Got my Italian pasta making machine delivered today – along with my rolly-polly composter but that’s a different story.  This is not my first such kitchen “appliance.”  I used to make pasta and had a whippy dippy pasta machine maker, I think a Cuisinart model if I’m remembering correctly.  But like so much of my “stuff” that somehow disappeared into the dark void of divorce proceedings, I haven’t had a pasta machine in nearly a decade.  But now I do.  And this one is the genuine article: a shiny, heavy, clunky Italian made number and not some Chinese made knock-off.  In looking through the instruction booklet that came with it, I am impressed that the instructions come not only in Italian and English (a bit sketchy on the English rendition, but, hey, I’m not complaining) and the usual French, German, and Spanish.  As I continued leafing through the booklet, I also discovered that the self-same instructions are also rendered in Chinese, Portuguese, Russian, Korean and Arabic.  Arabic?  Sure, I guess.  Why not?  But I was surprised at the breadth of multi-lingual instructions.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen a book of instructions rendered in 10 languages before. 
Which only goes to show you just how interconnected and “One Worldly” we have all become, except for certain countries (See Below).  Now I know that the right wing crazies see this as some sort of heinous attack on America’s Liberty, Freedom, Independence and represents an egregious assault on the Constitutional dicta regarding the imposition of a Religious dogma on the States by the evil Federal Government - or some such thing - but I’m just happy to see that the Italians are at least doing well in one facet of their economy.  Okay.  So the export of genuine Italian made pasta making machines may not be exactly the highest affirmation of Italian manufacturing expertise but at least this artifact is well made unlike a certain Italian-made car that I won’t mention so as not to injure diplomatic relations between us and the Italians but that Consumer Reports won’t even put on their “Worst New Cars” list since it scores so low in reliability.  (Okay.  I just made that up.)  But seriously, Viagra in this car's gas tank folks?  

But in defense of Italian car makers, at one time I did own a very sexy Italian sports coupe that was fun to drive, elegantly designed and zippy.  Problem was that one night in the dead of Winter during an ice storm the bloody clutch cable snapped and left me stranded with my Irish Setter whom I had transported across the Anacostia River to the wide open (and at the time snow covered) Anacostia Park at 11:00 PM.  Back then, the park was known as a big time, outdoor drug market (crack cocaine) so I was – shall I say – unhappy that at 7,000 miles the fucking clutch decided to give up the ghost.   And I had plenty of time to curse the Fiat Corporation since it took me about twenty minutes to walk back across the 11th Street Bridge with my dog in tow (of course he was just luvin' the sleet and freezing rain) to my apartment.  But I did love the car.

I love Italy too, although I haven't graced that country's shore's in more than a decade.  So last summer, my partner and I planned a European trip.  Now, he's an Indian National so he had to apply for a Schengen visa.  After the submission of documents, making flight and hotel reservations, submitting revised documents and the payment of several thousands of Indian Rupees, we were all set.  We were leaving from the US from Washington through Toronto to Rome.  So we arrived at Dulles International Airport on our departure day, I scan my passport, ticket is issued, he scans his passport but gets some "See Ground Personnel"message.  Odd, I'm thinking, but we trotted off to the United Airlines counter and, we are told, he needs a Canadian visa.  "What?" I shouted with a modicum of anger in my voice. (Actually, I think what I said was "What The Fuck Are You Talking About?" since flying these days is a less than pleasant experience for us human beings.)  "Do you mean to tell me that he needs a Canadian via to go from Gate 34-B to Gate 14-B in the Toronto Pearson International Airport?"  which was exactly what his proposed "journey" in the Dominion of Canada would entail.

Well since it cost around $6,000 US to get a same day flight for him and we weren't willing to cough up that kind of money, we cancelled the trip.  I hope that all Canadians citizens are feeling very safe now as a result.

But we will return.  One day. Soon.      

Have A Good Day!



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