Saturday, May 24, 2014

The hip hop furniture connection
File this under things that only happen to me. I got sick of not having a fun place to go out dancing to hip hop music, as if when I was living in Brooklyn I was out dancing every weekend, or any weekend. I don't know I like to reinvent myself. Like Madonna. I mess up my hair trying something new every three years or so and I fake a frustration level with my lack of a nightlife, despite the fact that I get grumpy if I'm in bed like one second after eleven at night and I am a cute little kitten if tucked in by half past ten. But forget all that because when I get an idea in my head like I am going to give the best hip hop party ever, that is what I am going to do. So I had arranged with my friend who has a huge wide open apartment to use her house for the party, but it turns out that she is moving and so we can't do that anymore.

I talked to my adorable English students Tommaso and Silvia about my party dilemma during our "English" lesson. I put English in quotes because I still don't believe that chattering away in my native tongue is helpful to anybody, but people seem to get something out of it. What a gig! Anyway, I mentioned the idea of contacting a dance school and having the party there as a fundraiser where my friends would pay 5 euro at the door for the chance to have space and good music and hip hop kids with whom they could dance.  Silvia said that the place that she takes guitar lessons which is called Area 23 would be the perfect place. The couple at the guitar store she recommended to us also proposed this guy Johnny at Area 23 as the best teacher for beginning adults. I was wondering how my middle school student Andrea would feel about coming to this party, but it turns out that this is also his hip hop school and so all the pieces seemed to come together. That's when Italy and life/Italian life happened. Silvia's grandmother fell ill and Silvia couldn't take me to speak with Johnny on the night that I had an appointment with him. F took me instead because I didn't want to chance having to speak Italian on the phone with Johnny again, a conversation that was awkward at best.

We got to the school and the boy and girl at the desk, let's call them Shaggy and Thelma, did a very good impression of being stoners who had just smoked a fat one. They lackadaisically let me know in drips and drabs that Johnny wasn't there and that there was no hip hop teacher and no chance of Johnny ever calling me if I left my phone number.  I managed to cajole his cell phone number out of them and then left the building. Then the hip hop music got to me and I marched back into the building, much to F's dismay, to steal a look at the hip hop rehearsal. A girl approached me right away and told her that she was friends of Silvia. I got the whole cutie-cutie group to be enthusiastic about the idea of the party and offered to share some of my library of music with their teacher. But then the story ends. Unless some of my friends give me more encouragement, the dream sequence of my head of me and my poor inflamed joints dancing pathetically along side some much cooler and hip hoppier young people while my pissed off friends, those who bother to show up and pay 5 euros, which in my fantasy number up to 60 people, but in my nightmare version total a whopping four, I don't think I can push this much further. We'll see. Maybe in September.

Scooby Doo auditions this way . . .

Since Silivia is spending time with her grandmother, Tommaso came alone for the lesson this week. He just finished his final presentation and graduated from school so now the subject turned to his summer plans. He showed me this possibility which is a volunteer organic farming apprenticeship called WWOOF where he could work on his English. The other plus is that he could say he was a WWOOFer which is reallly cute. He also mentioned that he was considering working in his family's furniture store. What??!! Do you people not know how obsessed I am with finding a nice couch that we can afford? I have had two contenders in mind, one from Ikea, which I hate now all of a sudden, and one from Masion du Monde, but our friend Alessandro is really dubious about the quality level of either. He also is dubious about our ability to buy anything from him because he knows how much we make. So what to do? We went immediately to Tommaso's family store which is the oldest and best in Lucca and found a lovely couch at a great price. His family could not have been sweeter and his mom let us bring home the fabric swatches to look at them in the house. She also looked at photos of our house on home exchange and even looked at my dream couch on Pinterest, which just happens to be Jessica Alba's couch. Well, after studying the fabric in the evening, the early light, and the morning we chose a ringer for Jessica Alba's couch material and I couldn't be more su di giri/stoked.

Can we please get a couch already?!

Say what you will about Jessica, she knows how to select a couch.

Since we were at the store anyway, I invited his whole family to the dinner I was planning anyway and for Tommaso and Silvia. While we were finishing the sale I met a bunch of their customers who were interested in hiring "Tommaso's teacher" for English lessons. This kid is the best publicity in the world and he was fluent in English long before he met me, but I'll take it. 
P.S. Some weird car show is happening today. 

The girls have spring/end of school fever.

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