Here’s a list of some of the even more outrageous happenings around town:
While another Italian institution – the sacred one of marriage – is also in free fall, “they” hosted a convention on ‘La Famiglia’. The guest of honour? None other than that twice-divorced, constantly cavorting Lothario-wannabe (‘cuz I don’t truly believe he gets all that action), Berlusconi? Really?!! Or, meglio,‘stai scherzando??!!’
He bowed out due to his latest fiasco – that’s why? What an example. It’s as if Bernie Madoff was asked to be the guest of honor on a Wall Street Ethics convention.
Another institution, that of the ‘macho’ football players, seems to be having it’s own coming out party. A prominent gay football reporter claims to have had sex with a number of players, all of whom are seen regularly accompanied by their hottie groupies, their model wives, and so on. Even in Germany, talk of being openly gay in the football realm is on the table. Could it be? It would at least confirm what we’ve longed suspected every time a goal is made…
While in Venice, signs are posted all over town – well, over half the town at least – imploring the Mayor to “do something”. Stating (or, rather, in that very wonderful Italian way), understating that the City has been divided by a bridge…The marvelous looking but poorly designed Calatrava bridge, no less. I thought the debate surrounding the signs meant, like the one over the Ara Pacis still raging in Rome, that half the city didn’t like the bridge for its look [Lest you think it’s over the inconveniencing 7 million tourists who come by bus, car or train who then have to lug their luggage up the steps for lack of a simple gliding ramp, think again].
Turns out, the retailers who, for the last 1500 or so years (give or take a few), have gotten the tourist dollar as the aforementioned tourists dragged their bags past their doorways, are upset. The bridge now provides a groovy short cut around the obstacle course and now different retailers are getting the tourist dollar (or yen, as the case may be).
So, what do they truly want their Mayor to do? Dynamite the bridge? Let’s hope he doesn’t follow the Mayor of Rome's example and start saying he’ll tear it down, brick by brick. But, I won’t complain if in the end he reaches an architectural compromise – like Alemanno did, and adds the luggage ramp.