Thursday, October 31, 2002

BREAKING NEWS:

Quake Traps Italy Schoolchildren

A strong earthquake rocked central and southern Italy on Thursday, trapping about 50 children in a school after the building's roof collapsed.
It was not immediately clear if the children, reportedly between the ages of 3 and 6 years old, were injured.
The ANSA news agency quoted police as saying none were dead.
ANSA and the AGI agency said firefighters rushed to the scene and pulled five children out of the rubble alive, but ANSA later said none had been rescued.
The quake had a 5.4 magnitude, said Marco Ludovici, an official with the Civil Defense department in Rome.
The school is located in San Giuliano di Puglia, near the quake's epicenter in Campobasso, in the Apennine mountain region about 50 miles northeast of Naples.
Phone lines in the region were down.
Schools were evacuated in at least three towns in the Abruzzo region, and in the city of Isernia, about 15 miles from Campobasso, ANSA said.
Panicked residents rushed into the streets when the quake struck at 11:33 a.m., leaving gaping cracks in walls and ceilings missing huge chunks of plaster.
An aftershock, which hit at the same epicenter at 12:56 p.m., had a 2.9 magnitude, civil defense officials said.
Also Thursday, a 3.7 magnitude quake hit Mount Etna, the Sicilian volcano which began erupting Sunday. No damage was reported. The National Institute of Geophysics and Vulcanology in Rome said the quake in central Italy and the one shaking Etna did not appear to be connected.
In 1980 an earthquake in the area of Naples killed 2,570 people and left 30,000 homeless in the southern Campania and Basilicata regions.


Actually, news on the TV say that until now they found 4 dead children under the school's debris.
DEJA WHOOPS...

Is it just me or short haired Eddie Vedder (as seen in Pearl jam's "I am mine" new video) looks frighteningly like...Davezilla???

(laters: uhm...is now Eddie Vedder going to be sued by Toho because he suddenly resembles Davezilla whose webby's been accused by aforementioned Toho to be an exploitation of their trademarked product, i.e. Godzilla?
Or is Davezilla going to sue Eddie Vedder for sporting a trademark face/haircut without asking him permission?
Or am I going to sue Toho, Eddie Vedder and Davezilla for causing me a headache?)

***

UPDATE:
Davezilla is probably going to sue me cos I said he looks like crop haired Eddie Vedder, whom he told me he thinks looks like Dan Beauchamp, who is not very likely to read this, unless I leave a message on his site, and, since today I've got annoying mode switched on, that's exactly what I'm about to do, so that Dan Beauchamp will sue Davezilla for telling me he thinks he looks like Eddie Vedder with short hair.

In all this, Toho corporation, not knowing what to do, will sue all of us (especially Eddie Vedder, cos I'm pretty sure he's the richest of the four of us) for breaking copyright laws by excluding the word "Godzilla" in all our suing and counter-suing papers.

Please note Eddie Vedder hasn't sued anybody, so far.

***

UPDATE #2:
Dan Beauchamp says Davezilla still owes him $10 from a year ago.

Speaking of which, my sister still owes me 25 euros from last June.

Am I going to sue my sister?

***

UPDATE #3:
Davezilla claims he only owes Dan Beauchamp a kick in the pants.

Monday, October 28, 2002

It's been a while, but I guess it's time I go back to doing some MM...ladies and gents, here's PromoGuy's Monday Mission 2.43

1. Ever do anything over and over just to make someone else happy but discover you actually hate it?
Uhm...no. I guess that would be sort of hypocritical. I've been lucky enough to find myself having to do only things I wanted to.

2. What kinds of obligations do you enjoy?
uhm...none! :)

3. What are your feelings about celebrating Halloween?
I won't. It's not part of my culture, and I wouldn't know how and why to celebrate it.

4. Are there any stories of bodily functions you would prefer people not share with you in conversation?
yes, many. There's some tale of a friend of mine telling me what he did to fall asleep when he was too stressed, and I had to ask him not to mention that to me again. It's just something I don't want to know.

6. Ponder the thought of being forever young, living on endlessly, being immortal. What would that life be like for you?
That's a scary thought. I fear being immortal more than dying!!!

7. What's the last thing you felt was "worth fighting for?"
Not quite sure. I guess life might be the answer in my case.

BONUS: Sooner or later, they all will be gone...why don't they stay young?
cos that would be unnatural and wrong! :)
Winston, don't tell me I didn't warn you going to Sicily wasn't a good idea...

CATANIA, Sicily (AP) - Mount Etna, Europe's biggest and most active volcano, came to life again Sunday, spewing lava but causing no injuries. A series of small earthquakes damaged buildings on the slopes of the mountain, officials said. The stream of lava destroyed some ski lift pylons as it headed toward Piano Provenzana, an area which sits at 7,500 feet and is used by tourists as a starting point for mountain walks. The area was evacuated and sealed by police, said civil defense officials in Catania. Later Sunday, forests near Piano Provenzana caught fire. Helicopters doused the flames. Sicily's main eastern airport, Catania's Fontanarossa, was closed down, with many flights rerouted to Palermo, the island's capital city. The airport was scheduled to reopen Monday morning. After months of silence, Etna's rumbled to life overnight, when as many as 200 small quakes rattled eastern Sicily, some creating panic and sending people to the streets. The strongest quake was magnitude-4.2, according to the National Institute of Geophysics and Vulcanology. The lava flow, which was growing heavier by the hour, was still far from settlements. The mountain also was belching a fountain of ash and sand that made for poor visibility miles away. Etna towers 10,860 feet above Sicily. The last major eruption was in 1992.

(from Yahoo News)
Uhm...Blogger was rather funny yesterday...let's see if I can post this now...

Sunday, October 27, 2002

ITALIAN POLITICIANS PLAY THE PIANO...

Everybody knows that my country is the "land of saints, poets and sailors"...now I'm (not so) proud to announce our politicians have proved to be excellent piano players.

Let me explain. I have nothing against piano players, as I'm a piano player myself. As long as they actually play a piano, then that's fine with me.

The problem is that when a politician becomes a "pianist" in Italy, that's not cos they're skilled musicians that spend their spare time on ebony & ivory. They're called "pianists" when they extend their arms for a few octaves and put their hands in two voting slots simultaneously. The thing is, in the House of Parliament they don't vote by raised hand, oh no, since they seem to think that's a too troglidite way of voting, they went hi-tech a few years back. Therefore, each MP has a place in his/her Parliament's desk where to put their hands and push some buttons and vote "yes, no, whatever" (not quite sure on the "whatever" bit, but I can't exclude a "whatever" button actually exists...)...the problem is, Italian politicians are too busy to spend all their time in the Parliament, so, most of the times, a bunch of desks are empty, and others MPs who sit near those empty desks, since they want to prove they're good neighbours, vote for the absent...(does all of the above make any sense??)

And then they say other countries laugh at us...

Friday, October 25, 2002

And so, Postcardx.net is gone. Hope it's not forever, cos it was so nice to send + get postcards every now and then. Shame.

Thursday, October 24, 2002

OK, I started my new blog in Italian - just to make sure I don't forget my own language, as these days it seems I can only think in English and then translate it into Italian and then speak it out, which is rather unhealthy, I reckon, should be the other way round, shouldn't it??
(trying to set up a parallel blog in Italian...)

Wednesday, October 23, 2002

A little explanation, due to some horrible email I got telling me I'm a bad person cos I wished my dad was Ryuichi Sakamoto. Dear you know who you are, you have little sense of humour. Let's make it clear that I WOULDN'T CHANGE MY DAD FOR ANYTHING/ANYBODY ELSE IN THE WORLD. It was just a joke. I only wished my dad could play an instrument, that's it. Minutes after I wrote that, I rang my dad and told him "you're going to go to guitar classes!".

You see, my dad is a retired accountant. When he was young, before marrying mom, he used to travel quite a lot, like all young people like to do. He once bought himself a guitar, which he never got round to learn and play. Shame, cos, despite he can't keep a tune singing, he does like music a lot. When I was three, I had a lot of dolls and other toys, but what I liked best to play with was my dad's guitar. Of course I couldn't play it, but it's not just by chance when I eventually grew up I bought myself a classical guitar, too, and, after a few more years, an electric guitar as well, having learnt to play the piano before all this. I only went to three guitar lessons, where the teacher, the first day, asked me if I'd ever played a guitar before, and I said no, cos, well, you can't count sitting under the Christmas tree at 3 as "having played a guitar before". He said he thought I had as it seemed it was quite natural for me to place fingers on the right chords while other people in the classroom had their hassle in founding the C major themselves. I explained him that maybe it was cos I play the piano, but he said that he didn't think that was the cause. I only went to three lessons as I grew bored after three Mondays of people who couldn't place their fingers on the strings and play a sodding C major. So I got a guitar handbook and taught myself what was beyond C major. I'm willing to take on learning guitar *and* violin properly sometime in the future, though, going to lessons (hopefully individual lessons, so that I won't have to face people not finding a chord...) and doing my homework, like I used to do when I was studying how to play a piano.

In all this, my dad himself wished he could play an instrument, only I reckon he thinks he's too old to do that. Given the fact that I believe that one's old only when they believe they are, and I don't think my dad is a decrepit mummy, I told him he's going to take guitar lessons.

He seemed quite happy at the thought.

Tuesday, October 22, 2002

The teabag problem has kept me busy for quite a few minutes this morning...having gone "all japanese" for days now, I started making "weird objects with folded paper", as my sis call them, or "origami" as I (and a zillion other people in the universe) call them. Hadn't been doing that for some time, possibly ever since I was at elementary school or somthing, with, maybe, the exception of 1000 lire banknotes folded as shirts when I was in high school...now, it never occurred to me I could do them with fabric as well!!!

Ok, I'll tell you when I'm back to planet Earth.

Monday, October 21, 2002

OK...now who did a Google search for giorgia sakamoto??? I mean, I already have an inferiority complex as I wish my dad were a musician or similar, while, in reality, he can't play an instrument, and can't even keep a tune, to say it all, so, after all, I should consider myself lucky I didn't inherit those "qualities" from him...but people Google-searching for "giorgia sakamoto" don't help my already fragile sense of self esteem...who did that?? EH?!?!?!? Whoever you are, I'm gonna send you the therapist's bill!!!

Sunday, October 20, 2002

I've learnt a new word today (from Cambridge International Dictionary of English):

hinder
verb [T]
to limit the ability of (someone) to do something, or to limit the development of (something)
Smoking hinders the ability of the heart and lungs to recover quickly from the effects of surgery.
Broken water pipes and gas leaks have hindered firefighters in their efforts, but the fire is now under control.
I don't want you to do anything that is going to hinder you from getting the job finished on time.
Her progress certainly hasn't been hindered by her lack of experience.

Doh. Received an email from some bloke in Sicily who thinks I'm Giorgia...I mean, of course I *am* Giorgia, only I'm not the singer, yer ninny!!! :-P

***

On another note, ladies and gentlemen, please welcome to this world Miss ALICE DALL'OSTO, all 3.4 kilograms of her!!
Congrats to my cousin Chris and to his wife Silvia...and to Alice's older sister, Elisa...oh, and to my Auntie Rossana and my Uncle Virginio, who've just become grandparents for the second time! HURRAH!!! :)

Saturday, October 19, 2002

I proudly announce here that La7 is my new tv channel of choice: it's got Law & order, it's got Caroline in the city, it's got Smac the pony, it's got Cow & chicken and Johhny Bravo cartoons, it's even got The persuaders (!!!), but, above all, this morning they telecast an interview to Ryuichi Sakamoto!!! What more can you ask from a TV channel? :)

p.s.: due to a very, very deep discussion re: nippophilism (I just made up this word, I think...) on Alf's blog, I decided it was time to give an hint of "eggplant's purple" to my blog's background...;-P

Friday, October 18, 2002

Where are we going? Italy hit by general strike.

***

(I should update the "cast" page one of these days...I'm not quite sure if some people featured on that page actually are still friends of mine, or if they've ever been friends of mine at all, according to what they told me themselves...)
Ok, can't help it, here's the recipe of a cake I found on October 2002 issue of Wallpaper* magazine (page 277)!!! it's soo yummy!!!:

CHOCOLATE FUDGE CAKE
ingredients:
500g dark chocolate
250g unsalted butter
10 egg yolks
10 egg whites
50g castor sugar
35g white flour

Preheat the oven to 180°C, butter a 26 cm cake tin and line with a baking paper. Melt the butter and chocolate over a water bath and leave to cool. Whisk the egg yolks and sugar in a mixer until it thickens a little, mix in the flour gently. Add the cool chocolate mix to the yolks and fold in. Beat the egg whites until thick. Add a third to the chocolate, fold carefully, and then fold in the rest in two batches. Pour the mix into the tin and level with a knife. bake in oven for 25-30 minutes. It's ready when a skewer inserted in the cake comes out damp. Take the cake out of the oven and let it cool. Remove from the tin and cut the top to level. Dust with cocoa powder before serving and remember to keep the cake at room temperature!!!

It's delicious, especially if eaten listening to Ryuichi Sakamoto's "Beauty" while reading Haruki Murakami's "Dance Dance Dance"!! :-P

Thursday, October 17, 2002

When an icon stops to be such...look at Adam Ant...no, I mean, he's a PIG!! I used to have a crush on this man (him and Nick Rhodes...and Roger Moore as Brett Sinclair in "The persuaders"' series...bit of an eclectic 12 year old I was...)...why?!? why David Sylvian is ageing so well while Adam bloody Ant looks like my great-grandfather or something??? DOOM!!!
BLUR AS SOTONG

Ain’t it weird things to talk about happen when you don’t have net connection at hand, therefore you can’t write about them on your blog?

OK, nothing *so* relevant, still, apart from the flu, I’ve had quite pleasant days.

A few weeks ago I finally went to see “About a boy” with Claudia, Antonella and Sonia and we had a lovely time, great flick, Hugh Grant is ageing the best way he possibly could, congrats!!

I’ve had to skip both Belle & Sebastian and James Taylor’s gigs (both of them FREE, both on the same evening, what on earth do gigs promoters think of when they do such things? How could a genuine music fan attend both shows? Split themselves in two or what?) because of the bloody flu, but nevermind, because last Saturday, 12th Oct., I went to see Ryuichi Sakamoto (RYUICHI SAKAMOTO!!!) at the new auditorium (THE NEW AUDITORIUM!!!), the one designed by Renzo Piano (RENZO PIANOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Super duper top flight Auditorium!!!) – it was about time they started using it, and it’s wonderful they finally decided that not only classical music is worthy, but contemporary music as well!!! I only wished they’d completed it last year, so that David Sylvian could’ve played there instead of that bloody awful Palacisalfa, that would’ve been much, much better…ah, whatever.

Also, two weeks ago I rang my mate Francesca, hadn’t heard off her for some time, and, surprise surprise, she announced me she’s getting married in July 2003!! Must be an epidemic.

Was pondering on my use of the English language – wonder if I don’t sound too, uhm, weird blogging in a language that’s not my own, apart from the fact that it’s so much easier for me to write in English than to speak, as, obviously, my pronunciation/accent’s not exactly BBC English…btw, this Summer I discovered I’m absolutely unable to pronounce the word “Graham” correctly, to the immense joy of Graham Reed, I suppose, although I eventually managed to understand it’s got to be pronounced as if I were translating “PROSCIUTTO GRIGIO” in English (“grey ham”…), or something very close to that…on the other hand, I don’t like the way my British friends pronounce my name, the “r” completely disappears and my name becomes something like “giogia” which means nothing at all, and that’s so very annoying…does all of the above make any sense?

Last but not least, during my puterless days I took on reading Time magazine more often, and I bumped into a very funny article about SINGLISH (this one’s for Davezilla, if he doesn’t know about that already – better than Engrish!!!), i.e. English as spoken by Singaporeans (I got the phrase “Blur as satong” from there, it means “clueless as a squid”!!!)…go to talkingcock.com for more of those gems, but also to sgem.com, webby of SGEM (Speak Good English Movement), made by people who basically would like Singaporeans to “jiat gentang” like westerners, and has tests to check if people’s English is good enough.

By the way, for Christmas and/or my birthday I’d like my copy of the Coxford Singlish Dictionary. Thank you, Santa.