Memorie Italiane (part 1)…

Pretty soon, I’m making a trip to Des Moines to see my very good friend Ignatius. I started thinking about how many times we’ve gotten together since grad school and remembered Italy. In 1999, I went to Italy… this was my last trip overseas and my last time on a plane. My friend Ig was on sabbatical for the year and had rented an apartment in Firenze for 3 months, lucky Ig, and I went and stayed there for one month of the 3. We had been to Italy before when we were younger and we did it like younger people would, meaning we arrived in Milan and headed east, then south, with backpacks. We stayed a couple days in each place and were overloaded with art and ancient towns and the food… oh man the food and the vino too. Anyway, this second time we were trying to get the feeling of what it was like to live there and although we took day trips on the treno, we stayed in Firenze most of the time. Ig teaches painting and a fellow teacher who was an art history person and very familiar with Italy told us of some wonderful places to see frescoes that were off the beaten path. This was probably the best trip I ever had as we drank wine, ate all over town, walked around 8 miles a day, visited everything we could find and went shopping for food almost every day. It took me about 4 days to realize I couldn’t sleep late, drink coffee in the coffee shop that was located below the apartment and lazily head off to lunch because of the siesta that everyone takes around then but I did adjust. So before I left a friend of mine gave me some “Billy Bob” teeth as a gag and I thought they were hilarious and always anxious for a prop, took them along with us. Hard to believe but a mere 10 years ago, inexpensive digital cameras with sufficient resolution to get a print didn’t exist so we took pictures with Ig’s 35mm and got them developed there. So we went around on our business and I got Ig to take pictures of me with the teeth and I tried to look like a dolt, lost in paradise as it were. As you can see from the photo, looking like a dolt comes easy to me. Ironically, my real teeth are all crooked in a different way just not to the same degree. When I got back and the project management team I was managing at the time asked me to bring some pics from the trip to the next meeting, I brought these and they were all at sea. It was already suspicious to them that I traveled overseas with another man (oh horror of horrors) and it probably took til I got together with Mom before they could rest easy about my orientation… I really didn’t have time for that kind of nonsense. Nonetheless, looking at this picture I’m amazed at how much 10 years can do to the way you look… I was 41 and now, 10 years later, it seems that I look much more than 10 years older. Here’s a pic in the piazza with the replica of Michelangelo’s David, off to the left around the corner is the Uffizi and past that the famous Ponte Vecchio…


Since I attended graduate school in sculpture, I had seen pictures of the David so many times that I wasn’t particularly excited about seeing it… I wanted to see it but figured there were lots of things that were more provocative to me. To my surprise, I was practically awestruck. There’s something about the way it’s displayed and the piece itself that defy photographs and it totally blew me away. Here’s a closeup of the teeth and I have always loved the woman to the left… a suspicious tourist from somewhere else wondering why that Chinese man is taking pictures of that poor dimwit bereft of dental work…


Still glazing.

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10 Responses to “Memorie Italiane (part 1)…”

  1. Anne Carentz Says:

    HaHa! I still have that pic!

  2. Miri Says:

    Funny story. Good luck with the glazing.

  3. Becky Jo Says:

    Ha! You’re coming to Des Moines (where I live) and you went to Italy the same year I did! šŸ™‚

    I love the teeth. I don’t have funny teeth photos from Italy, but I have some photos of me covered in pigeons… that’s what happens when you buy a bag of corn. The pigeons do a reinactment of “The Birds”.

  4. gary Says:

    Good lord if you go to Des Moines you have to see Becky Jo šŸ™‚

  5. Becky Jo Says:

    Yes! šŸ˜€

  6. ron Says:

    Ha. Those teeth are great! I soooo want to go to Italy. I just want to go somewhere beautiful where there is good food and stay for as long as possible.

  7. elfriede Says:

    nice halloween photo

  8. Diablo con queso Says:

    You’re the nutty professor!

  9. ang Says:

    ha forget the teeth… there are so many funny things going on in that photo…..HA..maybe that’s hat the expression is all about…..

  10. jen Says:

    My husband had a set of “DR. BUCKS” when we were dating and use to pull them out in public places when my head was turned and well…you can guess the rest. Something about messed up teeth that gets a laugh!
    What a wonderful trip you had!

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