A Place Where All the Wiseguys Knew Your Name...

Check out a small description of the kind of places we used to hung out in during the "good old days."

By Sonny Girard.

MOB BLOG: No, that’s not poodle skirts, though I did think girls (I was still a boy) looked great in them. The Poodle was what we called the Brooklyn bar we hung out at during my earliest mob years. The bar was like many in Brooklyn at that time, with names like “Wander Inn,” “Black Kitten,” “Flamingo,” “500 Club,” and “1717,” which were semi-hangouts for mobsters at all levels from wannabes to bosses, some neighborhood folks, and always plenty of females.

They were pretty much all dark inside, with a long bar on one side and a kitchen in the back where private conversations could be held, and the smell of stale smoke, booze, and sweaty bodies when empty and more of those fresh smells when full. Some had music on Wednesdays and weekends. All had jukeboxes that played Jimmy Roselli’s Neapolitan love songs, especially his big hit, Malafemmena....



  1. Goomba, jamme bbélle... me dispiace assaje ma la versione originale (Malafemmena) è cantata per Totò Murolo. Rosselli ha accento molto americano. Solo á un tipo di canzone veramente napoletana, e si chiama Neo-Melodici.
    State Bbuono.

  2. Of course Roselli had an American accent, since he was born in New Jersey, but then again we were all American too. Malafemmena was Jimmy's first big hit. He was a friend and a few of us used to have dinner with him at the home of one of ours. We'd see him every night when he performed, and of course sat ringside. One time when my sister was 16 Jimmy came off the stage onto our table and sang to her on one knee. She was so embarrassed that she slid down in her seat a little at a time until she fell off under the table. Also, there are many dialects and accents among Italian singers. Patrizio Buanne, for example, doesn't sound like classic Napolitano singers, but sings many of the same songs. Life changes, my friend, and for those of us who dislike change find most of it is not for the better.

    I do give one bit of advice to my few surviving pals who bitch and moan about how bad things are today. That is that we survived a beautiful age that left us with many wonderful memories and make us very lucky. I ask what memories young people today will have in 20, 30, or 40 years?


  3. I like the story about your sister. Inocence, something hard to find today.

    You ask about memories of the young people 20-30-40 from now.

    Well, don´t go that far, my memories are not as ´nice´ as yours. ´Your life´ seems, it was perfect. Predictable, stable. My ´life´ was about other things, some that would make the movie Camorra look like a PG movie.

    Can´t one just adapt and have success in between the chaos?

    Because, as bad as things are in the US, things are much worst in Naples.

    Sai una cosa paesano? Dovrebbe avere un espresso et sambuca in futuro. Sono sicuro che, avremmo godere i nostri ricordi. Tu sei un gentlemen, qualcosa molto, molto difficile da trovare oggi.

    1. Thank you for the compliment. I am sure you are a fine gentleman as well. I drink a lot of espresso, but usually with nothing in it. Kimbo, from Napoli, is the brand I use.

      I try to write about the lighter things that went on in the past, not so much the darker side, but all the events and good memories only came about because of the things I/we did. Writing about bullets whizzing by my head (they did) or years in prison don't seem as interesting to me and are things I am limited to write about anyway. That is why I prefer writing fiction. Someone very close to me asked me once if anything in my first book was real. I reminded him of an infamous event that happened in our circle then pointed to something in the book I'd changed around. He was shocked that he hadn't recognized it. The names have been changed to protect the guilty :)

    2. If I can add a word - Sonny's books are riveting and I highly recommend all. There's been a death in my family but I am working on a piece about Sonny's mob read - the eBook is a bargain - buy it!

    3. Mob Reader is the name - fi gers too big for my cellphone!!


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