Friday, February 15, 2008
Artist Caravaggio in Firenze
Now usually on Thursday evenings, my friend Lisa and I attend the art history lectures given by Charles Cecil at his art school in Florence. Yesterday was no exception, despite Valentine’s Day. In fact, Mr. Cecil joked that perhaps he should not discuss the artist Caravaggio on such a holiday since Caravaggio killed a man. But it was a great lecture.
Afterwards, we went to our usual ristorante to share a pizza. We always try something new and just before ordering, I noticed a pizza named ‘Viagra.’ How perfect was that for some dateless wonders on the lover’s holiday? And it has lots of meat on it! Heh. So, Lisa and I got a kick out of our choice.
GianFranco acted amused. He is always our waiter on these nights and he greets us warmly each Thursday. He is one of the few Florentines who actually speaks Italian with us, so Lisa and I have been learning a lot from him. Only, this time, GianFranco returned to our table and explained to us that the owner required that we order two beers with our pizza. That was a bit odd, but we were hungry, so . . . OK. Afterwards Lisa confessed that she did not like beer. Well, I certainly did not need them after the free-flowing wine at the Charles Cecil Studios. But, you know, when in Roma . . . or Firenze . . .
Well, after all that drinking, it made sense that I would need to ask GianFranco to show me the bagno. He did and as I turned inside the room to shut the door, I saw him still standing where I left him. I asked him to speak, “Dimi.”
And GianFranco asked, “hai boys?” (“Do you have boys?”) Since we normally speak in Italian, my brain wanted to figure out what ‘boys’ meant in Italian. I responded with a confused, “non ho capito questo ‘boys.’” He rephrased, “Do you have men?” The plural threw me. For some reason, my often literally oriented mind interpreted this to mean ‘as in a stable of men.’ A little confused, I responded, “non.” He then politely said, “Ok, see you next week” since his shift was over.
Lisa thought this was the funniest exchange and asked me how I managed to have such bizarre conversations while just going about my life.