Sunday, February 15, 2015

Accent matters

This week F and I learned that when it comes to teaching English or speaking Italian -- accent matters. This is especially true when you are getting your pre-teen boy students to remain interested in your native language by refusing to speak to them about Skylanders unless they do so in English.

Edoardo and his friend Oskar worked on their illustrations all week long and could not wait to give them English names. I had to suck back the giggles as they put their own particular flourishes on the pronunciation. The secret is to drop down an octave when you announce them.

F and I had tagliatelle al cacao con peperoncino for Valentine's Day. I must thank Patrizia for her family recipe. She explained to me that when you add the pasta water to the oil, roasted garlic, and hot pepper you need to let the oil cool down so it doesn't splatter or cause a fire. I told her if she heard sirens that she would know that my Italian had failed me yet again. It was delicate and had a lingering spicyness that just hit the spot. We served it with a sprinkling of parmagiano and a piece of gorgonzola.

Shoot. I should have made a heart shape for the photo!

T had a weirder Valentine's Day as she had to go a street safety lesson at school. A couple who lost their son to a car accident came to give a presentation involving a cartoon movie where the victims are represented as little talking skeletons. At one point the narrator goes over and slaps a few of them across the face Italian style for texting while driving. I believe a Coldplay song played in the background. The driver unfortunately was American and some smart alec asked her if she was sure her parents weren't the guilty parties. I am saving up for her future therapy bills as we speak. Luckily, she got to recover by having a sleepover party with Giorgia and Natasha.

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