When in Italy, it’s easy to find stereotypes you’ve seen in books, movies or television. While some obvious ones are easy to debunk, like the fact that Super Mario is a Japanese character and not Italian, some other clichés can be true or false. All it takes is for you to get a cheap ticket to Italy and make the journey to see for yourself if you can debunk these typically Italian stereotypes.
All you can eat is Pasta and Pizza: False
You’re hungry and ready for your first culinary experience beyond The Olive Garden. You should know that Italian cuisine goes beyond pizza and pasta. While these two trademark dishes may be ever so popular and original goods that are extremely delicious, there is so much more to enjoy. Sink your teeth into dishes like ossobuco alla milanese (braised veal shanks with vegetables, white wine and broth), capòn magro, which is similar to the Spanish paella; made of rich seafood and vegetables on a decorative platter. And when you opt for some gelato, don't just try familiar flavors like chocolate or vanilla. Go for the Italian Stracciatella; a vanilla based with chocolate shavings that has a nice balance of simple flavors.
The espresso machine was an invention from Italy: True
What would we do without our beloved espresso machines? The invention of this "pick me up" beverage has changed how we work, play and enjoy ourselves. It is a thick and concentrated coffee that does indeed originate from Italy. The first machine was invented in the late 19th century in Turin; originally called the "New steam machinery for the economic and instantaneous confection of coffee beverage." Also known as, fast and cheap coffee.
You should only visit Tuscany, Rome and Venice: False
When in Italy, you must see tourist attractions like the Roman Forum, the Venetian Canals and the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Unfortunately, many visitors only see these splendid places and don’t go beyond these sights. Take the opportunity to visit Italy again and see other places that are truly Italian. Head to the lakes like Lake Garda for a tranquil family vacation in one of Europe's best vacation spots. Follow the unbeaten path towards Sardinia for beautiful sceneries and the beach lifestyle. You can even visit a country within the Italian borders; a little place called San Marino to view the world's oldest republic.
Italians talk with their hands: True
If you’ve seen the movie “Eat, Pray, Love” you cannot help but laugh at the scene when Liz encounters Italians in their true nature. There are many books about the language of Italian hand gestures, simply because it is true! You can easily people watch from afar and can practically translate what Italians are talking about. Some of the best expressions are of joy, confusion and gestures that are a bit more adult rated.
Italians live for football: True and False
First of all, make sure when in Italy that you call soccer, football. (The sport where you kick a ball, not throw it!) It is difficult to judge whether or not every Italian loves football, but we know a heck of a lot of them do. For some Italians, it is more than the game; it is about bonding with the family, eating typical dishes and enjoying the passion enjoying such an exuberant sport. For others, it is an obsession that becomes a tattoo, a collection of jerseys or a die-hard loyalty towards their club. For non-football fans, you won't be shunned; just yell at the game every once in a while and enjoy a few beers!
Photo credit: roevin | Urban Capture