La Cosa Nostril

La Cosa Nostril, rickzimmerman 2010
La Cosa Nostril, rickzimmerman 2010

When FBI Agent Penrod McPill first heard of Vinnie Leonetti, he thought it was a gang of three wiseguys. “No,” his Manhattan field office supervisor patiently explained, “It’s not ‘Vinnie, Lee an’ Eddie’, it’s Vinnie Leonetti!”

But, for reasons that should by now be obvious to all, Vinnie Leonetti (pictured above in his infamous Bronx mugshot) was never again referred to by law enforcement officials by his Christian name. Forever after, he was simply ‘La Cosa Nostril’.

You might say that LCN is quite a hirsute goodfella. His eyebrows do, in fact, grow so wooly as to seemingly leap from his face as he alters expression (roughly once a year). Though his favored barber, Principio della Guardia of 192 Hester Street, Little Italy, NYC, regularly shaves his temples, cheeks, jowls, neck and nape — and carefully buzzes his electric trimmer along his earflaps — he’s not quite brave enough to tempt trimming those prodigious nostril hairs.

So, once every three days or so, LCN must trim them himself in the privacy of his own bath, magnifying mirror propped up, clippers in hand, tears streaming down his face from the intermittent yet excruciating hair-pull.

It is rumored that La Cosa Nostril blew away rival upstart Teodoro ‘So-so’ Doloroso for cracking wise about his gaping nose-holes. But reliable informants clarify that it was instead So-so’s unwise show of contempt in plucking one of those errant hairs that sealed his doom. 

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