Still on the road, so two quick tokes on the Blackberry:
A) One of the things I enjoy most about Italian plumbing (and there are many): in an effort to conserve water, newly-installed toilets are equipped with a dual flushing mechanism. A smaller button releases a modest amount of water, and a larger button sets off a more voluminous flush that most Americans would regard as typical. The buttons are not actually labelled "#1" and "#2", but one knows that it is implied.
B) From "Rick Steves' Italy 2006", p. 69:
From the piazza, you can see the bronze men [on the clock tower] swing their huge clappers at the top of each hour. In the 17th century, one of them knocked an unsuspecting worker off the top and to his death--probably the first-ever killing by a robot.