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Thursday, June 5, 2014

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Vicenzo-in-Anna-Marie's-Cafe--South-Philly








Anna Marie's Cafe. Born in 1945, Vincenzo has lived in South Philly all his life, and in his current house for 39 years. He married at 20, so next year will be his 50th wedding anniversary. He and his wife are contemplating a trip to Italy, where they have never been.

Born in 1892 in Latina, Vicenzo's father came to the US in 1916 and only returned once, in 1924, to find a wife.

All the Italian housewives would scrub their front steps once a day, Vince said, with Octagon soap.

"You mean once a week?"

"No, once a day."

"Why so often?"

"Because everybody else was doing it."

In his family, Friday night was reserved for Chinese food, and there was only one Chinese restaurant in the neighborhood then.



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About Me

Born in Vietnam in 1963, I came to the US in 1975, and have also lived in Italy, England and Germany. I'm the author of two books of stories, Fake House (2000) and Blood and Soap (2004), five of poems, All Around What Empties Out (2003), American Tatts (2005), Borderless Bodies (2006), Jam Alerts (2007) and Some Kind of Cheese Orgy (2009), and a novel, Love Like Hate (2010). I've been anthologized in Best American Poetry 2000, 2004, 2007, Great American Prose Poems from Poe to the Present, Postmodern American Poetry: a Norton Anthology (vol. 2) and Flash Fiction International: Very Short Stories From Around the World, etc. I'm also editor of Night, Again: Contemporary Fiction from Vietnam (1996) and The Deluge: New Vietnamese Poetry (2013). Blood and Soap was chosen by Village Voice as one of the best books of 2004. My writing has been translated into Italian, Spanish, French, Dutch, German, Portuguese, Japanese, Korean, Arabic, Icelandic and Finnish, and I've been invited to read in London, Cambridge, Brighton, Paris, Berlin, Leipzig, Halle, Reykjavik, Toronto, Singapore and all over the US. I've also published widely in Vietnamese.