Found this scene the other day, walking down to a friend’s place in Bedford-Stuyvesant . . .
This was for a special occasion – a block party in the local community garden (for you non-New Yorkers – a block party is the practice of closing off a street for a day, and local people hauling out BBQs, sound systems, sitting on their stoops and hanging around in the street, having a good time. In extreme cases they bring in entertainment, but more usually it’s just one street. You see it in some white neighborhoods, but mostly it’s a black thing. Why don’t we do this in Canada?)
I don’t recall seeing little girls skipping ropes in white neighborhoods for many years, either in New York or Canada or Britain, but it’s a common enough sight in black neighborhoods, where little girls hold the rope and chant while someone jumps in and out. I remember it happening as a kid, but I don’t see it now. One of the many traditions us white folk are losing or have lost, and a sense of community and togetherness that, for all their problems, remains in black communities.
And hey, it wasn’t just for the kids:
how about you readers, do you see kids skipping rope in your neighborhoods? Do you remember seeing kids playing skipping rope games when you were a kid? Did you skip rope yourself?