As I sweep into shades of gray

if “Little Boy” was filled with white powder and our Pizza station was Hiroshima.

The room is placid, like the immediate aftermath of a San Francisco earthquake. The people are gone, Two hundred pizzas made, two hundred fed. The rush is over. We rolled, we prepped, we cooked. The crime scene left on the ground shows signs of a hard day’s work. “Los Pizzeros,” as the dishwashers like to call us, are cleaning up the exhausted area. Pablo wipes down the dough station while he speaks of Norma Talamadge’s performance as “The Dove” as Dmitry talks of Palahniuk and the Battle of Stalingrad. As time passes, all is left to do is to sweep. One station reveals a heap of softened gracious flour as if “Little Boy” was filled with white powder and our Pizza station was Hiroshima. The opposite side shows the oven as a graveyard, the steam of the burning semolina shows images of the fog rising off of the cadavers as the ashes left from cremated ingredients fall to the floor. I sweep from both sides as the white meets the black in the center of the quarters. Has some sort of divine being brought these opposing forces together? Is this some sort of good vs. evil, yin vs. yang, Young Goodman Brown imagery of eternal battle or could it be the harmonious ebony and ivory piano keys acting as elements to come together to create a culinary miracle such as the margherita? I don’t know. This concept of mysticism goes on and on for months and months, and as I continue to speculate, time will take its toll. Dmitry and Pablo will exile back to the lands of different tongues and the summer boys will all go home, but yet I come back day after day to sweep at the end of the measure. Time passes and the lone winter approaches, I roll, I prep, I cook. “El pizzero,” just one of me now, I solely stand as I sweep into shades of gray.

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