Markipedia 2010-009 Pizza Facts

Ruben had his birthday dinner at Stuzzi this week. The dinner conversation touched on, among other things, fancy pizza fun facts. Enjoy! (or as they say in Italian, Buon Appetito!)

* What is the difference between ‘pizza’ and ‘pizze’ on the menu? — In both English and Italian,  ‘Pizze’ is the plural form of pizza. So the next time someone says ‘pizzas‘ you can correct them. It’s pizze.

* do you know that song “Mambo Italiano” that they sing at Richmond Kickers games? It was sung by Rosemary Clooney in the 1950’s. Rosemary Clooney is George Clooney’s aunt.

* What does stuzzi mean?  — I think it is a kind of Italian dinner cracker and/or from ‘stuzzicare,’ the italian word for sharp/exciting. The rest of this fact is particularly boring and dorky: I found a New York Times Article that describes stuzzi as “little crackers, which are stubby and ridged” (and these fancy dinner crackers are produced by “Dolcezze & Sapori, a company in Matera, Italy”.. Stuzzi  — the restaurant — supposedly makes pizza in  the “authentic” Southern Italy style). This article says ‘stuzzi” comes from ”stuzzicare,”  The Italian dictionary I found says the verb Stuzzicare means “to excite, incite;  to pick, stir; sharpen, awake”… so it’s fancy Italian crackers or exciting/provocative food.

* Master and Commander  — M&C is a series of like 20 books written by Patrick Obrian between 1970 and 1999  … the series is set in the Napoleonic period ~1800 to ~1815… where this English Captain (Jack Aubrey) and his ship surgeon (Stephen Maturin) sail around the world having adventures. A M&C  movie was released in 2003 but it was kind of a failure. Technically, only the first book was called “Master and Commander” and the series is the “Aubrey-Maturin series

* Talk Talk. They are not italian. They were a 4-piece “New Wave” band from the 80’s. Here is a sample of their New Wave style: … interesting to watch the drummer on his electric drums…

* Talk Talk Redux. Talk Talk’s final album “Laughing Stock” was released in 1991 … this album is super-indie, arguably ahead of its time… and is considered by some to be one of the first post-rock albums. … if you are in to youtubes, here is a beautiful jazzy song (New Grass)  1991…

* Is Michael Crichton dead? Yes, he died November 4, 2008. The last book he wrote was NeXt, but they found two more manuscripts on his computer and have enough material for two posthumous books.

* As an American, do you like pizza or burgers more? I personally prefer burgers, but Peter says his pizza to burger ratio is like 9:1… According to this pizza facts website, “According to a recent Gallup Poll, 82 percent of children ages 3 and 11 prefer PIZZA over chicken nuggets, hot dogs, macaroni & cheese, and hamburgers.” The terrorists have won.


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