About once a week, the Thevictorian family has Domino's Pizza for supper. Usually, it's on a night when The Pony has to stay after school for Scholar Bowl practice, and Big Brother comes on at 7:00. We know the order, we know how long it takes to get there, and we know the amount. The Pony goes in to get it, and he always pays with exact change. He's the Norm of Domino's Pizza. Everybody knows his last name.
week, we had a new girl take the order. She was not very good. But she
was cheerful and polite. "Oh, let me ask." And she did. Our routine was
not disrupted. When The Pony went in to pay, he said the regular guy,
behind her back, was holding his hand in a claw like he was going to
twist her head off. Still, the pizza was good enough. Even though the
leftovers I took the next day had beef that tried to stampede its way
out of my descending colon.
Yesterday, we had what
Genius's old prospective iPhone seller from China on eBay would NOT have
called a Professional Sunshine Experience. The minute I crossed over
the highway into residential space, I had The Pony dial the number and
hand me the phone. Normally, by the time I get to the stop sign by the
park that holds the Labor Day Picnic, the order is complete, and we have
fifteen minutes until it's ready. That leaves time to stop for gas, or
tire air, or for The Pony to buy a bottle of Sprite. He likes to eat his
pizza piping hot on the way home. He saves the breadsticks and some
pizza for the next evening. It's a finely-choreographed ballet. Let no
Domino's worker tear it asunder. Like that one The Pony saw riding a
push broom like a stick horse from the oven room to the pick-up shelves a
couple years ago. The dude who answered the phone yesterday sorely
tried Val's patience.
"Domino's Pizza. This is Doofus. What can I do for you?"
"I'd like to make a carry-out order."
"A CARRY-OUT ORDER?" So silly of me to think he might be familiar with that concept, working at a pizza place.
"Yes. I'm going to order it, then pick it up when it's ready."
"What's your name?"
"T H E V I C T O R I A N?" Like he can't see that on their magic caller ID.
number BR 549?" Like he can't see THAT as well. Like I have stolen a
phone with the sole purpose of prank-ordering pizza. I'm sure there was a
record of every order we've ever made there.
"What do you want?"
"A large hand-tossed cheese pizza, a large thin-crust sausage, beef, and onion, and an order of breadsticks."
"Do you want marinara sauce with those breadsticks?"
"Don't they come with marinara sauce?"
"Then I want it. And I also want a garlic butter sauce."
"GARLIC BUTTER SAUCE!"
"Oh. You want garlic dipping sauce?"
"All right. That will be thirty-one dollars."
"I don't think so! We order every week, and it's never that much."
"Oh. Wait. Can you hold on?"
"Ma'am? I found you a coupon. That will be twenty-four sixty-two."
"No. Don't you have the mid-week special?"
"Yes. It's only been advertised on TV for about two years now. A large pizza for seven ninety-nine."
"A LARGE PIZZA FOR SEVEN NINETY-NINE!"
"Yes. We order it every week."
"Oh. Wait. Can you hold on? Ma'am? Can you hold on?"
"We'll be there by the time you take the order."
"Sorry, Ma'am. I've been busy."
"I'll hold on."
"Ma'am? Okay. That will be twenty-two ten, and it will be ready in ten or fifteen minutes."
This is the best worker they could hire? The girl last week was manager
material compared to Doofus. You might as well put your toddler on the
phone to take orders. At least he would be cute. And almost as
competent. I don't tend to get all smart-alecky with food orders. But I
was having a hard time biting my tongue with this guy. If The Pony
hadn't been counting on pizza for supper, I would have said, "Forget
We wasted some time at Casey's convenience store after The Pony got
his Sprite. Contemplated filling T-Hoe's leaky left front tire. Blocked
the air hose, but decided against it. Counted out correct change.
Waited to dart across traffic to the lake road, the one which would take
the most time. When we arrived at Domino's, the parking lot was full of cars.
There are usually two delivery cars, and one other car with people picking
up pizza. I'd say there were twelve cars on the lot yesterday.
The pizza tasted fine. But I wonder how much sputum, urine, and ejaculate we ingested.