Rosa's Pizza owner Mason Wartman standing in front of the gifted $1 post-it notes (photo credit: Mason Wartman via People.com)

Living Up to Philly’s Nickname ‘City of Brotherly Love’

(pictured above: Rosa’s Pizza owner Mason Wartman standing in front of gifted $1 post-it pizza coupons. photo credit: Mason Wartman via People.com)

Philadelphia has a very special joint called Rosa’s Pizza & Grill where patrons can purchase slices of pizza for homeless people for $1. To date, the restaurant has given away more than 10,000 slices of pizza. And some of the restaurant’s regulars have been able to pull themselves out of poverty to find work and a place to live.

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Take a few minutes and watch the Upworthy video. Inspiring example of good people doing great things. People magazine also did a nice write-up of the owner and the effort, which you can see here.

(Author note: the pizza place may be in Philly, but the owner is from New York and understands how good pizza is made.) ;)

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#QuotableMondays: Killing Coffee… or the Planet?

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The Washington Post has a WonkBlog piece up about K cups and coffee pods killing Americans’ love of coffee. From the post:

Coffee pods, however, are incredibly efficient by comparison. People tend not to make more than they will actually drink—or, at least, first intended to drink.

“People used to make a pot of coffee. Now they make a cup,” Pedro Gavina, the owner of Vernon, California-based roaster Gavina & Sons, told Reuters. “Right there we’re losing the sink as a consumer.”

They are also cutting down on the number of beans used per cup, because they tend to be less caffeinated.

There’s certainly some truth in this article, but I am (and always will be) a full-on auto-drip guy. here’s why:

  • Used coffee grounds are excellent for compost (read more)
  • Doing auto drip or French press means you can adjust the strength/amount yourself
  • Supporting local coffee artisans who aren’t in the K cup business
  • Less waste than with K cups or coffee pods

On that last bullet, The Atlantic has a post up that eviscerates K cups and our disposable lifestyle:

Last year, Keurig Green Mountain pledged to create a fully recyclable version of its blockbuster product, the K-Cup, by 2020. Last month the company’s annual sustainability report reaffirmed that vow. It’s a point that Oxender has reiterated multiple times during damage control in the wake of #KillTheKCup. But promising only five more years with this amount of waste has done little to satisfy detractors. Some say it won’t be possible, ever, to make a K-Cup that is anything short of an environmental shitstorm.

“No matter what they say about recycling, those things will never be recyclable,” Sylvan said. “The plastic is a specialized plastic made of four different layers.” The cups are made from plastic #7, a mix that is recyclable in only a handful of cities in Canada. That plastic keeps the coffee inside protected like a nuclear bunker, and it also holds up during the brewing process. A paper prototype failed to accomplish as much.

There’s also a snazzy video, entitled “Kill the K Cup,” where people get beaned by marauding K creatures. The video is sprinkled with some startling statistics of our K cup usage.

You can certainly buy a refillable insert that goes inside the Keurig machine, but to me it’s just not the same. But, if you have one of those single-serving deals, then the insert is the way to go.

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The moral of the story for me is I feel very good about my Morningside Blend from San Francisco Coffee House, right here in Atlanta. All of my grounds go in my compost and feed my backyard—after they’ve fed me.

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Eat Your Heart Out, America: This Movie Projector is Only in Hong Kong

An idea that probably should’ve just stayed an idea?

The Verge has a great write up on Pizza Hut’s novel approach to flicks and pies: a pizza box as its own movie projector. But be careful… your phone could get greasy in a hurry.

Since the test run will go *so well in HK, they’re bound to bring it here. <obvious sarcasm>

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‘Pizza for Good’ Earns Another Stellar Review [VIDEO]

With great thanks to Eli in Portland for allowing me the chance to upload his video review of Pizza for Good so I could share it with you guys. How cool is this?

An excerpt:

“Recently I’d been looking to raise money for homeless youth in my area of Portland. I didn’t know how to go about it—many of these events take a lot of time and investment. What Mr. Pollock does is show people how to host a charitable event using pizza. It’s a brilliant set-up because people love to come together and eat. He asks a lot of relevant questions to see if you’re ready to do it yourself. And he goes over humorous and unique accounts of his experiences and who he’s assisted.”

And in another sign that he gets it:

“Everything comes together in a centrifuge of information that is exactly perfect for those who want to create a charitable event.”

Totally blown away and grateful to Eli for taking the time. He also left me an Amazon review, which you can view here. Remember: book reviews (written, autdio or video) really help with discoverability. Learn more about that by going here.

I told Eli I’d come out there and help him throw the party if he’s interested. Watch this space. — WP

 

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#QuotableMondays: ‘We Have to Love Each Other’

from left: Will Pollock, Lucas Schneider, Rob O'Connor & Alexis Vear at the "Pizza for Good" book-release party

from left: Will Pollock, Lucas Schneider, Rob O’Connor & Alexis Vear at the “Pizza for Good” book-release party

In Episode 1 of my podcast, “The Pizza Dish,” I speak to NYC-based software developer (and longtime pal) Rob O’Connor about a number of pizza-related topics, including:

  • DNA on pizza crust implicates Daron Dylan Wint in D.C.’s “Mansion Murders“—what are the civil-liberty implications?
  • What will happen to Memories Pizza? What will the long-term impact be of the Religious Freedom Act on Indiana?

“Are they collecting DNA for people charged and not convicted?” is a topic that came up during the podcast. Actually, the answer varies by state. HNGN has a great post up about the subject, and you can read the entire thing here. Some states collect DNA in light of serious charges like murder; others only do it post-conviction. In both cases, DNA collection raises serious constitutional questions that nobody is talking about, which was brought to light by this unusual DNA discovery on a pizza crust.

‘First sign of a declining society’
I don’t usually quote myself for #QuotableMondays, but I made an exception this week. Talking about the reaction (and the reaction to the reaction) to Indiana and Mike Pence’s Religious Freedom Act:

“We have to love each other. The first knee-jerk reaction is to shut each other down and not listen to each other. and that’s the first sign of a declining society when we just preach in a silo and we don’t listen to each other. I don’t agree with their position, but I also want them to be able to express their religious beliefs without them being persecuted. We’re better as a society with a conversation.”

Related: read my post, #PizzaforAll, right here on the book blog

Listen to the full first episode of “The Pizza Dish” below, and thanks for sharing with your pals! – Will Pollock

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Happy National Doughnut Day!

Did you know that the intersection of pizza and doughnuts is actually quite busy? Neither did I.

Check out some of the, um, “dishes” people have cooked up below.

Bacon-topped doughnuts (Serious Eats)

Bacon-topped doughnuts (Serious Eats)

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Pepperoni-pizza stuffed doughnuts (Pillsbury)

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Savory Pizza Doughnuts (Joy of Kosher)

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Pizza Donuts (Kirby’s Cravings)

Creativity is alive and well on National Doughnut Day. Go down the rabbit hole, Alice: There’s an entire Pinterest board dedicated to the topic. Some are nutty and gross, but some are quite creative. Enjoy!

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[VIDEO] Amazing Showing in Bethel for SCOTTY Fund & ‘Pizza for Good’

So many folks to thank for helping pull together this video. In no particular order:

  • Rachel, Chris, Ethan & Spencer Brown
  • Kyle Bowman
  • Linda Anderson & SCOTTY Fund
  • Perry Anastasakis & Famous Pizza (#Doughnators)
  • Arno Hunter Myers
  • Our army of event volunteers in Bethel

Thanks for sharing this video with your network! I want to show everyone how successful this Chowfunding model can be.