the son of a thief

This is part of a small series but it can also stand on its own. If you would like to catch up it would honor me, the first post is called Inconspicuous absence, the second the 4th of July, the third is called The sewing machine and the curio cabinet.

A year into middle school my Uncle died. He came home shitfaced one night, began yelling at everyone in sight, when he collapsed on the floor. A massive aneurism had gone to his brain. I’d be lying if I told you that I wasn’t elated at the news.

now that you’re caught up, here we go…

It was difficult for me to reconcile my feelings when my uncle died. I hate to say it, but yea…elated covers it. I was a mixed-up 13 year old kid and I lacked maturity. I was relieved that a man that I hated out of personal experience and a steadfast devotion to my father (and the truth) was gone. I was happy at the prospect of being able to see my cousin and hang out on Railroad Avenue again. Unfortunately, I had only considered my angle. My selfishness had clouded my judgment. I hadn’t considered how my cousin felt about it.

All of my cousins were devastated. To this day I struggle with reconciling how powerful the paternal bond is and how they could love a man like my Uncle. The comparison’s are easy, I just had to compare him to my own father. My Uncle was mean, violent, closed off and capable of some pretty white-trash shit; my father, who was not much better off financially, was kind, pleasant and a very decent man. That aside, my cousins were grieving. Little did I know that part of their grief would be to “dig in” on the lie. I would soon find out that I still wasn’t welcome on Railroad Ave.

I was the unwelcome son of a thief.

My mother had a theory, which she shared with me during a moment of despondence. Jealousy. My father, and this is not an opinion, was the only success story in the family. Margie married a poor man with little earning potential and remained in the poor home with uneven floors and plastic on the windows that she, Ellie and Dad grew up in. Ellie was destined to live with her parents forever. Dad, on the other hand joined the military, got a good job when he got out, married his high school sweetheart and bought a house. In support of her theory, she told me that we were regarded as “lucky”, and “the rich ones”. I found this amusing, we were stable and I never wanted for anything, but we were lower middle class at best.

I saw Mike at school. He took the loss of his father really hard and I left him to it. I don’t think he fully understood my contempt for his father and when he talked of him it was all I could do to put on a fake and sympathetic face. It was a tough time for me as well. I thought that once the Wicked Dick of the West was gone, everything would be great. That was not to be the case. Even if Mike welcomed my family on Railroad Ave, the rest of the family did not.

14 thoughts on “the son of a thief”

  1. Hi Billy, I haven’t been active here myself but I’ve been missing your posts and your silence got me a bit worried, so I wanted to check in. Are you alright? Hope you’re safe and healthy. Virtual hugs from Switzerland x


    1. Hi Monika. Wow, it’s really something when someone notices your absence.
      Yes, I’m fine. Just dealing with some stuff and not very inspired to write.
      I’m relatively healthy and not going anywhere.
      Thank you so much for checking in


      1. So relieved to hear from you! Glad to hear that you’re healthy 🙂 then I hope you’ll be able to sort the things out and find some inspiration to write again soon 🙂
        had to think of you when the protests started last month and wondered if you’d write anything about it (and what it would be), guess that was made me realise there hasn’t been any sign of life from you at all. anyways, take care:)

        Liked by 1 person

  2. So far, so good. And, honestly, I like the fact that you are writing this in relatively short installments – my blog-reading preference.
    I hope you are staying healthy and finding things to do (in relative solitude) to keep your spirits up.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m hooked. Will go back and read the others. I found out recently that I, too, am the daughter of a thief… I never knew until my uncle passed and my cousins let me in on this little tidbit. I guess no matter how shitty of a father you were, when you are gone… your kids miss you. Sometimes, even though you were an abusive, drunk, SOB… in death you become a misunderstood, self medicating, ruffian. 🙄

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Guess we will never know… like you, my dad is smart, loving, and kind. I have often wondered if the fear of the old adage —-the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree—- has some real meaning here? I got nothing! Guess we never could understand because the Dads we knew… well, there just are none better!

        Liked by 1 person

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