Cousin Salvatore

My Uncle Reginald Wronski was a Doughboy in WWI. American by birth, he chose to stay on in Europe after the Armistice, settling in Italy. There he sired quite a brood with his dark beauty of an Italian wife, Gina Lola. 

My Cousin Salvatore — “Salski” was his nickname  — was their first born and the apple of his father’s eye. An adventurous but wise lad, Salvatore excelled in school and in just about everything else too. Yet, given his Italian genetic heritage, he was always one to first follow his heart. Uncle Reginald was a forward thinking man — as are all Wronski’s — and he encouraged young Salski to march to his own drummer.

After brief failed careers, first as a gondolier in Venice and then as an oyster shucker in Trieste (he is reputed to have coined the erotically charged phrase, "Discover the Oyster!"), Salvatore settled down in Rome. There he opened what is arguably the very first Pizzeria, and therefore oldest, joint in the Eternal City. 

Superiore Pizzaria Quondo Romanissimo*, “Home of the Cheesiest Crust.” With a claim like that the Vatican soon took notice and SPQR was delivering pizzas to none other than His Holiness Himself, Pope John XXIII. (They say some of John's famous girth was on account of Uncle’s pizza.)

Cousin Salski had this gig for some time; in fact, he became fast friends with Pope John Paul II, hanging out eating pizza and drinking the Vatican’s best wine, exchanging Italian jokes. Being both of Polish descent you can understand the connection they had. Little known gossip, Pope John Paul would say to him, in Polish, "Jestem tak samotny jak Pollack w Roma" (translation: “I’m as lonely as a Pollack in Roma.”) Kind of like being as lonely as a Gentile in Miami.

Alas, it all came to an end when, as Salvatore says, “THAT German came to town.”

Today you still can find him happily flipping his thin, really thin crust pies in his original location. Look him up when you’re there. Walk one block east from the Fontana Trevi, turn left; walk half a block, then right onto a quaint mews. You can’t miss the spot. It’s got the only neon lights on the block; in fact, I believe it’s the only shop officially permitted to flash neon lights in the entire town.

If you’re there, mention me. You will have to pay for your pizza, but Cousin Salski will treat you to a big tumbler full of his own house made Chianti. Salut. (Try the pie with the kielbasa instead of pepperoni. You won’t be disappointed. Don’t, however, opt for the extra kapusta [sauerkraut] topping.)

PS It occurs to us that father and son were in fact very much alike. Like, one was a Doughboy; the other, a "dough boy".

PPS Currently in this Anno 2013 we have your Pope Francis I. Not confirming, not denying, but the down low is that a certain personage resembling The Man himself has been seen in the late evening hours peddling his bicycle to Superiore Pizzaria Quondo Romanissimo from a direction that looks like he's coming from Vatican City. The tale goes on.

* Now with branches throughout the Itralian "Boot". In Lake Como and ... Bologna too!
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See all the other Wronski's by going to the sidebar "Oh! Wronski / All My Relations". 

Or, for the full bore hystericalicity CLICK to go to this this page.

 

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