Thursday, October 23, 2008


I'm learning Italian, a little at a time. So far I can say my name.

Mi chiamo David.

I can say that I don't understand.

Non capisco.

I can tell a stranger that I need a doctor.

Ho bisogno di un dottore.

Tell them where it hurts.

Mi fa male qui.

Tell someone I have a flat tire.

Ho una gomma sgonfia.

Order pasta.

Vorrei pasta.

And tell a bartender when to cut me off.

Sono ubriaco.

I've wanted to learn Italian for years and now I'm trying, a phrase at a time. Why? I tell Jenny it's because I want to take her to Italy next year, but I have another reason. If the economy goes into the tank in a big way, I would rather be broke in Italy than broke in America. Here's one reason why:

This is the Italian idea of an afternoon TV talk show hostess. We have Rosie O'Donnell.

Not coincidentally, I'm voting today. This will be the first time in a long time my vote for president may make a difference. North Carolina a swing state? It only took eight years of George Bush and an incompetent John McCain campaign to put this state into play and some of our locals have been so skeert by years of Jesse Helms style booga booga, and the e-mails saying Obama is a muslim, that it's still not a slam dunk.

So, I'm not uncorking any champagne. I've been here before, only to wake up on that hungover Wednesday morning, my ass on fire, my guitar gone and my bank account empty.

What will I do if John McCain wins?

Barista, vorrei un vodka.

And keep 'em coming.


Charlie Stella said...

Madonna mia!

She's a beautiful thing.

You want to learn Italian, listen to Italian opera (I'm still on a German kick, but you get the idea) ... you'll be forced to read the librettos, etc.

Speaking of beautiful things:

I put this up on amazon (not sure if it's registered yet).

Somebody to Watch Over Us …

John Harper has it all … frustrated Washington socialites anxious for a quickie in a cloak room … the soul to play good music (really good music) … he can shoot and throw a punch AND he’s got enough good in him (i.e., soul—the kind that will restore faith in your fellow human beings) to make for the ultimate good guy just trying to mind his own business and get along … except he’s also been a spy and good enough at it to be sent on a mission with little chance of survival. Beneath a Panamanian Moon is a cleverly written ride into the Canal zone with enough of a history lesson (to learn and enlighten—always a good thing) and more than enough action to satisfy those with a blood lust. It is also a certifiable page turner than will rocket you through some hairy escapades while leapfrogging between some very sexy women and the intrinsic dangers that are part of their package. There’s genuine compassion in the protagonist and I suspect in the author as well. Fun (and poignant) stuff, start to finish.

David Terrenoire said...


You've made me tear up, just a little. Thanks.

I thought that once I became a bit more conversant I'd rent some good Italian movies that are subtitled.

That was one of the ways I learned Spanish and it's an entertaining way to learn how to say inappropriate things.

But I'll try the opera, too.

Jeff Shelby said...

I'm voting today, as well. Unfortunately, here in TX, I'm pretty sure they are going to look at my ballot and just laugh as they shred it...

norby said...

David, the next Italian phrase you should learn is "Hey lady your double sided tape is showing."

'Cause it is.

Charlie Stella said...

Davey 3x's ... I'm sure you've seen it, but La Vita è bella ... it's why I send my wife an email every day "Buon Giorno, Principessa!" ... it's how we came to be a couple (the movie) ... we'd both seen it and barely knew each other (at work). I heard her talking about it, mentioned I'd seen it and the rest is us ... I can't watch that movie without crying to this day (for more than the obvious reasons).

David Terrenoire said...


I had to look very closely for a long time before I saw the tape.

Then I showed it to all the guys who work around me and they saw it too.

I think I'm going to go look at it again.

Thanks for pointing it out.

Anonymous said...

Dave, you'll need these:

"Venite con me. Vi paghero."
Come with me. I'll pay you.

"Chiudete la porta. Avvicinatevi Mostratemeli!"
Close the door. Come closer. Show them to me!

"Che olio usate?"
What oil do you use?

"Gettate l'arma!"
Drop the gun!

Best of luck.

Anonymous said...

"Dammi una sega" literally means "give me a saw". Figuratively it's quite different. I used to sing this in my best operatic baritone while playing darts in the bar.

Along the same vein, but more practically, "Va fan culo" is quite common. It's an abbreviated form of "va fa in culo" (?) which means literally "go do it in the ass". Like the f-bomb it's liable to appear as any part or speech or any context and is not necessarily scandalous. In fact it's so ubiquitous that "vaffa" will suffice.

I too took it upon myself to scrutinize the double sided tape. During the course of my studies I noticed a telltale indentation in the inner left dug. My fantasies are dashed. Fake breasts induce a slight cringe. Otherwise serviceable porn wilts when I spy a toilet plunger breast.

I'm not one to toot my own horn but I batted 1000 on Yeah, I'm that good.

--Mr. Knuckles

Rose Ghost said...

I would also quite like to learn Italian, but for a slightly more noble reason...

But it is quite a sexy language.

Scott said...

Double-sided tape? Who's looking at double-sided tape?? I'm seeing double all right...and tape ain't what I'm seeing.

marco said...

Non è una conduttrice,ma un ospite.
She's not a hostess,but a guest.

"Dammi una sega" literally means "give me a saw"
And nothing more. Fammi una sega however means literally "do/make me a saw" and figuratively "give me a handjob".

It's funny that while I troll random crime blogs in order to forget the dire reality of my country's political situation, someone can see Italy as a kind of promised land.
In addiction to very known and longstanding problems, we also have our version of everything you despise , from Berlusconi (one of Bush's best buddies) to our own Sarah Palin (Mara Carfagna) to catholic versions of Focus on the Family and the like.

Anyway,if you already know Spanish Italian shouldn't be difficult.


Anonymous said...

This lady is named Pamela David and even when she looks italian, she is from Argentina.