Posts filed under ‘Entertainment’

Separated at birth, aloo gobi and doughnuts

Ciao Bloggisti!

What I’m watching: Just finished watching Vieni Via Con Me. Those of you in Italy know what I’m talking about. Tonight’s episode featured specials guests Gianfranco Fini and Pierluigi Bersani. Speaking of which, the leader of the Partito Democratico bears a scary resemblance to Dharma’s dad, dontcha think? Separated at birth, people!!

 

Pier Luigi Bersani

 

Dharma’s Dad

Music of the day: I loved Avion Travel‘s cover of the song Vieni Via Con Me on tonight’s show. Actor Toni Servillo (singer Beppe’s brother) guested on vocals.  And just listen to that guitar!

Best read of the day: I’m trying to teach my son the English alphabet and he’s making great progress with Thomas the Tank Engine ABC. It’s very basic but there’s something about trains that keeps Diggy hooked. Any other suggestions for teaching bilingual kids would be most appreciated.

What I’m eating: Yesterday I cooked up a storm: a bit of Indian and Italian. My husband bought some cauliflower so I could make aloo gobi.

aloo gobi

It was good but not quite perfect. I didn’t have any cumin and I was a bit stingy with the green chilis as I’m a milk dispenser now.  My husband did manage to find some coriander/cilantro in the garden, thank goodness. It’s so fragrant and really makes a difference. I also made chick pea and potato samosas (which the kids actually ate!) as well as a dish with borlotti beans, pancetta and red wine.

Best moment of the day: Playing in front of the mirror with the baby. She’s such a giggler now! Oh, cleaning out the lint filter in the dryer was also a highlight, albeit on a different level. Very zen.


Where I’d like to go: To Tim Hortons, baby! In one month I’m going to be in Canada and you know my first stop will not be my Mom’s place but Timmy’s, to get a chocolate dip doughnut and a double double of course.

 

16 November 2010 at 2:14 am 1 comment

Conchords, Ransom, Teeth and Stew

Ciao Bloggisti!

Ecco un’altra lista:

What I’m watching: Caught Flight of the Conchords for the first time last night, dubbed in Italian mind you. I still enjoyed it immensely! It’s like a cross between Peep Show and Glee. Sigh! I wish Mark and Jez would set their woes to music.

Music of the day: I was thrilled to see Elvis Costello on Letterman the other day. I think he has one of the best voices in music and he was on the show to promote his new album, National Ransom. The title track sounds great and the band is tight, which bodes well for the rest of the album. Can’t wait to get my hands on it.

Best read of the day: I’m currently reading Stephen Fry’s autobiography, Moab is My Washpot. It chronicles the first 20 years of his life and is at times hilarious and melancholy. If you’re a Fry fan, you’ll definitely enjoy following him on Twitter.* Oh, this video is pretty cool, too.

*Stephen Fry left Twitter for a few days due to criticism he received after being misquoted in a recent article on women and sex. He’s back now, thank goodness!

What I’m eating: Yesterday I had lunch at a Sardinian restaurant and was served a teeny tiny portion of grilled tuna steak and malloreddus gnocchi with tomato sauce. Not bad but I was hungry after an hour! So hungry that I decided to make a good old-fashioned Beef Stew.

Stewie Beef!

I got the recipe from my Canadian Living cookbook. Simple and delicious. I even used some of the San Colombano. The only problem was that the kids were disgusted by the vegetables and took ages to finish dinner, or maybe it was the San Colombano that slowed them down. They were also not impressed by the pumpkin spice muffins I just baked. More for me!

Best moment of the day: Bellie’s first tooth fell out!! And she was paid a visit by the Tooth Fairy, even if in Italy a little mouse (?!) usually does the honours.

Worst moment of the day: Little Charlie puking all over me. She’s ok, her tum tum just doesn’t agree with formula.

Where I’d like to go: The China Power Station contemporary Chinese art exhibition at the Pinacoteca Giovanni e Marella Agnelli in Turin.

Things that make you go “AWWW!”: Zidane and Materazzi hugging and making up.

Laters!

4 November 2010 at 10:31 pm 1 comment

Time!

Ciao Bloggisti!

I never thought I’d quote Steve Miller (the bane of my university years) but “time keeps on slippin’, slippin’, slippin’ into the future”. I can’t believe it’s already November and that my little girl is already two months old and my “big” girl just turned seven!

For the last few weeks “time” has been on my mind: the lack of, the speed of, the wasting of, the quality of, etc.

I’ve also been pondering how best to reconcile my need to write with my überbusy existence). Yes, I’m getting used to life with three kiddos but I still have the urge to create things other than babies and clutter. I’d also like to communicate in some way with the outside world because I’m cooped up at home most of the time. But how to do it in between feedings, laundry and sleeping?

The only thing I could think of that would best fit my schedule is a point-form list of what I’m doing, thinking about, reading, etc., because world wants to know! Ideally I’d like to post one every day but, come on, we all know how prolific a writer I’ve been lately 😉 I’m also going to write traditional posts (god willing!) from time to time so this new system isn’t set in stone.

Ok, here we go!

What I’m watching: My current obsession is the American version of The Office. I can’t get enough of it and I’m trying to control how many episodes I watch per day because I don’t want it to end! I have Seasons 1-5 (thanks Sue!). I was a huge fan of the UK Office and was doubtful I’d enjoy the US version but I was so wrong. The writers and actors have done a superb job with each and every one of the characters. Maybe in some twisted way it reminds me of work and is a way for me to “escape” to the office every day.

Music of the day: yesterday I enforced a No TV day and played CDs instead. A little bit of Schubert and Vivaldi but my favourite was The Beatles White Album. Perfect for a rainy day, or any day for that matter. That time spent in Rishikesh did them good. It has a bit of everything and will never let you down (well, except for Yoko’s screaming in Revolution #9. It scared the baby.).

Best read of the day: this is actually from a few days ago but I happened to read it now. I had no idea the Japanese were this crazy for doughnuts. They sound like my kind of people!

What I’m eating: I just polished off a heaping plate of spaghetti with sugo di stufato d’asino. That’s just a fancy way of saying “stewed donkey meat sauce”. I know, it doesn’t sound as good in English but let me assure you, it was yum. Oh, and last night the hubster made a divine risotto alla zucca, or pumpkin risotto. He also cooked his famous frittata, this time with turnip tops (cime di rapa). And thank god I can have a glass of wine from time to time because tonight we’re going to open up a bottle of San Colombano, the only DOC wine produced in the province of Milan.

Best moment of the day: Baby and Diggy “talking” to each other. She was even laughing a little bit. So sweet!

Worst moment of the day: My kids overhearing the expression “bunga bunga” and giddily repeating it over and over again. Cringe cringe cringe.

Well, this turned out to be longer than I thought. But it was fun!

Will I keep up with it? Only time will tell.

2 November 2010 at 3:53 pm 3 comments

Little Panino and Lapo’s Big Fail

Ciao Bloggisti!

Just wanted to update you on what’s been going on this week. First of all, I have a cat problem. I’m not sure if I already shared but I have two lady cats, Beppa and Sausage (don’t ask) who are 11 years old. Still sprightly despite reaching cougar age, they were living a peaceful life until some neighbourhood cats decided to invade their kitty home. They eat their food and sleep in their little cat hideaway under the stairs. But the worst part is that one of them, who I’ve dubbed Mel, is a male and is, ahem, marking his territory in their room. Which means my girls and their room now stink of Eau de Smelly Mel. What to do? Spray him back with Eau de Silvio? Befriend him? Send him to Vicenza? Any advice would be welcome.

And speaking of cats, there’s one that I have to let out of the proverbial bag. The big project I mentioned in the last post, the one that’s sucking all of my energy is actually a baking project. Yes, my friends, there’s a little panino in the oven! Four months along but he/she is rising nicely. So this, hopefully, explains my paltry posting activity over the last few months. Of course, the first trimester was exhausting. I spent most of my evenings passed out on the sofa. And boy was I ever nauseous! More than in the first two pregnancies combined. But on the whole, things seem to be progressing well. I even did a 3D ultrasound last week, which was pretty amazing. And since I’m a veteran, I’ve been feeling the baby kick for a while now. I have absolutely no idea how we’re going to handle everything with three kids but I’ll think about it when the time comes. So that’s big news number two.

Other interesting news this week comes courtesy of the NBA. I’m not sure if you’ve heard but the L.A. Lakers have a new star player: Lapo Elkann! Lapo is the late Gianni Agnelli’s grandson and is an “industrialist”, “international playboy”, “best-dressed bon vivant” and other things which I probably shouldn’t mention here. Let’s just say he’s not the brightest light in the Agnelli family.

So why is Lapo such a basketball superstar? Well, during a recent Lakers game against the Toronto Raptors, he actually tipped a loose ball away before Toronto guard Jose Calderon could make an out-of-bounds save. You have to see it to believe it:

Of course, our international-man-of-misery Lapo was mortified, as his Italian pals Bargnani and Belinelli actually play for the Raptors. But he just had to do something to protect his sunglasses. Or maybe he thought he was playing dodgeball. Anyway, I apologize to my fellow Toronto fans on his behalf. Scusate!!

Of course after this, there’s no way Lapo will ever become a member of the Handsome Men’s Club. I’m sure Matt Damon has something cruel and unusual in store for him. Mwah ha ha ha haaaa!!!

May you have a handsome weekend!!

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12 March 2010 at 1:12 am 4 comments

Here come the sons!

Ciao Bloggisti!

Big news everyone!! As you know, I’m a Beatlemaniac so when I read this article (courtesy of Abbey Rodent), I was so happy I started doing the Pharrell McDonald’s dance in the office:

While a Beatles reunion concert is sadly out of the question, Beatle fans may just get the next best thing: Julian & Sean Lennon, James McCartney, Dhani Harrison, and Zak & Jason Starkey are getting together for a series of concerts this summer.

Calling their outing the ‘Here Comes The Sons’ Tour, the surprising Beatles siblings “reunion” came about when Julian Lennon visited Friar Park, the home of the late George Harrison, at the request of Dhani Harrison and his mother Olivia, Harrison’s widow. Olivia had come across some George Harrison demos which George had intended to send to John Lennon in the months prior to Lennon’s tragic death. Harrison had recorded the demos trying to emulate Lennon’s voice, and decided that the songs were better suited for John. After Lennon’s passing, Harrison shelved the tapes, which were later discovered by Olivia.

Listening to the songs, Olivia also felt the songs needed a Lennon vocal and invited Julian Lennon to Friar Park to hear the demos. Julian listened and liked the songs, but thought that there were some parts that needed a higher, younger vocal register than he could muster. He rang up his half-brother Sean, and emailed an mp3 of a couple of the demos to the youngest Lennon. Both Lennon’s were excited about the songs and arranged to record them at Friar Park with Dhani and Sean doing the guitar parts.

Playbacks of the songs revealed to the young Harrison and Lennon Brothers that some distinctive bass and drum parts were needed. On a hunch, they rang Sir Paul McCartney to see if he might have interest in the project. Sir Paul politely refused, but suggested that perhaps his son, James, might be the man they needed to play bass. James McCartney arrived at the sessions with Zak & Jason Starkey, the sons of Beatles drummer Ringo Starr, who happened to be visiting the McCartney’s in London. The six Beatles siblings then went to work on the Harrison demos, and the finished results so pleased them, they decided that not only would they release the songs, they would also record additional original material for an album release, to be followed by a brief tour of the United States.

At a press conference held at Abbey Road Studios, the Beatles siblings made an official announcement of the tour and album release. “We’re all very excited by the songs”, Dhani Harrison beamed, “Dad really wanted John Lennon to record these songs, and in a way, I feel that we’re honoring his wishes”. “I’m very humbled that Olivia and Dhani asked me to listen to George’s demos”, chimed in Julian Lennon, “and I’m very happy that Sean is onboard this project too. We’ve been talking for years about doing something together, and these songs felt just right for us. And to have Dhani, James, Zak & Jason involved makes this a very special project as well”.

“Our Dads at first were a little leery about us doing this”, said James McCartney , referring to McCartney and Starr, “but after they heard what we put together, they gave us their blessings”.

“It’s funny in a way”, added Zak Starkey, “I’ve played with my Dad, The Who and Oasis, but playing with these guys, who are more or less as much brothers to me as Jason is, I’m really excited at the prospect of going on the road with them”. When asked who came up with the idea of calling the tour ‘Here Comes The Sons 2006′, Dhani Harrison raised his hand. “Guilty!’, he laughed, joined by the other five. “After all, I made the phone call!”, which elicited another round of laughter from the group. The tour kicks off at Irving Plaza in New York City on April 1st. More dates to be announced. Stella McCartney will be designing the stage wear for the group.

I hope the tour makes its way to Italy. That would be a dream come true.

 

Would you go to the Beatle offspring concert? Or do you prefer Offspring? Discuss!

1 April 2009 at 2:42 pm 5 comments

Big Mac, Filet-O-Fish, Quarter Pounder, French Fries, Icy Coke, Milkshakes, Sundaes and Apple Pie!

Ciao Bloggisti!

I was about to go to bed but decided to go on Dlisted for one last dose of dirty gossip. BIG MISTAKE! Now I’m going to have nightmares of Pharrell Williams dancing inside a Paris McDonald’s, begging for apple pie at six in the morning. And no, I’m not on drugs. But thanks for asking!

If you don’t believe me, have a look for yourself:

Now, I love Pharrell but that song & dance number was a superfail. And unimpressive. I mean, this is a man who’s worked with Madonna and all he got was “just breakfast”.

Poor guy! Who can blame a traveller for craving a taste of home while in a foreign country. Us expats can relate to Pharrell’s predicament. I once cheated on my beloved Tim  Horton and ate a stale Burger King donut in Milan because I was just that desperate.

I’d love to hear the bizarre cravings you’ve had on holiday or while abroad.  Have you ever sung for your supper?

Oh, and if you’re interested in “just breakfast” take a look at my friend Pickle Pea’s blog. I want that toast now!

 

One more thing before I forget, I just wanted to announce the winner of the giveaway. It’s NYC/Caribbean Ragazza! Congrats and I hope you enjoy the book!!

26 March 2009 at 1:00 am 5 comments

My favourite screen kisses

Ciao Bloggisti!

Now, I’m not a big fan of Valentine’s Day. The idea of “love” being forcefed down my throat like a foie gras goose really triggers a gag reflex in me. In fact, to counter all the sappy, chocolate-filled twee, I’m going out to listen to some combat rock tomorrow night. I’m also a big supporter of San Faustino, the patron saint of singletons. You can read all about him at Bleeding Espresso.

BUT, while I was cooking dinner tonight, muttering to myself about the state of the world and the commercialization of love,  I happened to hear some music on the news that instantly turned this cynical old broad into mush. It was the the soundtrack to the Academy Award-winning film Cinema Paradiso.

There’s something about that movie that turns me into a blubbering idiot, no matter how many times I watch it. Especially the final scene. Now, if you haven’t seen it (and shame on you if you haven’t!) this is a spoiler alert. In this last scene, successful film director Salvatore is back in Rome after attending the funeral of  his mentor and father-figure Alfredo. Salvatore watches the old reel of film that Alfredo left for him and is moved to discover that it’s a montage of all the “risqué” kissing scenes that were cut from the films shown at the Cinema back in the day.  It’s practically a collection of the most famous screen kisses from Italian and American cinema. You’d have to be made of stone not to swoon at this scene.  So, it’s with this that I reluctantly wish you all a Happy Valentine’s Day:

Baci baci!

14 February 2009 at 12:53 am 3 comments

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