A HUGE PILLOW FIGHT: FLASH MOB STYLE
It may have started just as a whisper, floating through sea of Social Networking, but it ended as a Tsunami of screaming people participating in Fresno’s biggest pillow fight ever. We had seen online that Facebook alone, had well over a thousand RSVPs, and like any event here in the Valley, you have to be skeptical of the turn out. The Dead in Sixty Years crew decided to turn out in full force, with pillows and a film crew. We showed up early, and already, there were sixty or so people milling around Woodward Park, chatting with pillows. You could feel a bit of anxiety as the younger kids started buzzing about the possibility of cops arresting people. I spent my time trying to inform people that having good clean fun was not illegal, but I will admit something did feel naughty about having a pillow fight with a thousand people in a moonlit park.
As we talked, hundreds more people showed up, everyone was chomping at the bit to get this thing started. Everyone waited for zero hour, and it almost felt like New Years as it got closer and closer. The minutes past and everyone converged on the grass until nine o’clock hit and you could hear a roar a thousand strong. “PILLOW FIGHT !!!” Everyone ran towards the middle wildly swinging pillows, hitting anything around them. It was absolute bedlam, it was dark, the crowd was thick, and there were a thousand swirling pillows all around you. Despite the chaos, the look on everyone’s face was pure elation. There was a sense of happiness that isn’t normally felt around these parts or maybe anywhere. There were thousands of people in one place smiling and laughing, hitting people with pillows, but no wanted anyone else to get hurt. No one talked about politics, the kids weren’t talking about gossip, and I didn’t see a soul get mad at anyone. We just were all lost and all found all and all just giggling together at the absurdity and fun people can have if they just get outside of themselves and just do. It was joy.
People got tired and moved to the edges, they smiled and chatted with strangers, as the more energetic raged on for an impressive half hour. People started to get creative. People started to have chicken pillow fights, another kid ran in with a giant pillow that was literally as big as him, and a gang of pillow marauders formed in the trees. A group of others, most of which didn’t know each other till that point formed on the east end of the grass. A kid yelled “FORMATION” and all his warriors instantly got into fighting positions and then “CHARGE.” These kids all ran back towards the eye of the storm doubling its size again, bringing more joy and energy back to the tiring center. It was beautiful. Actually everything about the night was beautiful. It was just pure. We all started to head out. We were all smiling. We drove south down Blackstone, a big truck pulled up next to us and someone rolled there window down. Usually on Blackstone this may mean you were going to get some animosity but tonight just a smile, a cross car high five, and a “that was fucking awesome!” Fucking awesome, couldn’t have said it better myself brother, couldn’t have said it better myself.
There are those who give with joy, and that joy is their reward.