Sunday, June 15, 2014

Out of the gloaming

When I was twelve my father and I used to go out back behind the big house in Chicago and throw the baseball back and forth, me with my "Ernie Banks" model first-baseman's glove and my pop with his 1940's style "giant puffy Mickey Mouse hand" mitt.

We would throw the ball until the light began to fade, in those long summer evenings, enjoying the small conversations, and good stretch of arm muscles, and the pop of the ball into the glove.

But the light would fade, and I would begin to lose track of the ball in the gloaming, until one evening the inevitable happened and the grimy gray ball sailed over my mitt and popped me square in the face.

My father came over to see why I was lying around not throwing the ball, checked me out to ensure I wasn't really hurt, and then picked up the ball and his son with the other hand and remarked, as we headed indoors to find my mother and a baggie of ice:

"Next time just make sure you keep your glove up."

That was good advice and I've kept my glove up ever since, Pop, thanks. Happy Father's Day.

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