(VREN – dzo – la)
A vrenzola is a woman who embraced vulgarity in every aspect of her life: she uses heavily accented vernacular expressions, often talking very loudly; wears extremely garish apparel (she is seldom graced with good tastes) coupled to heavy make-up and long, painted nails; and behaves very rudely, ignoring even the most basic social manners. Among her distinctive traits are the gum that she eternally chews and the kitschest iphone cover available on the free market.
Napoli is a romantic city, its other name is Partenope, after the beautiful mermaid that loved Ulysses: beauty is part of the city itself, part of its soul, part of its nature. But even as the Sea has its shimmering, glistening waves, an endless expanse that finds its perfect spot at the horizon, where the sea kisses the sky, it has also its deepest meanders, vast underwater caves where strange and dark things lurk, where light is absent and the only constant is despair. And this dark spot in the soul of Napoli finds its incarnation into her. The beast. The vrenzola.
Winter is coming. Modern times are in decline, and the vrenzola is the perfect symbol of the collapse of what was once the Pearl of the Mediterranean: groups of vrenzole roam the city, unavoidable, impossible to be ignored, and where they go, chaos ensues. Coarse, crass, vulgar, vrenzole travel in packs of screaming effigies of excess and indecency, obscenely dressed and with a behaviour matching their attire: the almost endless munching of what could be a seemingly infinite number of chewing-gums is the first and last signal of a meeting with one or more vrenzole, the alpha and omega of their social interactions with the world. In between, just profanity, crudeness and self-induced neural apoptosis for those that witness their endeavours.
They barely speak Italian, preferring to communicate through dialect, but the Neapolitan they manifest is not the noble language of the poets, not the sweet melody of the internationally reknown Neapolitan Song, not the perfect synolon of modernity and tradition that is presented on the pages of this humble blog, no: it’s rather a combination of foul sounds, barely understandable even by neapolitans, mangled words, insolent expressions, vulgar insults and a general array of screams and curses. The plague of a wave of modern singers, the so called neomelodici (literally “neomelodical”), whose “songs” pretend to be moving and deep whereas are only the lamentations of delusional dandies, are their almost constant soundtrack, and their wails, as they try to emulate their singing idols, are nothing short of the cry of the Banshee.
Their brains fried by the absolute worst of what mass media have to offer (Berlusconi, I’m talking about you and your TVs), vrenzole are beyond salvation. It’s not uncommon to see groups of four of them, wildly prowling the streets on a scooter. Yeah, you read correctly. Four of them. On a SINGLE scooter. No helmet, of course.
They are the Death of Culture. They are the Bane of Education. They are the Scourge of Fairness, the Curse of Dignity, the Dark Side of the Gulf.
They are the vrenzole.
Woe betide those who cross their path.