Some news from Italy for your Sunday reading pleasure:
>> Just in time for the holidays – I’m enjoying making my way through the Christmas in Italy guide that came as a free gift from Dream of Italy. All you need to do to get your own PDF copy is sign up to receive the Italian Daydreams e-newsletter. Enjoy!
- Italy is famous for its nepotism, but one bank in Rome has come up with a new twist on the old tradition. In order to cut costs, they’re giving many older (and more expensive) employees a choice: Either take early retirement, or leave your job to a younger (and cheaper) relative.
- If the thought of an Italy without pasta isn’t enough to convince you we need to stop climate change, I don’t know what is. A new report suggests climate change may result in conditions in Italy that are inhospitable for growing the durum wheat necessary to make pasta.
- A collector in Italy has found what turned out to be the missing tooth and fingers of the scientist Galileo. Yeah, there are some serious drawbacks to being famous and/or sainted and dying in Italy, in that you stand a pretty good chance of getting chopped up.
- An Italian politician stepped down last month after a video surfaced in which he was “intimate” with a transsexual prostitute – and now that prostitute has been found dead in a fire in her apartment.
- I’m all for an unusual attraction on an Italy trip, so I’m pleased to see that one of these weird food museums is in Italy.
- The folks at EuroCheapo have made a list of the places you can see famous works by Caravaggio for free in Rome, but if you’d like to understand the troubled painter better I highly recommend taking the Context Travel Caravaggio Seminar.
- A new museum is set to open in December in the Calabrian city of Reggio Calabria. The subject of the museum? The history of the Calabrian mafia.
- This isn’t the first time I’ve seen a recipe for the Roman pasta dish cacio e pepe, but it’s making me hungry again.
- Last year it was the garbage strikes in Naples that made the news. Now it’s the garbage strikes in Palermo.
- My blogging friend Cherrye has a guest post on Burnt by the Tuscan Sun about three things that make living in Italy somewhat less idyllic than vacationing there.
- So, if closing arguments are finally underway in the trial of Amanda Knox in Perugia, does that mean that we’ll stop hearing about this case soon? Pretty please?
- I’m not a video game girl, but I wouldn’t mind checking out the graphics in the new Assassin’s Creed II just to see all the Italy stuff.
- Aspiring pop musicians, listen up – the Sanremo Music Festival will allow non-Italians to compete in 2010, for the first time ever.
- Am I meant to be surprised to learn that Mussolini was a “fierce anti-Semite?” I guess I would have assumed that to begin with.
- The tax fraud trial of Silvio Berlusconi was reopened last week and immediately postponed because the Prime Minister is being, well, the leader of Italy. If they’re going to keep putting the trial off while he’s on official state business, maybe he’ll actually keep doing official state business.
- Yet another Italian mobster has been arrested – this time it’s Domenico Raccuglia, known widely as “The Veterinarian,” and he was taken into custody near Trapani.
- Oh, and so far, the folks who actually went and captured The Veterinarian have yet to be paid. Charming.
- In other Italian mobster news, if you’re looking for an interesting conversation-starting piece of art, you might want to consider picking up one of the paintings done by “Sicilian mafia turncoat Gaspare Mutulo” while he’s been in prison.
- A college student from New York State fell down some steps in a church in Rome and died from his injuries.
- Italy is well-known for history museums, but Italofile points out that there are some really excellent modern art museums in Italy, too.
- Evidently the crazy notion of “falling in love” via the mail with a prison inmate isn’t reserved to just the U.S. – an Italian journalist now says she wants to marry a man who’s in prison after killing three people.
- A painting on loan to the Uffizi Gallery in Florence apparently fell from its hook overnight – thankfully the painting wasn’t damaged, but its frame was. Oops.
- Taking a trip to the Vatican? Madeline has five suggested to-do items you might not know about.
- Plans have been announced to create a new theme park in Rome based on old films, as part of the Cinecittà empire. It’s set to open in 2014.
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