By Adolph Caso
Surviving World War II was brutal in every way. Things changed when I migrated to Boston in 1947: I neither knew standard Italian (schools were closed during the War and my first book was the Telephone Directory at my sister’s house). Of course, I spoke no English.
In my American schools, however, I always wanted to know about my Italian heritage; however, there was little or no information available. Finally, in a history class, Mr. Murphy mentioned the name of Russo, as being a great author—an Italian name at last, I thought. In doing further reading, I discovered his name was Rousseau--neither Italian nor French, and one of my least favorite future authors. Around the same time, Mr. McCurdy introduced me to Darwin’s Evolution.
As sports were the dream of every young person, perchance Istumbled on a newspaper reporting that Ferrari had won such and such a race. Before I knew it, I discovered a mythology that was alive and well—which was of Italian origin, with its cars competing and winning on a regular basis on the world stage. A race-car enthusiast, I saw every race; I even went to Monte Carlo two times to see the
Formula One race in my white Alfa Romeo Giulietta Spider--then, I was a 2nd LT in the US Army Signal Corps, stationed in Italy, doing mountain reconnaissance in an H-34 Helicopter. On one such mission, it crashed on a high mountain peak. Luck would have us survive that crash.
Back in the States, one thing led to another. While dreaming of owning a Ferrari, I was driving a Ford Pinto, then a Buick, then a Ford Focus—so much for un-prestigious dream cars. But, I got great transportation and was not aware I was saving money for a future Ferrari.
Unexpectedly, I saw this red Ferrari parked on the street in front of my office. I quickly placed a note on its window: “I want to buy this car; call me…” It was among the first edition of the model--Testarossa, distinguishable by the fact it had one rather than the usual two mirrors. Subsequent models had two.
“How much do you want?” I asked.
“Don’t you want to look at it first?”
“I already saw it; it has one mirror…”
In no time, I became the owner of a thoroughbred, prancing horse Testarossa with less than 20,000 miles, in mint condition, pure red in color with beige leather all around. So, now, I had something that concretely represented the best of Italian products. I also knew I would keep it till death.
I drove it with pride; and, everyone stopped to look at me (I thought)—driving that car. I would park it in the front of the Post Office. That’s as far as I drove it, and only in good weather. Before I knew it, people gathered in admiration. To my disappointment, however, young women, especially, paid no attention to me, but asked for rides in the car (which I denied). Older women made no bones about liking the car, while old men—octogenarians, like me, just asked: “What’s an old geezer, like you, driving a Ferrari?”
“Yes,” I answered. “But, how many Octos (octogenarians), like you, went on their honeymoons in a Testarossa, like me?” The retaliation filled my face with glee.
Receiving no personal recognition, I got in the car, and humbly drove off, except for one time: the battery was dead and the car wouldn’t start. This rather good-looking young woman in high heels, with a minivan, connected her battery to mine. With one turn of the ignition, the Testarossa responded with a roar. In a few minutes, I was parking my Classic Ferrari in the garage—looking better than ever, and, always beautiful.
In the mean time, I drive a Ford Fusion. At the Post Office, no one looks at the car or asks questions about how I am, despite the fact that, an obvious Octo, I can hardly stand on my two feet.
As I think about it, now I know: Darwin’s ill-conceived Evolution favors my un-derivative Testarossa—it always looks great and stays the same, while real Evolvement is assuring that my day, in the court of our final destinies, will be coming soon, that when mine does come, I will have had my Testarossa fulfill my dreams of laughter and joy, knowing all too well that, as reflected in my own book on, God and Evolution or Evolvement, there is no humor in that book, whatsoever.
Yes! I will stop driving my Testarossa half an hour after I will have died.
Good Thing that Testarossa is kept in the Garage...I'd hate to see it by the long, long time before you'll be driving it in the sky...
God With God, my Friend...