:33.42]trailer owners

                [00:34.93]who travel together

                [00:36.70]around the U.S. and Canada.

                [00:39.25]And every few summers,

                [00:41.44]we'd join the caravan.

                [00:44.74]We'd hitch up the Airstream

                [00:46.61]to my grandfather's car,

                [00:49.46]and off we'd go

                [00:52.67]in a line with 300 other

                [00:55.22]Airstream adventurers.

                [00:58.02]I loved and worshipped

                [00:59.58]my grandparents

                [01:02.31]and I really looked forward

                [01:03.62]to these trips.

                [01:06.51]On one particular trip,

                [01:09.00]I was about 10 years old.

                [01:11.61]I was rolling around

                [01:14.49]in the big bench seat

                [01:16.42]in the back of the car.

                [01:19.03]My grandfather was driving.

                [01:21.66]And my grandmother

                [01:23.53]had the passenger seat.

                [01:25.80]She smoked throughout these trips,

                [01:30.62]and I hated the smell.

                [01:38.92]At that age,

                [01:40.62]I'd take any excuse

                [01:42.92]to make estimates

                [01:43.92]and do minor arithmetic.

                [01:45.91]I'd calculate our gas mileage

                [01:47.96]figure out useless statistics

                [01:50.23]on things like grocery spending.

                [01:53.53]I'd been hearing an ad campaign

                [01:55.33]about smoking.

                [01:57.69]I can't remember the details,

                [02:00.01]but basically the ad said,

                [02:02.06]every puff of a cigarette

                [02:04.24]takes some number of minutes

                [02:05.80]off of your life:

                [02:07.44]I think it might have been

                [02:08.87]two minutes per puff.

                [02:10.99]At any rate,

                [02:12.36]I decided to do the math

                [02:13.66]for my grandmother.

                [02:15.78]I estimated the number

                [02:16.85]of cigarettes per day,

                [02:19.11]estimated the number of puffs

                [02:20.60]per cigarette and so on.

                [02:22.71]When I was satisfied that

                [02:24.10]I'd come up with a reasonable number,

                [02:26.62]I poked my head

                [02:27.51]into the front of the car,

                [02:29.56]tapped my grandmother

                [02:31.24]on the shoulder,

                [02:32.56]and proudly proclaimed,

                [02:34.61]At two minutes per puff,

                [02:37.32]you've taken nine years off your life

                [02:44.28]I have a very vivid memory

                [02:45.47]of what happened next,

                [02:48.81]and it was not what I had expected.

                [02:52.70]I expected to be applauded

                [02:53.82]for my cleverness

                [02:56.20]and my arithmetic skills.

                [03:01.05]Jeff, you're so smart.

                [03:04.91]You had to have made some tricky estimates,

                [03:07.98]figure out the number

                [03:08.98]of minutes in a year

                [03:10.89]and do some division.

                [03:14.50]That's not what happened.


                [03:19.06]my grandmother burst into tears.

                [03:26.01]I sat

                [03:27.19]in the backseat

                [03:28.36]and did not know what to do.

                [03:29.82]While my grandmother was crying,

                [03:31.81]my grandfather,

                [03:33.49]who had been driving in silence,

                [03:35.39]pulled over

                [03:36.63]onto the shoulder of the highway.

                [03:38.76]He got out of the car

                [03:40.47]and came around

                [03:41.19]and opened my door

                [03:42.80]and waited for me to follow.

                [03:44.86]Was I in trouble?

                [03:47.09]My grandfather was a highly intelligent,

                [03:49.40]quiet man.

                [03:51.01]He had never said a harsh word to me,

                [03:53.38]maybe this was to be the first time?

                [03:55.80]Or maybe he would ask

                [03:57.95]that I get back in the car

                [03:59.94]and apologize to my grandmother.

                [04:02.37]I had no experience

                [04:03.49]in this realm

                [04:05.14]with my grandparents

                [04:06.44]and no way to gauge

                [04:08.35]what the consequences might be.

                [04:11.28]We stopped beside the trailer.

                [04:14.37]My grandfather looked at me,

                [04:17.51]and after a bit of silence,

                [04:19.52]he gently and calmly said,


                [04:24.88]one day

                [04:26.69]you'll understand

                [04:28.80]that it's harder to be kind

                [04:31.46]than clever.

                [04:38.18]But what I want to talk to you

                [04:39.64]about today

                [04:41.15]is the difference

                [04:42.44]between gifts and choices.

                [04:45.98]Cleverness is a gift,

                [04:48.27]kindness is a choice.

                [04:50.96]Gifts are easy

                [04:52.50]they're given after all.

                [04:55.13]Choices can be hard.

                [04:57.37]You can seduce yourself

                [04:58.88]with your gifts

                [04:59.62]if you're not careful,

                [05:01.26]and if you do,

                [05:02.56]it'll probably be to

                [05:03.81]the detriment of your choices.

                [05:06.61]This is a group with many gifts.

                [05:09.28]I'm sure one of your gifts

                [05:10.84]is the gift of a smart

                [05:11.98]and capable brain.

                [05:14.38]I'm confident that's the case

                [05:16.06]because admission is competitive

                [05:18.84]and if there weren't some signs

                [05:20.34]that you're clever,

                [05:21.71]the dean of admission

                [05:22.76]wouldn't have let you in.

                [05:26.98]Your smarts will come in handy

                [05:28.22]because you will travel

                [05:29.96]in a land of marvels.

                [05:32.65]We humans,

                [05:33.52]plodding as we are,

                [05:35.45]will astonish ourselves.

                [05:37.75]We'll invent ways to generate

                [05:39.18]clean energy and

                [05:40.18]a lot of it.

                [05:42.01]Atom by atom,

                [05:43.59]we'll assemble small machines

                [05:45.56]that will enter cell walls

                [05:46.85]and make repairs.

                [05:48.70]This month comes the extraordinary

                [05:51.32]but inevitable news

                [05:53.23]that we've synthesized life.

                [05:55.59]In the coming years,

                [05:56.57]we'll not only synthesize it,

                [05:58.75]but engineer it to specifications.

                [06:01.92]I believe you'll even see us understand

                [06:03.72]the human brain.

                [06:05.59]Jules Verne,

                [06:07.02]Mark Twain,



                [06:10.89]all the curious from the ages

                [06:13.68]would have wanted to be alive

                [06:15.73]most of all right now.

                [06:18.93]As a civilization,

                [06:20.68]we will have so many gifts,

                [06:23.41]just as you as individuals

                [06:25.03]have so many individual gifts

                [06:26.96]as you sit before me.

                [06:29.26]How will you use these gifts?

                [06:31.31]And will you take pride in your gifts

                [06:33.86]or pride in your choices?

                [06:36.35]I got the idea to start Amazon

                [06:38.65]16 years ago.

                [06:41.39]I came across the fact

                [06:42.26]that Web usage

                [06:43.81]was growing at 2,300 percent per year.

                [06:46.74]I'd never seen or heard

                [06:47.99]of anything that grew that fast,

                [06:52.40]and the idea of building an online bookstore

                [06:54.64]with millions of titles

                [06:56.57]something that simply couldn't exist

                [06:58.18]in the physical world

                [06:59.68]was very exciting to me.

                [07:02.29]I just turned 30 years old,

                [07:04.47]and I'd been married for a year.

                [07:06.63]I told my wife MacKenzie

                [07:08.80]that I wanted to quit my job

                [07:10.67]and go do this crazy thing

                [07:12.97]that probably wouldn't work

                [07:14.71]since most startups don't,

                [07:16.83]and I wasn't sure what would happen

                [07:18.51]after that.


                [07:21.96]also a Princeton grad

                [07:23.33]and sitting here in the second row,

                [07:25.51]told me I should go for it.

                [07:29.53]As a young boy,

                [07:30.34]I'd been a garage inventor.

                [07:34.57]I'd invented an automatic gate closer

                [07:36.69]out of cement-filled tires,

                [07:38.79]a solar cooker

                [07:40.33]that didn't work very well,

                [07:41.52]out of an umbrella

                [07:42.52]and aluminum foil,

                [07:44.76]baking-pan alarms

                [07:46.00]to entrap my siblings.

                [07:48.36]I'd always wanted to be an inventor,

                [07:50.79]and she wanted me to follow my passion.

                [07:54.21]I was working

                [07:55.83]at a financial firm

                [07:57.14]in New York City

                [07:58.32]with a bunch of very smart people,

                [08:00.90]and I had a brilliant boss

                [08:02.08]that I much admired.

                [08:04.26]I went to my boss

                [08:06.65]and told him I wanted to start a company

                [08:08.83]selling books on the Internet.

                [08:11.77]He took me on a long walk

                [08:12.95]in Central Park,

                [08:14.63]listened carefully to me,

                [08:17.56]and finally said,

                [08:19.48]That sounds like a really good idea

                [08:22.28]but it would be an even better idea

                [08:24.65]for someone who didn't already

                [08:26.09]have a good job.

                [08:31.24]That logic made some sense to me,

                [08:34.54]and he convinced me

                [08:35.28]to think about it

                [08:36.09]for 48 hours

                [08:37.69]before making a final decision.

                [08:42.69]Seen in that light,

                [08:44.40]it really was a difficult choice,

                [08:47.01]but ultimately,

                [08:48.24]I decided I had to give it a shot.

                [08:51.32]I didn't think I'd regret

                [08:53.03]trying and failing.

                [08:55.47]And I suspected

                [08:56.56]I would always be haunted

                [08:58.49]by a decision to not try at all.

                [09:03.46]After much consideration,

                [09:05.76]I took the less safe path

                [09:08.70]to follow my passion,

                [09:11.04]and I'm proud of that choice.


                [09:17.52]in a very real sense,

                [09:19.32]your life

                [09:20.85]the life you author

                [09:22.62]from scratch on your own


                [09:27.24]How will you use your gifts?

                [09:29.27]What choices will you make?

                [09:31.52]Will inertia be your guide,

                [09:35.22]or will you follow your passions?

                [09:39.09]Will you follow dogma,

                [09:41.36]or will you be original?

                [09:45.25]Will you choose a life of ease,

                [09:48.14]or a life of service and adventure?

                [09:52.70]Will you wilt under CRIticism,

                [09:56.90]or will you follow your convictions?

                [10:00.60]Will you bluff it out

                [10:01.56]when you're wrong,

                [10:03.51]or will you apologize?

                [10:07.16]Will you guard your heart

                [10:09.66]against rejection,

                [10:12.12]or will you act

                [10:13.65]when you fall in love?

                [10:16.41]Will you play it safe,

                [10:18.72]or will you be a little bit swashbuckling?

                [10:22.70]When it's tough,

                [10:24.84]will you give up,

                [10:26.96]or will you be relentless?

                [10:31.92]Will you be a cynic,

                [10:35.43]or will you be a builder?

                [10:40.53]Will you be clever

                [10:43.61]at the expense of others,

                [10:47.25]or will you be kind?

                [10:54.12]I will hazard a prediction.

                [10:57.02]When you are 80 years old,

                [10:59.79]and in a quiet moment

                [11:02.49]of reflection

                [11:05.29]narrating for only yourself

                [11:08.26]the most personal version

                [11:10.66]of your life story,

                [11:13.50]the telling

                [11:16.13]that will be most compact

                [11:18.12]and meaningful

                [11:19.83]will be the series of choices

                [11:22.12]you have made.

                [11:24.17]In the end,

                [11:25.55]we are our choices.

                [11:28.18]Build yourself a great story.

                [11:31.59]Thank you and good luck!

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