Happiness Moments: The Best Pizza Ever
Anyone who says that money can’t buy happiness has clearly never spent their money on pizza. ~ Andrew W.K.
So a little writing experiment for the blog. I’ve been wanting to find a way to do some free writing as practice. And I’ve been wanting to capture the moments in my life that have brought me true happiness. I need that little pick me up right now with everything going on in the world and no real chance to travel. So, some writing about happy moments in my life, hope they bring you a little happiness too.
I love pizza, everyone who knows me well knows that I’ve had a lifelong love affair with this food. A good slice and a coke is about as close to my bliss as I get. Some people might find that sad, but in a few ways I’m a very simple man.
There have been a lot of great slices in my life. Whenever I’m behaving myself in terms of eating I allow myself a cheat day per week. Often that meal is a slice and a coke. When I first got diagnosed as a diabetic I went six weeks without eating any carbs. That first slice of pizza at that point damn near made me cry. It was a good slice of pizza, but not spectacular under normal conditions, it was an example of something I call momentary food. Which is food that, because of the situation, tastes so much better than it ordinarily wood. Think that first sip of ice cold water after a long run on a hot day.
One of the more recent great slices I had happened while I was hiking the Appalachian Trail. On town days we ate a lot of food, we ate a lot of pizza, but there aren’t a lot of spectacular pizza places along the southern portion of the Appalachian Trail. But my friend Second Star and I jumped off the trail at one point to hang out for a couple of days in Washington D.C. And it a town in Maryland where we spent the night we stumbled into a pizza place across the street from the hotel. Not only was the pizza NY style and good, but the slices were the largest slices of pizza I’ve ever seen, a single slice was the size of my head. Add to that the momentary food aspect and these slices were absolutely spectacular.
Currently, the closest really good pizza place is Arinell’s in the Mission District in San Francisco. This means I get there occasionally but it’s not quite close or easy enough to be able to swing by and pick up a quick slice after work. So it’s pure joy when I’m able to get there.
But, by far the greatest pizza I ever had, was my first love. The phone number was 828-1170, now I haven’t dialed that number in over 30 years but it’s burned into my brain as much as the memory of dialing it on the rotary dial wall phone in the house on State Street where I grew up. They knew the sound of my voice, they knew my standing order. I folded pizza boxes for them as a kid in return for slices. The Pizza Pit in Hudson, NY made the greatest pizza I’ve ever had. Not only was the quality beyond compare but it was also inexpensive. How much did I love this pizza? When I was in graduate school in Kentucky I would drive 14 hours to come home for holidays. I would always start early enough so that 13.5 hours into that drive I could call the Pizza Pit and order a pizza, which would mean it was ready the moment I drove into town. Writing this, my mouth is watering, I can still, with incredible detail remember precisely what that pizza tasted like, god how I miss it. The Pizza Pit fell victim to high priced antique gentrification in Hudson. I guess the upside is now Hudson shows up on lists of the best little towns in New England, famous people take the train up from NYC to shop for antiques and housing prices have gone through the roof. But selfishly, I would trade all of that prosperity for my hometown to have the Pizza Pit back and it’s not just my opinion. The photo with this piece is taken from the face group dedicated to the Pizza Pit.