Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Monday Practice

The Sicilian Derby results from Sunday

Calcio Catania played the second of its two rivalry (Derby) games at Palermo on Sunday.  Curva Nord's favorite team entered the fixture in 13th place in the 20 team Italian Serie A league with an 8-6-11 record while Palermo was in the 10th spot in league play with a record of 11-2-12.

FINAL RESULT: Catania 4 - Palermo 0

There was much dancing in the streets as Catania got out the brooms to celebrate a sweep of the two Derby games scheduled in the 2008-09 season, having beaten Palermo at home 2-0 back in week 7 in October, 2008.

What makes this even sweeter is the fact that of Palermo' only three losses in 26 games, two were to FORZA CATANIA! 

Monday was a work at home day to continue a little light reading of my latest 791 page book, "The Day of Battle" by Rick Atkinson.  It is about World War II, specifically chronicling the war in Sicily and Italy in 1943-1944.  A very fascinating tome being that I am reading about many towns and villages that I know as idyllic retreats that were devastated a little over 60 years ago by the carnage of war.  It was interesting that there was quite a bit written about Catania and the trouble Great Britain's General Bernard Law Montgomery's Eighth Army had in capturing it.

Also on tap today was some washing, yes girls, I do wash my own clothes when I'm not in the New World, catching up on my journal and actually catching a little sun on Malibu's lower patio.

In the meantime, Paul "The Happy Wanderer" Petrich Jr. went for a three hour walk into Catania!

The afternoon was spent at the Elephants' War Room studying some of our first opponent's, Ancona,  DVDs as well as last Saturday's practice DVD. 

Offensive Line Coach Denver Wade's Dorm Building

Last year, two of our imports, Matt (WR) and Brandon (OL), shared an apartment in downtown Catania that we dubbed "The Dorm".  This year our volunteer Offensive Line Coach Denver Wade truly lives in the real dorm building you see here while he spends a semester abroad through a Duke University program during this his junior year at Wabash College in Indiana.  He is really doing a GREAT job for the Elephants as he is successfully juggling school, workouts for his senior football season and coaching.

The One and Only Pino Anello

Sometimes coaching the Elephants makes me feel a little like Lou Brown, the fictional manager of the Cleveland Indians in the 1989 movie "Major League".

If you are not familiar with this cult classic film, it is about a bunch of odd balls put together on purpose to unwittingly lose games so that the team's attendance will drop allowing them out of their contract with the city of Cleveland and thus allowing their new owner, Georgia Frontiere (not really but I still hate her for moving my beloved Los Angeles Rams to St. Louis), to move them to Miami.  The only problem for the Georgia Frontiere based character is that when Manager Lou Brown and the team figures it all out, they bond together and go on to win the American League crown with packed stadiums in attendance, ergo no move to Miami.

Pino, a LB and DE last season, showed up last night at a very well attended practice for a Monday night to sign his Letter of Intent", he's in for another campaign of Elephants football.  He is definitely my kind of "colorful" player and unknowingly a 1989 Cleveland Indian at heart.

We had a REALLY good practice again with the stress of these weeknight sessions being on 90 minutes of individual technique and group work.  Luke, Taber and Claudio continue to impress offensively and we are developing some depth on the defensive side of the ball.


Dinner and "Dr. No" in Italian

Paul and I decided to drive, not walk, to either the east and or north side of Mt. Etna to see the molten red lava flow.  No luck because of cloud cover so we stopped in the town of Giardini-Naxos for dinner praying that we didn't get a parking ticket.  Nothing on the windshield when we returned but, let's face it, nothing will be official for at least another ten months!

We found a very reasonable seaside ristorante-pizzeria-bar called "da Pippo".  I had a very good spaghetti alla Bolognese.  The big screen next to our table had one of my all-time favorite movies playing, 1962's first James Bond movie, "Dr. No".  Our teammates believe that it is based on the adventures of the Elephants starting outside linebacker and real life doctor, Dr. Salvo Sicali.  I think they may be a little off on this one.

Paul eats not one but two desserts

Rationalizing that his three hour walk this morning deserved a reward, Paul ordered the chocolate cake AND the blackberry gelato for dessert.

Since I consider my body a cathedral, I opted to just watch Paul pig out.  I'll be a better man because of this Lenten sacrifice I'm sure.


Anonymous said...

Good for you George! So am I to understand that you gave up all sweets for Lent? I am proud! =)

Laurie said...

Laundry, huh. Can I assume that you will continue to do your own laundry after I arrive!?!?!?!?

DPLassen said...

But Laurie, you haven't lived until you've dealt with European washers and dryers. Especially the dryers.

George said...

1. Vanesa I gave up desserts NOT sweet things, I mean Laurie is arriving in Catania in only SIXTEEN more days.

2. Laurie, but of course!

3. Dave, both Laurie and I know about the washers here in the Old World, but what's a dryer?