I always make the same mistake. Coming from an Italian family I should know better. Once again, I decided to wear a white shirt on the day, we invited some friends for an Italian banquet.

The first thing I did was open a nice bottle of Banfi Chianti. Under normal circumstances this would have been an easy task. For the non-Italians I must explain that a bottle of Chianti is always wrapped in wicker basket. The basket is held to the bottle by two small bands of wicker. When one opens the bottle, one should never hold the bottle by the wicker but should hold it by the stem. After I cleaned up, I correctly opened up the second bottle of Chianti.

I then attempted the main course. Everyone else at the table was enjoying the feast at the same time I was trying to figure out how not to wear the meal. The meatballs were not a problem. All I had to do is cut them in half, spear them with my fork, and then pop them in my mouth. I was doing well until I accidentally slipped one of the pieces off my plate and on to the tablecloth. I looked up and noticed a sharp glare from my wife. The tablecloth was now soiled and there was nothing I could do about it. At least I missed my napkin.

The spaghetti was my greatest challenge of the afternoon. I grabbed my fork and spoon hoping I could masterfully roll the spaghetti onto my fork and then transfer it into my mouth. As I was attempting this Italian maneuver, I noticed the conversation was quieting down and I had become the center of attraction. I just smiled and continued to roll my fork. I am convinced I only had one piece of spaghetti on my plate because I continued to roll a huge amount of spaghetti on my fork.

I became tired of rolling after a few minutes and decided to put what I had rolled onto my fork and suck what was left of the strand into my mouth. I sucked a bit too hard. The free-flowing strand wrapped around my head and sprayed all over my dinner guests. My wife got the worse because she now had a perfectly straight red line across her face. My guests laughed and told me they really didn’t like the clothes they were wearing.

The meal ended with more red wine, of which I spilled some on the now worthless tablecloth and some dessert that consisted of a cannoli of which I bit into, thus oozing out its content on the now multi-colored tablecloth.

We had a few laughs on that Sunday afternoon. In fact, my friends wanted to get together again at their home. They suggested a Chinese food. All I could think about was how in this world was I going to use chop sticks.

— Special to the Telegram

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