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[religion|food] Saving your pizza for marriage - Lakeshore
An author of no particular popularity

Jay Lake
Date: 2012-06-05 05:36
Subject: [religion|food] Saving your pizza for marriage
Security: Public
Tags:food, religion
There's a meme in the Evangelical world that if you wait until you're married to have pizza, your pizza will be awesome.

I understand that in some people's belief systems, pizza can only be consumed within the sanctity of marriage. The right of every individual of consenting age to choose when and how they begin eating pizza is entirely up to them. That right clearly and unreservedly includes the choice of not eating pizza until they have entered a state of church-endorsed marital bliss.

For a lot of those folks, they're not even allowed to look at pictures of pizza, or smell pizza, or go into pizza parlors, or attend parties at homes where pizza might be served. To my personal view, this seems like it might be taking the whole no-pizza-before-marriage thing a bit too far, but everyone is entitled to their worldview. The First Amendment guarantees freedom of religion, and I for one would go to the barricades to vigorously defend the rights of my fellow Americans not to eat pizza out of wedlock.

But I really have to question the practical wisdom of this perspective, and especially the assumption of that married pizza will be even more awesome if you've never indulged in pre-marital pizza.

How would you know? With no pizza experience, you wouldn't have any idea if your marital pizza was awesome or not. You'd have no standards of comparison, and you would never have gotten an opportunity to develop your tastes.

We all know pizza preferences vary widely from individual to individual. Some folks are inveterate sausage hounds. Others prefer the classic simplicity of plain cheese pizza with all its warm, milky goodness. Some people like their crust thick and chewy. Others love it crisp and thin, going down fast and hard.

Beyond that, what about vegan pizza? Or gluten-free pizza? Or junky kitchen sink pizzas? Let alone the more esoteric forms of pizza, such as stuffed crust pizza, pesto pizza, pepperoni rolls, stromboli, and calzones. Even the sink of moral depravity that is meatball sandwiches can be argued to be a form of pizza.

And the ways and means of eating pizza... Many people do it missionary style most of the time, grasping the crust firmly and munching on the warm triangle before them. But some folks like to come in from the other end. That thick, ridge of fully risen and freshly baked dough can go down a treat before the explosion of salty goodness that follows. Some people use a fork. Some people even use a knife. Others stick to their hands, just as God intended.

Of course there are risks to eating pizza. You don't want to cut a slice out of some skanky old box that you don't know where it's been. Pizza shared with trusted friends and partners is probably a better idea than picking up any random pizza on a street corner down by the docks. But that's all human behavior. Smart, sensible pizza consumers can enjoy a wide variety without risking themselves overmuch. Prophylactics such as antacids can cut down on the health risks of pizza. Frankly, for most of us, life without pizza is a worse fate than navigating the risks of procuring and consuming pizza.

My point is, there are as many preferences in pizza as there are people who enjoy pizza. There are even people who don't enjoy pizza at all for purely personal or physical reasons. I fully support their right to live their life untrammeled by the emotional and social complications that pizza always seems to bring.

So, if you follow the Evangelical way, and you never look at pizza, or smell it, or taste it, or sneak a pepperoni roll on your way to the altar, how will you ever know if your married pizza is so very awesome as you're being promised? What will happen if you're a deep dish eater at heart who marries a back-to-front New York style vegan? You might never find out what kind of pizza pleases you most, what sort really makes your life worth living. You'll never know until it's way too late.

How will you know?




Because of the broad public interest in this topic — who among us does not think about pizza on daily basis? — I invite you to share your personal pizza testimony in comments. When was the first time you had pizza? What was the best pizza you ever had? Do you have an especially favorite pizza? Any recommendations on where someone just branching out and testing the pizza waters might find good advice and the appropriate support for their pizza-curious interest?

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Peter Hollo
User: frogworth
Date: 2012-06-05 12:55 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I remember the first pizza I had. I had grown up convinced I didn't like pizza. I guess I'd just seen the crassly commercialised versions from America (Pizza Hut etc), so my first experience of the real thing was frankly a little confused and a little furtive, but still thrilling.

It's taken me a long time to move on to more adventurous approaches to the pizza. Other cultures I have no problem with - Turkish pizza can be just what you need late on a Friday night after some sweaty clubbing, especially with a slice of lemon - but we've really loosened up the definition of pizza these days, and I'm not sure tandoori chicken or even feta cheese have any place on an Italian pizza.

But each to their own. I'd never dream of judging anyone's choice of pizza in their lives, nor wish to stop them eating it in public if that's how they get their rocks off.
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S-47/19-J
User: shsilver
Date: 2012-06-05 13:02 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Last night, I...served pizza...to 167 eighth graders who were away with limited adult supervision on an end-of-year trip.

I feel very guilty about this lapse in my judgment. Not because I served that pizza, but because I served them an inferior product at what can be an impressionable age. The thin, pliable crust was undercooked and gummy, sticking to the pan as I tried to lift the triangles out.

I fear I may have scarred some of these young children and turned them off pizza for life. Later, I saw some of the kids in line at a concession stand. I mentioned we still had pizza and they got a horrified look on their faces and waved me off, telling me they'd just have the...soft pretzels.

O Ghreat Ghod Ghughle, I beg forgiveness for my sins.

Edited at 2012-06-05 02:25 pm (UTC)
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Angie
User: aiela
Date: 2012-06-05 13:07 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
My husband and I like different kinds of pizza, so when we're together, sometimes we have the pizza I like, and sometimes we have the pizza he likes. Mostly we have the pizza I like, because he is less picky about his pizza. Other times, we have pizza with other people who are more in line with the sort of pizza we enjoy.
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dionysus1999
User: dionysus1999
Date: 2012-06-05 13:28 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
From an Evangelical perspective, their is only one pizza that is truly your pizza, all others are distractions to a holy (cheesy?) life.

Luckily the Supreme Court has ruled that what kind pizza you like is a private matter, though Scalia is partial to Domino's.
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russ: lyles constant
User: goulo
Date: 2012-06-05 13:38 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:lyles constant
As a vegan pizza eater, I just wanted to thank you for being inclusive and respecting diversity and alternative culinary practices in your examples!
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ericjamesstone
User: ericjamesstone
Date: 2012-06-05 13:50 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Let me just point out that, when you don't know how many people have been handling your pizza before you eat it, it can often have germs on it that lead to food poisoning -- sometimes fatal food poisoning. That's why most public health experts encourage what they refer to as "safe pizza," which generally involves keeping the pizza covered with a protective substance. But many people feel that reduces the flavor of the pizza, making it less satisfying, and so they continue to eat "risky pizza."

However, when two people abstain from pizza until they are married, they can then have pizza with all the satisfying flavor, but without the risk of disease. That's worth something, don't you think?
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scarlettina: Fork You Back
User: scarlettina
Date: 2012-06-05 14:27 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:Fork You Back
I have a friend who is a dyed-in-the-wool Chicago-style deep dish pizza fanatic. I myself prefer a New York-style thin-crust pizza. Despite our differences, we have been friends for decades. Our friendship even survived the ultimate test: my trying his style and his trying mine. At Gencon. In public. And I have to say: the experience bonded us in ways that only the sharing of pizza truly can. His wife didn't mind; in fact, she encouraged it. Our friendship is stronger for it, and we have learned to appreciate the differences that once divided us.
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cathshaffer
User: cathshaffer
Date: 2012-06-05 14:29 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
You don't need to have a lot of pizza or try all of the possible pizzas in order to know that the pizza you are currently eating is good and satisfying. What you advocate is a somewhat kink-centric model of pizza enjoyment, where each person has a pizza style that they need to discover to be fulfilled. However, many people are either very flexible about their preferred pizza style, or get a lot of enjoyment out of "regular" pizza, and are really more concerned about who they share it with, and that's fine, too. Waiting until marriage to share pizza with one special person is as valid a lifestyle choice as experimenting with gluten-free vegan and meat-lovers pizza in order to pursue perfect pizza fulfillment. The pitfall is in judging and preaching to others about what kind of pizza choice is right for them, and, ironically, that is the territory you tread perilously close to when you dismiss people who are, after all, really happy with their pizza, by claiming they couldn't possibly know whether they are happy or not.
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Lizzy Blythe-Shannon
User: lizzyshannon
Date: 2012-06-05 15:08 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I so agree! Otherwise you'll end up with a pig in a poke. Er... you know what I mean! ;-)
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Bob
User: yourbob
Date: 2012-06-05 16:43 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
To Eric, I think Jay did state that it was important to know where your pizza had been. And to those who are irresponsible about that, then waiting until after marriage for pizza is a fine alternative. I would not advocate against it, but would certainly advocate against forcing me to wait (especially as someone who is denied the right of marriage to the person I love by most of the same people advocating I wait for my pizza until marriage).

As to Cath's point of not requiring a wide-range of pizza experience to know what you like, that is certainly true for some people. I know many people who would never try anything but plain pepperoni, and they are perfectly happy. They may know they're perfectly happy - but how do they know they can't be happier? Maybe they don't want to know (as is their right), but they don't know if there's a better pizza for them out there. And there's a true risk to being disappointed - as when I tried anchovies. But unlike most people who say "no anchovies" - I actually know I don't care for anchovies, I'm not guessing I wouldn't like them.

I also know many people who believe that no one should eat anything but pepperoni. I have many pizza judgemental friends. And there are more than I'd have thought - just look at the public uproar when Trump used a fork for his pizza in New York! Sorry. Some pizza I eat with a fork, and some I eat by hand. Circumstances vary as much as pizza does.

Of course I live in California which either has the best or worst pizza in the world - depending on your world-pizza-view.
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cathshaffer
User: cathshaffer
Date: 2012-06-05 17:53 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
No one can know another person's experience. I would suggest that people who sample a wide-range of pizzas will never know what it's like to have a mutual commitment to a single pizza for life, and can not understand the unique pleasures of such a relationship. Some folks, also, are much more interested in people than they are in "flavors." I love pepperoni pizza, but there are a very limited number of, er, pizzerias, that I would patronize for it. The place across the street may have the world's best pepperoni pizza, but brand loyalty means a lot more to me. My favored pizzeria is also happy to try new recipes because it values me as a customer and wants to keep me happy.
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fledgist
User: fledgist
Date: 2012-06-05 18:33 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
This is interesting. You are, of course, not getting into the disputes over thin crust, thick crust, New York v. Chicago and so on?
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scarlettina
User: scarlettina
Date: 2012-06-05 18:42 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Jay may not have touched on it, but I testified to my own experience regarding New York vs Chicago preferences above. It's all in how you handle it.
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miki garrison: brak!
User: mikigarrison
Date: 2012-06-05 19:57 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:brak!
There's a difference in the choices people make to ensure that 1) they get to eat the very best pizza ever, vs. 2) they enjoy the pizza that's on their plate most nights.

Just saying.... :p
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A wandering fellow on the long road
User: tsarina
Date: 2012-06-05 19:57 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I confess I'm a big fan of thin crust pepperoni, sometimes with anchovies. I love the salt. It's the best part.

When in Prague, I sampled many unusual pizzas. I'll never forget those drunken nights, late night calls and pizzas piled with shaved slices of onions in a delicate froth at the center. It was strange, but familiar and oh so delicious.
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Janet Freeman
User: janetfreeman
Date: 2012-06-05 20:14 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Though it's not as much of an issue these days, it's still true that those who aren't sufficiently thoughtful about indulging in pizza risk the appearance of unplanned doughboys.
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Gary Emenitove
User: garyomaha
Date: 2012-06-05 21:44 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
The Omaha Beach Party meets when jaylake is in town, consuming mass quantities together, and sometimes even sharing garlic cheese bread, to the mutual satisfaction of all. It is not for the meek. The desire for "extra spinach" or "soda and water in separate glasses" can be intensely stimulating. We welcome new members of any pizza orientation.
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threeoutside
User: threeoutside
Date: 2012-06-05 23:16 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Well said!
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