Still doesn’t want to see the garbage can man

Posted on Jan 29, 2013 in Columns
Still doesn’t want to see the garbage can man

In the picture, he’s squatting, his ball glove on the wrong hand. He was just about 2 1/2 years old then and baseball was something his Dad coached so he wanted to be part of it too. His Dad bought him a little fielder’s glove with a Velcro strip inside the pocket and a cloth ...

Finally remembered that one Alex

Posted on Jan 29, 2013 in Columns
Finally remembered that one Alex

Sometimes we’d play a game. He’d name an old song and I’d have to say who sang it. “Tears on My Pillow,” he’d say with just a hint of that Arkansas drawl. “Easy,” I’d say. “Little Anthony and the Imperials.” He’d smile and nod and on it would go. Sometimes out of nowhere, apropos of ...

Late night conversation stirs memories

Posted on Jan 29, 2013 in Columns
Late night conversation stirs memories

The three of them stood at the end of the driveway, gathered around a car, talking. Two more cars were parked on the street where they had once ridden bicycles, skateboards, chased the dog and played catch not that long ago. All of them had somewhere to be, places to go, people to see. But ...

The life to come

Posted on Jan 29, 2013 in Columns
The life to come

The rain marched across the curling brown grass, splattering dust around the makeshift bases we had constructed. The distant asphalt parking lot steamed as the cool water struck the hot pavement, momentary wisps of thin gas lingering like whispered delight. Our baseball game interrupted, we retreated to the shelter of the sedan that brought us, ...

Teaching ‘The Great Gatsby’ at 7:30 a.m.

Posted on Dec 19, 2012 in Other Writing
Teaching ‘The Great Gatsby’ at 7:30 a.m.

Gary sat in the cubicle next to me during my two weeks as a substitute English teacher at Bartlett High School. I liked Gary. He was only 25 or so, but he seemed in control of himself; organized, focused and vibrant. He was not yet as cynical as I am. Cynicism is a healthy thing. It cushions reality’s ...