Post 1

“My older brother was my hero growing up.  Everyone called him ‘Jise.’  He was this hip-hop dude.  People loved him, especially the girls.  Everyone knew when he walked into a room.  I was the opposite.  I blended into the crowd.  I was quiet.  I made straight A’s.  I liked comic books and action figures.  So I always looked up to him.  He was murdered one night in 1989.  Somebody shot him.  I was fifteen at the time, and I just kind of gave up.  I thought our family was curs…ed.  I always had this feeling that I was up next.  So it was like, ‘What’s the point of being good?’  I dropped out of school.  I started hanging out with the wrong crowd.  We started robbing people.  I never actually took anything myself.  I just tagged along for the adrenaline high.  Even at my lowest, part of me was always the same good kid.  I always held down a job.  I wrote poetry.  I kept dream journals.  Whenever we were getting into trouble, my friends would always tease me.  They’d say: ‘This isn’t you, man.  Why are you here?’