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Houdini




I used to be a career escape artist. I'd step behind the curtain so nobody would see me. And then I was g...


That curtain was my life. And this trick? I’ve done it over and over again. I was Houdini's assistant without the applause.


After Ryan passed away, I was done with Georgia. Donezo. Finito. I needed a fresh start immediately.


My only criterion was complete anonymity. Where could I go to be a needle in a haystack? A stranger among strangers? A face among the crowd?


NYC was my first thought. Bright lights! Big city! YES! Starbuck’s salary. Womp womp.


The next best was Indianapolis. Wait, what? Indianapolis? Ok yeah, I only considered it because my best friend lived there. But thankfully she knew me better than I knew me. She put a, “you’ll hate yourself,” to that thought immediately.


And then it hit me: Chicago! Or as they say it, Chi- cahhhhh- go. I decided to trade in my Southern drawulllll for a Midwestern ahhhhhhh as quickly as I could say wahhhhter.


So there I was. One dude, one dog (and my brother and a Uhaul). We loaded up and drove 15 hours to Chicahhhhhgo one Saturday.


The highway called my name loud and clear. So did my brother. Within fifteen minutes of being in my new place, somebody unloaded something besides furniture.


A parked car was looted in broad daylight. Windows smashed in. Compartments ravaged. Tires slashed. Nothing stopped this guy.


My brother stopped to record the whole thing though. “This is what you decided to move to Jeff.” Yes, I thought. This is what I decided to move to!


Because it excited me! That car represented everything Georgia wasn’t: change! I strangely felt closer to that man than my own past.


And just like that, I vanished out of thin air away from Georgia. This roller coaster called "Chicago" was about to begin. I just had no idea where I was going.

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