I promise it’s only coincidental my recent disgust with both my physical health and appearance has emerged on the first day of this year. I’m yet to splurge on a January Gym Membership but the copious amounts of whole foods in my fridge speak louder than perverse faux-spirational social media posts ever could. Despite this, a heart full of aspirations and a head bursting with shredded brussels sprout recipes had not hindered my curiosity surrounding Pizza Hut’s Doritos Crunchy Crust pizza.
A caveat: pizza is my least favourite fast food. Long story short, it made me vom as a kid and has left me subconsciously scarred and discriminatory against tomato sauce.
Anyway, despite my 2015 hopes and dreams for A Better Me™ I was delighted by the thought of enjoying a true slice of modern Americana, a campaign backed food and brand mash-up in my own home. Slowly but surely I felt the fedora descending on my head as my cursor hovered over a BBQ Meatlovers Doritos Crunchy Crust Pizza as well as a serve of Double Choc Cookie Shots to make up the additional few dollars of minimum delivery. “This had better be the best $25 I’ve ever spent”, I proudly declare to Facebook, relishing in the self-aware irony of a #foodie ordering a fad #pizza online and attempting to rid myself grubby feels. Likes began rolling in as I research what I’d just ordered: “As you bite into the crust you’ll be blown away by the crunch – it’s not only seriously loud, but delicious.” 20 minutes later, much like that fateful night when I was seven years old, the delivery guy raps at my door. This time there were no voms, just expectations of mind-blowing aural aesthetics.
Navigating the delicate topography of this pizza… it tastes exactly like a usual BBQ meatlovers pizza. Where are the brain crushing acoustics? Where are all the Doritos I was promised? The grandeur of immaculate lashings of cheesy crisps has been replaced by a minuscule amount of burnt crackers barely crowding the rim of my pizza. What the hell, Pizza Hut? The outer diameter tastes like a 50c cheese melt from the school canteen, but burnt. Nostalgic, but inappropriate. The dual textured delight of molten mozzarella and crunchy Doritos covered in cheddar fell flat – if that Apple / young-startup keynote inspired advert is anything to go by then this is the iPhone 6 Plus of pizzas. A severe letdown. Oh, and those Double Choc Cookie Shots? They look like just the turd emoji, and tasted, without sounding too much like a disgruntled Urbanspoon user attempting to describe a lacklustre coffee again, burnt.
As I remove what remains in the pizza box to a more appropriate receptacle, the slices reveal my greasy, pizza horoscope – a bloated figure trapped within a rounded frame. Story of my 2014? Maybe, but hopefully not a premonition of 2015.
In the cruel light of day the next morning I send a message to my brother offering the rest of the pizza sitting in the fridge – “I have two slices left if you want them, or else they’re going in the bin”. Hours later he arrives, hot, starving, craving leftovers. “This crust is amazing”, sighs the student-who-lives-out-of-home, “so much better than the last hotdog and cheeseburger crusts, they were disgusting“.
Maybe it wasn’t that bad after all? Have I lost touch with my junk food appreciation roots? Are my cries of joy surrounding fried things, oily things and sugar-laden things all just a farce?! Maybe the part of myself that exists as a sad girl Tumblr-esque snackcore scenester claiming a stake in the bachelor frog game is but a facade hiding the disgusting reality I’m not as scandalously gross as I often make out to be, in my yuppie home, on my yuppie iMac, surrounded by my yuppie things. Has the Dyson lifestyle ruined me?
That being said, when my brother arrived expecting two pizza slices there was only one left – I claimed it was “for science”, “for research!”, but deep down I knew I wanted to get that soggy burnt cheese in and around my mouth to savour the flavour, once again perpetually stuck, like so many of us are, oscillating between self-loathing and the person we want to be.