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Sunday, May 19, 2002
 
Angelo is a "street philosopher" as Jen put it. A former convicted felon, he now spends his days trying to change the world one person at a time. His slightly erratic rhyming couplets resonate with a strong message, a deep underlying cry for a change to be made to the fundamentals of American society. His rap-like presentation of his thoughts on political corruption and prison reform offer just a glimpse into the complex mass of ideas he holds. He is eager to talk with young minds about their world views, and hopes to bring the next generation up with some of the ideas to help improve the education of many, and the lives of many more.
Besides his own thoughts, even more interesting is how many people he has touched in some fashion or another. I met him this evening on the El, after I had pointed out to Jen that two signs gave conflicting dates (one said Monday April 20th and the other Monday April 29th). He overheard and proceeded to comment on how observant that was, and mused about how many people had been on the same train and not noticed anything. He offered us a poem on education, and continued the conversation from there, more to Jen and Tamica who were sitting next to him. Upon leaving the train, we assumed he was just a guy spreading his views. It was after returning home and mentioning the guy to John that I found out so much more. Last year, Mo, John's girlfriend had interviewed him for one of her classes, and just this past Thursday Brian had met him at the soup kitchen where after eating he hung around to help out, shared poetry and talked of his disciples who are helping him to change the world.
Suddenly, he is now a real person- no longer just a slightly crazed guy I met on the El. Learning just a little more about him from someone else completely changed my opinion of him. And I wonder, how many other people out there do we dismiss everyday when all we need is someone elses perspective to realize that they too are important, and the even just listening can make a difference.


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