Judge Mazz Dispenses Justice With a Belly Full of Pastrami

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Photo: Courtesy Michael Mazzariello

Name: Michael Mazzariello (a.k.a. “Judge Mazz”)
Age: 50
Neighborhood: Born and raised in the East New York section of Brooklyn (New Lots). Now residing in the Town of Newburgh located in Orange County.
Occupation: Trial attorney, educator, lecturer, and host of Street Court.

Who's your favorite New Yorker, living or dead, real or fictional?
Elisabetta Iacoviello (my wife). The daughter of Italian immigrants, she was also born and raised in Brooklyn. She supported me financially and emotionally during this roller-coaster ride called Street Court.

What's the best meal you've eaten in New York?
Pastrami and rye with a Dr. Brown’s cream soda at Adelman’s Kosher Deli in Brooklyn. (Don’t forget the fries.)

In one sentence, what do you actually do all day in your job?
Dispense justice in a “Firm but Fair” manner.

Would you still live here on a $35,000 salary?
I did for less and still would. New York is the only place for me.

What's the last thing you saw on Broadway?
Wicked.

Do you give money to panhandlers?
Yes! Showing compassion toward another is one of life’s greatest rewards. I live by the saying, “But for the Grace of God … ”

What's your drink?
It’s a tie between Manhattan Special espresso coffee soda and Campari.

How often do you prepare your own meals?
Not often, but I do all the barbecuing, and Elisabetta is just simply the best cook in the world.

What's your favorite medication?
Methylprednisolone out of necessity.

What's hanging above your sofa?
Pictures of my beautiful wife and children.

How much is too much to spend on a haircut?
Twenty dollars.

When's bedtime?
Right after the Yankee game, or local news when Yanks aren’t playing.

Which do you prefer, the old Times Square or the new Times Square?
I like the old Times Square of my early childhood (when Times Square was Times Square). It was fun and just a blast to walk around.

What do you think of Donald Trump?
He is a doer, builder, and a man with great hair.

What do you hate most about living in New York?
I love all things New York and hate nothing.

Who is your mortal enemy?
Criminals and toll booths.

When's the last time you drove a car?
I drive every day.

How has the Wall Street crash affected you?
Limited my ability to save for the children and retirement.

Times, Post, or Daily News?
I read all three for different reasons. The Daily News gives me Brooklyn, the Post gives me sports, and the Times gives me brain food and the crossword puzzle.

Where do you go to be alone?
My tool room on my favorite teak rocker surrounded by my beloved tools and boyhood mementos.

What makes someone a New Yorker?
Compassion and toughness.