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Tag: NYC

NYC Area 0

Hoboken’s Most Powerful Gangster

Inside a low-slung building surrounded by trees in southern Minnesota, there is an old man. Now ailing and in his 90’s, he was once one of the most powerful members of the American mafia. This building is Federal Medical Center Rochester. This man is Louis “Bobby” Manna. Manna was born in Hoboken in 1929 and, by the 80’s, he had […]

Entertainment 0

The Church Tony Soprano’s Grandfather Built

“See that church? Your great grandfather helped build that almost 80 years ago. He was a stonemason, the old man. Came over from Avellino with four dollars in his pocket.” Tony Soprano The camera pans down to show a beautiful church made of grey stone. Alongside it: a red Tahoe. A father wants to show his teenage son the family’s […]

NYC Area 0

The Mafia’s Hoboken Fortress

On a narrow street at the edge of town sits a squat brick building. There are no windows. On the street, lookouts watch for unfamiliar faces. The few who do enter are carefully watched. Inside: the headquarters of the most powerful mafia family in this country. This is Casella’s Restaurant in Hoboken, NJ. In the 1980’s, it functioned as home […]

Entertainment 0

Where Christopher Moltisanti Almost Died

How could this happen? How could this happen? Tony Soprano As Christopher Moltisanti walks out of a diner beneath the Pulaski Skyway, he happens across two of his partners in crime: Matthew Bevilacqua and Sean Gismonte. What’s brought them to this same desolate spot? Suddenly, Sean leans out the window. In his hand: a pistol. Before Chris can react, Sean […]

NYC Area 0

A Notorious Mob Informant’s Hoboken Headquarters

A slight, bespectacled man with white hair sits behind a table, going over today’s bets. At his side: a beeper. You might not even notice it. Inside the beeper is a tiny microphone. This unassuming bookie in a nondescript storefront is about to take down the most powerful organized crime family in this country. Peter “Petey” Caporino, a Hoboken native, […]

NYC Area 0

A Hidden Castle…In New Jersey?

As you round a clear blue lake, a second, smaller path winds away from the main trail. Up this path, on a peak covered with flowers, lie the remains of a vast stone edifice. This is Van Slyke Castle in Ramapo State Forest in Oakland, NJ, just 30 miles from midtown Manhattan. I visited with a friend last week and […]

Acting 0

What It’s Like to Be on Law & Order: SVU

It was barely dawn when I walked into the squat brick building in Manhattan’s Little Italy. I wasn’t even sure it was the right place. I went through the heavy swinging doors to find a hive of hundreds, preparing to make one of the best known television shows on earth. In December 2019, I got the amazing opportunity to be […]

COVID 0

The Best New Thinking on COVID

Today, I came across two new articles that provide a great perspective on the COVID crisis. We are running a live experiment with massive numbers of new COVID cases every day. There is a significant risk of mutations, which have already been seen in the UK and South Africa. Delaying 2nd doses of the vaccines to get more people a […]

Health 0

Why I Started Giving Blood

Last March, as COVID began to whallop the New York area, I sat on my couch refreshing the news over and over and getting increasingly paranoid. I’d check the case counts before I went to bed and then again as soon as I got up. I soon realized this was not a sustainable way to live. Then I saw an […]