Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Rolled Chicken Bites

The other night I asked for volunteers to help cook dinner. Of course, my daughter, Gabriella, was first in line. She never misses a meal. This girl literally lives for food....she can hear a wrapper opening miles away! And then, of course, she comes running..."What are you eating, can I have some?!"

I mean it, I will try to sneak a snack while riding in the car, and she can see, from the third row of the van, that I am stuffing something in my mouth. "I smell something," she says, "what are you eating?"

One day, her love for food will either make her husband very well fed, or she will fall into obesity and have no husband at all. (My husband is hoping for the latter!)

So back to dinner....Gabriella and her plastic 'sharp' (as she calls knives) were on hand to help make these wonderful snacks that my parents and grandparents would serve up at every party. So as kids, we only ate them when guests or lots of family came over...which usually meant there wasn't much left for us. This made my brother and I especially angry. Let's face it, a hungry Italian is not a pretty sight. So, I decided I would never put my children through such torture.

They are a great party snack, but you can make them larger, like I did, and have them as a meal. So, as promised, another great recipe from the family cookbook: "La Cucina Di Rosa"

ROLLED CHICKEN BITES (call them anything, I suppose...we just named them this as kids)

Getting Ready

Preheat oven to 400 degrees
Cut chicken breasts into strips

Cut bacon strips to half size

Cute a block of swiss cheese into small cubes

Beat eggs with a touch of milk, salt, pepper, garlic powder

have ready: bread crumbs, toohpicks, parchement paper

The Dirty Work

Start with the cheese. Wrap a piece of chicken around it as tightly as you can. Then wrap a pice of bacon around that fairly tightly. Secure with toothpick. Dip into egg mixture, then into breadcrumbs. (If desired, repeat to double coat the breading...its a litle crispier that way.) Place on parchment paper on a baking sheet for about 30 min, depending on your oven (so keep checking!)

You can remove the toothpicks once they're slightly cooled.....then dig in. They are especially good with some marinara sauce to dunk. You could even substitute prosciutto for the bacon, but you can't use too large of a piece since it dries out so easily.

Bon Appetit!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

The Modern Italian Network

Just a quick post to let everyone know that I am now a proud member of the Modern Italian Network!!

M.I.N. is a great site that was created solely for the purpose of serving people who are "passionate about Italy." If you become a member (registration is free) you have access to all sorts of Italian info from food and culture to language and travel. You begin to build a network of Italian Americans across the world via the wonderful world wide web....

So if you register, you will have access to my profile and all the other good conversations we'll be having. So take a look, you can access the site via the link on the bottom of this blog, under "I Miei Favoriti."

Grazie Mille....Ciao

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The REAL Italian Stallion

"Italian Stallion" -- What's the first thing that comes to mind?

Okay, besides my husband, I can think of three things......

First, Sylvester Stallone, but that thought quickly leaves my mind so as to avoid vomiting.

Then, Rocky Marciano. Sure he retired undefeated, he was heavyweight champion, blah blah blah......boxing doesn't thrill me that much.

But then I think of perhaps the most fascinating piece of machinery ever created...... the pride of Italia for over 75 years.......and perhaps the most well known brand in motorsports --

the Ferrari.

Yes, my friends, the true "Italian Stallion" is and always will be the Ferrari....does anyone care to argue that point? Well, let's just take a look at history...the whole idea of the 'stallion' as the Ferrari logo came from an air force ace in World War I named Baracca. Francesco Baracca always had a prancing black stallion painted on the side of his planes, which made way for his nickname, the "cavalier of the skies.' Apparently Enzo Ferrari made the acquaintance of the noble Baracca family after his death, and was asked by Francesco's mother to put her son's horse on his cars for good luck. And so the Ferrari stallion emblem was born....

You may be asking yourself, what is the point of all this investigation into the real Italian Stallion? Well it's a dirty job, but someone's got to end the bitter confusion that plagues the majority of Italian-Americans who desperately seek answers to life altering questions such as these....

Okay, maybe not. But some Italian out there must (should) care....and so....this one's for you.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Radio Flyer Wagons

Almost every parent has heard of the infamous Radio Flyer Wagons and other toys......but what you probably didn't know is that they were created by an Italian!! Antonio Pasin came to America from a small town outside of Venice in 1914. After a few years of hard work, he managed to save enough money to begin a small business making wood wagons.

By 1923, he had hired several employees and improved his design using metal stamping, as done in automobile manufacturing. He named his company Liberty Coaster Company after the statue of liberty, and he named his Radio Flyer Wagons after Marconi's (another great Italian) invention of the radio, and Pasin's own love for flying.

So today, thanks to the creative mind of Antonio Pasin, we have these adorable radio flyer wagons and scooters (as seen here, my son's pride and joy). Pasin began a company that is still going strong today, and as one of the oldest toy companies is still family owned! Salute Italia!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Italian pride gone too far?

Okay, so we all have a case of Italian Pride. But can you really blame us? I mean,we have the food, the language, the places, the people, the history....An Italian who is not proud of his heritage is almost unheard of. In fact, to some it is very serious. I can't remember the last time I saw my full blooded brother-in-law without some kind of Italian t-shirt on. And even I have the 'Forza Roma' banner in my garage...where it belongs. The signature display of a flag in the garage is one thing, but THIS? This is clearly out of control. Really.....do ya need the Italian flag in every room of your house? What's next? An Italian flag bedspread....oh, wait, they already make those.

Who really buys these, anyway???

photo courtesy of appliancist.com

A Real Man

(This photo taken by this
very talented young lady

Tomorrow is a very special day in our house...it is my lovely husband's birthday, so I thought I'd pay him a little tribute with this post. No matter what, his first priority is always making sure he's around for his family and I love him for it! Among the many Godfather quotes,

is my favorite, and it reminds me of my husband every time.....I am one lucky mamma italiana!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Those Italian Songs

Being the daughter of first generation Italian Americans, I have been blessed with wonderful memories of my heritage. But I've been cursed with not understanding them all of the time. I always knew the basic rules (Sunday is family day, never buy jarred pasta sauce, etc) but I didn't always know the how's and why's behind them. Another example is this song. I grew up hearing this song. I know the tune by memory, I've even fiddled around with it on the piano....but do I know what they are saying? NO. I can't understand Italian that well, plus it usually goes so fast! So, in effort to keep alive that Italian tradition, I have searched for the lyrics to teach my own kids. (they already love dancing around the house to it!) It's such a fun song, and its about music which is a big deal in my family. So here it is...sing along to an old classic. (I think it was sung by Lou Monte...I'm not sure who sings this sing-a-long version, but enjoy!)

Garlic & Parmesan Popcorn

I am always looking for ways to 'Italianize' the common snack. (yes, I make up my own words, get used to it.) That's how this recipe for "garlic parmigiano popp-a-corn" was born. It's so easy, and it sure beats that greasy, stale stuff you get at the theatre. I attribute the popularity of this snack to my love for garlic. I have inevitably passed it on to my chilren, who love to peel it, smell it, and eat it. And so began our family movie nights - with an Italian twist:

  • Pop a bag of popcorn in the micro (you can find some really good organic varieties these days!)

  • While it's popping, heat 3-4 tablespoons of butter in a small pot until melted. (adjust amount according to number of bags)

  • Stir in a little bit of fresh, finely chopped parsley

  • Mix in some salt and pepper, to taste*

  • Add in two cloves of minced garlic (about 2 tsp). Be careful not to brown it, just slightly heat it.

  • Empty popcorn into a large bowl and toss it evenly in the butter mixture, then toss in a few heaping spoonfuls of grated parmesan cheese.

  • Mangia, e guarda il film!

*Note: cayenne pepper or hot pepper flakes really spice this up! Or try adding lemon juice for a tangy twist!

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Kitchen Rules

This picture of my kids licking the bowl clean is yet another fine example of why I always say:

"A clean kitchen is the sign of a wasted life."

Anyone who believes otherwise can excuse themselves from this posting immediately. I mean it, there is no room for any perfect people here.

Okay, now that we've filtered out all the 'Med-E-Gans' let's chat, paisan to paisan......

Life is far too short, and too busy, to clean the kitchen. Now, let's be very clear - does this mean that you use this as an excuse not to clean the kitchen?


This is something, however that must be made clear very early on in any relationship. Whether its your spouse or your child, I would suggest clarifying the following rules associated with being a "mamma italiana." This way there is no confusion whatsoever. these rules will serve as a guideline for the expectations that Italian husbands & children are prone to misunderstand.....Bless their little hearts....

Here we go:

1.) Whatever has been cooked for dinner is what's for dinner. This is NOT a restaurant - there is NOT a menu
2.) And in lieu of the restaurant topic - I am not a waitress nor a busperson.

3.) If you don't want to eat what has been cooked, fine. Don't eat it. But don't expect to eat anything else until the next day.......(life is not fair, people.)

4.) No one leaves the kitchen without:
  • first thanking God

  • clearing your own plate

  • clearing anything else on the table

  • putting leftovers away (we'll get to these next)

  • sweeping the crumbs...my kids love this one

  • massaging mom's feet and shoulders (I thought I'd give it a shot....it never happens.)

5.) There will be days where lovely leftovers are all that we are eating... Yes, we just ate this last night. No, you are not getting anything different (see rules # 2 and 3)

6.) Last of all - the kitchen will NOT always be clean. After all, that would be a sign of a wasted life:) And if the kitchen is still dirty the next morning, do not even dare to comment about it. Just smile, and silently proceed.

While it is quite common for other family members to 'forget' (unintentionally, of course) these minor rules and regulations of a mamma italiana's kitchen, we must hold strong to our expectations. After all, this is our domain. The kitchen may very well be the only place we can rule without protests and strikes and whatever other rebellions may arise in an Italian government....I mean, household.

And face it, I'd rather spend time with my kids than clean a kitchen all night while I miss out on some of the greatest memories of our family.

And that sums up ALL of the rules pretty darn clearly.

Mini Meatballs (Polpettini)

My father always told us that one of the main reasons he married my mother was because she made good meatballs. The funny part about that is he was being completely serious. That really scored some points with him. And it's a good thing, cuz we love 'em too (Thanks, mom) So in honor of my father's birthday and my mother's meatballs, we made some mini meatballs today. (actually, we had to bring them in to my husband's work for a potluck, but we'll keep that between us)

So, back to the tribute to my parents.......mini meatballs are such a great snack because they are easy to pop in your mouth and can feed a lot of people. Even my kids will give up watching a movie or playing outside just to roll some up themselves.....needless to say we don't eat those ones......but it's fun for everyone! And the best part, of course, is tasting them. So I thought I'd include the very coveted recipe for my mom's polpettini fritti. Enjoy!

  • 1 lb ground sirloin

  • 1lb ground turkey

  • 1lb ground veal

  • 2 1/4 cups bread crumbs

  • 2 heaping TB grated romano cheese

  • 3 pieces white bread (crust removed) soaked in milk until mushy

  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten

  • salt, pepper, garlic powder to taste

  • vegi oil for frying

Mix all the ingredients together (BY HAND, please), roll them up to about the size of a quarter, and shallow fry them.

Then, let them cook in some of your favorite marinara sauce

As you can see, my son really loves making these with me...he loves eating them even more. In fact, they're almost all gone already. (Helpful Hint: If you have kids, double the recipe.)

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I Cognomi Italiani

My father -in-law always says, "If your last name ends in a vowel, you're o-kay"

I think this was his way of justifying his daughter marrying a Hawaiian (lucky for him, his last name ended in 'a') Nontheless, it is something that remains fairly true about "i cognomi italiani" (Italian last names).

But where did we get all these strong names from anyway? And why does it seem like we ran out, since everyone knows someone with the same last name these days? Well for Italians, last names were not fully established until the Renaissance, and are primarily descriptive. For instance, you were named for.....

1) Your family's origin: Genovese (from Genoa), Siciliani (from Sicily), Lombardi (from Lombardy)

2) Your ancestor's trade or occupation: Ferrari (blacksmith), Vaccaro (cowherd), Sarti (tailor), Pastore (shepherd), Marinaro (sailor), Pellegrino (pilgrim)

3) Your father's actual first name: Di Giovanni, Di Giacomo, Di Pietro, etc

or, 4) Your physical features: Biondi (blonde), Grasso (plump), Calvino (bald), Mancini (left-handed)

How interesting are all of those? Every Italian knows at least three people with one of the above last names, right? Well, even my own maiden name follows these rules. "Pusateri" actually means inkeeper. So somewhere down the line, our ancestors were working in hotels or inns. The funniest part about this is that almost everyone in my family is in the hotel business today. I guess there's some fates you just can't escape...

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The Tarantella

On my playlist for this site you may have heard the Tarantella (its the second song, see bottom of page)...

Well for those of you who do not know, the tarantella is an old Italian dance. Its origin is said to be in the Italian town of Taranto - as a sort of music therapy. People who were bit by a tarantula would continue a fast paced dance (the tarantella) to certain music until their body was rid of the spider's venom (I'm guessing through perspiration?......sounds strange to me). It even evolved to have a 2 partner version which is different depending upon the regions of Italy. Even the music can vary from place to place.

Well perhaps the most well known of the varieties is a group dance....and for this one, you round up as many Italians you can find, and join hands in a big circle. Everyone dances in one direction until the music changes and then you switch directions. All the while, as the music speeds up so do the dancers. It is quite a sight to watch, and quite a workout if you're involved! But it's a blast, and an Italian wedding without it is just plain boring.

Above is the tarantella in action at my own wedding. A few people (my mom and my brother) even got inside the circle, which was a riot. Not as funny, though, as my 80 year old grandma keeping up with the crowd!
Of course, you don't have to be Italian for this one, so find an excuse to try it....If you're Italian you know what I mean. If you're not, then crash an Italian wedding. Can't find one? Meet an Italian and marry them. (Despite all the "proverbs" its not that bad) Because believe me - it's one of those things you've got to try at least once in your life.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Italian women...burden or blessing?

As you've noticed I began an "Proverbio Italiano" section on the sidebar of this site. The only problem I have is that many of these meaningful sayings require much more attention than a simple translation. There is some serious meaning behind most of these, especially the Sicilian ones (my dad's side is Calabrese). So I have included two, quite paradoxical sayings that concern Italian women. My only claim for authority on this subject is the fact that, let's face it - I am one. I believe these qualifications are enough to explain the following:

One Sicilian Proverb says, "La buona moglie fa il buon marito"
Translation: A good wife makes a good husband.

To me, this is quite true. Oftentimes the woman is the glue that holds the family together, and I've known a few good women to change a few not-so-good men. Contrary to popular belief, women are actually quite beloved in Italian culture. After all, an Italian man's first love is his mamma. (I'm hoping for my son, I am his only love.....yes, its psycho, but I have time to get over it - he's only four.)

And everyone knows Italian men would be lost without the woman that cooks for them. (to the heart through the stomach, my mom always said) Face it, a good Italian woman can straighten out a crooked Italian man. (If you have found an Italian man who is not crooked - by this I mean perfect - let me know, it would be a monumental moment in history.) So it is safe to say, as a qualified judge of Italian women, that this proverb holds some water....except we drown in the next proverb...

"Chi ha moglie ha doglie"
Translation: Who has a wife has strife
Unfortunately, my experience forces me to agree with this one also. Yes, it is sad (and difficult) to admit, but I can say, from experience, that a wife causes a husband much strife.....especially an Italian one. I have to confess that every so often (okay, maybe most often) my Italian temper gets the best of me...... I just use the excuse that 'it's in my blood.' (that one doesn't work, by the way). Undeniably, Italian women will likely cause their husband some perfectly justifiable strife, at least a few times (okay, hundrends of times) in their marraige. It's just the facts, folks....

So after careful examination of the two proverbs, I have realized the dilemma....And there is only one obvious solution here....

we must write a new proverb. Perhaps it could go something like this:

"Nothing in life is free....for a good wife, you pay with strife."
I know there's a more experienced Italian spouse out there who has a list of these things......come on, who's got a better one?

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Il Naso "the nose"

Most Italians can relate to me with the whole 'roman nose' feature. I'm pretty sure they call it that to disguise the fact that its just plain ugly. After all, Italians can have pretty large noses - something I learned very quickly in my childhood. My father used to say he hoped one day my face would catch up to my nose so that it wouldn't look so big! (good thing I have thick skin, right?)

Well, the torments of my childhood have made a comeback via my 2 year old daughter. One day we were all playing around, wrestling on the floor and she stops suddenly to say, "Mamma, you have a big nose."

Once my husband gained control of his laughter he asked her, "Who's nose is bigger, mamma's or daddy's?" Of course, she said mine was. Given her astutely sharp mind I am not surprised by her observation, or her bluntness..... (those of you who know her know what I mean). When she made the comment, this is what the look on her face said:

"Mamma....do you know how BIG your nose is? What a terrible shame. It's just so BIG! How unfortunate, you must do something about that."

And then she resumed playing.

oh, from the mouths of babes......

Saturday, September 6, 2008

May the force be with you...

After a five hour plane ride and eating only Cinnabon, reheated airport pizza (the frozen kind that sits under heat lamps for 17 hours), and peanuts, one could almost give up on food altogether.

But not my brother.... No, he is a champion eater. It's like, as soon as he enters someone's front door, an undeniable force pulls him towards the refrigerator, leaving him no other option than to sniff around for some means of satisfying his caveman-like craving for "cibo" <--word of the week:)

It is borderline disgusting.....until I remember that 100% of his blood is Italian, and then it just makes sense.......still in a weird, disgusting way.

But - il mio fratello....well, he is the Michael Phelps of eating. We went to Maryland together last year and as soon as we arrived, our 'grammy' had spaghetti and meatballs on the stove....which still, was not soon enough for my brother... so he made his way towards - you guessed it - the fridge. (I'm telling you, it's the force...)

Anyways this ever so attractive picture of him (above) calls to mind the athletic ability that is deeply innate in any Italian man. Believe me, I was raised by one, I was a sister to one, I am married to one, and now, I am raising one...

And if he turns out anything like his Uncle - I am putting a lock on my fridge.

Truffle Time

September marks the beginning of Truffle Season, which usually ends around Dec. or Jan....Black truffles have summer and winter varieties, but, everybody knows............ the best of this coveted, underground fungi is the white truffle.

Truffles (above) look like an irregular rock type formation that has a pungent odor and unique taste....

When in Rome, I was fortunate enough to eat at a restaurant in the Jewish Ghetto that served shaved truffles on our pasta. they actually use a special truffle grater at the table, right before you eat. I cannot even describe the taste, yet I'll never forget it. The pasta was perfectly al dente and the sauce was so minimal so as to not distract from the flavor of the truffle. To truly enjoy these rather expensive delicacies, though, they must be eaten shortly after harvesting. Otherwise they lose their flavor with time. And harvesting them is no simple task......pigs or dogs are used to sniff out these "tartufi" (truffles), after which they are carefully dug up and preserved for quick transportation.

Truffles usually grow at the roots of certain trees in several different areas (even some in Oregon & other parts of the U.S.) - But they've made quite a name for themselves in Italy. Piedmont, Tuscany, Umbria, and Le Marche are the regions most popular for harvesting truffles. In those areas they have Truffle Festivals (Oct/Nov) where they market the truffles and have food, festivites, and marching bands in the town's streets. What a festa we are missing out on.....

And while some truffles can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, we can enjoy a small taste of what they are really like with truffle oil. But if you get your hands on some, shave them onto your favorite dish or even into butter. Truffles are heat sensitive so when you shave them into soft butter, you can store it in the freezer for later.
And did you know that truffles are so pungent that they can penetrate the shell of an egg? So store them with eggs and when you're done with the truffles, make an incredible omelette that will have absorbed the truffle flavor.....

Share your truffle memories.....or perhaps where to get some.....

The Family Cookbook

Years ago, my crafty and talented Aunt Marie created a family cookbook. She compiled family recipes (old and new) along with photographs of family and Italy. She then had it bound under the name "Cucina Di Rosa" after my Grandma Rose. Now the cookbook rests on the countertop of everyone in the family.
It is a wonderful way of preserving old recipes, and leaving room for new ones with lots of blank recipe pages. I will henceforth try to post a recipe from there every so often. I am always looking for new ones, too.
This is one way of keeping Italian traditions alive that I would encourage every family to do. Buon Appetito....
TOMATO BASIL SAUCE Passed down from my Nonnina (my great grandmother Lucia)
Saute 1 onion (diced) in olive oil and butter until transparent
Add 2 cans whole peeled tomatoes, blend until smooth
Add black/red pepper to taste
Add large bunch of Basil (you can either cook in the flavor while whole and then remove it, or add it earlier and blend it into the sauce)
Cook for one hour
This recipe is SO simple, yet SO tasty. I chose this one first, as it is very basic and super easy to try...but look forward to more in the near future!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Some food with your garlic?

I am painfully ignoring the sound of my stomach growling at me as I take the time to honor the ever so tasty....the pungently smelly.....the historically infamous...... garlic clove. It is amazing what you can do with a clove of garlic. It is more amazing what you can do with 40 cloves (40 is the number of garlic cloves per small batch of marinara sauce in my house.....) And so it is only fair to say that I season my garlic with food. If you are Italian and you don't agree, I would like to say you could plead ignorance...but you can't. Any respectable Italian household uses garlic on a daily basis. I make homemade garlic butter by the pound and keep it in the fridge for those morning cravings. (Yes, I eat garlic toast for breakfast) And having fought through the crowds of the many garlic groupies and followers, I have more than earned the title of garlic's number one fan. Anyone dare to dispute that? ....... I didn't think so.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Parmigiano-Reggiano vs. Pecorino Romano

THE ULTIMATE BATTLE - Two of the most competitive cheeses face off in Una Mamma Italiana's delerious mind (It's nearly 11p.m.)....This particular fight has been long overdue, but the time has come. May the best cheese win.

(((see the poll on the sidebar and participate, per favore)))

You know you're Italian when....

...it is physically impossible for you to talk with your hands in your pockets. Admit it. Italians, by nature, are very physical. They hug, they kiss, they almost break everything around them during a conversation. But it's beautiful! You all know what I'm talking about...two palms pressed together, moving up and down in unison....the cupped hand with all fingers touching as they describe their last meal......An Italian with his hands in his pocket? Well, he'd be a mute.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Italian Lullaby

Growing up my mother and grandmother used to sing a little lullaby to us that I'm sure came down from an Italian nursery rhyme or song or something. Our version was a bit of broken English and Italian mixed together...went a little something like this "Ninnananna, ninnananna, Baby's going ninnananna..." I have sung it to my children so much that my girls sing it to their dolls now! But until recently I did not know that "ninnananna" actually means "lullaby" in Italian. So sweet....

So I decided to do even more research, and I found a lullaby that goes to the tune of Brahm's Lullaby. Thanks to a great website, http://www.mamalisa.com/, for the following:

Fa la ninna, fa la nanna

Fa la ninna, fa la nanna
Nella braccia della mamma
Fa la ninna bel bambin,
Fa la nanna bambin bel,
Fa la ninna, fa la nanna
Nella braccia della mamma.

Go to sleep, go to sleepy
In the arms of your mother,
Go to sleep, lovely child,
Go to sleepy, child so lovely,
Go to sleep, go to sleepy
In the arms of your mother.

San Gennaro

So September is here which means the arrival of the San Gennaro feast to cities across the nation. This year's festa in Las Vegas promises to be bigger and better than the last. And on opening day, "mamma italianas" ride the rides for free. Yes, the Italian mother's dream has finally come true, we no longer have to pay for the coveted rides at San Gennaro.

Seriously though, the rides and the candy are fun and all, but even I can remember back to when the San Gennaro feast was a little less commercial. It was a day commemorating Saint Gennaro, Bishop of Naples. Processions, parades, and culinary treats were made in his honor. There was singing, dancing, rides, and entertainment which the whole family loves. Nowadays, something about it just seems so much less Italian. Does any one understand what I mean? Maybe it is because Vegas has no real 'little Italy." Maybe it's because the times cause everyone to worry about crime. Maybe it's the economy? (I love using that one!)
Regardless, it is still a fun outing with the (little) kids. Maybe we just need to kick it up a little bit. Ideas, anyone? How could we make this "la festa de tutte le feste?"

so far so good

So far my "attempt" has not been all that miserable. While I am slowly getting used to this, I still have to consider this blog "under construction" until further notice.... Per favore, your ideas/questions are welcome and appreciated.

Il Primo

You are about to embark upon the very humorous journey of watching me attempt to succeed in the digital world of blogging... ("attempt" being the operative word here)
Look forward to many, more interesting posts!
Ciao for now...
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