Let’s be frank. We all know the True Golden Rule in this world: everyone loves pizza. Everyone. Every human, and most dogs, too, for that matter.
Being human, and also wishing most days that I was a dog, I am part of the True Rule. My pizza love runs deep. We’re talking ain’t no mountain high, ain’t no valley low, ain’t no river wide enough baby.
Therefore, on this sacred day of May 20th (which is National Pizza Party Day, for you fools in the dark), I feel the need to express my devotion in a letter. A love letter, if you will. Because it is important to shower the ones you adore most in acts of affection, after all.
I cannot recall our first moment together, but don’t you find something intrinsically beautiful about that? It implies that we have been intertwined with each other since the beginning. That my very existence has been shaped by your cheesy, chewy, sauce-covered goodness.
You have been there through it all, dear Pizza. When I was young and living the dream (also known as childhood), you were the highlight of every post-church Costco run. Slices so large and cheesy that my sister and I had to fold them in half in order to even attempt to eat them…. I feel like the bliss of being a kid could be summed up in those pieces the size of my face.
Through adolescence you were my rock. The staple of all slumber parties, I would lose every ounce of chill each time the Dominoes delivery dude would drop off a fresh, warm, delectable pie. (Being one of those weirdos who grew up too far out in the middle of nowhere to actually have food delivered to her house, I still to this day get way too excited over food delivery services.) Oh the teenage heartbreaks you eased with your grease and stringy cheese. The countless young ponderings you witnessed as my friends and I dreamed about what our lives may have in store for us. You made our world seem bearable and made our futures seem perfect and made Chad Michael Murray a completely attainable boyfriend.
As I left my home to explore the great unknown that is an out-of-state college, you came along as my constant companion. Every all nighter, every stressful cramming session, you were there to keep me stable and give me the motivation to push through. Shoutout to the on campus snack bar that was always open late, which made you the #1 contributer to my freshman fifteen. And my junior twenty. (Fuck you, junior year. What an asshole.)
I somehow managed to graduate. I moved to LA, lived with my best friend, and attempted to master the art of adulting while constantly flailing. Additionally, I was beyond broke. I was sad. I was pathetic. And yet you never left me. Your love is of the unconditional variety, my darling Pizza. All those days and nights of being face to face with the reality of my own shortcomings and limitations. Endless hours feeling purposeless and directionless and hating my pitiful jobs. You helped me through them all, allowing me to laugh at my idealistic teenage expectations of what my twenties would be like. You eased the constant feeling of being a Jurassic Park level disaster. You brought joy to the Dark Ages of Haylie’s Life. Bless grocery store freezer sections for having you in stock when I regularly needed to run in to your embrace at 2am.
And now, here we are. I’ve made it to my mid twenties, which is due in large part to you. We’re still intricately intertwined, and yet we’ve also changed. Now we spend time together with friends that will talk about plans and dreams and life wisdom learned until the restaurant closes. Now you and I get to meet up in new cities and in the midst of new experiences. Now when we’re together, it is often to celebrate that there is so much good in life that it greatly outweighs the not-so-great. My world has shifted. I hear that this is what they call “growing up.” You have witnessed every step that has led to here, and I’m pretty certain I would not have made it without you.
Here’s to our 25 years together and many more to come, Pizza.
You will always be my first and truest love.