"Mah, qua siamo." Welcome again to the show that never ends, "Only In Italy!"
"Né di Venere né di Marte non si sposa né si parte! "Remember, folks! Neither marry nor travel on either Tuesday or Friday! Why? It's just so...
Enjoy the issue, keep writing and Grazie!
Naples - August 17, 2010 - A suspected member of the Neapolitan mafia, the Camorra, has been arrested by Italian police after being unable to resist his mother's culinary delights.
Rosario Scognamillo, a 39-year-old suspected of being a high-ranking member of the Grimaldi Camorra clan, was captured by agents Monday while having lunch at his mother's home.
The man, who is accused of criminal association related to drugs trafficking, had been on the run since May.
He may have thought his return home would not be noticed with many Italians relaxing on their summer holidays at the moment.
Police: "Hmmm...smells good. What is it, Rosario?"
Oh, our lovely Naples...a city full of traffic, crime, filth and sensational food. Just ask our Rosario. Down every narrow, cobbled street hangs colorful lines of laundry, shrines carved into walls and crumpled old men in sandals teaching their grandsons how to play stupid when stopped by the polizia.
"Cacchio", and what a treat it is to find a Napolitano family sitting on their table and chairs outside their front door crowding over a mobile phone to speak to another cousin named Rosario who is spending time in Salerno with the "bagascia" (tramp) he was constantly warned to stay away from.
Then there's the themed roads; sort of like Disneyland gone haywire. There's a whole street dedicated to limoncello and biscotti, one for tripe and innards, and one for chili peppers. "Minchia", it's fantastic!
How do you battle the chaotic Mad Max traffic? Easy! Just use a local as a human shield...putting them between you and the traffic. They'll know how to weave between the hordes of psychopaths on scooters. Don't worry if they miscalculate. They'll take one for the team.
Yes, being mugged or pick-pocketed by Rosario's relatives can be frustrating but the visit to a Naples police station almost makes up for it. It is just as you would expect an Italian police station to be...complete disorganization, papers everywhere, every nincompoop officer smoking at their desk despite the walls being covered with no smoking signs, and the many, many exaggerated shrugs, disgusted looks, "allora" (and then?) and "che cazzo ne so io?" (what the f_ck do I know?).
Naples - August 18, 2010 - A doctor's letter to patients saying he wouldn't be around during the August break has sparked lottery fever in a small town near Naples.
Locals are rushing to play the numbers 12, which corresponds in the Neapolitan cabala to 'doctor'; 72, for 'surprise'; and 2, for 'letter', a local Naples daily paper reported Wednesday.
In his missive, the GP said "Don't bother ringing the bell, I'm off to join my family".
"I can't recommend anyone else except the Almighty".
Oh, that Naples! Now do you understand why they celebrate when the sun comes up?
By the way, feel free to play the following lottery numbers. If one of our readers does hit the jackpot, be honest and send our share to our office in Sicily. "Buona Fortuna!"
53 - 22 - 76
87 - 88
43 - 16 - 17
19 - 63 - 59
52 - 10 - 55
Rome - August 18, 2010 - An Italian family has expressed outrage at a restaurant for going after a lunch bill payment, even though their teenage son died of an alleged violent allergic reaction after waiters gave him the wrong type of ice-cream.
Davide Perta, 16, who suffered from a severe gluten intolerance, died from suspected anaphylactic shock minutes after eating the ice-cream at a fish restaurant in San Giovanni Rotondo, Puglia, his family said. The ice-cream was mixed with biscuits containing gluten.
His parents claim they had sent a list of foods their son could safely eat to the restaurant in advance, including a type of ice-cream containing no biscuit. Magistrates have now placed La Spiga restaurant owner, Andrea Marchesani, under investigation for suspected manslaughter as they await the outcome of toxicology tests and an analysis of the ice-cream.
But the restaurant saw fit to call Perta's family to chase payment of the 2,000 Euros ($2,600 USD) bill for the lunch on 8 August, at which 30 people celebrated the catholic confirmation of a family member.
"I did not want to believe it. It seems an absurd, barbarous and cynical request," said Davide's father, Luigi Perta. "It was like being stabbed in the heart. I don't have a problem with asking for the bill to be settled, but I do have a problem with the timing and the way they did it. Not a word of condolence or apology. Just a cynical request for cash."
As a lifelong suffer of Coeliac disease, Davide was allergic to gluten, the proteins found in wheat, rye and barley. The anaphylactic shock he allegedly suffered after eating the ice-cream biscuits can cause the face to swell and flush, as well as respiratory problems and death. Despite receiving mouth-to-mouth resuscitation from a family member who was trained as a nurse, Perta died on his way to hospital.
"The request for the bill was possibly made at an inappropriate moment," said Marchesani's lawyer Leonardo Maruzzi. "However, the call was made to the boy's uncle, who was due to pay the bill, not to his parents."
When the call was answered, Davide's mother was present. Grabbing the phone, she shouted: "Shame on you."
Mazurri said: "About 30 people ate and someone will have to pay the bill."
"Ma che schifo!" This is why we hate being alive. We swear we've seen more compassion coming from a dead swordfish in a Sicilian fish market.
Unfortunately, we live in a nation profoundly ignorant and disrespectful. Here's another example typical of what could happen to you if you're vegetarian and dine in an Italian restaurant:
Veggie: "Buon giorno, I would like to order a vegetarian platter. Grazie."
"I did not want to believe it. It seems an absurd, barbarous and cynical request..." "Minchia", absolutely! The hillbillies who run "La Spiga" restaurant should learn about a great invention called the computer, get an Internet connection, and read the incredible amount of publicity it's currently getting on the web. Even the Bushmen in the Kalahari desert know what they have to avoid the next time they visit San Giovanni Rotondo.
The illustrious attorney, Leonardo Maruzzi, "About 30 people ate and someone will have to pay the bill." After the case closes, the good lawyer should take our advice and go into farm animal psychology.