An Ode to Pizza (and Other Sillinesses)

 

Because the conversation drifted that way (with a little nudge here and there, perhaps) – and because @arahant pointed out that we had in fact arrived there through the pizza grove – I found myself drafting odes to that prince of foodstuffs. Oh, all right, it’s a fair cop, it doesn’t take much to start me riffing poetical and, falling among good company (ahem), a couple of parodies were but the work of a minute or three:

O, for a flice triangular! that hath been warmed
A decent while in the earthen oven,
Tasting of sunlit slope and thyme-flowers green,
Good cheese and not the box, and companionable talk!
But not with a beaker of faery wine,
Which twinkles, bubbling, at the brim,
Or else I should slip,
Like old Rip, drifting in to the Pizza Grove,
And fade far away into the forest dim …

There should be warning figns up:

Beware the Pizza Grove, my son,
The salmon that wafts, the pansy to catch,
Beware the Arugula Leaf, and shun
The frumptious Dandelion Patch!

(With apologies to Messrs. Keats and Carroll.)

So, good friends, draw up a chair and a slice, if you will; cut yourself a piece of the pie, be you so inclined.

What bad (or good) poetic riffs, parodies, or songs might you have to share? What anecdotes on that noble dish might you have the crust to advance?

Come one, come all, gather round – have a coffee (or something stronger if it’s getting later) or a nice cup of tea, and gather ’round the fire and chat.

(Thanks again go to Monsignor Arahant for ſetting my typography ſtraight here.)

(Edit: Oh, and before I forget, thanks and acknowledgment are due too to @percival whose remarks on the dangers of suspicious salading helped inspire the latter riff.)

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  1. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Love the tags.

    • #1
  2. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Love the tags.

    Thankee indeed, kind sir. You probably helped inspire at least half of them, be it fairly ſaid.

    • #2
  3. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    As for poetry pizzetical, let me ſee what I can dredge up from the murky deeps of the ſwamp.

    • #3
  4. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    Arahant (View Comment):

    As for poetry pizzetical, let me ſee what I can dredge up from the murky deeps of the ſwamp.

    What have I unleaſhed?! Kind friends, I knew not what I did! (Only in good humour, of courſe, you underſstand.)

    • #4
  5. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    There once was a fellow from Greenwich,
    Whoſe given name was Heneage.
    Be that as it may,
    Though the cauſe ſome ſay,
    He preferred his pizzas with ſpinach.

    • #5
  6. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    Arahant (View Comment):

    There once was a fellow from Greenwich,
    Whose given name was Heneage.
    Be that as it may,
    Though the cause some say,
    He preferred his pizzas with spinach.

    Though I cannot but deplore this ſpinacheous tendency, a fine addition to the pantheon of pizza poetry, be it rightly said!

    • #6
  7. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    I went back and fixed the eſses. 😜

    • #7
  8. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    Arahant (View Comment):

    I went back and fixed the eſses. 😜

    A welcome improvement, but oh deary me, what have we started?

    • #8
  9. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Or ſtarted?

    • #9
  10. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Or ſtarted?

    ſsteady … (How doeſ one deal with the capitals and ſtill give it the welcome olde-time ſavour, one wonders?):

    There once was a chef from Troy,
    Who had an inspiration as a boy:
    His eſſays into pizza
    (How much better the Nietzche),
    Though often ſpinacheous, brought the world joy.

    Now that one’s going to be written down and uſed againſt me … 

    • #10
  11. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Andrew Miller (View Comment):
    ſsteady … (How doeſ one deal with the capitals and ſtill give it the welcome olde-time ſavour, one wonders?):

    The reason it was called a medial ſ, is that it was in the middle, meaning in the middle of a word or at the beginning if not capitalized. Capital S was always just a capital S. Then there was the terminal s, which was used at the end of words or sometimes as the second s in a pair. For instance:

    How does one deal with the capitals and ſtill give it the welcome olde-time ſavour, one wonders?

    or:

    The purſuit of Happineſs.

    • #11
  12. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Andrew Miller (View Comment):
    ſsteady … (How doeſ one deal with the capitals and ſtill give it the welcome olde-time ſavour, one wonders?):

    The reason it was called a medial ſ, is that it was in the middle, meaning in the middle of a word or at the beginning if not capitalized. Capital S was always just a capital S. Then there was the terminal s, which was used at the end of words or sometimes as the second s in a pair. For instance:

    How does one deal with the capitals and ſtill give it the welcome olde-time ſavour, one wonders?

    or:

    The purſuit of Happineſs.

    You live and learn: Another post on orthography and typography beckons? (And not juſt ’cos yours truly is hoping to ‘overhear education without paying’, to borrow another wee dram from The Wee Free Men, which surely needs its own poſt too in the near future.)

    • #12
  13. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Andrew Miller (View Comment):
    You live and learn: Another post on orthography and typography beckonſ?

    Could include the yogh (ȝ) and the thorn (Þ) and eth (ð), too. Bring all the good ones back.

    • #13
  14. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Andrew Miller (View Comment):
    You live and learn: Another post on orthography and typography beckonſ?

    Could include the yogh (ȝ) and the thorn (Þ) and eth (ð), too. Bring all the good ones back.

    A title occurs: Out of Print? 

    • #14
  15. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Andrew Miller (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    Andrew Miller (View Comment):
    You live and learn: Another post on orthography and typography beckonſ?

    Could include the yogh (ȝ) and the thorn (Þ) and eth (ð), too. Bring all the good ones back.

    A title occurs: Out of Print?

    I actually used the yogh in my Jack the Magicless series in Bryce McKenȝie’s name.

    • #15
  16. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    There’s no reason not to use them with modern resources.

    • #16
  17. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    Hmm, an idea is bubbling away … The Ricocheteer’s Intelligencer (or something like that), a weekly “magazine” post (perhaps with a monthly summary) of sorts, bringing to the attention of the diſcerning lady or gentleman some intereſting developments of the week just paft, Main Feed or no. 

    • #17
  18. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    Andrew Miller (View Comment):

    Hmm, an idea is bubbling away … The Ricocheteer’s Intelligencer (or something like that), a weekly “magazine” post (perhaps with a monthly summary) of sorts, bringing to the attention of the diſcerning lady or gentleman some intereſting developments of the week just paft, Main Feed or no.

    Indeed, developing on the theme — because it’s often difficult to go back and find a favourite post or a useful post or something you’d like to read again, and as a way of developing the medium of posts and links and so on … 

    It’d probably require a little bit of thought on typography and WordPress formatting and so on, but you could have overall “catalogue” posts, linking to summary posts by year or month, a little like we have with Group Writing. 

    It’d also be a nice way of linking things up and of providing some encouragement all round. Food for thought.

    • #18
  19. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    Indeed, ſomething a little like thiſ, perhaps:

    The Ricocheteer’s Intelligencer, No. 1

    Being a Magazine Post of Sorts for the Discſerning Ricochet Reader, gathering heretofore excſellent poſts of all kinds for your kind consideration. 

    And inviting our readers to leave further recommendations in the comments below for the benefit of their fellows.

    But this of course is a side tangent: On with the sillineſs!

    Edit: But in essence (and in summary) to contain a magazine (with hyperlinked Contents section) in the space of a blog post, and to take discarded artefacts of the printing press and bring them back to life here.

    • #19
  20. She Reagan
    She
    @She

    It is allowed on all hands, that the primitive way of slicing pizzae before we eat them, was to partition them into the flice triangular, beginning with a bisection across the midpoint: but his present Majesty’s grandfather, while he was a boy, going to carve a flice cut according to the ancient practice, happened to cut one of his fingers. Whereupon the Emperor his father published an edict, commanding all his subjects, upon great penalties, to divide their pizzae henceforward into the flice fqware.

    The people so highly resented this law, that our Histories tell us there have been six rebellions raised on that account, wherein one Emperor lost his life, and another his crown. These civil commotions were constantly formented by the monarchs of Blefuscu, and when they were quelled, the exiles always fled for refuge to that Empire.

    It is computed, that eleven thousand persons have, at several times, suffered death, rather than submit to first cutting, and then eating, the flice fqware. Many hundred large volums have been published upon this controversy: but the books of the Triangulatorf have been long forbidden, and the whole party rendered incapable by law of holding employments.

    During the course of these troubles, the emperors of Blefuscu did frequently expostulate by their ambassadors, accusing us of making a schism in religion, by offending against a fundamental doctrine of our great prophet Lustrog, in the fifty-fourth chapter of the Brundecral (which is their Alcoran). This, however, is thought to be a mere strain upon the text: for their words are these; That all true believers shall flice their pizzae as they see fit: such fitness, in my humble opinion, to be left to every man’s conscience, or at least in the power of the chief magistrate to determine.

    A sliced smoked salmon pizza with a pizza cutting wheel.

    (A lufcious fmoked falmon pizza, cut–af if proper–into fqwares.)

    • #20
  21. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    She (View Comment):

    It is allowed on all hands, that the primitive way of slicing pizzae before we eat them, was to partition them into the flice triangular, beginning with a bisection across the midpoint: but his present Majesty’s grandfather, while he was a boy, going to carve a flice cut according to the ancient practice, happened to cut one of his fingers. Whereupon the Emperor his father published an edict, commanding all his subjects, upon great penalties, to divide their pizzae henceforward into the flice fqware. […]

    A sliced smoked salmon pizza with a pizza cutting wheel.

    (A lufcious fmoked falmon pizza, cut–af if proper–into fqwares.)

    To all those naysayers against ſpinach, be warned, it can be worſe! Salmon waits just outſide the door, biding its time! 

    • #21
  22. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Arahant (View Comment):

    There once was a fellow from Greenwich,
    Whoſe given name was Heneage.
    Be that as it may,
    Though the cauſe ſome ſay,
    He preferred his pizzas with ſpinach.

    Spinach is good on pizza.  

    • #22
  23. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    All this is good, but perhaps not as good as an actual pizza as my wife or youngest son makes them. 

    • #23
  24. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    The Reticulator (View Comment):
    Spinach is good on pizza.  

    Yes, we know. But some do not. The subject comes up often in the PIT.

    • #24
  25. Judge Mental Member
    Judge Mental
    @JudgeMental

    All good people know
    It’s an abomination
    Spinach pizza bad

    • #25
  26. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Arahant (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):
    Spinach is good on pizza.

    Yes, we know. But some do not. The subject comes up often in the PIT.

    Fine. Order a pizza with spinach on it. We’re still gonna make you sit on the curb in front of the restaurant while you eat it. 

    Heathen.

    • #26
  27. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Judge Mental (View Comment):

    All good people know
    It’s an abomination
    Spinach pizza bad

    Yesterday I planted a 27-foot row of spinach in our garden. I hope some of the crop ends up on pizza, though it’s good in other ways, too.

    So, there.

    In February 2020 Mrs R and I visited the Spinach Capitol of the World (Crystal City, Texas) and took photos of the Popeye statue, though that visit was more for the sake of sugar beets than spinach. It was shortly before I posted “Go West, Young Man, and be a Migrant Worker.”  Crystal City supplied a lot of the migrant workers who would come north to work in the beet fields of the Red River Valley in North Dakota.

    • #27
  28. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    Judge Mental (View Comment):

    All good people know
    It’s an abomination
    Spinach pizza bad

    It’s nice to see you, Judge.

    • #28
  29. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Judge Mental (View Comment):

    All good people know
    It’s an abomination
    Spinach pizza bad

    Yesterday I planted a 27-foot row of spinach in our garden. I hope some of the crop ends up on pizza, though it’s good in other ways, too.

    So, there.

    In February 2020 Mrs R and I visited the Spinach Capitol of the World (Crystal City, Texas) and took photos of the Popeye statue, though that visit was more for the sake of sugar beets than spinach. It was shortly before I posted “Go West, Young Man, and be a Migrant Worker.” Crystal City supplied a lot of the migrant workers who would come north to work in the beet fields of the Red River Valley in North Dakota.

    Arr, it’s a fair crop, guv.

    • #29
  30. Andrew Miller Member
    Andrew Miller
    @AndrewMiller

    Percival (View Comment):

    Arahant (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):
    Spinach is good on pizza.

    Yes, we know. But some do not. The subject comes up often in the PIT.

    Fine. Order a pizza with spinach on it. We’re still gonna make you sit on the curb in front of the restaurant while you eat it.

    Heathen.

    ’Twas ever thus, even on the streets of Jerusalem and Acre back in the old Crusading times. A dusty, travel-worn wanderer easing himself into a seat in the shade with the clink of chainmail, grasping a refreshing cup of something or other, looking around furtively and asking — “Yes, we serve it. But outside in the gardens, if you please, friend. We want no trouble here.”

    • #30