I’m Italian. 100%, grandparents off the boat, Italian. I hate tomato sauce. What kind of Italian, are you? You might ask, as my grandfather used to in his most loving, accent filled (that I, my mother and sister never heard) way. If love is blind she’s also deaf to accents. But I can’t help disliking tomato sauce. Macaroni and sauce? Not for me. Oil and garlic? Now we’re talking. See, I’m really Italian. You should see my hands move when I speak.
What else makes me Italian? My hair is pitch black. Well, it used to be many moons ago. Now it’s dark brown with lovely caramel highlights. Maybe I should rename them canolli shell color? Canollis. Now that’s Italian heaven.
I sound like I’m from Brooklyn. I’ve never been to Brooklyn.
My mother’s name is Mary. Every Italian family has one Mary. We have twelve. Mary, Maria, Rosemary. Oh, yeah, Rosemary was creative. Snuck that Mary right by us.
I know every superstition ever created. My grandmother has her PhD in superstitions. Don’t put new shoes on the table. Bad luck. Honestly, I’d rather put the new shoes on the table instead of the old, dirty ones. You must leave the house from the same door you came in. Otherwise, bad luck. I’ve tried to trick my granny into going out another door. She’s having no part of that. She can dodge and weave better than a basketball player. She doesn’t even wear sneakers. When my BFF asked me to be godmother to her new baby I was pregnant. My superstitious grandmother told me I couldn’t accept her offer. Bad luck. “Bad luck for who,” I asked. She just shrugged. That explained everything.
I love Italilan bread and the way my crazy family thinks if they yell they get their point across better. I wouldn’t change a thing about the way we add an “a” to the end of every word or our fears of black cats. I love us for who we are and all the pasta filled traditions we share. Just hold the tomato sauce.