This is a story I wrote out of a general dislike of elitist organizations of all kinds
The Way of the Pizza
The kid eased the old VW along the undulating road with the deliberateness of a python swallowing a mouse. He was thinking more about the term paper for his kinesiology class than delivering pizzas. Turning up a long cypress lined driveway, he reached out the window with his left hand to check on the red and blue Dominos sign that flickered on the roof.
The kid liked delivering pizzas. He didn’t resent working nights to pay for college, the hours of driving allowed him to think through his class work. He’d write papers in his head then scramble to type them up when he got off at 10 PM.
He used the outside handle to open the door, the inside latch hadn’t worked in a year, and he slid from the seat, a quartette of Domino’s finest pirouetting on his right hand.
He loped over a prone figure in a red Izod shirt that lay between him and the pillar encrusted fraternity house. Flies were treating the guy like a corpse, but the kid could see the subtle movement of his breathing. He approached the Greekly endowed front door faster than his normal appearing gait should have carried him. Studying the entryway for a moment he shook his head and grinned. Taking an ivory mallet from a hook he rapped the center of a two-foot gong that was sitting by the door in an ornately carved teak frame. The sound resonated with the pizza boxes and they vibrated in his grip; even the corpse by the fountain began to stir.
The door swung inward and out oozed a rainbow of Polo shirts and designer jeans.
“Pies are here,” said a pastel Green Shirt who stumbled toward him. The kid side-stepped to avoid the atomized Jack Daniels that issued from Green Shirt’s mouth. A Pink Shirt and an Orange Shirt rushed over to keep Green from falling, their eyes scrunching in unison at the kid.
“That’ll be sixty-one, twenty,” he said, flashing his best big tip smile.
A Black Shirt and the Red Shirt that had been passed out in the driveway shuffled forward and yanked the stack of boxes from the kid. The top box flew open and a double cheese, sausage, pineapple, and olives did a complex maneuver, like an Olympic diver, on its way to the marble tile. The kid’s face lengthened as his eyes followed the doomed pizza to the floor, then snapped back to the gang of primary colors.
“Sixty-one, twenty,” he said as he looked from face to face.
Orange Shirt stepped forward, pulling a snakeskin wallet out of his hip pocket, but Black, who was holding the three remaining boxes, put his hand on Orange’s wrist and sneered.
“Dude,” said Black Shirt. “These pies are cold,” he shifted his bloodshot eyes to the mess on the floor, “and you screwed that one up. We’re not paying you a cent.”
“Fine,” said the kid and he snatched the boxes out of Black’s grip.
“Hey,” yelled Black Shirt and he lunged for the kid.
The kid slid smoothly forward and to the inside of Black’s ataxic punch and jabbed the corner of a pizza box into his forehead. Black Shirt dropped to the tile like a dropped sack of fraternity laundry. Green Shirt and Red Shirt came at the kid from each side. The kid flung a super combo in Frisbee fashion, the sharp cardboard slicing into Red’s right jugular. Blood mixed with marinara formed an ephemeral pink cloud between them and Red stumbled backward gurgling and holding a hand to his neck. Using a backhanded twist at the elbow the kid snapped the vegetarian supreme into Green Shirt’s jaw, precisely striking the marginal mandibular branch of the facial nerve. Green sank to the ground, mouth open, but his now paralyzed jaw would only produce a raspy squeak.
The kid stood tall, surveyed the scene. The rest of the shirts were fleeing into the house. And it was a good thing, for he was out of pizzas.
Tucson Expo Center
3750 East Irvington Road