I like to think that everybody is patriotic. “If you don’t stand up for your country, nobody else will” a friend of mine once told me. And she was right. If I don’t take Italy’s side in an argument, nobody else will. Because, deep down, some deeper than others, we are all patriotic and we all love our own country.
So now this is very true for Mr. Brit. He loves England. Even if he will never openly admit to it, he really loves his country. He’s proud of where he comes from. Thing that is not necessarily true for an Italian.
Of course we love our beautiful landscapes, we have some amazing food that makes you go all Remy in the cartoon movie Ratatouille when he combines cheese and strawberries, we speak the most beautiful of languages (even if Mr. Brit’s imitation of my Italian sounds more or less like “bidibabidibibibababibu”) and we all love and care for our mammas. But recent…umm…political characters and quite embarrassing facts make me thank God I live abroad.
However – yes, there is an however – I still stand up for Italy. Let’s put it this way: I can badmouth my country. Nobody else can.
I know, Very Italian that.
Anyhow, you can imagine how thrilled I was when I first watched the old FIAT TV commercial for the US market. In the commercial there’s the portrait of a colonial North America, and the “what if” creative exercise that sees the Italians (on flaming red Cinquecentos) invading America instead of the British. Bonnet caps turn into short and stylish hairstyles, traditional pilgrims’ outfits change into cocktail dresses, cups of teas are smashed and replaced with small coffee cups and pubs transformed into clubs.
Basically, if the Italians had been the ones to invade America instead of the British, life would have been much different. And probably we would all be speaking Italian right now.
Would it have been better though? I’ll leave this question open ended, as I’m sure Mr. Brit and I very much disagree on the answer…