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Grandmas With Attitude   2 comments

Just because everyone has a story to tell, doesn’t mean everyone should. It’s
nice, though, that Adriana Trigiani shares hers in the memoir, Don’t Sing at
the Table: Life Lessons From My Grandmothers.

Trigiani imparts memories and the advice given by both of her grandmothers:
Lucy (on her mother’s side) and Viola (on her father’s). Although the two
had little direct interaction with one another, they had a profound influence
on the author. Both were hardworking, independent women who raised families,
ran their own businesses, suffered personal losses, but lived long rich lives.
This describes many grandmothers today, but this was the 1940s and ‘50s.

These Italian-American women weren’t just role models to their granddaughter
(and others); they also had plenty of advice to dispense, from parenting to
femininity, from marriage to adventure. Trigiani’s writing is conversational.
It’s easy to imagine the time spent with Lucy and Viola, and to feel the im-
pact they had. These were tough but caring women who found success at work
and happiness at home.

The title is what caught my attention. Not singing at the table was one of
many family rules when I was a kid, but there was never an explanation.
Trigiani provides one. It comes from an Italian proverb: “Chi e canta a
tavola e piu stupido che fuma a letto, which translated means ‘He who
sings at the table is more stupid than the one who smokes in bed.’” This
is debatable, but it certainly makes for a good title.

Three Bookmarks
Harper Collins, 2010
204 pages

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2 responses to “Grandmas With Attitude

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  1. Sounds interesting, will have to add it to my ever lengthening “to read” list! 🙂

  2. This is a pretty quick read, and it’s fun.

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