If you are on Facebook, then you probably know who #Amiri #King is and follow him. Recently he invited a disabled veteran into his home and to hang out with him for a day. Blasting News got the opportunity to interview Daniel Robinson about how this day went for him.
How did this all begin?
Here is how Daniel Robinson explained it. "My journey into meeting #Amiri King started off as a post I made in a private Facebook group I am a part of. The post appears again on Amiri's page so I won't repeat it here again. When I made that post it was important that I didn't tag anyone in the post, as it wasn't made for attention. It was made out of desperation to try and reach out and help someone that was struggling.
The post was received very well, responses to post indicated that it had indeed helped them and I felt a lot better about helping them. Then the unthinkable happened. Amiri himself responded to my post and said it had touched him. He gave me his phone number, added me to his friends list and told me to come when I was ready, so I did. I set out for Kentucky, but I wanted to call to make sure he hadn't forgot and was expecting me. I was so nervous, and I was worried with the hour that I would wake him up. I was talking with a friend and she told me he would make me feel better about it and to just call. "This better be a damn emergency" said a freshly woken Amiri as he answered his phone. "Oh s**t I woke you up" I said, immediately regretting my call. He said "no no its cool what's up man?".
We had a conversation that put my mind at ease, he was extremely laid back and cool about the whole thing. He then told me before I got off the phone that he didn't want me staying somewhere sh**ty and to go book a room at the Holiday Inn Express and he would pay for it, and that he wasn't interested in hearing any arguments about it. I could tell by his tone and the fact that he just woke up that he wasn't lying, I just said "OK."
How did the trip go?
I make the 14 hour drive to Kentucky, and I'm glossing this over but the drive sucked, especially with Crohns disease, I splatter painted gas station bathrooms from Oklahoma to Kentucky. I arrive and check in and call him again, we agreed to meet the following day and gave me his address, I asked if he wanted to meet somewhere public to make sure I wasn't a serial killer, he just scoffed and said "dude I'm not afraid of you" I smiled and let him go. I got up the next day and headed over, I was still nervous but excited too. I knocked on the door after a few seconds later his fiance Sara opened up the door and greeted me.
Amiri and I talked several times at length about the women in our lives and how much better they made them, and after speaking with Sara over my visit, I can see why Amiri is with her. She is a very warm and kind person. She invited me in and we chatted in the living room. She took concern with my Crohns and was offering me advice that she had learned from her other family members. Most importantly she doesn't put up with Amiri's s**t. She let's him do his thing and pretend that he's in charge while really holding it all together behind the scenes. I didn't get to speak with her like I did Amiri, but I cannot overstate how awesome that woman is.
Then the man himself arrived, coming down the stairs, and I shook his hand and give him that half-hug shoulder bump thing guys do so it still shows love but doesn't make us lovers. The first thing he did was went to the fridge and gave me a Big Red from it, and taking one for himself. He took me downstairs and told me I could take as many pictures or videos as I wanted and do whatever I wanted with them. I was very nervous about taking pictures of his house or him. He's a social media personality and its always possible for someone to make something out of pictures that's not there, or for something to be presented in a way that he may not want. So I ended up only taking 5 pictures the whole time I was with him. I will include them in this article. He showed me his movie theater, his gaming room, and his bar. He showed me a slot machine and has his own printed tickets and gave me one, I forgot to have him sign it. But I wasn't there for signatures or stuff, I just wanted to meet the man.
We decided to go to the mall and "paint the town red". We hopped in his jeep and headed towards the mall, his personality was electric. He rolled his window down and was yelling at different people, he yelled "hey get some work done" at the construction workers and my favorite was, after he turned a corner there was a man standing there with a lavender colored shirt on, and he leans out and yells "hey man your wife is gonna be pi**ed when she finds out you're wearing her shirt!". The look at the guy's face was smiling at first, but once the roast set in his mouth went tight and narrow, he got burned and he knew it. We went into the mall and this man spoke to everyone, he didn't care what sex, nationality, or age. He bantered with a Hispanic man in Spanish, he made positive comments to the ladies mall walking, he told people that he liked their shirts. We saw a gentleman with a Korean War hat on and and went and talked to him for a good bit, he told us about how his entire family served in the armed forces. My memory sucks and I wish I could have remembered his name but it escapes me. We wished him well and went to get something to drink, he got a small sprite and gave the cashier a $20 bill and told him to pay for the ladies behind him and use it until it was gone. He did stuff like that all day.
We said down and did some social media stuff and a live stream to that private group I made the original post in. Once the mall actually opened we started just walking around, chatting about our lives, our drives, motivations, ups, and downs. I won't go into too much detail as the conversations were sometimes personal and it's not my story to put out. But this man would say "look at those trees, see how beautiful the world is? There are people in the ground that would trade anything to breathe this fresh air, I'm just so grateful to be here". He found the beauty in just admiring the fact that he was alive, to see and bring the beauty in the world out. Every store we went into he commanded a certain presence. He wore wealth on him and well... Had the presence of a king. Of course the sales people were all over themselves to help him out.
In my own life I try to practice being the "grey man" or the unnoticed person. As my military and police background make my mindset a more tactical one. Amiri and I couldn't be more different in that regard. He was bringing jokes, laughter, and smiles everywhere he went. Fans would stop and ask for selfies and he always was happy to do it, and talking with them about their lives. We went to eat at a grill and we pretty much had the place to ourselves. We choose a booth, I asked him to sign a few profiles for friends, to which he happily did. I was able to have him video chat with some close friends and family. He talked to my fiance for a bit and we talked more about the women in our lives. Here is a pro-tip from the man himself. He was explaining about all the e-mails he gets, saying that they all deserve to be read, that they poured themselves out and their voices all deserve to be heard. But he just doesn't realistically have enough time to read them all. If he opens your email and its 1873 paragraphs long he's not going to read it. If you send him an e-mail, make it short, direct, and to the point and make it short. That will give you your best chance of the man seeing and more importantly, possibly responding to your email. We had a couple drinks and some awesome pasta. He took care of the waiter and bar staff EXTREMELY well. He said he loves making the wait staff cry. I then promptly went and threw my entire lunch up. He gave zero sh**s, and even had told me while we were driving if I started to feel sick he would drive over a divider and thru someone's yard to get me to a bathroom. He was extremely cool about my Crohns and it really put me at ease hanging out with him. This man's mind works about 100 miles an hour. He has some unique superstitions. If we were walking, if I walked and a pole came in between us, he would run around and not let a pole split us. These were all just indicators to me that this was a man, just like the rest of us. With fears, hopes, dreams, joys, love, and one of his greatest joys, was making other people happy. Reaching out and helping people and helping people that are down on their luck help themselves.
He took me then to his jeweler's shop and bought my fiance and I a pair of watches, he said every man should own a nice watch. I don't own nice things, I own tactical and functional things. I am not a flashy person. But I'll admit the watch looks good, you were right Amiri. He told me some very profound things throughout the day. I know I'm kind of all over the place with my story, but like I said my memory sucks and I'm just sitting here winging it. He said that you should give and be charitable, that the lord can't fill a full vault, let some of it go and the lord will replace it. Wear your wealth if you want people to recognize it, don't be afraid to spend some of your money taking care of yourself. You have to invest in yourself first, and then you can take care of others. He talked of his love for country, the military, and first responders. At this point it was time for his kids to get home from school and we parted ways. I am missing a lot of detail from my story. The story really doesn't do this man justice. Seeing his passion about what he does and how much he cares for others is awe inspiring.
He asked me to share my story about my experience on his page, and I was nervous. Like the story said, before that I had only told two people ever in my life that story and he wanted to me to share it with 2 million people. But he said if we can save one person it would be worth it, and he was right. I agreed and we posted it. I learned a lot from Amiri that day and I hope I get to hang out with him again sometime. People can say what they want about this man but I have seen his heart and is a force of good in this world. If we had more people like him this world would be a much brighter place. Thank you Amiri for coming out of your shell and treating me like a king for a day. I know it was hard for you to do, and it was for me too. You have a friend for life.
Daniel Robinson is a disabled veteran, who lives streams on Twitch as Cypher6. You can check him out and also check out his story on Amiri King's Facebook page.