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Dying to Live From Despair and Death to Freedom and Joy von Burkan, Tolly (eBook)

  • Erscheinungsdatum: 29.04.2016
  • Verlag: BookBaby
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Dying to Live

On August 22, 1967, Tolly Burkan, who was spending a relaxing day at the seashore with his fiancée, suddenly disappeared without a trace. Months later, he reappeared claiming amnesia. Theories ranged from abduction by UFOs to exotic medical conditions. Now, for the first time, the facts are revealed by Tolly Burkan himself.

Produktinformationen

    Format: ePUB
    Kopierschutz: none
    Seitenzahl: 200
    Erscheinungsdatum: 29.04.2016
    Sprache: Englisch
    ISBN: 9781483569727
    Verlag: BookBaby
    Größe: 336 kBytes
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Dying to Live

3 My parents divorced right before my second birthday, and I have no early memory of my father. My mother, Eileen, an intelligent, attractive woman-tall, blonde and slim, with bright blue eyes and a vivacious personality-was a model before becoming pregnant with me. She remarried when I was three, and Ted, her second husband, the only father I've ever known, adopted me and gave me his name even before I entered nursery school. Smart, handsome, trim, with thick black hair and soulful brown eyes, he has always had the slightly removed air of a professor. My father was devoted to our family and had a generally quiet disposition, but he also had a quick temper and frequently solved child-rearing problems with a raised voice and a strap. He established early on that where matters of my conduct were concerned, he was to be taken seriously the first time around. The message I received from him was, "Consider my needs before your own." Approval seemed to be forthcoming only if I could guess and do what he expected of me. There was an invisible line over which I could not go without making him furious. And since, especially as a young child, I was extremely hungry for attention, I crossed this line many times-with disastrous results. Even though I knew the consequences, sometimes I would resort to anything, good or bad, to get my parents to focus on me. When my father dragged me into my bedroom to hit me, I remember hoping that my screams would bring my mother. But they didn't. By not objecting to my father's use of corporal punishment, by always demanding that I act in a way that would make both her and my father proud-and crying if I didn't-my mother also gave me no margin for what she considered misbehaving. Although they certainly didn't intend this, my parents' extreme treatment communicated to me that I had very little worth and no right to have needs and demands at all. I had no idea then how much they loved me. The sanctuary of my childhood was Grandma's house. Fortunately, it was only a few blocks away. My grandmother had taken care of me when my mother's first marriage was falling apart, and we formed a bond that lasted until her death. Whenever the stress of my own home became unbearable, I would seek refuge at Grandma's, eating her special lentil-barley soup and playing Canasta, which she taught me when I was three. "Your brothers are my grandsons," she told me as I grew older, "but you are my son." When I was five years old, something happened that I thought would solve all my problems: I was given a magic set by Uncle Harold, my father's younger brother. Harold, who was both a doctor and a magician-the magic had provided the money for his medical education-had dazzled me with magic tricks for as long as I could remember. I was thrilled to have him teaching me how to perform tricks myself. I soon learned that magic isn't only accomplished through sleight-of-hand and special props: the magician's primary means of deception is his ability to lie impeccably and to misdirect his audience's attention. Magicians have to be expert psychologists, I discovered, watching people closely at all times; their job is to manipulate minds as well as objects. Performing magic was even more enthralling to me than watching magic tricks had been, and by the time I was nine, I was amazing adults with my adept sleight-of-hand routines. To my delight, I had found a perfectly acceptable way of being in the spotlight as much as I wanted. Gratified by the attention I was receiving and, on a deeper level, sensing, even then, the incredible power that performing magic was giving to me and would continue to give to me throughout my life, I pursued my new craft with diligence. By age fourteen, I started to earn money as a magician by performing for local parties and organizations. By age

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