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January 3, 2014     Post-Gazette
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January 3, 2014
 

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T THE ITALIAN-AMERICAN VOICE OF M_SSAI-U ,  , E TT  :::erly LA GAZZETTA del MASSACHUSETTS) VOL. 118-NO 1 "='"::'-""" MASSACHUSETTS, JAHUARY 3, 2014 $'30-A COPY Bosto00 L Anno Bello. A Year m Italian Folklore Collect, ng Christmas Trees - Wua, Viva ,efana/ by Ally Di Censo Symynkywicz At the Berlin Zoo in Germany, this is how they recycle their Christmas trees. They feed their elephants dis- carded Christmas trees thrown away by residents as well as unsold trees from vendors. I don't think I've ever seen an animal eat a whole tree, have you? The Department of Public Works will be collecting Christ- mas trees for composting now through to January 10, 2014. Please remove all ornaments, decorations and stands from trees and place trees at the curb by 7:00 am on your recy- cling, day. Do not put trees in plastic bags and don't forget to recycle your holiday catalogs and wrapping paper as well. To find your Recycling Day visit www.cityoJboston.gov. As the calendar turns its pages towards January, a blank and tantalizing prom- ise of a month, it can be easy to settle into a spell of disappointed gloom. Christmas wreaths and holiday lights gradually disappear from rooftops and doorways, packed away until next year. The ther- mometer rests at frigid tem- peratures, heralding long stretches of cold, gray days. An aura from festivity seems to dissipate from the atmosphere as people head back to work and school, no longer looking forward to an imminent week-long break. These bleak images tend to characterize the common perception of January, but I believe that this month of- fers much more merriment and reward than people wbuld normally think. The return to a routine after the holiday break can fill us with renewed discipline and purpose, harnessing the young energy of the New Year. Yes, the days are cold, but if we pay attention, we will notice that the sun shines longer in the sky now that the winter solstice has passed, sending pale golden streaks dancing across a snowy evening. Finally, the early days of January love to remind us that Christmas and all its quaint celebra- tions are not done yet! Tra- ditionally, the Twelve Days of Christmas ended on the Epiphany, the feast honoring the Three Kings' visit to Baby Jesus, which falls on January 6 t. In Italy, this important holiday is epito- mized by an indelible, rus- tic character named La Befana. Across Italy, the famed Christmas markets remain open until the feast of the Epiphany, sporting figurines of La Befana and bustling with costumed entertainers dressed like this custom- ary gift-bringer. La Befana, whose name derives from a corruption of the Italian word for Epiphany, Epifania, is a mystical fairy-witch figure who deliyer,#-r-sents to children on t-he night of January 5 a. Decked out in a raggedy dress and ker- chief and riding on a broom, covered in a layer of soot from entering people's houses through the chim- ney, La Befana's origins mys- teriously linger in the mists of time. Nowadays, several scholars believe she may function as a remnant of the pre-Christian goddesses that symbolized the transition from winter to spring. According to Italian lore, a legend ex- plains La Befana's connec- tion to the holiday of the Epiphany: The ,Three Kings stopped by La Befana' s house while en route to vis- iting Baby Jesus, and asked her if she would like to ac- company them on their journey. La Befana initially declined, remarking that she was too busy sweeping her house, but later changed her mind, hopped on her broom, and set out to find the Three Kings and the Holy Family. However, she was never able to locate them and continues her hunt to this day, dropping off presents as she circles the world in search of Baby Jesus. Italian (Continued on Page 5) La Befana (Anna Ginnetti-Ricci) with grandchildren of Donne 2000 members. (2012 Photo) iiiii!iiiiiiiii!iiii!iiiiiiill !i ! iiiii!i!iiii!!!!iiiiiiiiiiii!!!iiii!i!!!!!i IIIII ililiiiiiii 00iliiiiiiiiiiii!iiil; ill LI 1!iiiiiiiiiiii!ii!ii FI i iiiiiiiiii!i!!!iiiiii!iiiill ! ii Go Gomez, Hello Klan? Back earlier this year, Massachusetts voters had a special election for the U.S. Senate to fill Secretary of State John F. Kerry's vacant Sen- ate seat. In the election, voters had a choice, 36 year incumbent U.S. Rep. Eddie Markey or so- called Republican Gabriel "Navy SEAL" Gomez. I voted for neither, willing to see Markey in the Senate over Gomez. A few days before Christmas, I realized how much I thank God I didn't chose to vote for Gomez. Recently, on Boston Herald Radio, he actually stated that conservative Republicans were intolerant Klansmen. When asked if he was comparing Tea Party or right wing Republi- cans as the KKK, he said when he stated used the term "klan," he wasn't talking about the Klan. Does he think the voters are that stupid? Or is he the really stupid one in this story? (Continued on Page 3) "Our Family Serving Your Family W.ith Professionalism, Dignity & Respect" Funerals Starting at $3900. (pace dm  ae o me) Ample Off Street Parking Complimentary Valet Parking Nonsectarian & From Our Funeral Home For Family & Guests for Visiting Hours . Se Hab Espanol Si o Plea call 617, 569-0990 any Visit us at our wCbslte:  corn