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The Baby Slot - by Ericka Lutz
The Baby Slot (photo by Jack Zins)

Early in May, giant hailstorms pelted the hills of San Andreas, turning them lush and green as Washington's Olympic Peninsula, but where the old man lived he didn't reap the benefits -- only more weeds between the cracks of the pavement. He kept his mind active; he'd promised himself he'd live the life of the mind when the body failed, focus in on the small things: the beauty of a spider web. The taste of chocolate ice cream, the only thing decent they serve in this stinkin' joint. Yet it was hard not to want to walk towards the water and keep on walking, now that he couldn't read even the large print books.

.... Soon to be available as an ebook story!  Watch this space.

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Beautiful

Ericka,

What can I say.  You're a wonderful writer.  The Baby Slot's mix of old and young, realism and dream state, current and past were skillfully woven in a small amount of space.  The Valerie and hummingbird flashbacks were poignant.

The story made me curious, angry, sad, hopeful.  Most important, in my opinion, it made me face the cold hard truth to then allow me to figure out what I can do to make our society better.  It may be too late for the old man, Mr. Martin, but it's not for most of us.

If we all can learn like the old man has finally learned that the time to make things right is from the beginning, to set at least a proper example for children to follow or to make the leap and help each other when tough problems arise.  It's about stepping up but as usual some so-called mature adults even mess that up. Being a board member of a large child advocacy center that helps abused children, I know for certain we have a long way to go.