Angela was a teenager at the time, so fortunately, there was no need for white lies about how Daddy was going to go live on a farm where he could run free and play with the other daddies for a while. Later, whenever he was indicted or sentenced -- which happened quite a few times during Angela's teenage years -- they all had to find out from the news. She understands why he didn't tell them. "That kind of openness would leave room for our questions, and he never liked answering those," she says. We all know what happens to snitches.
The movies had one thing right: Angela was expected to help carry on the family tradition. "As a woman, I wouldn't be able to own the business," she says. But her dad thought she'd make a great lawyer for the family, and for a while, she considered it. Despite coming to terms with her family's lifestyle, Angela couldn't see herself contributing to it. It's one thing to love your dad in spite of the criminal charges. It's quite another to help him get away with it.
There are better ways to bond with a parent than over a "Not guilty" verdict.
Even so, Angela can never forget what her real last name is. It can be painful, like when her grandfather died, and she wasn't allowed to go to his funeral because her mother was worried about the reporters getting a photo of the kids. It can be scary, like the stalkers who still show up occasionally.
"If I ever tell someone about my family, it's because they're close enough to me that they might be followed too," she says. "It snowed last year during the night, and we awoke the next day to find a man's footprints circling the house, starting from my sister's window." The family joked about it, but "my boyfriend didn't find this funny."
We're a little hazy on the punchline, too.
"The distinguishment between actual threats and those you create in your own head is a little more daunting when many of those threats have been proven prior," Angela says. "Think the difference between someone following you down an empty alley with their hands in their coat pocket versus someone chasing you down the street swinging a machete. One's a definite red flag, but the other one is hiding his flag in his pocket."
And now, if you'll excuse us, we have to see if GrubHub delivers to beneath a desk.
For more insider perspectives, check out 5 Things 'Breaking Bad' Left Out About Having A Drug Lord Dad and 8 Terrifying Life Lessons From A Former Terrorist.
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