Sports Illustrated

When I was 9 Dad bought me my first Sports Illustrated. May 3rd, 1976. Mike Schmidt was on the cover. We were inside 7-11 waiting for Mom. He was perusing the rack. I was right there beside him, penniless, my mouth watering at the prospect of owning that magazine. I had just started playing baseball.…

The Librarian

“Don’t you ever check out any books beside books on baseball?” “Try saying that three times fast while holding your tongue.” “Excuse me?” “You said something sarcastic to me, so I thought I’d return the favor.” “But you’re like 8 years old.” “And you’re like 88 years old. Let me check out the kinds of…

Purple Crayons

I loved purple crayons when I was a kid. Loved every shade of them. Loved the way they smelled, even though all crayons smell the same. My brother and I colored pictures in the living room. He made sure to use all of the crayons evenly so one wouldn’t wear out more than the others.…

My Summer of ’77

Writing and rewriting a paragraph, then reading it back until you feel like you are seeing the plush green grass at Municipal Stadium for the first time is the feeling I want to experience every day for the rest of my life. Of course nothing feels like seeing green grass on a baseball field for…

Nick The Street Vendor

The street vendor on Literary Road sold three things: hot dogs, Lay’s potato chips and Pepsi-Cola. Four if you counted lively conversation, five if you had the privilege of listening to his radio when Indians games were on. The last two were free as long as you bought one of the first three. In May…

Bobby Buzzcut Goes Back To School

Summer was our furlough after ten months of tyrannical rule by the nuns at St. Agnes. It was the 1970s and every boy in South Newburg had two goals in common: play baseball as much as possible and grow our hair as long as our favorite players. John Lowenstein. Lee Mazzilli. John “The Count” Montefusco…

Snodgrass

This short story by Mike Sajovie appears in “Sleigh Bells and Muckrakers” (copyright 2013). The italicized portions were borrowed from Ernest Lawrence Thayer’s “Casey at the Bat” – an American poem that was published in 1888. J. Lewis Snodgrass was a self-proclaimed journalist who challenged baseball owners to change their ways or face dire consequences.…

Thought Process and Self-Review

In theory, sleigh bells and muckrakers go together like Nicholas Sparks and Stephen King. So what compelled me to lump them together in my first e-book published earlier this year? I had written some stories and allowed them to simmer on the back burner for a while. The Internet and the explosion of publishing without…