Dear Members of Ciancia,

once in a while, we return to our roots and to the cultural character of our club.  This month we opted to steer our conversation toward food production, cultural anthropology and innovation technology.

As Ferrari is celebrating its 70th birthday, we decided to talk about Italy’s proclivity, on one side, to advanced technology, and on the other, to pre-industial organic farming and healthy food (intended as non-mass produced).  Italian supermarkets are as filled with generic products just as much as American ones.  However, Italy continues to mount a strong resistance to the homogenization and industrialization of food production, particularly outside of the large metropolitan areas.  This issue involves the problems induced by industrialized production such as harvest chemicals, pesticides, GMO’s and colorants. Its greedy rationale is far more reaching than the simple fact that citizens of busy metropolitan areas don’t have time to shop for organically grown tomatoes and fruits, grass-fed beef, farm eggs or hand-made bread.  Aside from obvious culinary pleasures, what is beginning to surface is that the medical costs of the problems induced, such as obesity or digestive allergies, are far higher than the cost of organic food.

This month we are presenting the results of the research conducted in Italy by one of our committee members, Whitney Easton.  Aside from our regular gatherings, in the next few months, our programs will be featuring events such as reviews of Italian films, lectures in literature, cuisine and architecture.  This is meant to lead Ciancia back to its roots of a cultural hub.  I sincerely hope that those of you who have joined us because of their interest for the language and culture of the Italian peninsula will be pleased by our initiative.  AGP



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Who hasn’t dreamed of driving or owning one?  Ferrari is a symbol and emblem and today it is 70 years old!  The legacy left by Ferrari’s design and technological innovation is baffling and unparalleled, especially for a brand born in a garage.  One could easily say that Ferrari has lead sport auto-making to what it is today.  By widespread consensus, it is also the most recognized brand and coveted sport car in the world.  Small wonder, for it design has always challenged the status quo, always reaching new grounds.  Its technology leaped forward, from aluminum-box chassis (scocca scatolare), to ultra light titanium-alloy and carbon-fiber components, to its amazing V-engines, the first ever able to pull 500 horse-power out of a 3 liter propulsion system; reaching, eventually, a mind-blowing, asphalt-tearing 930 bhp, with its 3 liter F1 V10.  Its innovations have been copied over and over again, becoming standard equipment in Porches and Jaguars around the world.  But this is just the beginning of the Ferrari legacy.  Competition pilots (my category was 500 c.c. speed motorcycles) know what was done to its Dell’Orto carburetors, variable-length intake manifolds, amazing Brembo breaks and disks, dual clutch transmissions, compressors, engine heads, pistons and crankshafts, spoilers and skirts, both is terms of power/weight ratio, and reduction of parasite frictions.  Ferrari has also been a world leader in terms of aerodynamics. And what about its stunning pilots? From the legendary Ascari and Fangio, to Surtees, Bandini, Lauda, Hill, Massa, Schumacher, Ferrari was joined by some of the best pilots in the world, making history with many world titles and long uninterrupted winning streaks of six consecutive world titles, from 1999 to 2006, during which Ferrari was unseizable and elusive, indeed the F1 team to reckon with. In conclusion, the Ferrari brand remains a testimony of the Italian class, technology, resilience and creativity, the proof that a generation of embarrassingly crude and idiotic Italian politicians cannot affect the achievements of our beloved nation.  For more images of its anniversary, click here Yours, AGP


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I am sure that some of you remember Marilyn Monroe singing that sensuous and sassy song, or, if you are too young, that you have been exposed to the narrative of a prince in a shiny armor, getting on his knees offering you a ring as a pledge of his heart.  Well, as it turns out, in the world of innovation technology something as important as the invetion of the light bulb has happened: diamond batteries.  A diamond battery is a weird item.  It works almost like a star, may last far longer than any marriage, longer than those reliable Duracell men and women keep by the bed side, though for different purposes…  I only met one person in my life, our sweet Italian maid Pina, whose unstoppable chat would beat the Energizer’s Bunny by many rounds, but that was my only solid proof of unending renewable energy.  God only knows what she was eating…  The invention of the diamond battery is for real and could power your pacemaker until your flesh fall off your bones, or until your speech starts resembling Mr. Trump’s gibberish (not necessarily for the same type of disease).  Click here for an interesting reading! AGP


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Speaking of coffee, are you in the mood for humouring yourself? Do you wonder what distinguishes Italians? What make them behave in a certain way? What is “acceptable” versus what is not?  Here is, for instance, why Italian espresso does not come in 100 varieties, or meatballs are never served with pasta.  This one is by the brilliantly funny “Marco in a Box.”  Click here!



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We just received an announcement of a book donation.  We are in the process of inventorying our Italian book library, which spans across various literary genres.  We will post our available titles on our website next year.  Our members and subscribers will have the opportunity to participate in this free circulating library, exchanging one of their Italian books for one of our Italian books.  This is a barter program, without exchange of money. It is meant to foster reading and circulation of Italian literature.


Ciancia is brought to you by a Steering Committee of outstanding, dedicated and accomplished professionals, each one bringing to the table amazing expertise in communication and event production. This is entirely a team of volunteers, all strong believers in the great rewards of social interaction, intellectual curiosity, diversity, and cultural engagement. We admit new committee members on a regular basis. If you think that you have the drive and the time to take over one of the numerous responsibilities that make Ciancia possible, please step forward at one of our meetings.

Here is our current roster:
Arturo Giancarlo Pirrone, President
Alessio Medda – Planning and Special Events
Whitney Easton, Editing and cultural activities
Allyson Gwaltney, cultural activities
Piero Tarantelli, sponsors and host coordinator
Dina Fricioni, logistics, travel and cultural activities
Stefano Grossi, IT Team, website design

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