"Domani farą schifo...melo sento." Alas, it's another comically immature of, "Only In Italy!"
I love your newsletter! I look forward to it.
I recently spent a very short time (too short - only 1 week) in Sicily with my sister. We went to my grandmother's birthplace, Motta D'Affermo in Messina. We wanted to honor our Sicilian heritage. We've always felt really connected to Sicily and we are the first of our family to go back to the town. It was marvelous. From the moment I arrived I felt that I was home.
I can't wait to go back. I'm trying to figure out how I could live there!!! Sicilia e tutti bedda! Grazie! Bonnie B.
Thanks for your letter and your visit to Sicily, Bonnie.
Hmmm...hard to believe Sicily had such a positive impact on your life. That's wonderful. However; do not make such serious plans out of haste. You should have spent more time in Sicily in order to get an idea of how life really is here. 8 days would have been sufficient enough to have made you pack your bags and swim home.
By the way, Sicilians honor their Sicilian heritage by leaving Sicily.
Enjoy the issue, keep writing and Grazie!
Rome - February 5, 2009 - Italy risks losing its status as a world economic power if its economy continues to perform so poorly, the outgoing American ambassador said Thursday.
Ronald Spogli, sent to Rome three years ago by ex-president George W. Bush, explained that "the basic problem of Italy's economy is its long-term slow economic growth, which is much more serious than the current recession".
Italy, he observed, "has over the years repeatedly ranked low in international rankings in regard to conditions for doing business and investing". The main reasons for this, the ambassador said, were "too much bureaucracy, a rigid labor market, organized crime, corruption, a slow judicial system, the lack of advancement by merit and an education system which does not meet the needs of the 21st century.
However, at the root of Italy's slow economic growth was "a lack of unity" among Italians, Spogli said.
"Unfortunately, I have no magic glue to offer which can keep this country together. Nevertheless, I'm not pessimistic. What I have seen in these past three years convinces me that this country can make it," the ambassador added.
Speaking on Inauguration Day, January 20, Spogli said that no matter who takes his place as ambassador "nothing will change in the excellent relations which exist between the United States and Italy"."Cacchio", we can't get anything right. We need Emperor Constantine to help get us out of this crap.
"Italy, he observed, has over the years repeatedly ranked low in international rankings in regard to conditions for doing business and investing". We beg to differ Ronaldo. Our Prime Minister of Meatballs once stated Italy was a great country to invest in because "today we have fewer communists and those and those who are still there deny having been one."
PM of Meatballs: "Another reason to invest in Italy is that we have beautiful secretaries...superb girls."
So, the companies that make up the S&P 500 should understand it makes perfect business sense to invest in Italy and avoid countries with ugly women and ex-communists living in denial.
"too much bureaucracy..." Bureaucracy is our own beautiful lyrical opera full of sound and emotional singing. Wander into any post office, police headquarters or government office and you will hear an enchanting chorus of stamping, slamming and banging while long lines of confused Italians pray that they're in the right place and the right line for the document required. God forbid if they're not.
"Testa di minchiaaaa ha ha haaaa! If this is the wrong document, time, line, office, hemisphere, why don't you have any indication signs...you grandissimo figlio di una mignottaaaa la la laaa!"
"a slow judicial system..." Again, our Prime Minister of Minestrone has a logical explanation for this: "Eighty-five per cent of the Italian press is left-wing and among the judges it is even worse... There is a cancer in Italy that we have to treat: the politicization of the magistracy."
PM of Minestrone: "If they do that job it is because they are anthropologically different from the rest of the human race."
So, you see, once we lure these early prehistoric cavemen out of the court rooms with tiger meat and back to the caves where they belong then one will be able have a speedy and civilized court trial.
Rome - February 10, 2009 - Suicides in Italian prisons have dropped to the lowest number in 17 years, the prison administration department (DAP) said Tuesday.
Last year 42 people killed themselves while in jail, and a further 604 attempted suicide out of a 56,000-strong inmate population. In 1991 there were only 29 suicides, but the prison population stood at just 30,000.
DAP said around 70% of prison suicides were among new arrivals and were largely Italians rather than foreigners, who make up around 38% of all prisoners. But the director-general of DAP's prisoner office, Sebastiano Ardita, said there was a danger that the positive trend could be reversed in the light of chronic overcrowding in Italian jails.
The effects of a controversial government pardon in 2006 that saw 27,000 inmates released in an effort to relieve overcrowding have since been canceled out, and there are currently 58,000 inmates in Italy's 43,000-capacity system. In January Justice Minister Angelino Alfano appointed a special commissioner for prisons and gave him powers to accelerate the government's jail-building program.
The scheme is aimed at raising the official jail capacity above 60,000.
58,000 inmates?! "Mamma mia", we just threw up our lunch from this frighteningly low number.
There are entire neighborhoods in Salerno and Palermo that should be behind bars. No need to construct new prisons because we can't even get that right. Just surround these towns with prison walls and watchtowers and let them be. Conjugal visits would be more than welcome for anyone just as long as they realize they can never leave, because whoever visits these neighborhoods can't possibly be up to any good.
However; we strongly believe that some inmates in Italy are innocent of the crimes they have been convicted for but...they're guilty of something. They are all guilty of something!
There is a logical explanation to the drop of prison suicides. It's called a reason for living. That specific reason is the awe-inspiring government pardon of 2006 which allowed close to 27,000 inmates to simply walk free.
Not so shockingly, 6194 of these fiends are back behind bars while the other 20,806 are still at large and on the run somewhere between Campania and Sicily.
Rome - February 11, 2009 - Two Sicilian bank robbers have been caught breaking into a bank in Turin wearing carnival masks representing the features of Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and his close business and political associate Marcello Dell'Utri.
Possibly inspired by the Hollywood movie Point Break, in which a group of surfers robbed banks wearing masks of former presidents of the United States, the men were armed with imitation handguns.
They were overpowered by Carabinieri military police as they attempted to flee a branch of Unicredit Bank with Euros 70,000 (90,000 USD) in a backpack after an employee who had witnessed the robbery from a lavatory raised the alarm.
Newspapers on Wednesday published photographs of the arrests taken by a man whose apartment overlooks the bank. The robbers were identified as brothers Michele and Matteo Manganaro, aged 45 and 46, from Catania. A third accomplice reportedly escaped.
The choice of masks could be mildly embarrassing for Mr Berlusconi, who has been accused over the years of bribery, false accounting and collusion with the Mafia, but has never been convicted. His friend Mr Dell'Utri however, who hails from Sicily, has convictions for false accounting, tax evasion and complicity with Cosa Nostra.
Berlusconi: "I am the Jesus Christ of politics. I am a patient victim, I put up with everyone, I sacrifice myself for everyone."
Berlusconi: "I trust the intelligence of the Italian people too much to think that there are so many pricks around who would vote against their own best interests."
Berlusconi: "Italy is now a great country to invest in...today we have fewer communists and those who are still there deny having been one. Another reason to invest in Italy is that we have beautiful secretaries...superb girls."
Berlusconi: "Eighty-five per cent of the Italian press is left-wing and among the judges it is even worse... There is a cancer in Italy that we have to treat: the politicization of the magistracy."
Berlusconi: "I believed and still believe that citizen Berlusconi should be praised for having prevented the state's wealth from being looted... I was expecting a Gold Medal for Civil Worthiness for ensuring the state earned 2,000 billion [Italian lire]."
Berlusconi: "If I, taking care of everyone's interests, also take care of my own, you can't talk about a conflict of interest."