Sunday, 8 April 2007

all dressed up and....

It's Easter weekend, and that means holiday time. The Italian saying goes, "Natale con i suoi, Pasqua con chi vuoi" which means Christmas with your parents, Easter with whoever you like. Only, you know, rhyming. Everyone has time off work and there's lots of socialising, and partying to be done, and prodigious quantities of food and drink to be consumed. It's 23h on Saturday and your faithful correspondent is all ready to go out: dinner cooked eaten & cleared away, shower, new top, sparkly eye-make up, hair straightened and implausible lilac shoes at the ready. Plans call for cocktails, dancing and stumbling home around 5. When the mate I was supposed to be meeting calls to say they don't feel well so can we go out another time?


Since housemate one is at home in Puglia and housemate 2 is out having a romantic dinner with his girlfriend, and most of my other mates are either out of town or otherwise engaged, this means a change of plans. The revised plan calls for hanging out the laundry, handwashing my pink angora cardigan, singing along to Etta James and, you will be doubtless delighted to learn, writing a blog entry or two. If I feel particularly wild and crazy I might paint my toenails purple. I've even considered reorganising my t-shirt drawer but, y'know, maybe best to not get carried away and do something I might regret in a fit of Saturday night exuberance. I might take off the skyscraper heels though, the lady downstairs complains if I clop around in heels late at night (as in most Italian flats the floor is tiled not carpeted, and since the construction of this apartment block is as flimsy as Parma's hopes of escaping relegation despite the presence of the lovely Claudio Ranieiri, the noise tends to carry).

Blog updates have been erratic of late for which I apologise. The explanation is at once simple and incomprehensible, in a classically Italian way.

See, let's imagine that you, dear reader, were in the business of providing a service to customers in their homes. Now, when the time came to send out the monthly bill, would you choose to:

a) send it to the address to which you provide the service?

b) send it to another address which the customer had registered with you?

c) send it to an address you had invented completely and which doesn't exist?

So, let's further imagine, just hypothetically, that in your infinite wisdom you'd chosen option c). When your customer calls up to ask where the bills are, and explain that they've not received anything from you, you reassure them and promise to send out a new copy. You ask them to confirm their correct address and they do so. Now, do you:

a) send it to the address to which you provide the service and which the customer has confirmed?

b) send it the invented and non-existent address?

Well, maybe you've developed an affection for the non-existent address now. And, it's not like since you know what the customer's real address is, not like you provide a service directly to their home or anything. But what's this?! Bastard customer STILL hasn't paid their bills. Really, the only sensible thing to do is to cut them off, no? No need to bother warning them, let them work it out for themselves, when the service ceases unexpectedly to work.

Now, the customer may be especially persistent and succeed in working out a way of paying you (sneaky devils). They pay you in full, in cash, and ask you reconnect the service. Do you

a) reconnect them, or

b) not?

Are we having fun yet? Cos your soon-to-be ex-customer sure as hell isn't, I can tell you that for nothing. I have been without home internet access since February 20th or so and despite exasperation, rows and threats on the one hand, and undertakings, promises and guarantees on the other, the situation is as yet unresolved. And of course it's not going to be fixed over Easter weekend. I am currently connected at who knows what implausible cost via my mobile. Mostly out of curiousity to see if it works.

Anyway I'm going to spend my evening writing up Roma - Man Utd. There's millions of things… well, maybe thousands… ok, literally half a dozen things I've been meaning to blog about but the necessity of the whole internet café thing has been such an enormous rottura di coglioni that I haven't yet got round to it/them. But I want to write about a couple of films I've seen recently (300 and Il 7 e l'8), about the book I'm reading (John Dickie's Cosa Nostra), about the exhibition I went to yesterday (Piero della Francesca e le Corti Italiane in Arezzo), about a couple of funny nights out (cultural mismatches and the like), about what I've been eating recently (bottarga and artichokes), my further reflections on bull-fighting arising from all your very interesting comments, about suicide as a historical phenomenon, about Roma-Milan, about a make-up dilemma (morality, aesthetics, face-powder). Sorry. I shall probably get round to sharing on as many of 2 or 3 of these subjects in the end. Feel free to nag if any of these subjects sound particularly interesting and I don't get round to the one you were wanting to read about. Always supposing that any of them, in fact, are of interest. And now, if you can contain your excitement, I'm going to go and rinse out my cardigan and put it to dry. Never let it be said that I don't know how to have a good time on a Saturday night.


punk said...

io ho visto 300ho trovato molto bello graficamente anche se lka storia non regge bene
il 7 e l'8 no, però a palermo i cinema erano pieni solo x loro.

Patrick Porter said...


do a post on 300, I'm about to do one on Oxblog (comparing it a bit to Stone's 'Alexander') so it'll be interesting to swap notes.

And no doubt, disagree wildly and throw some nuts about into the bargain.


Anonymous said...

Funny you should mention John Dickie's "Cosa Nostra", because I've been reading it too. Love to hear your thoughts on it. Although I've put it down for now because I've started on Paddy Agnew's "Forza Italia" which is excellent up to half way through. Great chapters on Maradona and Berlusconi.
- Aussie Romanista

TrentToffee said...

So it's true ! Italian telecoms providers really are crap at billing :oD

I agree with the others, a post about 300 and Cosa Nostra please.