l’allarme bomba (m.)

Today’s #PdG is the masculine noun l’allarme bomba, which means bomb scare.

The web site for the newspaper La Repubblica in Rome was briefly shutdown due to a bomb scare. You can read about the bomb scare on their web site. A screen capture below can be seen of their web site where they reported the scare, which briefly halted updates to their site.

If you want to hear the noun pronounced, you can hear a good pronunciation here:


A bomb scare is when someone calls a company/business/person and says that there is a bomb inside the building/residence/etc.

la leggenda metropolitana

Welcome 2020!

Sorry for the delay in the first post of the year. I am still trying to decide on the direction and pace of #PdG. In the meantime, while I was procrastinating on Facebook today, I ran across the expression la leggenda metropolitana (you can hear the word/expression pronounced below courtesy of Forvo — if you have never visited Forvo, check it out).

Can you guess what this means? It means urban legend.

An urban legend, according to Merriam-Webster, is “an often lurid story or anecdote that is based on hearsay and widely circulated as true.”

SPOILER ALERT: The cartoon I embedded from Facebook is a bit on the gory side so if you are bothered by cartoon blood, please do not read further.

I saw the word used on the Facebook Group Imparare l’italiano con le barzellette, which you can see below:

Are you familiar with this Italian urban legend? The gist is that if you pop a pimple (schiacciare un brufolo), you can bleed to death (morire dissanguato). Comics, pictures, jokes, and other content on social media can be a great way to build your vocabulary! I highly recommend this Facebook group as there are always interesting jokes, cartoons, drawings, and insights into everyday Italian language and culture.


Christmas tree with cat looking at lights

Christmas with cat! Miao!

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the verb addobbare, which means to decorate or to deck (out). See the verb used below:

Il fine settimana scorso,Sandro e Maria hanno addobbato la loro casa per Natale. Hanno usato luci, calze rosse, agrifogli e nastri che hanno comprato nei loro viaggi per il mondo. Ogni anno, casa loro è il regno del Natale!

Last weekend Sandro and Maria decorated their house for Christmas. They used lights, red stockings, holly and ribbons they bought in their travels around the world. Every year Christmas reigns supreme in their home!

incartare/scartare un regalo

From the archive! We’ll be coming back in 2020!

Today’s Parola del Giorno are the verbs incartare/scartare un regalo, which mean to wrap/unwrap a gift.

Wrapping presents is a lot of work, but unwrapping them is so much more fun! 🙂 Don’t forget another useful word for this holiday season: la carta da regalowrapping paper.

See the verb used below:

Che bello quando la mattina di Natale i miei bambini vedono tutti i regali sotto l’albero! Sono come api che scartando tutti i regali come se fosse il loro primo Natale. Che entusiasmo!

How beautiful when on Christmas morning my children see all the gifts under the tree! They are like bees unwrapping all the gifts as if it were their first Christmas! What enthusiasm!

essere stressato

While we gear up for 2020…let’s share some words from the archive!

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the expression essere stressato, which means to be stressed out.

As much as we all love the holidays, this time of year for many can be stressful, especially if you have to work long hours in retail or find yourself always on the go or dealing with shopping and crowds!

See our expression used below:

Un anno, sotto le feste di Natale, mia nonna mi disse, “Perché hai sempre un bicchiere di vino in mano?” Le risposi: “Non vedi come sono stressato? Le feste mi rompono: fammi godere una piccola pausa con questo buon vino!”

One year, during the Christmas holiday, my grandmother told me, “Why do you always have a glass of wine in your hand?” I told her: “Can’t you see I’m stressed out? The holidays bother me: let me enjoy a short break with this great wine!”

Buone feste e altri aggiornamenti (Happy Holidays and other updates)

Ciao a tutti!

I am sure that many of you noticed that #PdG has been quiet since the summer. I want to apologize too all the followers of the site for my absence.

2019 was a tough year, both personally and professionally. I won’t bog you down with the bad news, but the good news is that I passed my comprehensive examinations for my doctorate and successfully defended my dissertation proposal. I achieved candidacy this August, and I have begun teaching my own classes. Needless to say, I have been quite busy doing a lot of teaching, research, and writing.

I plan to resume #PdG in January 2020 in a way that works both for my future academic career as well as maintain my hobby and love for my Italian heritage. #PdG has helped me to connect to my “roots,” and learning Italian has been an adventure that I want to continue. However, I will be going onto the job market soon, and I need to put a lot of time and energy into finding work as I finish up my PhD, and I need to make sure that the site provides a proper balance with professional and personal imperatives that consume a lot of my life’s bandwidth.

I want to shift gears a bit on the site and return to help users build their vocabulary and improve reading comprehension. I want to return to introducing users to new words and phrases that I encounter through Italian literature, film, music, and the daily news. We also have two final volumes coming out from our “Piccole Guide” series: one on pronouns and another on vocabulary building.

Thank you for your patience as I (re)organize my life and gear up for an exciting 2020! I wish all of you a safe and happy holiday season and a happy new year!

il bacchettone

Today’s Parola del Giorno is the noun il bacchettone (la bacchettona), which means prude or prig.

See the noun used below in its context:

Che persona noiosa il padre di Valerio! Vede sempre il male nelle cose e ci dice sempre che noi ragazzi non abbiamo valori sani e pensiamo solo a divertirci e a cose inutili. Cavolo, è proprio un bacchettone!

What a boring person Valerio’s father is! He always sees the worst in things and tell us that we kids have no wholesome values, and we think only of having fun and other useless things. Gosh, he is a really a prig!

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