Well, now that St. Patrick's Day has passed, I feel that I must balance my celebration of my Irish heritage with a shout-out to my Italian side. My grandfather was never a jealous man, but I wouldn't have wanted him to think that my grandmother was having all the fun.
It's a lovely day here in the City of Y______, definitely "shorts" weather. I walked to Artuso's on McLean Avenue to pick up a couple of zeppole, which I will consume with some espresso made in an old-school, stove-top espresso pot.
One of my favorite Italian standards is Marina, written by Calabria-born, Belgium-raised Rocco Granata. Marina was an international smash hit, and is popular throughout Europe... it's like a musical "Rosetta stone", giving one an immediate entry into just about any group of Continental drunks. I have sung this song with a Polish girlfriend (she told me it's a wedding favorite in the old country), Italian-American friends, a team of German judoka, and a bunch of outdoor cafe patrons Zürichsee-side. All of them knew the chorus, at the very least. Listen, love, learn- it'll make your European travels a lot more fun:
Ahh... those crazy Continentals, in 1989, they released a dance mix of the song. Ay, che schifo!