Tuesday, January 5, 2016
May the Pepperoni Be With You
With Star Wars dominating public consciousness I was thinking about the role pizza might play in a galaxy far, far away. On the day the new movie came out some of my co-workers were fully regaled in stormtrooper gear. While shooting a recipe video our test chef attempted to slice a pumpkin seed pizza with his light saber acquired in the WalMart Empire outpost here in Oxford, Mississippi, where the PMQ Deathstar orbits.
To be perfectly honest, I was always more of a Star Trek guy. Since my dad was a Naval aviator (that’s cooler than a mere pilot or even a Jedi Knight in my book) the Naval nomenclature in Captain Kirk’s universe had personal appeal. I remember when the crewmen, not to mention the crewladies in their 23rd Century mini tunics and boots, pressed a button and the fakey-looking rectangular door on the instant food replicator whizzed open to reveal trays of never-found-in-nature-hued nutrition blocks, maybe chased down with some blue Romulan Ale. Never saw them grab a smoking slice of pepperoni pizza out of that thing. Too messy, maybe? Not enough heat produced by the dlithium crystals to bake really authentic Neapolitan crust? Politically correct concern for Vulcan dietary mandates? Don’t know, but the Trekkies are missing the starship when it comes to good eats.
Now I love syfy, even if my tastes run to more authentically cosmic physics-aligned approaches like last year’s hit Interstellar. Even in Matthew McConaughey’s fifth dimensional, gravity-curved worm hole of a fun time there’s no time for pizza. Ditto my favorite mind-bending film experience from childhood, 2001 a Space Odyssey. The astronauts again feast on rectangular essence of real food. The mysteries of creation are found in a black monolith, but not one sliver of leftover pizza crust exists in the vast expanse of space.