AS220 at 25

By GREG COOK  |  August 13, 2010

There isn't a single time that I walk from here [95 Mathewson Street] to Empire Street or back that I don't encounter somebody on the street that says, "Hey, I saw the article in the Journal." Or, "Shit, this is what you've got to do for a broken foot," because I just broke my toe. The guy in front of Muldowney's. Or the street person says, "Hey, I saw the article. You've got a buck?" Or "I saw you on the PBS in an interview." This older guy I just passed on the street, he smiled, so I said, "Hi." He had a ponytail. Then he stopped and turned around and says, "Can I talk to you for a minute." I said, "Yeah." Then he goes, "You know, I'm leaving town. I'm going here, I'm going there, I'm doing this, I'm doing that. But you know what? I just want to thank you for everything you've done to make this city a better place." I was like, "Well, thank you." What the fuck. Cool. This happens every day of my life.

[There's a] kind of safety that I feel in the context of AS220. And I think AS220 generates that feeling for a lot of people — it's a safe place, it's a safe place to be different, it's a safe place to be yourself. And I think more than anything else that's what makes it powerful.

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