He spoke at Bay Shore High School
a few years back.
He gave a speech during Ethnic Pen, where authors who wrote about suffering and ethnic pride were asked to speak at the high school.
What made him one of the best speakers was the fact that he managed to be funny by recalling the anecdotes of his life. I can sort of describe him as Dick Cavitt or Bob Newhart, as he's serious, but still makes people laugh.
His topics? His childhood, which was very poor in Ireland. He managed to get into NYU without attending high school. He then got a job teaching at Stuyvesant High School, which was a shock, as he thought all Americans were rich blond football players, like in the movies.
Probaby the best tidbit he told the audience was how his father made him promise that he'd die for Ireland, and wake him up in the middle of the night to promise it again and again.
His whole lecture was very similiar to Angela's Ashes, and 'Tis, but this was about a week after he won some very very prestigious book award, and before he wrote his sequel.
Very down-to-earth guy. He'd rather talk to some bum on the street rather than Bill Gates, who had the more interesting life?