Why do Italian Americans fire of fireworks so often?
We recently moved into the heart of Little Italy in Boston’s North End. Of course, I’m not surprised by do-it-yourselfers celebrating on the 4th of July and such occasions. But I must say this place was like a total war zone on the 3rd and the 4th, and of course there were the inevitable leftovers that people discovered on the 5th. I’m not talking just lady fingers or even cherry bombs. They fire of skyrockets that go hundreds of feet up and generate star-bursts and sparkling light-curtains just like the stuff the professional displays use. These sort of skyrockets cost serious money, and they fire them by the dozens or on the 4th by the hundreds.
But it’s not just on holidays. There was another big batch tonight. Every saint’s birthday seems to rate a fireworks celebration, but even on days with no special meaning, we have one or two big displays a week. Are they for birthdays or weddings within a family, or what?. Am I off base in thinking it’s the Italian Americans? What’s it all about?