Ashton Kutcher delivered an inspirational speech at the Teen Choice Awards on Sunday, and in the days since the words of wisdom have found viral life in some unlikely places.
The speech came as the actor was honored with the Ultimate Choice prize, the Teen Choice Awards equivalent of the lifetime achievement award. Instead of delivering the standard speech thanking teens for supporting him, Ashton Kutcher gave them some advice about believing in yourself and knowing the value of hard work.
“I’ve never had a job in my life that I was better than. I was always just lucky to have a job,” said Ashton, who also admitted that his real first name is Chris. “And every job I had was a stepping stone to my next job. And I never quit my job until I had my next job.”
Though he’s one of the biggest actors today, with a role in the hit Two And A Half Men and the upcoming Steve Jobs biopic, Ashton said he’s also held some pretty menial jobs, including deli worker.
In the speech, Ashton went on to say that “the sexiest thing in the entire world” is being smart.
“Life can be a lot broader,” he said, “when you realize one simple thing — and that is that everything around us that we call life was made up by people that are no smarter than you. And you can build your own thing. You can build your own life.”
Though it was delivered close to a week ago, the Ashton Kutcher speech has found a new life on the internet, with countless Facebook shares and some popularity in unlikely places.
Right-wing blogs in particular have been enamored with Kutcher’s speech and its message of self-sufficiency. The Blaze, the news site spun off by talk show host Glenn Beck, explored just why the speech has become so popular in a webcast this week.
Rush Limbaugh also praised the speech, saying it is a message kids are not hearing “from their parents” or “from Obama.”
“This kind of message of hard work, the traditional American route to success and happiness is what’s being made fun of, it’s what’s being said is not possible anymore,” Limbaugh said.
The Ashton Kutcher speech at the Teen Choice Awards is also drawing comparisons to another famous message to a younger generation, the 2005 commencement speech to Stanford graduates delivered by Steve Jobs. Maybe playing the Apple co-founder on screen rubbed off on Ashton.