as the united states becomes less agricultural it becomes, generally, more covered in forests. and as the forests spread you start to see the return of big animals ('megafauna', one of my favorite words) who haven't been around in the states for decades, if not a century. like bears, for example.
when i had a house upstate i used to see black bears shambling around at the edge of the woods every now and then. i also saw lots of deer and wild turkeys and occasionally saw signs that wolves had been sniffing around in the woods (like peter and the wolf, minus the duck and the malevolence). but the bears are kind of the most interesting, as the black bears are for the most part shy and fat and reclusive (although they do still occasionally kill people. remember: avoid black bears, but if one charges you wave your hands in the air and scream and never run away from a black bear. outdoors safety tip #274. this only works with black bears. never yell at a grizzly bear. just fyi). and now you have people in the suburbs having fairly regular encounters with mega-fauna who used to just be in zoos (i mean, there were no deer or bears or wolves in darien, connecticut when i was growing up). eagles, too. i used to see gigantic eagles swooping around upstate (1 hour north of nyc).
so as the bears return you end up with the occasional bear in a skate park, like in this accidentally minimalist picture:
this bear wandered into a skate park and couldn't get out. so someone had the simple idea, 'well, we could bring in a helicopter or tranquilize the bear or bring in a cage. or we could just pop a ladder in the skate park and let the bear climb out.' which, eventually, the bear did. i just love this simple picture. bear. ladder. skate bowl. and, for the record no bears or people or ladders were hurt in the process. i really do wonder why the bear went into the skate bowl in the first place. maybe he thought it was a giant cement bee hive. i'm sure he was embarrassed when he realized it was just an old swimming pool.