on the Italian character: for Pasquale Galiano

Leonard Durso

So I’m talking to Pasquale as he’s driving me to the village my great grandfather lived in and where my grandfather was born and we’re talking about driving and his sister Gilda who is a special person in my eyes. We both agree she terrifies us and I admit to holding on to the side of the car while my life flashed before me as she swerved in and out of NYC traffic cursing everyone else on the road.

Then the subject of her stubbornness came up and I said being stubborn was part of the Italian character. Pasquale objected to this and said no, it was just Gilda. Then I asked him if he was stubborn. He shrugged (another trademark of Italians) and said of course. So I said my point exactly. Then he countered with it’s a family trait. Then I said of my family, too, and of…

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