Double Life – Food & ball

fubiniBy Daniela Fubini*

One of the things that keeps new and old immigrants connected with the original country, especially when you are an Italian and you live anywhere else on the globe is naturally the food.

Luckily, Italian food is a cult in many countries around the world; unluckily, about 99% of the times it is kept by proper heretics who dare to call “Italian” stuff that is barely edible to any Italian, or by people who mean well but have absolutely no idea how to even boil the water for pasta, let alone dress a salad or cook a simple risotto. Therefore, I am known to come back from my short trips back home with a full suitcase of ingredients, ready to cook the all way until the next trip. A real Italian respects his or her kitchen, first of all.

Another thing that keeps you connected to Italy when you are abroad is obviously soccer. As an Italian woman it may be surprising but I do know the rules, I know exactly when to scream at the referee for a penalty he didn’t give and so on. So with Italy out of the games, as a double national Israeli and Italian I am facing the most annoying three weeks ever. The only moment of real fun may come if Argentina gets kicked out of the World Cup and we see Messi humbly leave the field after losing to some obscure team. After the Messi mess, when our outspoken and not at all diplomatic minister of culture and sport (no, no capital letters) single handedly caused a regional outpour of pure hate peaking with death threats to Messi’s family by very peaceful Palestinian leaders, we still hurt because eventually he didn’t come to play against Israel and kick easily 25 goals at us.

So down with Argentina: the curse of the Kotel they stood up is on. And it’s funny because as an Italian it would be actually very natural to shift my support to Argentina, somewhat a sister country. But as an Israeli no way. That’s when double nationality and multiple personalities are but a thin line.

*Daniela Fubini (Twitter @d_fubini) lives and writes in Israel, where she arrived in 2008 from Turin via New York.