Shooting the Bull With Sammy the Bull

Coffee talk with a Mafia muscleman turned stoolie turned alleged drug kingpin

I don't know about that.

What I do know is that I've been offered Nikes and even a Pink Triangle or two, but only inside upscale Scottsdale clubs where liquor is served and high schoolers are not (also, those same Nikes and Pink Triangles, which first appeared in the Valley about a year ago, are widely known in the rave and club scenes as "bunk" tablets which made a lot of people sick instead of high).

One convenient omission that accompanies the hyperbole of the media's Ecstasy frenzy is this: The recreational use of Ecstasy in the Valley, not to mention the world, is exploding not only because more teenagers are doing it at raves, but also, and probably more so, because more yuppies are doing it in nightclubs.

Jay Bevenour

If Gravano's guilty, it's because he saw a trend and capitalized on it. I doubt if he knows Ecstasy from aspirin, except one's illegal and costs $25 a hit. It's easy for me to envision him tutoring a few criminal protégés, then pulling their strings. Picturing Sammy the Bull on Ecstasy is another matter. (Go ahead and try.)

Sammy don't rave.

This much I know from a tale I heard him tell about a flamboyant Czechoslovakian disco-club promoter and multimillionaire who, back in the early '80s, rented out a Brooklyn discotheque Sammy owned to throw himself a surprise birthday party. Gravano told this story the first night I saw him, when I was out of his line of sight and could take good notes:

"Here's this fuckin' guy, he's handing out nose powder like he's the fuckin' Pied Piper, and he's got all these, I don't know, weirdos or somethin', with their flamingo hair, hangin' all over him, men and women, and then they sit him down and shave him bald, right there in my club. I tell him, 'Get the fuck outta my place.'

"Next thing I know, he wants to buy my club for a million dollars. I think, sure, why not? Next thing I know, the deal's not even done, he's moving into my office with his Dobermans. I ask him what the fuck, and he points an Uzi at me across his desk. I tell him, 'Hey, no problem.' I back off. Then that night, I get the guys together, we put one bullet through each of his eyes."

The saga of Sammy appears to have entered its endgame chapter. From what I know of him, he would want you to remember this about his life in Arizona: He owned a big house with a pool when they came to get him, and he drove a nice car. Nicer than the cops who put him in cuffs. And I'm sure he's sure that's why they were after him.

I mean, hey, it's not like he killed anybody.

Contact David Holthouse at his online address:

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