Calling On The Cinquecento Once Again

In 1957, the Fiat Company did for the Italians what Volkswagen did for the Germans with the Beetle in 1945. It created the Fiat 500 – or The Cinquecento – a car to carry the Italian family through their daily lives. The car is built to last, is easy to maintain, and the costs are affordable for the average family. For years the Fiat 500 was a symbol of the Italian middle class, lining up outside in the city streets in front of apartments. Few things epitomize the Italian lifestyle as much as cooking, but the Fiat 500 comes pretty close.

A Brief Respite For The Beloved 500

The end of the Cinquecento was written on the wall when the company had to massive restructuring to the design thanks to the “suicide doors”. 1965 Called for dramatic changes and with the Sports model looking to recoup some of the sales thereafter, it was only a matter of time before this beloved stalwart of the motoring world became a relic of the past. The Fiat Company decided to stop further production on the Fiat 500 and instead focused attention on the newer, more modern Fiat 132 and 133. These were bigger and sturdier, playing into the desires of drivers in the seventies. [Read more…]

Wherefore Art Thou Romeo?

By Alberto Amore

Romeo and Juliet is a ripoff. There, I said it.

Bill Shakespeare ripped it off just like he ripped off pretty much everything he did. He was a rapper of yesteryear, sampling, reshaping and reselling old songs that had been sung time and time again, but to a new audience, a British audience. It is a practice that has always been in play and copyright lawyers rub their collective hands together with the knowledge that it always will. But let’s be honest.

Do we want to hear the world’s greatest love story from the point of view of an Englishman? If you want your romance to be microwave spag bol, by all means, help yourself. However, if you want passion on a plate, if you want to be serenaded and romanced with the finest wines and the embrace of sun-kissed Mediterranean ingredients, then you need authentic Italian food. And as for romance, you may side with the land of Monty Python and Mr. Bean or you may look to the land of Casanova, Rudolph Valentino and Romeo and Giulietta.

In the Shakespearean version, when Juliet leans over the Balcony (as it is often portrayed) and calls out

“O Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo?”

She is not asking where Romeo is, contrary to the direction of English teachers and Directors the world over. ‘Wherefore’ does not mean ‘Where’ nor did it in Shakespearean England. Wherefore would be understood as closer to why,  changing the lazy interpretation of ‘Where is Romeo?’ to ‘Why’ does this object of my love and adoration have to be he, a Montague, a member of a rival family.  [Read more…]

Positive Italian Habits Everyone Should Inherit

You can develop an optimistic outlook as easy as a habit of doing cardio every morning. Of course, willing to live and enjoy life is not a myth! Many people say that Italy is a country of optimistic people – and yes, if you compare Italy to other European or Northern countries, psychologists agree – this nation lives happier indeed. And none of the factors depend on the economics (which is not in the best state throughout the last decade). But people in Italy never cry over life and perceive things as they are. Maybe, there is something to learn for every other country?

NEW DAY, NEW LIFE

There is no reason to panic and forecast the end of the world. Whichever news the press will announce today, you don’t need to make an elephant out of a fly. This life principle is typical for the majority of Italians, which is not surprising, because the country has lived with Berlusconi for so many years, and the eternal crisis of the Italian economy is already almost a part of the local color. People here live and expect better things to come.

FACEBOOK IS A SOCIAL MEDIA MEANT FOR FRIENDSHIP, NOT FOR POLITICAL DEBATES

Italian profiles are always the best to look at on the social media – they all are sweet and positive. The majority of people post photos of their wives, children, memories from recent holidays and weekends. The links to the political articles are relatively rare and difficult to find. And quarrels between dissenters in the commentaries are not a normal phenomenon. For example, there are numerous cases where two Italians are both politicians, who represent competing parties, but they live perfectly together. [Read more…]

Rugby League World Cup, the Red, White and Azzurri!

By Al Mach

No helmets, no pads, no blockers, no first downs, no kneels and no time outs. Two teams of agile, fast and powerful football players have to be able to play every position on the field, be it offensive, defensive and special teams and regularly change from one position to the other during the full speed run of play in the time it takes for an NFL quarterback’s heart to skip a beat. This is the world of Rugby League Football.

2017 marks the 15th iteration of the World Cup of Rugby League, a game that started in the North of England in 1895. It differs from its sister sport Rugby Union which it is often mistaken for, in that the more modern and more free flowing game of Rugby League has smaller (Rugby has 15 players on the field while Rugby League has 13) and more versatile teams competing with ‘plays of the ball’ as opposed to constant scrimmaging in order to speed the game up and provide enthralled audiences with constant visibility of the football which often gets lost under the rucks and mauls (Rugby Scrimmages) of its predecessor, Rugby.

First held in 1954, the 2017 Rugby League World Cup will showcase 14 men’s and 6 women’s teams from around the globe in Pacific Island host nations Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea where the game has flourished. In Australia, Rugby League is the local form of Football. It is known as a working man’s sport and is often referred to as ‘the greatest game of all’ on the East coast of Australia where it has been a very popular and highly professional sport for over a century. In the US, the word ‘Football’ conjures up the very different images of Steely McBeam, Ben Roethlisberger in a shiny logo’d helmet behind a highly posed offensive line on perfectly manicured astro turf (Rugby League is played exclusively outdoors on grass). The two games have evolved from Ruby but taken very different paths. The games communities are even more diverse. The NFL generated more than $13 Billion in the 2016 season while in the USA has been floundering to try to get off the ground since before World War II. [Read more…]

Week of the Italian Language in the World

By Alberto Macchione

From October 16th to October 22nd, The President of Italy will be the patron of ‘Week of the Italian Language in the World’.  This is the 17th Year of the celebration of cultural events and happenings which this year will feature the ‘Italians in the Cinema and Italians at the Cinema’ acknowledging the remarkable contribution of Italian cinema and its everlasting legacy.

The language 65 Million Italian speakers reside in the European Union while 14 Million speakers make up minority language communities in Crimea, Eritrea, France, Libya, Monaco, Montenegro, Romania, Somalia and by expatriate communities in Europe, the Americas and Australia.

Italian is a ‘Romantic’ language in more ways than one. It is romantic in that is the language of love. It is undoubtedly the language of Giacomo Casanova, Rudolph Valentino and Romeo and Juliet, however the true meaning of ‘romance’ means that the language is derived from ‘Rome’ and thus being of Romantic origin.

Italian is the closest language to the Latin spoken in ancient Rome however it is surprising to many that Italian was not a universal language until after World War I. The reasons for this are varied however the main factor was that Italy did not become a nation state in the modern sense until 1815 in what is known as the ‘Unification of Italy’ or more correctly, the ‘Risorgimento’. [Read more…]