Saturday, August 12, 2006

generosity and generalizations

Neighbor Gianni just came to the door asking for David. David was upstairs adding some kind of seal to the floor so I can mop it in the future (yeah, that will happen – not. Who mops their bedroom?). I saw Gianni walk back down the road after only a minute. So I go upstairs to check out the gossip (Gianni either knows or is at the center of Maberga gossip – a good guy to know. He was also one of the owners of our house before us…the same one that had sellers’ remorse after the closing, leading him to rip out all our electricity one day. I’ll save that story for another day).

“What did Gianni have to say?”

“Oh, nothing. He just wanted to give us this.”

You see, the other day the wind blew open the door and did this:

Gianni noticed we needed some glass so today he brought us some. Actually it’s plexiglass that he found in his warehouse. Isn’t that nice?

Earlier this morning I was doing a little hemming on these:

Ok ok ok, I didn’t hem them at all. I just cut them off at the proper length. Those swell turquoise hip-hugging bell-bottoms were one of the pairs of pants that neighbor Lisa gave because they don’t fit her daughter any more. I LOVE hand-me-downs, LOVE ‘EM! They are like shopping at a thrift store without paying. What could be better?! Anyway, I’m getting a little away from my point here…

After these two experiences I got to thinking about how insanely generous Italians are. (I recognize that that’s a generalization but, in addition to hand-me-downs, I love generalizations. Some people are bothered by generalizations but I just consider them working hypotheses based on social observations that are easily disproved) I started looking around the house and noticing all the gifts we’ve been given – and I mean given, just because, not for a birthday or Christmas or anything. Here’s what I found:

hand-me-downs-boy-style from friend Flavio

tomatoes from mother of friend Mimmo, Adelgisa

there's also some chili peppers in that photo from neighbor Franco

a sink from neighbor Giuseppe (Giuseppe’s nephew, Carmello also gave us a hide-a-bed when we first bought the house and had nothing to sleep on but we got rid of it when we moved our couch and bed in)

an enormous wooden rolling pin from friend Alexis

a smelly soap thing for the bathroom from friend Chiara

home-made goat cheese from neighbor Lisa (sorry about the photo, the cheese is circled)

a pressure-cooker from friend Mercedes

Folks, this is just downstairs. If I added the stuff from upstairs the list would be 10 times longer but unfortunately I can’t because, well, because the upstairs looks like this:

Yes, we made the ultimately stupid home improvement mistake of not covering all our stuff in plastic before the work started. Look at that dust! Idiots we are. Please don’t ask me where my yarn stash is. I don’t want to think about it. Back to generosity…

I’m not trying to say here that only Italians are generous. I know a lot of generous Americans but I wouldn’t really say that as a people we are generous. And, lord knows that The Danes (Mette and Teddy) have been way generous to us. But I only know three Danes so even I won’t make a generalization about the Danes as a group. And the English? Well, English friend Natalie did give me her yarn stash just because she wanted to. That was really generous but again I don’t have enough samples in my experiment to form an hypothesis.

This was the same stash from whence comes the yarn for the STILL unfinished blanket-that-is-really-a-lap-warmer. Leave me alone! I had to work last week. I’ve promised myself to finish it this weekend. Now that I’ve told you all about that promise I better do it. Dang, I can feel the pressure already. I gotta go knit now. Bye

1 comment:

  1. EarleinDenver10:04 PM

    What's with the 3:20 AM post time. Are you guys really up that early?