Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Open Mic Night


My first year of college was spent in Columbus, Ohio, which is where I met my husband.  We married, moved west, and I graduated from the University of New Mexico ("Everyone's a Lobo woof woof woof!") but have fond, if somewhat hazy, memories of that year living two blocks from Ohio State's party central, High Street (appropriately named for a college campus party avenue, dontcha think?) 

Anyway.  There was a low-key bar that we hung out at sometimes, a brick tavern type of place that occasionally hosted an open mic night, where they turned over the stage to whoever wanted to say something, as long as it wasn't a senseless or poisonous rant.  There were some who did poetry readings, others told jokes, or posed questions to the crowd.  It was always a fun time, and I learned stuff each time - sometimes as simple as a new punchline or something more profound, like...say, the meaning of the song American Pie.  No question was ridiculed and everyone left feeling a little high on the cameraderie that it inspired (the cheap beer didn't hurt, either).

So I'm turning the spotlight out to you sitting there in the shadows, and hosting an open mic night here at the Pinon Tree.  Throw out your questions (or your comments, your insights) and I'll answer them.  I've received lots of queries through the years, so don't let stage-fright hold you back.  (One person wrote to ask me if there are spiders in Italy.  Answer: Yes, there are.)

Are there things you've always wanted to know about living or traveling in Italy?  Anything you've been wanting to ask but was afraid to send an email?  Post your burning questions in the comments! 

10 comments:

LindyLouMac in Italy said...

Sorry on the spur of the moment I can think of nothing to ask you, but already living here it is harder to think of something! I hope you get a good response.

Janine said...

Very cute post Valerie. I've got a hundred questions swimming in my head...Italy stories are my thing. So I'll go with a broad-based one: What's the biggest/most important lesson Italy has taught you?

A presto,
Janine

Jennifer Pina said...

Hi Val, My question is: How hard is it to travel throughout Italy if you don't speak the language? thanks, Love you, Jen

Jennifer Pina said...

Oh and to clarify I mean without a wonderful cousin who has lived there for years and knows the languange to be your tour guide ;)

Valerie said...

Good questions...keep 'em coming! I'll answer them in the next post!

Anonymous said...

Just wondering...with the Italian economy doing so poorly and lots of Italians not finding work, how do you manage to live well? I know the cost of living is lower in the south, but still you must have expenses. Did you arrive with a big chunk in savings or can you really earn enough there to live a decent life and have enough for retirement too? Thanks!

Diane said...

What is the strangest Italian custom you've experienced?

Anonymous said...

Ciao Valerie,
here's a few ?s:
1) Ndrangheta -do they keep a low profile in your region? have you seen them commit a shakedown in your neighborhood stores 2)Is mammismo also prevalent in So. Italy 3)Do so. italian men also carry men's purses like in the North 4)do you ever notice men grab their ball when tell them an unfortunate story like getting into a car accident or mail lost by Post. They say italian men grab their balls to ward off bad luck. Like in the U.S. when we talk about something & wish nothing bad happens we say knock on wood, but italian men grab theior balls instead. have you noticed this yet or is it true at all what kind of dialet do they speak in your hood. did you ever order capuccino after 10 AM and what did they tell you Grazie, In Bocca a l lupo. Ed

Unknown said...

My questions have to do with your casa. I have been following the blog for some time and saw the HH International episode and think your place is really cute. Have you been able to do any further work on your dream kitchen? Is your cantina situated in such a way that it is possible to link it to the rest of your house? What would you like to do with it? Thanks, Louise

AlanP said...

What is the most common misconception people have about Italy?