This was one of my favorite moments to film for this video, it gave me tons of joy. This was right in the thick of the Eric Garner riots. So much racism was on the forefront of the media and was weighing heavily on a lot of hearts. Especially being in the middle of a project about the state of America, I was seeing how all of it was effecting the lives of so many different people. This was after I’ve shadowed two different police officers, filmed a lot of different stories in black communities and also personally sifted through hours of footage of the NYC riots that a friend of mine filmed.

But in the midst of all of that, a childhood friend of mine invited me to a birthday dinner. And though I wasn’t initially there to film, I saw my friend’s sons playing with all of the other kids while dinner was being made in the other room, I just had to film it. I loved seeing that my friend was raising his kids not to judge someone on the color of their skin, but the content of their character. Seeing a room full of so many different kids; black, white, Nigerian, girls and boys all playing together. Really felt a glimpse of heaven and also a glass of cold water from the current events.

It was also a reminder of my childhood, where age and location seemed like the only common ground that you needed to be friends (can you spot me?):

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