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Italian News Snippets: 24 February 2007

  • Now, this would be something to see – Vatican soccer teams made up of priests and trainee clergyman start playing this Saturday in a bid for the Clericus Cup.
  • On February 19th Italy celebrated “World Slow Day,” which was apparently amazingly successful, as the announcement hit the sites I read the day after the event. Now that’s slow.
  • Want to get out of that speeding ticket? You’d better be on your way to performing a dying man’s last rites.
  • Oh, and if you’d prefer a lighter prison sentence, it might help if you’re connected to the mob in some way.
  • The Italian government has unveiled a new energy-saving plan in an effort to fight global warming and make the country more energy independent. I wonder what it’s like to live in a country that would do that kind of thing…
  • The case of the CIA kidnapping the imam in Milan with the help of the Italian secret services (possibly under the direction of then-Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi) continues to intrigue on both sides of the Atlantic.
  • Berlusconi is in more hot water, only this time it’s not from his wife. Prosecutors are set to appeal his 2004 acquittal on judge bribery charges.
  • Ferrari continues to mark its 60th anniversary, this time with a special exhibit at the Galleria Ferrari in Modena about the relationship between Ferrari and film.
  • Turin’s Civic Museum is hosting a new exhibit dedicated to the influence Alexander the Great had over Western Asia, even after his death. It runs through May 27.
  • The House of Augustus, Rome’s first emperor, is scheduled to reopen “later this year after decades of excavations.” It’s been mostly fenced off since 1961.
  • February 17th was the “Day of the Cat” in Italy. Don’t tell my cats, or they’ll want some kind of belated present.
  • If you like the smell of citrus, you’ll love the annual orange-throwing festival in Ivrea. Just be sure to pack a facemask before you go, those oranges can hurt.