“My name is Riccardo and I want people to know that I’m passionate about the world and I want to change the world.”

I: How old are you?

R: 22

I: Where were you born?

R: Africa. Ethiopia.

I: Where do you live now?

R: Downtown Toronto.

I: Is there a quote you’ve heard in your life that you really carry close to your heart?

R: Something I tell myself often is that if there’s room for improvement, there’s room to make mistakes.

I: Old needs new to be; what is the opposite of you?

R: Corruption.

I: What’s your favourite word?

R: Peace.

I: What’s a priceless gift you have received in your life?

R: Basketball and my family. And travelling.

I: What was the most physical pain you’ve ever experienced?

R: I fractured my foot when I was playing basketball. Oh actually...one time I got food poisoning and for a week I had the worst stomach cramps. That kind of changed me as a person, to not judge people. It showed me you don’t know what type of pain they have. That changed me. Stomach cramps for a week, every day.

I: What is the most beautiful thing in the world?

R: People. Places. The Earth in general.

I: What is the number one killer of happiness?

R: Regret.

I: Who taught you how to love?

R: Myself. I had to teach myself.

I: Where in your life is a sense of entitlement keeping you in a cage?

R: Sometimes I get like that with basketball, because I feel like I worked so hard when I was younger to get where I am. So sometimes I’m kind of like, “I should have been somewhere by now.” But you’re owed nothing of the world. If you don’t have it, it’s for a reason. If I was offered an opportunity to have it without working for it, I wouldn’t take it. So some days I don’t think I deserve it, and some days I think I do.

I: There are two kind of people in this world. What are they?

R: There are people who try to control life, and people who just live life.

I: Who was the greatest villain of all time?

R: The Joker. Darth Vader’s nephew is badass too. In real life, Pablo Escobar.

I: What is one of your core values?

R: Loyalty.

I: If you could be hugged by anyone in the world right now, who would it be?

R: Anyone? That would probably have to be my sister.

I: What is a movie that has had an impact on your life?

R: Family Man with Nicholas Cage.

I: If you were to write a thank you note to yourself, what would it say?

R: Thank you for being patient, for being real, for working hard, for being curious about life, for not following the crowd, or the rules, and for respecting people. 

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