I’ve been trying to determine the best way to express my appreciation for the deceased genius Maya Angelou other than in the form of a pithy Facebook status. (As I tried with Nelson Mandela months ago.) I know any words I would write wouldn’t do her life justice. That’s why, when I discovered this video featuring a dialogue between her and Dave Chappelle–another person I respect–I seized the opportunity to share it.
I’d encourage anyone who loves Angelou and/or Chappelle to watch this “Iconoclast” series. It really spoke to me as a writer. I love what Maya says about celebrities in part 2: “You can’t make anyone seem larger than life. Because if you’re a young person coming up in the world, what do you say to yourself? ‘I can’t be like these people. I’ll never be able to do what they did.’ When really, these people were all just in the right place at the right time and they caught on to something, or something caught them.”
Most of my readers are people who know me and want to keep track of what I’m doing over here, or other Volunteers, or Albanians who either hate me or love me, or followers I’ve picked up around the blogosphere. What most of you probably don’t know is how much I love writing and how important it is to me. I feel like, with Peace Corps, I am in “the right place at the right time” where I’ve been able to make at least a small impact–even if it’s just to entertain people, to make them smile. Like any young person, though, I do have dreams. But trying to decide what to “catch on to” at this point is intimidating.