The Flying Pie

I’m afraid that I have a very uncouth story to relate. An incident which makes us all stop, drop, and wonder about whether we do, in actual fact, live in a first world country.

We’re in Boise at the moment, the shining capital city of our great state, visiting Granny. And the hands-down best pizza in town is to be found at the Flying Pie Pizzeria. It’s crazy good pizza, and no trip to Boise is complete without at least one stop there. Flying Pie is a bit of a Boise legend, and is basically unchanged since my husband used to hang out there in highschool (lo, these many moons ago.)

While they make great pizza at the Flying Pie, it’s also an undisputed fact that the place is gungy and weird. It’s got a very “independantly-owned-bowling-alley-from the eighties” feel about it . . . the kind of bowling alley where the owner lived in a trailer out back. Strange decorations abound in the dimly lit interior – decorations like a giant wad of tinfoil the size of a dishwasher. There’s also a homely little mannequin in a motorcycle helmet who presides over the counter where you place your order. All the employees are sportily tattoed, and I’m fairly certain that you must be able to prove a certain amount of ink in order to even get an interview.

So. There we were. Sitting out back on the deck in broken plastic chairs, waiting for our pizza. There were ants on the table, along with a number of mysterious sticky bits. But that’s ok. We’re big kids. We can take a few smooths with the rough. The part that was starting to get us down was how long the pizza was taking. It was a crazy weekend though, and the place was packed, so we waited an extra long time before Ben went up to check on the progress of our pizza. We were told it was coming in two minutes . . . and we began to idly speculate on how long the two minutes would take. Knox set the timer on his watch so we could see who was right.

Strangely, the waiter arrived with the pizza nearly immediately. Knox wasn’t even done setting the timer. Our two gorgeous pizzas were plunked down, and our waiter and his tattoes retired back into the restaurant. We began to dish up the slices, when we realized that the pepperoni pizza didn’t seem to have any pepperoni on it. It looked like plain cheese. I sort of peeled the cheese up to find out if there was any pepperoni lurking there underneath, but there wasn’t. The combination pizza looked good however, so I dished up a lot of those slices while Ben went back inside to find out about the missing pepperoni. Judah picked an olive off my piece and ate it. After a few minutes we decided that no matter what happened with the pepperoni pizza, I might as well dish up the rest of the cheese slices . . . it’s not like the kitchen would take it back after it had been left on our table and fiddled with.

But just then a cheerfully tattooed waitress came dashing out the door, with Ben in her wake, yelling at us to not take a bite! These weren’t our pizzas. They belonged to another table – and she had the correct ones with her. She said, rather breathlessly, “You haven’t taken a bite yet have you?!”

Well . . . not exactly. But we had dished them all up and picked at the cheese and Judah had eaten an olive. “Oh that’s ok then” she said, “just put them all back on the pan. They’ll never know.”

I was totally incredulous. I tried to tell her that we had very definitely touched these pizza slices. She absolutely didn’t care. We took all the slices back off our plates, put them back in the pan, leaving various sausage bits and peppers behind . . . but for the most part they were all reassembled. The cheese slice that I had investigated was looking a little saggy and unfortunate, and they were rather disheveled pizzas, but she really didn’t mind at all. She deposited the new correct pizzas on our table, and toodled off with our old ones to deliver them to the poor unlucky and unsuspecting recipients.

Seriously. She did. I felt very guilty and like I owed someone an apology. So here it is – whoever you are out there . . . “I’m really sorry that we touched your pizza and picked some of the toppings off before you ate it! My husband isn’t, but I am! I’m fairly certain that we didn’t sneeze on it, but I can’t be sure! Hopefully you didn’t suffer any unfortunate repercussions (or rashes) from that little misunderstanding! When you bring your lawsuit, please don’t include us!”

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23 thoughts on “The Flying Pie

  1. Now that I’ve pulled my jaw up from reading this story, I was wondering if the Femina ladies could direct me in a very unrelated topic. I am very new to this word “covenant” that is used a lot around here. Are there any resources Nancy, Bekah, Lizzie, or Heather could recommend to explain these covenant promises to me in general and also specifically in relation to our children?

  2. The rash only covered 3/4 of my body, so all’s well. …But I was a bit disgruntled by the missing olive.

  3. HA!

    Also, I get the Anatole reference! Do I get a cookie, or a pre-loved pizza, or something?

  4. Merkles,

    My wife and I were there and saw the whole thing. We were at the table right next to you. I meant to say something to Ben at church yesterday but didn’t get the chance. We are members of King’s and I recognized you all from visiting. Needless to say we checked our pizza out before we ate it. And we got a good laugh from the whole thing.

  5. That is a hoot, Bekah. I was just wondering why all these fantastic things happen to you and yours. Like being accident prone, you all seem to invite the most peculiar happenings. Probably just to amuse your audience out here.

    Kat, the best recommendation is to study the Scripture, and if you read any other books on the subject you can evaluate the teaching in the light of it. My favorite people group in the Bible were the Bereans who were checking Paul’s teaching out by comparing it with Scripture.

  6. So will you be going there again? Does your loyalty exceed your disgust? Anyway, that is just too hilarious. I hope no pizza places around here have such scruples!

  7. So…maybe I’m just feeling edgy and rebellious, but I have to think, “Good girl! She didn’t waste even more food!”

  8. The waitress made a terrible decision, which grosses me out too.

    Howard Olivier, Flying Pie Owner (from his trailer out back)

    PS: The folks I’ve checked this story with are astonished, to say the least. We will discuss this with all 70 Flying Pie-ers, to be sure that we ALL know this is a completely unacceptable “solution”.

  9. Gracious! I’m not too surprised though…we have a family-favorite pizza joint at a surfing point in Santa Cruz. Super yummy pies. Ambience and cleanliness however, hmmm…not so great. Tats, abc gum on top of the tables, and a lord-knows-what on the floor, seems to be standard where good pizza resides.

    Thanks for the story (and the guffaws that came with it)!

  10. Kind of random, but this place I loved in college (and high school), washed over me at the mention of The Flying Pie…and it appears to claim a similar location in Moscow, ID as “Legitimate Offspring”. Long live Bagel and Deli! I wish I were still close…

  11. Doesn’t sound like Flying Pie has changed much since I was in elementary school!

    And, Claire, that Santa Cruz pizza place has cleaned up its act. New owners, clean tables, you can now see out of the windows (after nearly 8 years of going there I hadn’t realized that windows even existed!)…but some of the nostalgia is gone. My 5-year-old recently lamented that the drippy, wax-figure of an old man on a surfboard is no more.

  12. Wow…this is the second restaurant review on this blog that’s been discovered by the proprietor.

    And Mr. Olivier, as long as it’s not a van down by the river, you’re OK. 😉

  13. Brittany,

    Oh dear…I will miss the creepy surfer dude too. We were planning to make a trip down there this summer, so it will be interesting to see the update. Yay…but…phooey. It’s fun to hear from someone else whose family delights in the glories of Pleasure Pizza. 🙂

  14. Bekah, I know this story is all in good fun and I get a kick out of so many of your posts, but if I may make a comment.

    My husband and I operate a small business. We oversee more than a handful of staff. Sometimes employees can do dumb things. If we are informed of it, we can fix it. If we are not informed of it, we can not. If everyone else is informed of it, it does hurt our business and livelihood.

    Just something for everyone to keep in mind. Operating a business sure gives one a different perspective on customer complaints 🙂

  15. This has got to be a good pizza joint sign. My favorite pizza place in Seattle is in a hole in the wall spot in the University District. It is called Atlantic Street Pizza and it is fantastic pizza. But man, the place is a dive. I try no to look too hard when I am in there. And the bathrooms, WOW!! Well let’s just say hold it and go at home.

  16. And on a more important note, Mr. Olivier, this story did have an effect on me – it put your restaurant on our list of “must eats” if we are ever in Boise. I’m sure it’s that way for most. 🙂

  17. Isaiah! How hilarious! I can’t believe you were at the next table! You should have said hi – and then I could have explained that we had come straight from Moscow to the Flying Pie and that’s why we were all looking terrible and gross and I don’t usually take the kids out looking like that!

    Mr Olivier – your pizza is totally unsurpassed! And actually, while we were eating it (the second ones) one of the people at our table was telling us about your reputation as an incredible boss . . . taking all your employees on an amazing vacation to Puerto Rico or somewhere? Anyway . . . we’ll be back the next time we’re in town, and that little incident just spiced up our evening!

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