A Free-Form Treatise on Pizza

Written by Jester

I love pizza. There's no doubt in my mind that pizza is the best foods in existence, and a really good reason to keep on living. Give me a big ol'pizza and an Extra Huge-sized Coke to wash it down, and watch me not care about the burdens that come with being alive and responsible in the latter half of the 20th Century.

Pizza goes great with anything. Now, I don't mean great with other foods. Admittedly, pizza and chocolate don't go too well together, as do many other equally great foods. What I mean is that pizza goes great with just about any other activity, with the possible exception of sex, unless you like getting greased up first. But if you're sitting down to watch the hockey game, an episode of the X-Files, helping someone to move into their new home (By law you can only eat pizza or Kentucky Fried Chicken when helping someone move into a new home), or chatting about a movie you've just seen, pizza is the perfect companion.

There's only one other thing that pizza does not go well with: Work. Though it is kind of cool when you work at a place where they don't mind if the employees treat themselves to a pizza... well, work is work, and it's impossible to fully relax in front of the boss. Also, you usually have several employees sharing the same pizza (or not sharing at all, the bloody hogs), and with all the different tastes in your office, that usually means eating pizza with at least one topping you loathe.

From what you've read so far, you can probably determine two things about me: I've thought about this a lot, and I have an unnatural and quite possibly dangerous obsession with pizza. But that's okay. Just where to go from here, toppings or ordering pizza? ... Toppings first.

Speaking of toppings, I have determined that the long-standing pizza legend about everyone hating anchovies is a myth. Simply put, anchovies don't exist, because nobody likes them. I have been unable to find any pizza place that actually offers this as a topping. Unless you go into those fancy restaurants that offer pizza with sea food. But this isn't real pizza. Real pizza is ordered over the phone, or from over the counter from some guy who's the cook, the cashier, the janitor, the mechanic for the delivery cars, and the guy who unclogs the toilets at your local greasy spoon.

If you do order over the phone, you don't seem to have a lot of choice these days. The big conglomerates have killed off most of the Mom and Pop operations where the really heavenly pizza comes from. The only way non-Super Corporate Pizza places survive now is by finding a busy location, and then selling slices over the counter. These slices have the same production-line conformity as the big pizza chains like Pizza Pizza. The problem is these corporate sell-out pizzas are dirt cheap, and that's why they caught on. Also, they have phone numbers that are easy to remember. The breakthrough was Pizza Pizza, who cleverly managed to get their number into a catchy jingle "Nine six seven... eleven...eleven..." This started a trend all delivery food fast centres now follow.

Mom and Pop operations don't have this kind of convenience. Their phone numbers are usually something like "area code 416-555-6724 and ask for Gio." And the delivery boy is usually Gio's son, who also answers the phone and was hoping that it was his girlfriend calling back. As for thirty minutes guaranteed delivery, forget it. It will get there when it's ready, not before. And it probably won't be cheap, either, unless you've got a Mom and Pop Pizzeria sent from the Great Pepperoni, the Ancient Roman God of Pizza.

Most people don't seem to have the patience or understanding that you get what you pay for anymore, so they order from Conformist Pizza. It's not bad pizza, but it ain't great either. A slice of pizza to die for is rare thing these days, so if you know a place that serves one, hang on tight and don't ever let go. I'm thinking of starting a web page called "The Pizza Lovers Survival Page" and www.sospizza.com, where we can all share the locations of good pizzerias.

It's so hard to find a slice of pizza to die for where I live. There used to be a place where I grew up called Pizza Delight. They made the best pizza I have ever had. They made the crust thick, but light. A little crispy on top, but still fairly soft and chewy inside. The pizza was about an inch thick, and toppings were piled high. Under the cheese, in the cheese, on top of the cheese. And it wasn't overly greasy, either. And it was baked in the shape of a rectangle. Sigh. Those happy, innocent days...

Nowadays, were stuck with these really stupid trends that if people would just wake up for a moment and realize than convenience is no substitute for excellence, most of these conglomerates would be forced to change their product, or go out of business. I don't care if a pizza arrives in thirty minutes or less. Take an extra half-hour to put it together right, why don't you? Equally annoying are those 20 for 1 pizza operations. The formula is X amount of shitty pizzas for the price of one good one. I have friends that want open One for Ten Pizza, where you only open after the bars have let out, and sell one pizza for the price of ten. Another friend of mine wants to open Infinite for One Pizza, where you buy one pizza and receive an infinite amount for free. The one pizza would cost $989, 632.57.

I say fight back against these corporate places. I'll close out with this tactic for making their lives miserable and bringing them one step closer to bankruptcy, which can be used if you live a large apartment building. Order a pizza, then call all the elevators to the top floor. Unless you've got Donovan Bailey delivering pizza, it ain't gonna get up those stairs in time. At the very least, you'll give the delivery boy a coronary.

Well, that's all for now. Next time on the Great Pizza Obsession, I'll tell about the time we used a traffic accident in order to get a free pizza out of 2 for 1. See you then.