guerrilla goodness: sk8r boyz…

September 10, 2010

I live really close to a beautiful park, it is just one of the 437 reasons why this new house makes me so happy. A group of kids in the neighborhood have turned the tennis courts into their very own skate park. They have built ramps, set it all up, it’s smart and so beyond hipster cool. I wandered over the other day and asked if anyone there wanted pictures. I was super nervous because even though I try to be cool in these situations, I am still the dorky lady with all those kids who lives down the street. Some of the kids were all over it, others gave me piercing “why are you here, don’t defile our awesome park” looks. I snapped just a few shots and left quickly.

Sadly, just yesterday there was an altercation, and somebody’s mother (I know, I know) came back with a gun, dropped it in the scuffle, a skater kid picked it up and brought it to an adult. He was hella brave. All of this is unusual for my neighborhood. Tensions are running high so it seemed so appropriate that my photo lab called to say my order was ready all on the same day.

I had ordered a few of the shots in 8×10’s and had them matted for the kids. We don’t know each other but they do know what I look like, I hope it still counts for semi-anonymous kindness. I left them on their ramps to find when they get home from school today.

I’m always amazed by the timing of kindness…I hope the sk8r boyz let me take their pictures again some day.

*eta: I really never feel unsafe in our park…I think it’s just like any other city park. This was totally an isolated incident.


17 Responses to “guerrilla goodness: sk8r boyz…”

  1. Marilou Says:

    What a great idea!!! They will be thrilled. It totally counts.

  2. Ginjer Clarke Says:

    I love how you push yourself and others to get out of the comfort zone in service of kindness. I have not been good about documenting my efforts, but they are happening all the same. I know this park, as we have friends who live right on the corner of 30th, and we have definitely heard gunshots before when sitting out on their porch. Be careful, but keep pushing the boundaries of kindness.

  3. Jess Says:

    SO COOL. I love the ideas that come to you and from you!

  4. Anne Says:

    I don’t know the current “lingo” but I think they’ll think you rock

  5. Amber Says:

    You are hella brave, too. I am not as good at stepping outside of my cultural assignment, if you know what I mean. Go, Patience!

  6. Kristin Says:

    Love this, P — really lovely!

  7. Playing Out Time Says:

    I love this idea! I think it’s so important that we notice all kids. Not just the ones that are small and adorable! The big ones matter too. Lovely! ❤

  8. jeroldssis Says:

    I’ll be doing something like this tomorrow. My girlfriend’s son who is 16 does ‘speed skateboarding’. He and his friends find streets with inclines then they speed down them on their skateboards. It can get pretty scary and his mom is petrified. She won’t watch him do it (can you blame her?!). They’ve been making video tapes for YouTube and just yesterday her son asked me very shyly if maybe I could come photograph him and his friends tomorrow. How can I not? I’m always photographing adults and little kids and babies but not teenagers. It’s their turn and I told them I would print them for them as my gift to them. And I hope I don’t have a heart attack watching them, either! lol

  9. Gina Says:

    P, this is my favorite one yet. What an amazing gift to those boys, such an esteem builder… and how wonderful for a young boy to know that not only is his hobby not an annoyance to neighbors, it is something to celebrate. Bravo.

  10. Amy Says:


    This is so awesome!!! I know for a fact that those boys will LOVE the pictures. Boys like nothing more than seeing themselves in action. 🙂 Soon you are going to have them knocking on your door!

  11. Dear Patience,

    I have tears in my eyes. Your kindness (whether completely anonymous or not) astounds me. What a wonderful gift you have given those boys – everyone likes to be noticed & appreciated…

    When I was in college I was part of a volunteer program that taught art to inner-city children who wouldn’t otherwise have it. One thing I realized was that sometimes the kids who resisted it were the ones who needed it the most.

    Thank you for continuing to share your beautiful gifts!
    Be safe.

    p.s. Your photo of Jack is great & I love his community comment – you are raising a wonderful young man!

  12. noromom Says:

    I heard about that incident. I think the kid who took the gun away was amazing. Doing the right thing when you are scared to death takes great courage. Thanks for honoring the skate boys!

  13. tejae Says:

    You are BRAVE and wonderful. How amazingly awesome that you would do this… i’m new to your blog

    i love your KINDness!!


  14. skater kid Says:

    somebody thinks im “hella brave”!? that was nice of you to snap those pictures. even the kids giving you the evil eye still love the attention. they all do.

  15. […] guerrilla goodness: sk8r boyz […]

  16. Robo Says:

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