THINGS I WILL MISS ABOUT BEING A PIZZA DELIVERY GUY

Spent nearly a year (told myself three months) working for Dominos. ''Twas a great and terrible job, and it all ended Saturday night.
  1. Free pizza. #obvi
    Honestly, it doesn't happen (nearly) often (enough). But when the line messes up a pizza or someone who ordered carry out doesn't show up for an hour and the manager doesn't want to save it for himself to take home, I get a slice! It's magic.
  2. First timers.
    One perk of being in a university town is the spectrum of people you get to talk to for 40 seconds. And once in a blue moon they're international students who have never ordered pizza. My favorite: a British couple answered the door together smiling like kids on Christmas. Told me they'd never ordered pizza before and weren't sure what to tip. Handing me $5, she asked if it's a good tip. I told her a fiver is a great tip. I have made few people that happy in my life. Probably my favorite memory.
  3. Audio book time.
    Spending hours on end in the car calls for finding ways to stay sane. Enter the Chapel Hill Public Library collection of audio books on CD (I'm old school. See also: broke). I had the time to knock books off my list (The Poisonwood Bible ❤️), read things I'd never find the time to read otherwise (1Q84, which SUCKED), and branch out into new territory (Patricia Cornwell?).
  4. Brief glimpses into the varied lives of strangers.
    We don't go in to houses (unless you're hyper old and wave me in from a rocking chair next to your also-centenarian sweetheart in a well-lit neighborhood), but there's always interesting information to be gleaned from a quick encounter and its coinciding factors—order frequency, stages of dress while answering, tip amounts, art on the walls, odors leaving the house, etc. Most of them couldn't pick me out of a police lineup, but I know a handful of them just enough to sound creepy writing this...
  5. Being called "Pizza man."
    It's either people trying to ask for free food or little kids, but it happens multiple times a night. On my last night two girls followed their mom to the door and grilled me. "Are you the pizza man?" "Is that your pizza bag?" "All pizza boys have pizza bags." "Do you—" *slam*
  6. Coworkers.
    I plan to write a book about working in the food industry, and one of the things I've appreciated about the business is the smorgasbord of personalities and belief systems that get/are forced to gel. Dominos was particularly good—great diversity of race, nationality, religion, education, age, you name it. Always harder to leave the people than the place.
  7. Toddlers losing their freaking minds when pizza shows up.
    Screaming, chanting, punch dancing, jumping, ripping down curtains. Pizza is not food; pizza is an experience.