All roads lead to Rome. Also, all Roman roads are trying to kill you.

Napoli. Sidewalks are for the weak.

If you are considering traveling to Italy, particularly Rome, please note the following very important information before approaching the roads there on foot or in a vehicle.

  • Crossing the street in Italy is a precise timing exercise involving moving between the few cars that will stop for you and the more common cars that will swerve slightly to avoid getting your guts on their paint. Luckily, there is sophisticated training software that can prepare you for pedestrian activity in the country: The tutorial app is known as “Frogger.” Do not walk in Italy until you can consistently reach at least level 17.
  • There is evidence that Italian taxis can collapse spacetime around them to pass through openings that are actually smaller than the vehicle. The alternate theory is that the vehicles are constructed using the same technology as cats.
  • Roman vehicles are not subject to traditional physical laws, but rather they follow those normally found only in video games. The only reason the roads are not strewn with flaming wrecks is that collision detection is disabled and driving physics have been turned down to “simple.”
  • The purpose of lane markings on Italian roads has yet to be determined by scientists. So far, researchers have only proven they are under no circumstances ever used to actually separate or line up traffic.
  • In Rome, people will park anywhere. Observed last week: An SUV with its front wheels on the sidewalk. A Smart Car parked in a building’s lobby. Five two-seater cars fitting in two spots in a pattern normally only achievable in Tetris.
  • If you are considering driving yourself when visiting Rome, may we suggest instead one of the following alternate activities which are considerably safer: Removing an impacted tooth from a Komodo dragon. Spelunking in active volcano tubes. Drawing editorial cartoons featuring prophets. Dissing Lee Greenwood at a Trump rally. Live-grenade badminton.

Italian drivers don’t stop being dicks just because they’re parked.

— Denny Atkin, 4/2017

Oh, like I didn’t already have enough to do.

Yes, I’m starting a blog. <troymcclure>Hi. I’m Denny. You may know me from such magazines as Computer Gaming World, OMNI, and Mississippi Catfish Farming Implements Journal.</troymcclure>

Here you’ll likely find me blogging about gadgets, writing, gaming, and other topics. Or you’ll find this blog a dusty, un-updated monument to procrastination, overcommittment, and distraction. Hopefully the former.

The goal here is to get into a regular habit of blogging, then post my first novel so I can launch my fiction-writing career, just like Scalzi. That’ll work again, right?

I guess I should start working on the novel…