Tuesday, September 01, 2020

75 miles

Michael Sedano

75 and my pants are falling down. They’re old pants and the belt needs another punch. I ate a nectarine the other day and it was good. First time I lost my trousers, I was four, maybe. Old enough to be enraged at the world for my predicament, and I did wear the bottoms of those trousers rolled.

Lynch Field bordered our back acre and Catter’s egg ranch next door. That day, I climbed to the topmost rail on the eight-foot wooden fence of center field. Inching my way along the rail, holding both hands tightly to the top of the planks, I made it around to left field and Caterino’s first jaulas.

From up here I can see to the corner and la tiendita, my uncle Lugo’s house, the empty lot where the Nationals hang out and they burned that agave to make pulque. Over the top of Catter’s cement block house, I regret the big pepper tree that’s easily climbed. Not like this fence. It wasn’t so hard to get up here.

I feel my pants slip. I can’t let go to pull them up. No way from up here will I release my hold on the fence! 

I puff out my belly but the hand-me-down Levi’s keep slipping past my hips. The oversize pants slide down to gather at my knees in a wrinkly bundle. I resist revealing my indignity as long as I can.

I scream for help. My Mom and Dad respond quickly with my Dad laughing. He goes back inside to get his camera, a German war prize. First, he photographs my predicament, then climbs up to carry me down to the ground, my Mom snapping off a few frames of the rescue. 

Plague-time and 75 is cleaning the attic time. Sure hope I find those negatives in my Dad's stuff.

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