Five reasons why Sicily is better than Massachusetts

I've spent some time analyzing the comparison of the Mass Bay area with the SF Bay Area, and occasionally even commented on the Red Sox - Yankees rivalry, but a recent trip to Europe has brought to the fore another instructive comparison.

You may not realize it, but it turns out that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is almost exactly the same size as the autonomous Italian region of Sicily - 10,555 and 9,926 square miles respectively.  Mass has the edge in population - 6.5 million vs 5 million - but that won't stop me from pointing out.... five reasons why Sicily is better than Massachusetts:

Sicily has the largest active volcano in Europe. (That's Mt. Etna, which is 10,890 feet high) Massachusetts has the largest Federal highway project in the USA.  (That's the Big Dig, which is about $22 Billion deep)

In Sicily, shops close in the afternoon for a long lunch. In Massachusetts, banks and bars close early.

Sicily was colonized by the ancient Greeks over 2,000 years ago and later became an important part of the Roman empire. Many of the events in the Iliad and the Odyssey take place in Sicily.  Massachusetts was colonized by uptight English religious fanatics 400 years ago.  Many of the events in Ally McBeal take place in Massachusetts.

In Sicily, you can get a good espresso almost anywhere for about a Euro. In Massachusetts, you can get Dunkin Donuts coffee almost anywhere.

Sicily gave the world the Cannoli. Massachusetts contributed, um, well, there's no cuisine section in the wikipedia entry on Massachusetts, so I'll just stop here.

5 Responses

  1. I won't argue with you that Sicily is better than Massachusetts, but culinarily MA did give us Fried Clams (Woodman's in Essex), Baked Beans (though I can't find exact sources) Boston Cream Pie and Parker Rolls (both from the Parker Hotel).
  2. I was thinking not so much of good food created in MA - there's a bunch of that - but of food created here that has become a part of global culture. You can get cannoli (of varying quality) all over the world. I suppose on that count, Boston Cream Pie is in the ballpark. Maybe you should go update Wikipedia.
  3. Anything you put in your mouth tastes better when you're eating it in Sicily. Frankly, there's no comparison between Boston "Educator Crackers" and biscotti from the bakeries in the town of Erice! I could go on and on.....Come on Massachusetts get a gripe, you lost this one!
  4. Julie A.
    Better mafia in Sicily too. You can't forget the mafia...
  5. [...] of the Patriots: The Boston Tea Party & the Making of America by historian Benjamin Carp.  History might not run as deep here in Massachusetts as it does in Sicily, but it’s pretty thick in Boston and the event was held at the Old South Meeting House, a [...]
  6. Gabe
    Genius. Thanks.

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