You can call me a pizza slut, a pizza whore…I take no offense to either of those phrases. Slap down a good piece o’ pie with that right balance of sauce (not too much, dammit!), stringy cheese, and that nice crackly thin crust (and if you REALLY want to impress me, learn how to cook in multiple toppings without making the slice extra oily or watery), and I’m ready to drop trou and prance about in my Christmas Pants. So believe me when I say that I take my pizza seriously. I’m currently at a pizza-off, sliding the best damn NY pizza out of the oven that you could dream of, hot steam rising off a pristine sea of melted cheese, a ring of toasted red sauce near the edges, promising the JUST-RIGHT accent of sweet and tart before the carbalicious crust brings it all together into a mouthful of heavenly glory….there’s also an audience of thousands here, and they clap, ooh and aah when they see my majestic creation arise from the oven. A dozen yards away is my enemy: one of those giant, pug-faced fellas that the East Coast seems to specialize in manufacturing; you know the type—due to a lack of genetic gifts and unwillingness to do anything “unmanly” the East Coast produces a mean, surly-looking dude who takes pleasure in denigrating everything and substituting faux toughness and cynicism for actual capability (this isn’t the reason I can’t live on the east coast, which I have done in the past; I can’t live there because I’m already an intense guy and it’s not good for me to be constantly surrounded by a bunch of other intense, angry folks. Vacationing every once in a while is ok). My enemy’s name is Gigantor (not his real name but whatevs). He’s a low, low human; one of those who prefers Chicago style over New York pizza. Lemme tell you something: if I wanted to shove the equivalent of a gastrointestinal apocalypse into my stomach, one that made my guts explode from my butthole in a fiery mess, then why not eat a chunk of C4 explosive and punch myself in the fucking belly, right? Chicago pizza can choke on year-old smegma. We both cut slices from our pies, eyeing each other with vitriolic hate. The venom builds and pools, and as we make our way to present our slices to the judges, it erupts. Both of us grab our slices and try to slam them into each other’s mouths. Gigantor’s face is purple with rage as he screams at me that New York pizza will NEVER be as good as Chicago style—not in a million years, not if gauge symmetry recalibrated the Universe and rewired the very laws of physics. I scream back that he doesn’t make pizza, he makes oversized bricks—lasagna, really—and that he’s not a pizza chef, he’s a Lasagna Bitch (this is an insult that, when applied to Chicago pizza chefs, is worse than the vilest racial slur). Both of us are using our free hands to prevent the other’s pizza from entering our face-holes. We collapse to the ground amidst screams from the crowd, barrel-rolling across the football field that’s been designated to host this event, locked in a pizza death-roll. Gigantor’s enormous, fetid body winds up on top of me, and he uses both hands to try and force his ill-cooked brick of Nasty into my face. I’m fending him off with a pair of crossed, trembling arms, but it won’t be long before I’m done for. Only one option left. I dart my free hand down to my pocket, withdraw my eReader, and open it to Echo. Magic flash. Out of the corner of my eye, I see Bitefighter (my loyal buddy and 10 lb. Terrier Extraordinaire) running toward us. He blatters Gigantor across the face with a whirlwind of tiny paws, disorienting my assailant, giving me the opportunity to execute an ugly-ass jiu-jitsu mount reversal. Now I’M on top, pressing my slice down towards Gigantor’s face. But despite having pursued physical culture for decades, my muscles are no match for this heinous ogre’s brute strength. As my face trembles and turns beet red, I manage to gasp out, “Bitefighter! Help me!” Bitefighter rushes back in and—just like a circus elephant standing on all fours atop a ball—balances on my slice-hand. He starts boinking up and down, thrusting his entire ten pounds into my hand again and again. This is enough; my slice begins inching toward Gigantor’s lips. Sheer panic erupts across my enemy’s face, and a few seconds later, my slice of Heavenly Goodness enters his mouth. His eyes roll upward, exposing the whites, and I see that he’s processing an ecstasy that could quite possibly rival the universe-revealing rapture that accompanies a massive dose of dimethyltryptamine. After a few seconds of moaning in utter bliss, Gigantor begins sobbing. “You’re right,” he bawls. “New York pizza IS better! AH GOD WHAT HAVE I DONE!” The rest of the words trail into a blubbering mess. Bitefighter paws at my leg. “Rowf!” I smile at him and say, “Sure thing buddy.” Then I throw him the remains of the pizza I’m holding. As for the Chicago Gross in Gigantor’s hand, Bitefighter stops to take a steaming piss on it before we run back to the stands to enjoy the rest of the pizza-off.
NY pizza is better. You know it and I know it. Right now I’m in the middle of reworking Echo 1, trying to get all my noob mistakes out. If you refrain from buying it due to my amateurish writing style, a product of my first ventures into fiction, then I totally understand, and I’ll announce when I re-upload an updated version. If you buy it anyways, then many thanks! Get Echo Vol. 1 on Kindle here: Vol. 1 on Kindle. Vol. 2 on Kindle here: Vol.2 on Kindle Vol. 3 on Kindle here: Vol. 3 on Kindle