April 5, 2011
So much more than JUST a Mafia tour
The second day that Jordan and Jodi were here we went on a "Mob Tour" of the Little Italy Area. We saw the deal livingsocial, a website that gives you discounts on different stuff in your city. When Pat saw it he automatically thought of Jordan for some reason. Maybe it's because he looks like he could be in the Mob..I don't know. So we got tickets and made reservations.
I wasn't expecting much after our Ghost Tour didn't have many ghosts involved; however, this mob tour was all about the Mafia and had so much juicy info...I wish I could remember it all! I don't even know how much I want to put on this blog because apparently the Mafia is alive and well in NYC! Who knows what they would do to me for divulging their secrets!
The tour of course gave a history of the Mafia, where it came from, their structure, and what their purpose was. Before this tour I didn't know anything about the Mob. I have never seen any movies or read any books about it, so it was hard to soak up all this new information.
When we were in Little Italy our tour ran into Cha Cha, the unofficial mayor of Little Italy. Apparently he has been in the last 9 seasons of The Sapranos and has a lot of connections to the Mafia (he definately looked the part). He was such a nice guy and insisted that we take a picture with him.
The coolest part about this tour is that it was not just a history tour, but it was a tour of the present! Our tour guide not only told us some great history stories about the mafia and their shenanigans in Little Italy but he was also able to tell us all about the current mobsters and their whereabouts. It felt a little weird because when we were in Little Italy we would pass people and they were noticeably upset about us being there. Our tour guide said that some the mob members don't like that he gives tours because they feel he misrepresents them. As we were on the tour of 6 people (us and one other couple) our guide would whisper some juicy information about a place or person that was just up ahead, and then he would tell us to walk by and act normal and "not look." He sure did know how to set the mood! One such time was when we were passing a card board cut out of a chef of a cannoli restaurant in Little Italy. The chef just looked like any other Cannoli Chef, hahaha; however, apparently the chef is a mobster and a very bad one at that....in fear of the Mafia and my tour guides life...all I will say is that our tour guide said you can see it in his eyes.
Our guide showed us where the Mafia hung and hangs out, where people where killed, restaurants they own, and where crimes were committed. At one point on the tour we even walked by a natorious mobster, John Giordano, aka Handsome Jack. We were walking down the street in the Lower East Side when we saw this guy walking, who definately stood out with this slicked back hair, tan, and white expensive suit; he looked like a movie star. As he passed he gave our tour guide a little smirk and said hello. His smirk seemed to say "I know you know who I am and you're ridiculous." Watching this all unfold in front of me I knew something was up and when the gentleman was out of ear shot I immediately asked who that was. And low and behold we just walked by one of the "higher ups" in the Gambino Family Mafia.
Not only did our tour guide show us the ins and outs of the Mafia but he also showed us the current joints where one can makes some "tax free" cash (aka under the table gambling). It was so funny because he brought us into this little join in China Town and bought us a "numbers card" where you guess the last 3 digits of the DOW for the following day. Unfortunately we didn't win...
There was so much awesome informaiton that I do not even know where to begin but all I can say is...I LOVED THIS TOUR!!!!!!