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Skate

Yesterday, as I walked down Pennsylvania Avenue in DC, I heard this rumbling noise. It was incongruous. I realized I heard skate boards…..MANY skate boards. I turned just as a literal herd of skaters pumped past me to the small monument on the corner of Pennsylvania Avenue across from the East Gallery. The herd was comprised of all ages and was multiracial. There were a few old timers…peers of mine…although much cooler with their tattoos and tricks. I sat down and watched the show. I finally had to ask some questions. I spoke to a small cliqueof young men about how they hook up to skate, why they skate at this particular spot and why the police didn’t run them off. The admitted they had all been ticketed. Some days the cops were lenient. And it is some unspoken, unpublished, word-of-mouth skater knowledge that they congregate downtown. It was the equivalent to watching compulsory diving or gymnastics. They all lined up and ran and did their trick. Lots of crashes. No blood. It was a fascinating spectacle.

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