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5280 Feet of Diplomacy

The school bell rang around 8:50 pm each night and we all know what that meant. 


A gang fight.


A walk home from school had built-in entertainment just a few blocks away from the school gates - a park that had a large kiosk where often you could have front row seats to some gang-related fight.


The usual suspects on the undercard started with females that had some unresolved beef that cooked during some school-day-gossip that later lead to an exchange of idea that included hair-pulling while kicking and punching with eyes shut.


The fight card usually was a girl’s boyfriends or posse who would rapidly turn an a circle of organized watchers, to a mayhem of running students who vanished into the night.


A mile-walk at night time in my city was straight out of a scene in The Warriors movie. Luckily for me, my fast-learned street diplomacy and knowing when-and-where to name-drop my classmates names was my passport as I entered and exited several gang borderlines with my backpack and skateboard on hand.