The Last Piece Of Pizza: Portrait Of A Midwestern Standoff

MELROSE PARK IL, Vinny & Mike’s Pizzeria, 8:30 p.m.–A group of friends find themselves in a stalemate so intense even Kissinger would need to excuse himself from the table to frantically clean his soiled trousers in the men’s room sink. It is not just one last piece of pizza on the table that remains, but the very fabric of Midwestern hospitality that is at stake. The duality of man and his inherent self-destructive nature put on display on stage built of pepperoni and marinara. The closest similarity being the conflict in Korea or a stack of 8th grade essays on Lord of the Flies.

STEVE: Looks like there’s only one piece left. I’m so hungry, but I don’t want to be that guy. I knew we should’ve sprung for another pizza or cheese sticks at the least. Look at Marie though. I bet she’s thinking she’s just going to eat that piece all nonchalantly like a thief in the night. Is that what’s going through that conniving brain of yours? No, you don’t have the stones Marie, but I do! I am the one who knocks. I alone can stop this madness. The sun melts when it comes too close to my wings! I am god reborn, bow before me you stupid peasants as I gobble this piece like Saturn Devouring His Son! Side note, what is up with Tim and Sharon?

MARIE: I see you, Steve. I bet you are thinking right now that I won’t swipe that pizza from your grubby paws, like a rabid animal. Well think again Steve, you fucking troll. I see you eyeing that slice of pepperoni like Smeagol in Lord of the Rings. I bet you’re thinking I don’t have the stones. You would have the gall to think that. Strong men carry my balls to win competitions, meanwhile your doctor is still trying to find your undescended testicle, you pubescent looking motherfucker! I will eat you and that slice in one gulp like a goddamn boa constrictor. Well at least you’re not a weak ass bitch like Kyle.

KYLE’S STOMACH: What the hell is going on here Kyle? We’re clearly still hungry. Why haven’t you grabbed that last slice? I thought I made it apparent from my growls that we want more food. Please don’t tell me we’re going to fill up on scoops of peanut butter over the sink again tonight. Where are you cojones man!? No wonder Sharon is cheating on you.

SHARON: Do you think anyone will mind if I eat the last piece? Maybe Kyle wants it. He deserves it after all I’ve put him through. He deserves so much more than me. He definitely deserves a better friend than Tim. Then again, I do love pepperoni and he is much more of a sausage guy.

TIM: Oh man I am stuffed.

THE PIZZA: Uggh have you ever seen sorrier sacks of shits? Not one of these skin bags is going to take the initiative and eat me. Midwestern tavern style pizza is meant to be shared among friends and enjoyed until the last bite, not to have the final slice cast away like so much garbage. Why? Because it’s not polite, because it’s uncouth!? What will happen when they come for your children in the dead of night? Will you be polite then? Will you be so accommodating when they line you up and march you to your death? I say where is your precious God now? You pathetic pieces of meat! Also, Sharon is clearly cheating on Kyle with Tim, so sad.

WAITRESS: Do you guys want me to wrap this up?
Sounds good I’ll take this away and I’ll bring the check. Will this all be on one card?

STEVE: Damn I knew I should’ve brought cash. Maybe I can use this to my advantage and be the hero this table needs me to be. Yes, I’ll simply put it on my card and ask everyone to Venmo me later, or maybe that’s just what Marie wants me to do….

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