Currently, 26 million Italian-Americans are living in the United States today. This group of people is an amazing and fascinating community, who put their heart and soul into everything they do. In honor of Italian-American Heritage Month, let’s celebrate some of the things Italian-Americans love.
Talking About Their Italian Heritage
No matter what generation they are, Italian-Americans cherish their heritage. They love to talk about the stories their parents or grandparents would tell them about the old country. They love to preserve the family recipes and pass the traditions onto their children. Even if they are only 25% Italian, Italy tugs at their heartstrings and welcomes them with open arms.
Arguing about if it’s called Sauce or Gravy
If you’ve been around a group of Italian-Americans, you’ll know exactly what I’m talking about. If you don’t, all I can tell you is some people call it sauce, some people call it gravy, and both sides are convinced the other side is wrong. Honestly, I’m surprised Italian-Americans haven’t turned this argument into a sport because this topic can get vicious.
Unless it’s the family’s secret sauce/gravy recipe, most Italian-Americans love passing their cooking knowledge on to others. They will spend hours in the kitchen showing you the right way to form a meatball, how to get your sauce/gravy to simmer perfect, and what a pinch of garlic really means.
Italian-Americans love to gossip, but not in a mean vicious way, they just love to talk about the people they know. Most conversations will start with, “do you know…” or “did you hear about…” and off they go. Even if it’s only been a few days they will catch each other up on everything that has happened in their lives during the time in between. You will hear all about your cousin’s half sister’s best friend’s wedding or about how your uncle’s friend’s son-in-law is doing at college. Italian-Americans just like to know what’s going on.
To Display Their Italian Pride
Many Italian-Americans love showing off their heritage with some Italian swag. They’ll have t-shirts with ‘Proud Italian’ printed on it and signs that say ‘Italian-American parking only’, along with dozens of keychains and bumper stickers. Anything that will announce their heritage, Italian-Americans are eager to have it.
To Prove You Wrong
Italian-Americans are notoriously stubborn, but it typically works in their favor. They came from ancestors that were constantly belittled or stereotyped as criminals, so now Italian-Americans are all about setting the standards high. They strive for excellence, and if you even consider doubting them, they will show five different reasons you are wrong.
Italian-Americans love their families like nobody else. Cousins are best friends, extended family members are always welcome, and yearly events are attended by dozens of people. Italian-Americans have always thrived on a sense of community, and their family relationships are just an extension of that communal nature. They’ll complain about each other for some reason or another, but if an outside ever tries to start something, they’ll have to face a long line of cousins, aunts, uncles, etc.
- Feature Picture [Wikimedia]