I’ve written a few times about my childhood, but I can never find the words to convey the feeling of fragility and conflict that was a part of every day, every activity, every material possession. I am my father’s son, and this relation alone is enough to ensure I always sit with my back to a wall. I don’t think anyone who hasn’t lived so close to violence can understand.
When I was young, I lived for a time with my father and his family in Montreal. There was an ongoing power struggle between my father, and the other organized crime figures in the area. Several of my father’s friends and family had suffered kidnappings, brutal attacks, and countless acts of property damage, in an attempt to persuade my father to back off. My father has never backed off.
I was placed in the care of my aunt and uncle, and their two daughters. I was given a nice room, a comfortable bed, and more than enough books to read. We had private security, an alarm system, and a police trained german shepard.
I had only been there a week or so when my uncle came in my room to pick a suit jacket from the closet, as he did every morning, and found the cuffs to every jacket had been cut off, neatly folded, and placed in the pocket of the jacket, which was then buttoned closed. There were probably about twenty jackets in the closet, which opened up right next to the nighttable of my bed.
I was flown to Halifax shortly after.