Holding All the Cards…

October 9, 2012 10:22 am Published by Leave your thoughts

A hand of Italian cards

Briscola, scopa, tresette, centocinquantuno: the names of Italian card games are as intriguing as the motifs on the cards. Every small town – and not only the small ones – has a cafe’ where i giocatori gather after lunch and after dinner, at outdoor tables in good weather and inside in front of the ubiquitous TV in inclement weather. I’ve never seen any women: they’re home washing the dishes, no doubt. The card-playing is a social “leveling” phenomenon as men of all ages and all professions gather together: classics professors, plumbers, carpenters, and postal employees concentrate on their hands while chatting about national politics and the woes of local government.

Partners for the card games form naturally. Some men never play but just enjoy observing, standing behind the card-dealer…silently. They’re careful not to give away a play.
While walking in Assisi, see if you can find the cardsharps’ cafe’…..

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