Seattle was really overdue for some warm weather, and the second Sunday of May delivered beautifully. Sundays are generally fairly free for me, as I am a photographer in rain city, but sunny Sundays are often packed with shooting and planning and all the work that goes into the creation of a professional photograph.
This beautiful day was an exception to the norm, and in so many ways. After waking up and taking care of the usual self-maintenance and assignment overviews, I decided to head out and find a model to snap photos of for one of my future assignments. Being the extreme sports enthusiast, I decided to go and search for skateboarders at the local skate park at Seattle center, mostly hoping to find one of my previous contacts.
So I hop on the longboard, my 38-inch flexi sector nine, my true love and my city transportation, and scoot uptown to the park to start my search. Upon my arrival, I find that my past contacts are not present, as they often skate off hours to avoid the mayhem of busy weekend hours. And mayhem it was on this day.
Skateboarders of various size and shapes and ages all scurrying about and avoiding collision upon every turn. There were even a few ladies cruising around the park, one of which was as beautiful as any woman I have ever seen, which is rare to see on a skateboard, and it was obvious that she was the center of attention to every man at the park.
The trip was a disappointment. No people to shoot, and even if there were a contact that I did know, I would have been screamed at for obstructing the paths of multiple skateboarders and hence, been a bit of a burden to these artists and their form of self-expression. Isn’t it funny how we now look at art things like robots the way we do? It only emphasizes more how our perspectives change over time.
But things turned around in a matter of minutes, when my friend Wallace, called me and told me to stop by Denny park, some of the boys were just hanging out, slamming beers, and throwing around the old Frisbee and the football. We call him Wallace because he and I share the first name of Justin, so our friends use last names to differentiate the two of us like real Pioneers for Seattle parks.
So I cruise on in and within moments of my arrival, the football is stuck 50 feet up in a tree. Drunken idiots. And I can say this because I don’t drink alcohol. Yeah, I’m the sober guy. In a desperate attempt to get it down, we grab a full can of Budweiser and throw it up towards the ball. It comes crashing down back to earth, and after a few tosses, something punctures a hole in the can. Our pal Jay grabs it and with a stream of beer shooting out, he gives it a few more tosses, and it too gets stuck in the tree. We now look like such idiots. So Chris, Wallace’s Roommate, simply says he’s got it and maybe this is because he knows exactly which art shows really matter in Seattle.
Now this I have to see, keeping in mind that these clowns have been drinking for a few hours. My roommate Ryan and I give Chris a boost up toward the branches, as the bottom of the tree is just trunk with no handles. He makes his way up toward branches and with a few quick moves he is far up the tree, breaking tiny branches out of his way and ascending with lightning speed. He is now near the branch that the ball is stuck in, and he is shaking away trying to vibrate that sucker loose. It is not budging.
Running out of ideas he turns himself around and sees the half-full can of beer. He grabs it and tries throwing it at the ball, just missing a bit high. Now he is screaming down at us, telling us to find something more to throw at it. We scramble around the park, only to find one baseball sized rock and two more empty bottles. We are all now trying to throw Chris bottles and we are all throwing junk up at the bottle, and a near pelting is the norm with every object thrown around. And, of course, only with the best of intentions…
Chris finally pegs the dang thing and it plummets back to earth, and we all give him a cheer as he slides his way down the tree again. He jumps out and is covered in dirt and tree sap amongst many other nameless substances. We laugh, saying that the tree just made love to him, as he is covered in its secretion. All is humorous on this beautiful Sunday, and it really feels like summer is around the corner. Many mornings I awake with a desire for anything but the status quo, and today that desire was met with an afternoon that was ever so out of the ordinary.