To the Editor:
A few days ago, after my first correspondence with reporter Nick Baumann from Turin, I was not particularly delighted to be depicted as somebody who speaks “broken English,” drives a “hilariously tiny car,” does not use the Internet or public transportation because he doesn’t work and walks around with all his cash because banks are a new innovation we still need to import from the United States. After Tuesday’s column, I have to amend this depiction — evidently I have a ridiculous idea of glamour and pomp (maybe I should take some class from Baumann) and I spend most of my time whistling at girls and screaming “ciao bella,” “una brutta” and “vaffanculo.”
In my previous correspondence to the News, I tried to keep up with Baumann’s talent for putting together bad and old stereotypes and silly stories about my host country. I must surrender. As far as I could go writing about fat Americans gorging on junk food; driving big, ugly and inefficient cars; speaking no other language except a funny declination of English called American and jumping around to find viable cell phone coverage, I could not reach the sublime level of cheapness and emptiness of Baumann’s report from the Olympic games.
But since the News seems to insist on privileging insulting pieces over sports news, I hereby volunteer to follow the next sporting event for your paper. Though I cannot assure you I would be as disdainful with Americans as Baumann has been with Italians, please consider that you would save my travel expenses, since I can put cheap prejudices together and sneak in secondhand information on the games from my couch.
Matteo Rizzoli LAW ’06
Feb. 22, 2006