Best In ShowFebruary 12, 2009 at 1:44 AM | Posted in Riding In Cars With Pizza | 1 Comment
Last night was a typical Tuesday. Dina left early, this time with a good excuse; it was her birthday. I handled dinner just fine. Around 7pm I got rid of Mike, and around 730, I got rid of Paro. It was then that Steve showed me the tickets for a timed order.
Twenty-one pizzas, due at 8:30. Oh, yeah–tonight. In an hour. Less than an hour. But I can actually wait to start making them until–
It’s 7:37. The phone rings. It’s Maryville University, the place where the big order is going. What are the odds? Steve takes the call.
They want to know where the pizzas are.
Steve explains that we have them down for 830.
She said no, it’s supposed to be 730. Uh-oh. While he talks to her, I go grab a stack of dough and wheel it out. But I don’t start making them yet, because the clues I am picking up from watching his end of the conversation lead me to believe they might just cancel the order.
Steve listens to her, then explains what happened. As the story goes, Dina took the order Sunday. Monday, they called back and talked to Stan, and changed the time. However, Stan didn’t bother to change the time in the computer, the mother-fucker.
You know, I have an excuse for my perceived incompetence–I don’t give a shit, at all, about the job. Stan cares alot, and he fucks up all the time. Dina cares, but not much (but way more than I do) and there is always little shit that they don’t take care of. So my half-assed effort is at least as good as their best effort.
In a world of slackers, it doesn’t take much to be an over-achiever.
Finally, the woman decides that she does want the pizzas after all, if we can get them to her by 830. Well, duh–that was the original plan. "even better if you can get them here by 815." It was 745 now, and it was 21 pizzas. How the hell am I gonna–?
I threw down on some dough, pronto. Luckily I had Steve to help, who was a veteran of school lunch orders. This order was just like that. I did the dough and sauce, and Steve cheesed and did the toppings. You start with the harder ones first (it’s all relative), the pepperoni. They are just more time consuming. By the time you get to the end, the plain cheese pizzas, you’re on your own because your help now has to catch the pies coming out of the oven. We are synchronized.
We wail away on the order–again, 21 large pizzas–and it is completely made, in the oven, out of the oven and he is bagged up and leaving at 807. That’s 22 minutes from start to finish for 21 large pizzas. That includes the oven time of 6 minutes, boxing, cutting, and bagging them up. He gets it delivered at or a little after 815. Not bad. Not bad at all.
I’ve said before–I’m not THE fastest, but I’m one of the fastest. I’m not THE best, but I’m one of the best. If I was as good at ANYTHING else as I am at this–
If I were an actor, I’d be Will Smith. Or Julia Roberts.
If I were a scientist, I would have invented flying invisible cars. And robots to fly them for us.
If I were a race care driver, I’d be…one of those guys that is really good. I can only think of a few names right now and I’m not sure which ones I’m thinking of are alive and which ones are dead.
If I were a band, I’d be Led Zeppelin. Oh, definitely Zeppelin. Hear me out: I make pizza sexy. I’m way past my prime. And as far as *you* know, I did make a deal with the devil. And I may have choked on vomit at one time or another, either mine or someone else’s.
If I were a porn star, I’d be Ron Jeremy. I do have a hairy back.
I’m not trying to supplant real emotion with a one-dimensional feat of fairy-tale adventure of heroic deed. This is in addition to, not instead of the love and emotion and so forth. All that sappy crap. But I want to impress Detroit. Kind of juvenile, I know–like the boys in junior high showing off for the girls. I want her to see me doing my thing, and be impressed. I mean, instead of joining a band to pick up chicks, I went to work for Domino’s. Not a winning strategy, but it’s the only one I have. I guess groupies might be a little much to hope for.
I remember shortly after we got together, I changed the brakes on her Aztek. She practically jumped on me while I was under the car. It was a masculine thing I was doing, I suppose, and it turned her on. That’s what I’m looking for. I just want to impress her. I know I don’t *have* to–after all, I already have her, what the hell does it matter?
This is related, but not the way you think it is:
Long ago–perhaps the early to mid-90s, at a time when I already thought I had been doing this a long time–I remember a carry-out customer, a woman who came in. She was nice, we chatted briefly. I can read people, and I could tell she was a religious person, perhaps a little nutty that way but not in an I’m-an-evangelical-and-you’re-going-to-burn-in-Hell kind of way. She was sweet.
Anyway, she watched as I made the pizzas, then we talked, and then they came out, and I gave them to her.
"Here you go, ma’am."
I remember exactly what she said. "Wonderful! You are blessed by the work of your hands."
I felt like…she had given me a hug.