A month ago, LIz "Go Go" Hong stayed with me and Nancy Silverton in Panicale, Umbria for one week. While Nancy was in charge of the food, I became sort of Go Go's personal Minister of Italian Culture.*
The following is a question/answer with Go Go and Krikorian Writes on her cultural experience during what she has called "the greatest trip of her life"
Krikorian Writes - After being home a month, what sticks out culturally from your trip to Italy? What will you keep in your cultural spirit?
Go Go - Umm. That's a good question. There was some much culture going on all over Italy. But, if I had to pick one thing, probably the Tumeric-flavored Yogurt appetizer at Cibreo in Florence.
KW - Well, that's more like fermented milk culture, isn't it? I was talking more about...
Go Go - Oh, and did you know that in Florence, the don't even call it Florence. It's called like "Fur 'n Z", Ya know,. like it's a mink coat company. And i guess they put the "Z" on it so its kinda like "the end", ya know. Like the "last word" in fur coats. Fur and Z. I kinda like it.
KW - I see. Umm, interesting take. How about your favorite museum?
Go Go It might not technically be a museum in the classical sense, like the way the Beverly Center is, but the Prada Outlet was very rewarding.
KW - Ok. Let's see. I understand in Rome, Michael took you to the Spanish Steps.
Go Go - He took me to some steps. I don't know if they were Spanish. They might have been Mexican. You know, the way some Mexicans say they're Spanish. (At this point Go Go coughed, but as she coughed, mumbled what sounded like "Pilar".)
KW Did you see any Caravaggio masterpieces?
Go Go No. Baseball is not very big in Italy. David Rosoff told me Sandy Caravaggio once pitched a perfect game, though.
KW Let's move on. Speaking of David, I understand you saw the public copy on display in Piazza della Signoria.
Go Go Come again?
KW That's what she.. .. Forget it. The public outdoor version of Michelangelo's stature of David. Out in the piazza. The town square. You took a photo with it. Were you impressed?
Go Go - Oh, the nude guy. Yeah, good abs. Nice ass, too. His thing, though. It wasn't hard. I mean I guess it was hard because it was made out of metal, or ugh, clay. No, not clay because clay would like get all wet in the rain and sorta melt. Right? But, his thing was not pointing up. You understand? It was pointing down. Good thing he didn't pee. I was right under it.
KW - It's a sta..... Let's go on. Let's talk about architecture.
Go Go That's ok.
KW Ok. Well, let's see. I understand Michael walked you by the Church of Santa Croce in Flore, I mean, ugh, Fur And Z.
Go Go - You catch on quick.
KW -And he told you Michelangelo, Gaiileo, Rossini, Ghiberti and several other famous people were entombed there and he asked you if you wanted to go inside to, what, pay your respects?
Go Go Yes.
KW What did you tell him?
Go Go . Rest in peace.