If Berlusconi is the pits for Italians in Britain, then Enoteca Turi on Putney High Street must be the road to salvation for any Italian nostalgic or English Epicurean.
It is easily – at least for me and Elisabetta – the best Italian restaurant in London. I have been going there for years, and I have got to know Mr Turi a bit. He is from Apulia, like Elisabetta (and his cuisine is philologically accurate about the greatest food from that region), and I was happy today to discover he's also an anti-Berlusconian.
Today he told me a joke that has been going round on the internet about Berlusconi, Obama and Bin Laden. It's more or less like this:
Barack Obama, bin Laden and Berlusconi are summoned by God.
God says: "I am not happy at all about what's happening on Earth – and you are not helping at all. If you don't get your act together, you and your people will be condemned to shovel dung for eternity!"
On their return on Earth, the three leaders call up a press conference.
Obama says: "People of America. I have some good news and some bad news. The good news is that God does exist." Here Americans cheer. "The bad news is that, if we don't get our act together, we'll be shovelling dung for eternity!" Americans try their best and work hard to improve things.
Then bin Laden says: "I have two pieces of bad news for you, my people: the first one is that Allah does not exist." Here everybody moans and boos. "The second one is that, if we don't get our act together, we'll be shovelling dung for eternity!" His followers start to work hard to improve things.
Finally Berlusconi says: "Italians! I have some wonderful news for you! First of all, my dad is sending His best wishes to you. . . And secondly, it looks like there will be a lot of work for everybody soon!"