Baseball, Fatherhood, and Peace

As I usually try to do on days that I’m not posting, I’m re-blogging this post by Paige Erickson, who writes The Nice Thing About Strangers. She has a great eye and imagination for creative Non-fiction, and you all should follow her.

The Nice Thing About Strangers

The little old man playing the organ has lost most of his hearing, so he plays by heart. He plays beautifully, sweetly. Organs always make me think of baseball games, so I look at Father and wonder which coach he resembles.  It’s Catholic Mass at noon on a Wednesday, but there will be a seventh inning stretch.

A man and his grown son have matching hairstyles–smoothed with cream and combed into place. The father sometimes reaches for his son’s arm, taps him on the leg, offering a kind reassurance of his presence.

Most people here come alone. A room of widows, widowers, retirees and grandparents.  I adore a tall man with a cane, a missal, and a mustache. When I shake his hand and say, “Peace Be With You,” as we’ve been instructed, he replies: “Thank you very much.” I’m struck by it. I give him as much of a…

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