Yes, I’ve had a fascination with the American Mafia (La Cosa Nostra) since I was about 17 years old.  It made me proud to have a full-blooded Neapolitan Italian grandfather.  I know, that’s a bit f*cked up!  I actually wrote a blog post a few years ago about how the HBO show “The Sopranos” was my obsession in my late teens.  Now I think the show was actually pretty stupid, and here are a few reasons why…

#1  Everyone was Italian in that show – the neighbors, the friends, the girlfriends, the shrink, etc…  I didn’t realize that only Italians were allowed to live in New Jersey.

#2  A mob boss wouldn’t last a month in that life if he was really seeing a psychiatrist.

#3 The last reason I will give. The show had a website to keep it’s viewers updated and able to purchase products/merchandise.  They had a list of the 5 families of NYC and what shape they were in as of the year 2000.  Now, here it is…  one poll posted on their site asked:  If you could join the mafia, would you?  Good grief.  And I thought I was obsessed…  This is a stupid question because people are so full of sh*t that they’re not even honest with themselves half the time.  Not too mention, you would be a complete moron to go down that road these days with the implementation of the RICO law during the 1980’s.  This was the beginning of the end for LCN. There’s better options these days, and I’m not talking about crime, although… nevermind.

Get right with God.  I heard a quote a while back:  What we do in this life echoes in eternity.  This is a grave reality!

Anyways, beyond “The Sopranos”.  I still watch mob movies these days, but not like I used to.  Being a gangster is of no interest to me anymore, and I literally thank God for this. I have recently been taking up gambling in an effort to go pro.  Why not, why can’t I?  People have told me it be worth a try for my gift for strategic thinking in regards to chess.  I have been a tournament player since 1996.  My last tournament was in March of this year (2021).  Now, to me, being a professional gambler sounds like the closest thing to being a gangster (a real gangster) without having to commit a sin that will damn your soul.

YouTube.  It’s fantastic for documentaries.  I watch a lot of “sit downs” with Michael Franzese.  I want to join his circle and have a sit down with him virtually.  Click here to go to his website.   But there’s a hefty fee to join his circle.  Michael Franzese was one of the mafia’s highest paid bosses of all time.  He is known for starting the gasoline tax scheme.

I recently watched a video of his on YouTube about the 5 traits you need to stay alive in the mafia.  I don’t recall the exact title of the video but that was the general idea – 5 traits!  Out of these 5, there are two that hit me.  These were  1) TRUST NO ONE   2) Keep a low-profile
Obviously, this can apply to a lot of other lifestyles, not just the mob life.

Now, what did I (and to a degree still do) admire about mobsters?  Their ambition and power!

“You are what you are in this World.  And that’s either one of two things.  Either you’re somebody, or you ain’t nobody”
-Frank Lucas, “American Gangster”

And to conclude this post, who was my favorite mobster of all time?

Vincent “The Oddfather” Gigante.  He feigned insanity for almost two decades to avoid prosecution!  Ha!  There’s a fantastic documentary on him on “Rare Documentaries & Movies Channel” on YouTube.

– Monk