“Mastermind” by Reed Farrel Coleman appears in Long Island Noir, an anthology of short stories set in Nassau and Suffok counties of New York, recently released by Akashic Books:
Jeff Ziegfeld was always the exception to the rule: the dumb Jew, the blue-collar Jew, the tough Jew. No matter the Zen of the ethnic group the wheel of fortune got you born into, dumb and poor was the universal formula for tough. And he had to be tough because it’s hard to be hard when your name is Jeffrey Ziegfeld. Didn’t exactly make the kids on the block shit their pants when someone said, “Watch out or Ziggy’ll kick your ass.” He was extra tough because his dad liked to smack him around for the fun of it, all the time saying, “Remember, dickhead, no matter how strong you get, I’ll always be able to kick your ass. I grew up the last white kid in Brownsville. And where’d you grow up? Lake Grove, a town with no lake and no grove. What a fucking joke. Kinda like you, huh, kid?”
You can read the whole story over at Criminal Element.