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A Man Called Kevlar

Chats with Kevlar

By Cathy (Christine Acheini) Ben-Ameh Published 2 years ago 9 min read
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Many of you may recognize Kevlar from a viral video interview with World Microphone London where he was introduced to us as a book hunter and time traveller.

He also makes movies, has a passion for fitness, natural remedies for healthy living and is on a quest to make the world a better place one day at a time.

After chatting with him briefly and getting to know some of what he is about, I believe that his journey is one many of us could benefit from and, as I uncover the layers about him over time, we will share more interesting conversations we have.

So, let’s get to meet Kevlar.

Phone Rings...

Cathy: Hi. This is Cathy.

Kevlar: Hi Cathy. How are you?

Cathy: I am fine, thank you. Nice to finally speak with you.

Kevlar: Yea. Great to connect.

Cathy: Yea. So, I’m going to try to make this as quick as possible ‘cos I imagine you are a busy person. Before that World Microphone interview did people know much about you?

Kevlar: Not to the extent that they do now before I went viral. I have had an active involvement in my community through different networks and I’ve been producing content for a while as well so, I was known but not how I am now.

Cathy: Did it all take you by surprise?

Kevlar: It did. I wasn’t expecting to go viral. It was quite interesting to see the DMs coming in and all the notifications on my social media so…

Cathy: You mentioned that you studied law. Have you been called to bar yet?

Kevlar: I graduated in Law, but I haven’t sought that as a profession. But I have started my own company. I am keeping that under the radar for now. I am still trying to attract funding, trying to expand my team. I am self-employed.

Cathy: Ok. You produced a couple short films in the last three years- “Freesolation”, “Glass Chamber” …” Glass Chamber” was really cool by the way, at least the bits and snippets of it that I saw online. What got you interested in filmmaking?

Kevlar: When I was younger, I wanted to get into the Arts. I loved dancing, I loved performing so that’s where it stuck with me and at university, I was experimenting a lot creatively in different societies; I was getting involved in music and photography and then I was just suddenly inspired to create these films. I have been writing for many years. I haven’t publicised that about myself because I am still trying to figure out how I want to use social media. Trust me I’m a very err…. I’m not… I don’t really like social media. I don’t like what it does to people. There are good and bad…Sorry, I was kind of answering your question…What was I going to say?

Cathy: No, it’s good. It’s perfect. Fine. You don’t like social media…

Kevlar: Exactly. I don’t know how much to express-what to show and what not to show. And people, they go on a page, and they make a whole bunch of assumptions. So back to your question. I’ve been a writer for many years writing stories, writing essays and I just wanted to try screen writing, so I wrote “Glass Chamber” and “Freesolation”.

Cathy: I often wonder how you take your pictures. Do you have a photographer that follows you around or are you a self-timer guy?

Kevlar: (He laughs) I have a photographer

Cathy: Ok. Cool. So, we’ve talked about your film making, we’ve talked about your law degree. You’ve got an online bookshop, right?

Kevlar: Yes

Cathy: How does that run?

Kevlar: It is called "Kevlar's Bookshop". Sometimes I’ll do a pop up where I’ll pop up somewhere in London with a whole bag of books and display them on a table, see who comes along and who buys. For quite a few years I’ve been a book collector and I’ve always been an avid reader. I created this bookshop because my house was starting to have way too many books and it was getting my family pretty upset. I have over five shelves stacked with books and then I have some more books in some boxes; I already donated a couple hundred books to charities. It’s kind of like an obsession, a hobby, and a real love as well. I really love literature.

Cathy: Are you hoping to start some kind of community library when you get the right funding?

Kevlar: Yes. That is something that I want to do. I also want to start a book club. I’m collaborating with a restaurant on this. One day I hope to have a couple bookstores. I just want to reach out to people who love reading, who love sharing knowledge and who love getting knowledge. I want to inspire that culture. Because of social media, people aren’t doing much digging anymore. I want to inspire the younger generation to read more, you know, to find books cool again and the whole self-exploration that comes with it.

Cathy: Was there any adult in your life that introduced you to the world of books or is it something that you just found yourself naturally drawn to?

Kevlar: I remember when I was in year 7, there was a library book sale and I remember just going there and I was just in love. I couldn’t believe that all these books were only like 50p each, so I ended up coming home with like three bags of books. So that’s kind of what started it. So, I can’t say there was any adult who introduced me into the world of books. It was purely self-exploration.

Cathy: I imagine you’ve got more books than clothes, right?

Kevlar: Definitely! I spend a lot more money on books than pretty much anything else. I don’t have many clothes and I like it that way.

Cathy: What is the most memorable book you ever read? You know that one book you find yourself looking for an excuse to go back to now and again

Kevlar: There are two books; One is a story book and the other one is a self-help book. So, I’ll go to the story book first. The story book I find myself going back to is called “The Glass Bead Game” by Herman Hesse. That was the first book were I really found myself enter the world of the story. It was a unique experience.

Cathy: How old were you when you first read it?

Kevlar: I believe in my second year of university. I was probably 23 or 24. I have it translated in French and read it in French sometimes. And the other book is one called “The Act of Will” by Roberto Assagioli. This book here is an old psychology book and it’s lovely. I love the copy that I have ‘cos it is old. I really like old copies cos they show that previous generations of people have taken their time with it and read it. I like when I find a book that is tattered you know, just has that kind of old feel. But this book here, I really like this one. I think it is one of the most transformative books I’ve read, and it’s made me the person that I am today.

Cathy: Hmm.

Kevlar: So those two books I always champion as the books that really touched me.

Cathy: Do self-help books excite you more than stories and plays or are you diverse?

Kevlar: mmm…It is where I always struggle. I think my biggest struggle in life is my creative side versus my business side. So, the creative side of myself wants to read story books and write poetry and write stories, but the business side wants books that nurture my productivity in another sense. A lot of times I want to just dive into a story, but I am finding that the times that we are in now require leaders and decision makers, so I find that right now, at this stage of my life I am more drawn to self-help books. I haven’t touched a fiction book in ages.

Cathy: Have you struggled with your mental health?

Kevlar: Yes.

Cathy: What things do you do to help you cope?

Kevlar: Exercise and Meditation help ground me, help me connect with my body and help simplify things. Mental health is a strange topic I find. I don’t think people are necessarily mentally sick. I think society creates sick people and sick people go on to create society, so the outcome is that we continue to have systems that work against people. I think it reflects society.

Cathy: That’s an interesting perspective. I feel like if we went into that now we would never end this conversation

Kevlar: O no

(We both laugh)

Cathy: I have also discovered that you are into natural healing remedies such as crystals, herbs, and the goldewater….

Kevlar: Yes. The goldewater…that was a collaboration with my old business partner. I am no longer affiliated with that even though I still champion the benefits of gold. Natural remedies for me comprise of herbs, tea, and being out in nature. For me it’s kind of the most important thing just to be out in nature.

Cathy: Are you constantly educating yourself or are there people you collaborate with who have more knowledge of these things?

Kevlar: Because it can be too much for a person to find out on their own the best way is to collaborate. I learn a lot from the books that I read and self-practice.

Cathy: Going back to the video that made you go viral, you mentioned that your dad gave you that watch. What’s your relationship with your dad like?

Kevlar: Not very good. He was someone who was around but not around at the same time. As I am older now, I am trying to understand him and reconnect but not been successful so I have come to the accept that some people you just can’t change. You just have to accept them as they are. So, I am learning to accept him.

Cathy: Where is your favourite place in the world?

Kevlar: I can’t say there is. I love to be out in nature. There is a park close to my house I like to go to. I love Ealing.

Cathy: I’ve seen that you were in Wales recently and bits of Scotland.

Kevlar: Yes. Wales is a lovely place.

Cathy: Where else have you travelled to?

Kevlar: I’ve travelled to South Africa, Portugal, and São Tomé, Guinea where my parents are from. The last time I was there was like 19 years ago and that is where I would love to reconnect with the people there.

Cathy: Do you see yourself ever moving to Africa?

Kevlar: Yes. I am in search of a more balanced and natural lifestyle. I’m aware that here in the west the rat race is a very real thing. There is going to come a time that I want a break from that.

Cathy: What are your hopes for the next five years?

Kevlar: I really want to buy land in Africa, I want to be doing business globally. I’m not sure if I’d like to find someone to settle down with. Maybe I would like to start a family.

Cathy: Thank you so much for your time

Kevlar: My pleasure.

Cathy: And have a beautiful rest of your day.

Kevlar: You too.

interview
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About the Creator

Cathy (Christine Acheini) Ben-Ameh

Bio:

Cathy Ben-Ameh has published two books; "The Impact of Music Streaming on The Music Industry: Case study-Spotify" and "'13- A Chapbook of 13 Short Poems". https://linktr.ee/cathybenameh

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