Monday, September 17, 2012

Boardwalk Empire Season 3 Episode 1

When I sat down to watch Boardwalk Empire last night, I didn't expect to find my own story, too.
Like Jimmy, my father, was a bootlegger during Prohibition.
Like Jimmy my dad, Louis Rosen, was murdered in a turf war with the Mafia.

And like Jimmy, he left a child—me-- at the age of two.
Watching Tommy's confusion and loss last night, I was reminded of the feelings I had when my father suddenly disappeared. Although I had a mother, and Tommy was orphaned, it was as if I was orphaned, too--my mother disappeared frequently into her new llfe as a partying flapper. And when I was old enough to ask her how my father died she told me he died of pneumonia. As Tommy, I lived in a world of adults hiding the truth.
I discovered the facts about my father's life and death at the age of 12, when my older brother told me I could read about him in the newspapers of the time. So I went to the Cleveland Public Library and found his story on the ten-year old pages of The Cleveland Plain Dealer and The Cleveland Press in huge headlines and graphic pictures.   
Boardwalk Empire is an entertaining TV series that viewers enjoy, turn off and forget about until the next Sunday night. But for me, the story doesn't stop; it stays with me, lingering, haunting my dreams.

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