Have you ever run into someone you have not seen in decades? I have. Recently, via social media, I made contact with a childhood friend. We had not seen each other since I was 15. He was an old man; what little hair he had was white and his belly hung over his belt. What … Continue reading Mythical Italy
Aunt Jemima, Uncle Ben, & Chef Boyardee; one of these things is not like the other. In the wake of the world becoming more aware of the damage caused by racial stereotypes, many of the icons with which we have become accustomed are being replaced. Land o’ Lakes recently removed the native American from … Continue reading Aunt Jemima, Uncle Ben, & Chef Boyardee
If you are Italian American, you have probably seen the meme of Italian immigrant children circa 1900 in homespun clothes waving American flags. The image is captioned; Legal Italian Immigrants did not wave Italian flags coming into America, they did not riot and try to stop the legal election process. They learned English, they were … Continue reading The Italian Immigrant Myth
Are Italian-Americans Italian? People keep telling me we aren’t. When I say I am Italian, Italian-Italians, those born in Italy, look at me with suspicion and scoff. American Uber-patriots chide me, telling me that I am American. In their minds, to associate myself the culture of my forbears is close to treason. With so many … Continue reading Are Italian-Americans Italian?
Several years back, an evangelical Christian co-worker was complaining about the secularization of Christmas. “Jesus is the reason for the season,” he declared, literally raising his arm, pointing to the heavens above. “What does Christmas mean to you? Is it a holiday or an holyday?” he asked, almost daring me to answer incorrectly, or at … Continue reading An Italian-American Christmas