I once took a class in college on the American Mafia, called “The Psychology of the Modern American Crime Syndicate”, but it was like “how to be in the mob 101” taught by a man whose father worked for notorious gangster Lucky Luciano after he was exiled to Sicily. Luciano had this really nice house, and his dad was like his right-hand man in regard to everything, (he called him a Signore-attendant, basically he was like his bff) and so my teacher spent a lot of time around the father of organized crime when he was a kid (6-12 years old). He said that Luciano became like an uncle to him, cause Luciano himself didn’t have any kids, but he was fond of kids in general and he really liked this little guy (my teacher). Apparently, there was this one story about how when Luciano and Meyer Lansky were first working for Arnold Rothstein in like 1918 or something, he sent them out ahead of him to Chicago to meet with some guy there, and it’s a good thing he did, cause there was this ambush set up to kill Rothstein in a restaurant. Luciano and Lansky hightail it back to the lower east side of Manhattan, and report back to him what they saw, but one detail was CRUCIAL to the story: the color of the tablecloth. Luciano said it was white, Lansky said it was beige. They spent like an hour arguing over the color of the tablecloth, they argued so long, in fact, that Rothstein went home and came back a few hours later to find Lansky with a black eye and Luciano icing his hand, fuming in the corner. My teacher wanted to know if it was true, so he asked him when he was 11 years old, while Luciano was reading in his parlor (like outside his bedroom) late one night. Luciano looked at him, took a sip of wine, walked down the hallway and simply said “don’t tell Meyer Lansky this, but it was beige”. That’s my all time fave story about ANYONE, cause he DENIED the fact that it was beige for decades, and that’s something I would do.
∟”There was a man once, I don’t recall his name, frequented the billiard parlors downtown. He made a comfortable living wagering whether he could swallow certain objects, billiard balls being a specialty. He’d pick a ball, take it down his gullet to here, then regurgitate it back up. And one evening I decided to challenge this man a wager, 10.000 in cash for him to do the trick with a billiard ball of my choosing. Now he knew I’d seen him do this a dozen times, so I can only surmise that he thought I was stupid. We laid down the cash and I handed him the cue ball. He swallowed it down. It lodged in his throat and he choked to death on the spot. What I knew and he didn’t was that the cue ball was 1/16th of an inch larger than the other balls, just too large to swallow.”
Giuseppe “Joe the Boss” Masseria lying dead on a floor with the ace of spades shoved into his fingers. He lost his life in 1931, while playing cards with Lucky Luciano. Lucky excused himself to use the rest room, which was a cue for the planned hitmen to eliminate Joe the Boss.
Source: Cosa Nostra by Picozzi