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Realistic Pizza
Carl Levin, won't you please answer my letter?
by John Worster

Waterford Cottage InnEditor's note: John is a friend
of mine from the 1990s, a bartender, with whom I shared several evenings bending the
elbow and occasionally ideas... at a premier Oakland County, Michigan, gentleman's drinking establishment.  We've stayed
in touch, but haven't actually managed to hook up personally for brewskis or golf or whatnot. He recently sent me some random thoughts... .

John is struggling to keep the American dream alive as proprietor of the Cottage Inn Gourmet Pizza Emporium in Waterford, Michigan.  If the politicos and the journalists really want to know what's killing this presumably great country of ours, I suggest they tune in to these trenchant tho riotous comments.  [John's unique take on the 'human condition' will appear more regularly in the Coffee Coaster, as we 'endeavor to persevere' to throw off Kleptoconic tyranny.]

Pointed thoughts courtesy "Little John the Pizza Mon"

Hello friend.  Been awhile since I communicated with you so I figured I would drop you an e-mail.  Hope all is well on your end. 

Obama almost certainly lost my vote when he landed at the airport next to my business and they blockaded all the exits and wouldn't allow my driver to leave for 25 minutes making two deliveries late.  Nobody is that fucking important.  Funny thing is McCain did it a few days later to even it out.  Barr should capitalize on this rude behavior of the older-party candidates and earn a few votes.

Senator Carl Levin, how 'bout some relief!

I wrote an e-mail to Carl Levin today.  I told him of my being 39 years old and have voted Democratic in every election, including for him.  I learned about him in my high school government class, maybe I should rethink this.  That puts him two years younger than Moses.  Strom Thurmond thinks he looks tired. 

I told him of my business struggles as of late.  Basically saying I now work 80-90 hours a week for free because of our struggling economy, and many other owners I have talked to are in the same boat.  It is not as bad for me as I am single and don't own a house or have kids, but some people are in dire need.  They are losing everything! 

I started 5 years ago with a small dream of a house and some small creature comforts.  I am now $20,000 in the hole and looking up from the well with no ladder.  I can survive with my fallback service-industry skills but it is very depressing nonetheless.  My beef with Sir Carl was I pay Federal, State, Property, Payroll, and FUTA tax and a few others I am sure I have forgotten.  I have asked for relief and was met with dead silence on the phone. 

I was a day late on my Payroll tax last month and got a letter from the IRS saying I was late and could be charged a penalty but they were letting it slide this time.  Now isn't that just noble of them!  I bust my ass trying to pay this tax while considering Ramen noodles and mac-and-cheese a delicacy, and they are on me about being a day late.  Doesn't seem right especially when the front page of the paper has a 700 billion-dollar bailout for several institutions.  Give me .0001% of that and you will never hear from me again.  Am I the crazy one? Am I expecting too much?

The other problem with my business is it has changed my outlook on people in general.  I remember when I met you bartending and looked forward to seeing you for some intellectual conversation.  There were many more customers that I liked versus those that I didn't like… which made the job pretty enjoyable.  In my new line of work I seem to run into nothing but morons and assholes. 

Everyone is looking for a handout or trying to get over on me in some way or another.  A guy rooked my sister out of two pizzas last Sunday convincing her she had messed up on an order that never happened.  People have also become lazy and retarded.  About 95% of my customers can't handle placing an order.  The process is simple:  Figure out what you want, call me, place the order, hang up, and wait for it. 

Almost everyone calls me and when I ask them what they want, they start yelling through the house asking everyone what they want on their pizza while my other call-ins are dying on hold.  My favorite is when they are looking right at the menu but still ask me what is on a certain pizza although it is right in front of them.  If I dare point out that they have it right in front of them, I hear a whiny sigh like I just asked them to do a Herculean task as they scold me to "wait a minute" while they now have to read because of the awful pizza guy. 

It really makes me dislike most people.  When I am out in the real world it follows me and I find I don't like many people that I run into.  I see the same slothfulness and sense of entitlement I see in most customers.  Sad for someone who used to like conversation and now thinks house arrest would be a blessing.

We are getting older.  I saw your deaths run in cycles sentence.  My father has been very ill and been in the hospital for over a month.  It is just one of those things.  The problem is it always sucks on every level and there are no answers.  I think the worse part is I tend to focus on my own mortality, and it makes me feel like shit because my attention should be focused on helping someone in need.  Stupid being raised Catholic.....the guilt always finds you.  Oh well, no sense in beating ourselves up over the inevitable.

On a happy note, I got to play golf this weekend.  My friend needed a 4th for an outing, and it started at 7:00AM on a Sunday so I didn't have to worry about work.  I am still terrible and can't hit the ball.  It wasn't a scramble so I finished in DFL (I believe DFL is slang for “dead ‘something’ last”—ed). 

Cool thing was though I paid 20 bucks to get into skins (God knows why) and on a par 3 playing 220 uphill into the wind, I took my 3-wood and hit it horribly.  The ball never got 2 feet off the ground but it found a way to slice on the green and leave me a 15-footer which I actually sank for birdie.  I was the only birdie of the day on that hole and won a skin that paid for my entire outing.  There is a god!  

Trust me, if you saw my swing you would be on your knees praying as if you saw an image of the Virgin Mary in your golf ball.  (I tend to see that image after a Bloody Mary and four Amstel Lights but I am sure that is just coincidental).  As the prayer goes in Johnny Dangerously:  Dominus Abiscus....we miss the miss the bus....when's the next bus....magna cum Laude....summa cum laude....the radio's too Laude.  Ahhhh, the classic movies make me smile!

That's enough rambling for now.  Just wanted to catch up with you.  Stay gold, Ponyboy.  (?)

Followup on people's attitudes

Hey Brian.  Yeah you can use whatever you want.  I was never much for penmanship and writing.  [Editor had suggested more paragraph breaks for readability.]  When I was in elementary school I was a genius level at everything but never could write and didn't care to, either.  It explains my non-use of paragraphs, probably proper grammar, or being marred in syntax.

I do believe that a lot to do with people’s attitudes is the economy.  I told you in my last e-mail that people are always trying to get over on me and they whine about prices because we don't make a five-dollar piece-of-shit pizza.  I have even noticed a slight change in my own perception.  I would never take from a fellow person (unless they were an asshole and deserved it using a formula that I come up with... sorry, slight god-complex), but if I found a wallet with a grand in it, there would be a part of me hoping there is no ID  in it.  I would steal from corporate America though.  Find me the WaMu (Washington Mutual) vault and I would giggle like a school girl as I filled my coffers and knocked over old people on the way out.

Never did hear back from Mr. Levin

Big fucking surprise.  It is strange that he would lose a vote without even caring though.  His yes men could have sent me a political-jargon-filled ambiguous answer, and I would have laughed it off as par for the course, but now I am actually angry. 

I don't like the fact that he is too busy to respond when nothing but filibustering goes on in the great house of sloth.  Like he is doing anything else but drinking.  The Taco Bell drive-thru at 2:45 AM moves faster than DC.  How hard is it to distribute 700 billion dollars?  My god, you and I could take 5 minutes and still have 300 billion left over.  (Maybe 299 billion after the best strip bar visit ever).

Well, time to make the pizzas.  Have a good day and hope to catch a brew with you soon.  I might have a lot of time on my hands soon (but no cash) as my business is about to crumble.  It is sad that my best business plan involves a stray remote-controlled drone that is being tested at the airport behind me and lots of oily rags and insurance.

Greatest business venture in history

By the way, we missed out on the greatest business venture ever.  It started in 2002 and it stands up against any market.  It is called "betting against the (Detroit) Lions."  My god, I would already be up three grand this year if I wasn't such a pussy!  They haven't been close to covering a spread and I am sure the Bears will crush them on Sunday.  I am stupid enough to be going to the game (at Ford Field, Detroit, 10/5/08).  My problem is I keep thinking of Moe from the Simpsons though..."you gotta help me, I'm 22 grand in the hole... they are going to take my thumbs."  Bye for now.

Contact info:

Hey Brian.  My cell is ###.  Don't be offended if I don't answer.  I am open-to-close 5-6 days a week at the store so sometimes I can't answer my phone.  I do return my messages even though sometimes it takes me longer than I think because the days all melt together.  Hmmmmm, I will check it right now....well golly, it is independent candidate John Anderson looking for advice.  Wow, I really got to check these phone messages more often.

My store is Cottage Inn Pizza, 7380 Highland Rd, Waterford, Mi. 48327.  There is a corporate-run website that I haven't checked in awhile.  I am sure they have fucked it up just like they do all of our advertising.  Here is an excerpt from the last meeting: "You know who would like our pizza? One-eyed Indians who smoke pipes.  Start the campaign!!!!!  And hey... how about this for a topping... sun-dried snake penis.  Top of the world, Ma.”

I would appreciate the shout out (i.e. the ads: everyone near the Waterford store call (248) 886-1800 and order one with everything— ed).  Every little bit helps, unless I am sandwiched in between an E-coli article and the results of the projectile-vomiting contest.  Look for me on TV at the Lions game.  I will be the short guy with his mouth agape realizing I just paid 11 bucks for a Bass ale that looks suspiciously like Blatz.  Bye for now.


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