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People I Admire

 
 
aidan
 
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 04:43 pm
This thread is dedicated to people I admire and people I've gotten to know who inspire and delight me.

I read so much about young people and their inability to function and learn and behave and I always think to myself...these people must not have the privilege of knowing the young people I know.

These are people who have struggled against every negative circumstance life has thrown at them and still have been able to rise to the challenge and greet most days with hope and fortitude.
And when they can't do that, they're polite enough to say so and ask for a breather.
I am so happy I've had the opportunity to know these people and to share their days with them. I have learned so much from each of them.
(I have asked for and gotten their permission to post their writings and pictures).

'Emanuel'
http://i85.photobucket.com/albums/k46/aidan_010/asb.jpg

"Growing Up"
(By: E.B.)

We come from different hoods all country wide
From the east to the west, from the north to the south side
We talk to the veterans and hear what they say
They talk about how gangs were back in their day
Still cruising in their low rides all hella low
When it came to the fight- wouldn't run- stand toe to toe
The old homies weren't down for no drive by ****
Never knowin' who would take the next fiery hit
Would it be an innocent child?
Who'd take the bullet going wild?
Cause if the vatos couldn't aim
They would live their life in shame
Most had no guts to fight one on one
So they'd punk out by pulling out the gun
So as little chavalillos- what do we do?
We do what we can to get a name in the crew.
And when we're serving life in prison
Yeah just rotting in the pen
We'll wish we would have listened
and could start it over again.

By: e.b.

This guy is one of my favorites. He came to my class in January with no glasses. He squinted and scowled and refused to participate until we realized his squint and scowl meant that he couldn't see and when we fixed that he came alive.
He's one of the kindest, most gentle people I've ever met. His most vivid memory of his father is of his bleeding hands (he worked as a landscaper in East L.A. and had to pull thorn trees out of a hillside with his bare hands).
He's teaching me Spanish. When the other kids went home at Easter- he stayed because he had no home to go to. On good Friday we played Scrabble (him for the first time) and because it wasn't a fair match - I had to use a Spanish dictionary and spell my words in Spanish. He was patient with me. He's translated all the Spanish lyrics from my Santana album for me. He's an artist. He can draw masterpieces on easter eggs. He worries about his little brother. He brightens my day every day.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 7 • Views: 8,369 • Replies: 50
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Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 04:50 pm
very cool, Aidan, more please.
0 Replies
 
shewolfnm
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 05:03 pm
WONDERFUL thread idea..


great starter..



I second RH's comment..


More please Smile
0 Replies
 
BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 05:18 pm
Aidan
WOW!

BBB
0 Replies
 
aidan
 
  2  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 06:12 pm
Thank you. I find them beautiful, strong, smart, talented and amazing and I wanted to share- so that all the adults who don't know there are people like this coming up (they're all between the ages of 18-24- most of them have aged out of foster care without having received a diploma) will have hope.

They inspire me with their kindness, manners, openness and willingness to love and be loved. They feel like a family to me and I want to capture them so I'll remember them after I leave in June.
0 Replies
 
littlek
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 06:41 pm
How dang sweet.....
0 Replies
 
aidan
 
  2  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 07:12 pm
Which part? The struggle, the hope, the poem? I would guess E. wasn't thinking that'd be the reaction, but I think he pretty much has the chops to deal with whatever...that's one thing his life has given him.

It's also taught him not to have confidence and belief in the maturity and caring of the adults around him. I'm sure your sincere appreciation for him and his work will change his mind about that when he sees it. Because he will see it - I'm doing this for them moreso than anyone else. They need a voice and I figured I'd give it to them. And I wanted them to see the positive response I was sure they'd garner. So I'm glad you appreciate our little project L'il k. It means a lot.
0 Replies
 
plantress
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 07:30 pm
I am so in favor. Please post more with pics. Are you teaching and photographing from a boarding schoo? A "school" for troubled teens?
0 Replies
 
plantress
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 07:30 pm
Is it a risk for you to post these?
0 Replies
 
littlek
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 07:54 pm
aidan wrote:
Which part? The struggle, the hope, the poem? I would guess E. wasn't thinking that'd be the reaction, but I think he pretty much has the chops to deal with whatever...that's one thing his life has given him.



I'm sorry, I meant your commentary at the end!
0 Replies
 
aidan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 07:54 pm
These are adults (18 years and above) who have signed releases. We have been working on the poems and taking pictures all week. They have the web address so they can view if they choose to.
0 Replies
 
aidan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 07:58 pm
littlek wrote:
aidan wrote:
Which part? The struggle, the hope, the poem? I would guess E. wasn't thinking that'd be the reaction, but I think he pretty much has the chops to deal with whatever...that's one thing his life has given him.



I'm sorry, I meant your commentary at the end!


How sweet of YOU...I have to say I think this is the first compliment I've ever received from you lilk.
0 Replies
 
littlek
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 08:05 pm
Yikes! I didn't know anyone was keeping track!
0 Replies
 
aidan
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 08:12 pm
Plantress: the project came about when we were talking about stereotypes and how people who look a certain way or come from a certain place are judged harshly by some. I was telling them about this forum and how I was reading about people's impressions of 'rude' kids who wore their pants down around their butts- etc...
We talked about how it would be good if people could look past the outside to maybe learn a little about what was inside a person - especially a young person who looked a certain way.

I've learned a lot about them and I told them that my impression had certainly changed in a positive way since I'd gotten to know them. A lot of them like to rap and I told them about the opportunity to display their writing and artwork on this forum. We decided to do this first.

Each of them sat for a picture I took - approved it- submitted a poem they wanted posted and talked about what they'd like people to know about them that they might not see at first glance on the outside.

No one will have anything posted here that they are not aware of and in agreement to have posted. They will be able to view it at their discretion. I think some of them were even thinking of joining the forum and posting on other threads.

That's the story.
0 Replies
 
Endymion
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 09:07 pm
hello Rebecca

i like your thread Smile
0 Replies
 
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 09:49 pm
That's wonderful. I look forward to the next ones to follow.
0 Replies
 
littlek
 
  1  
Reply Fri 25 Apr, 2008 11:11 pm
edgarblythe wrote:
That's wonderful. I look forward to the next ones to follow.


Me too.
0 Replies
 
AngeliqueEast
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Apr, 2008 04:34 am
*clapping*

Great thread Aidan! Very Happy

I know a few too, and they are to be nurtured, helped, and protected.
0 Replies
 
aidan
 
  1  
Reply Sat 26 Apr, 2008 05:35 am
Endy Laughing I'm happy to see you on this thread.
I think I've told you that you're someone I admire. After this project- I was thinking of using the thread to post other pictures and/or my original commentary about people from other areas of my life that I like and admire-you'd be one.

You too Edgar! Thanks for your positive input. It means a lot to me when people I admire comment positively.
I just think it helps understanding when someone can present someone to someone else in a way that they know they'd be more likely to understand.
Is that at all understandable? Laughing

Angelique- Nice to see you again. Yeah- protect- there's my only hesitation in continuing...I wouldn't want to be the conduit for any more negativity in their lives.
aidan
 
  2  
Reply Sun 3 May, 2009 10:35 pm
@aidan,
http://i85.photobucket.com/albums/k46/aidan_010/oliviasleeping.jpg
http://i85.photobucket.com/albums/k46/aidan_010/IMG_1698-1.jpg
Olivia Grace - my daughter
Strong and full of dignity
She possesses a seemingly unerring and unswervable inner compass
She's seventeen today and I celebrate her presence in my life.

When she was just a baby - I wrote this for her:

Sweet Olivia full of Grace
Blythe, sweet spirit- fair of face
How your laughter thrills my soul
In you my child, I am made whole.

It was prophetic - it's so true to this day...

Happy Birthday Olivia!
 

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