Santa Cruz Good Times

Friday
Sep 04th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Things That Go Boom, Boom

AE_boom1Local women’s kindness-based card game is worth the shuffle
Just like a boomerang, what you put out into the world will come back to you. This is the creed of the Boom Boom Revolution, a movement for kindness that erupts from two local women and their card game.

Co-founded by local duo Mary Beth Campbell and Helene Scott, the revolution is fueled one kind notion at a time, via the original card game entitled “Boom Boom Cards; The intentional Acts of Kindness Kit.”

It is something like Pay it Forward meets Where’s George. To play Boom Boom requires four steps: 1. Pick a card, any card. 2. Commit to a random act of guerilla goodness (that’s called a Boom Boom). 3. Recruit others by passing your card on to another person. 4. Track your card on the website by registering its serial code. Then, if you want, post a blog about your experience.

AE_boom2“There’s no discrimination when it comes to kindness. It's been really gratifying to see a website be alive that has such a large variety of people, age and type, on it,” says Campbell. “We have 13 year olds posting, and we have 60 year olds posting.”

Although Boom Boom Revolution is its own unique company, its inspiration came by way of another company Campbell began when she was a teacher at Harbor High School: The Boomerang Project. The project is an education-based mentoring program in which upperclassmen in high school and middle school are given tools and organized methods to welcome younger students to the school, rather than haze them.

Before she taught high school, Campbell says she was actually a cynic. However, through watching her high school students participate in the Boomerang Project she realized that these young people were “fantastic human beings who really wanted the best for the planet.” It made her take a look at herself, and her outlook on life took an inspirational turn.

“To my surprise, Boomerang worked,” Campbell says. “As we were doing these high school/middle school transitions, we realized that it’s not that hard to ask people to be nice. And if high school kids will do it—everyone can do it. Essentially the program works because we give these kids structure. We give them a way to be nice to the younger kids. And they do it.”

So Campbell and Scott thought, what if they created a structure for everybody? Maybe it would work. And that’s how Boom Boom Cards started.

“The lifestyle I see [Campbell] as having, as far as very purposefully celebrating life, to me is a form of a kind act,” says Scott. “There’s lots of joy and fun and silliness and happiness going on around this lady, and it’s contagious. That to me was a perfect kind of segue into part of what these cards do. Boom Boom Revolution the company, stems a lot from the idea that you call out to what’s good in your life, and you get it back. It's this ‘boom—BOOM.’ You get back what you give.”

Boom Boom Cards consists of a 26-card deck. Each of its cards displays a random act of kindness, such as “Smile and say hi to everyone you pass today,” or “Give five genuine compliments in one day.”

Written on the cards, below each act of kindness, is an option to “revolutionize” the act. For example, “Buy a stranger a cup of coffee,” becomes, “Revolutionize it: Make it a latte.”

“We want to be about the uprising of guerilla goodness, that kind of clandestine kindness that we think people have in them, but they've forgotten. We just want to help them realize that it's there,” says Scott. “We believe that people want to do and be a part of something good everyday and don’t know how or don’t have permission, or feel intrusive ... and somehow these little cards make it easier. They have permission, it’s like 'this is what I’m supposed to do today.’”

The idea that helped Boom Boom blossom from a card game into a revolution is that merely owning the cards can cause a shift in the way people go about their daily lives. “Having that deck of cards in your purse or on your desk kind of just begins to shift your consciousness,” Scott says. “You intentionally want to do these kind acts. And that’s part of our hope, that there’s a shift. We are out to change the world with intentional acts of kindness.”

Boom Boom is cultivating more than kindness. Its blog online is an expanding garden full of inspirational stories, as, after playing a card, participants are encouraged to blog about their kind acts.

“Our hope was that people would be compelled to write stories,” says Campbell.  “There is a guy from England who posts on the site called ‘Live Life Fully.’ He posts the most beautiful, thoughtful posts. He did card four, which is ‘Write a letter to a teacher …’ He wrote a letter to a teacher he had many, many years ago. He heard back from the son because the teacher had died. But the son had written back and thanked him for honoring his dad’s memory.”

Spreading kindness is a rewarding business. Campbell can easily recall the first post she read on the website by a stranger. “It was surreal, and powerful, and very magical and I cried like a baby,” Campbell says. "Some guy from Connecticut had posted about holding doors open for people. I sobbed and was like, ‘People are really doing it!”

Last month, a woman from Sweden decided to take the Boom Boom challenge, which consists of the entire deck of 26 cards in 26 days. She posted a blog every day in Swedish. “I assume she has good things to say,” says Campbell with a laugh.

Their belief is that people of any age group, anywhere in the world can get on board with basic acts of intentional kindness. Campbell and Scott have created a teen deck and family deck on top of the original Boom Boom Cards. “We talk about rebranding kindness,” says Campbell. “We think that kindness has gotten a bad rap over the years, and gotten schmaltzy and kind of dorky. People go, ‘Why be nice? Why be kind?’ because it’s just not cool. What we want to do is make kindness a hip and cool thing, so people will be like, ‘it’s cool to be kind.’”

 


Boom Boom Cards are $9.99 and are available locally at Stripe, Book Shop Santa Cruz, Capitola Book Café, and the Homeless Garden Project. For more information about Boom Boom Revolution, or to purchase cards online visit boomboomcards.com.
Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

You Are What You Post

Online personality algorithms put astrological profiles to shame, but UCSC psychologists are raising questions about sharing personal data

 

Venus Direct, Mercury Retro Soon, Honoring Our Labors

As Burning Man (nine days, Aug. 30-Sept. 7 in the sign of Virgo) burns in the hot white desert sands, a petal of the rose created by retrograde Venus and the twelve-petaled Sun in Virgo’s petals unfold. All of us are on the burning ground (Leo) in the womb (cave of the heart) of the mother (Virgo), gestating for humanity once again (each year) a new state of consciousness. Both Virgo and Cancer, feminine (receptive energies) signs, are from our last solar system (Pleiades). When humanity first appeared on Earth we were nurtured by the mother, a matriarchy of energies (on islands in the Pacific). Eve, Isis and Mary are part of the lineages of our ancient Mother. Overseen by the Pleiades, the Earth (matter, mater, the mother) in that last solar system was imbued with intelligence (Ray 3). As we move toward autumn, another mother, Ceres realizes she has mere weeks left with her beloved daughter, Persephone. Persimmon and pomegranate trees prepare for autumn, their colors signs of hope as the light each day continues to dim. Sunday, Venus in Leo turns stationary direct, yet continues in her shadow until Oct. 9 (when retrograde Mercury turns direct). Slowly our newly assessed values emerge from the Venus retrograde. We thought in Venus retro how to use our resources more effectively. Mercury retrogrades Sept. 17. Monday is Labor Day. Let us honor the labor of everyone, all life a “labor.” Let us honor Labor Day and all those who have “served” (labored for) us this past year. We honor their labors. We honor the labor of our parents, those who have loved us. We honor our own labors, too. We are all in service, we are all laboring. We are all valuable.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of September 4

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Sushi Garden

Local sushi empire expands to Scotts Valley

 

Do you overshare online?

I don’t think so. I just post things about my life, like successful things. Sometimes I just like sharing different news that I find interesting, or favorite artists, clothes, music. I like to post photos. Natalia Delgado, Santa Cruz, Server

 

McIntyre Vineyards

I recently met up with three friends for dinner at Sanderlings at Seascape Beach Resort. We chose to eat outside so we could watch the sun set over the ocean, but the Aptos fog rolled in and swallowed it up.

 

Sustainable Supper

The Homeless Garden Project’s Sustain Supper series supports its award-winning programs