On Track

LarrE Ervin



 Short Story


My grandfather was 5 years old when Lincoln was shot. My father was born the year the Wright brothers first flew and Henry Ford started building his cars. At my birth Hitler was storming across Europe and Japan was winning the war in the Pacific. So you can see the Ervins have been around a while. You can not see and feel that much with out forming a distinct view about life. This is one small view that I’ve learned.





Shortly after my father died we were talking about his long productive life when I made this comment. “Remember dad telling us about his softball team? He sure had a good time with those guys. They’d play like it was the World Series then party with the other teams as if they were all brothers.”

“Larrie, you don’t know anything about it. I was there you weren’t even born yet.”

“Ya, but I ‘member him telling how good those days were. Even saw some photos showing the guys partying after one of the games.”

“Kid”, said my much older brother, “Those were afternoon games.”

“So, what the hell does that mean?”

“It means they had time during the day to play ball. None of them had a job. It was the depth of the great depression. After those parties they would go over to the rail road siding and steal coal from the rail cars to heat their homes. Dad bought a chicken for his and Mom’s anniversary one year. The only meat they had that week. There was no unemployment pay or government help. They’re relatives couldn’t help…they weren’t working either. There was nothing they could do about it. It was the worst of times!”

“But Dad always talked about it as if it was the best of times.”

“It was that to, Larrie. They made it that to


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