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Lives Not Yet Intertwined

My dad was 16 years older than my mom, and I often think of what their lives were like before they found each other.

During the 20s, when my dad was working in radio and touring up and down the West Coast as an actor, my mom was a child growing up in a company house in a Western Pennsylvania coal mining town. When my dad was working to bury his Brooklyn accent, my mom was learning to talk—in Slovak.

The two photos here were taken around the same time. The photo on the right shows my dad with his mom and a couple of cousins. It was taken in California on April 17, 1921—five days before my mom’s second birthday. My dad is 18 here.

In the photo on the left, my mom poses with her parents. This one is undated, but she could be about two years old here. (View a larger version.)

I like to imagine two camera shutters, a couple of thousand miles apart, going off at the same time, each capturing a moment in lives that wouldn’t intertwine for another 20 years.

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