Stan sits down on the couch for some TV and a beer.

...and Frasier says, "If we can put a man on the moon, why can't we put METAL in a MICROWAVE?!"

Cue the laugh track! It's great: Channel 39 has back-to-back Cheers episodes every night, at 10:00 and 10:30. He never misses Cheers. It's the best thing on for that hour.

Remember the one where Woody kept turning the thermostat up, so Rebecca...? Good one. Saw it again last week.

At 10:30 the doorbell rings. It's the kid with the pizza. Stan pays the kid and runs back to the TV. This is the one where Diane's in the loony bin and she hits the old lady with the croquet mallet.

He gets a beer during the first commercial and eats the pizza. The commercials are no good tonight, but he wolfs the pizza down anyway. Don't want to miss anything.

The episode ends the way it did last time, and the doorbell rings. It's the kid with the pizza. He pays the kid and runs back to the TV.

Hang on there. Did he order this? Can't remember ordering it. Can't remember ordering the first one, either. Why the hell'd he pay for it?

Well, when the kid's at the door with the pizza, you pay for the pizza and you go back to the TV. Force of habit. Law of averages. Can't keep a good man down.

He's not even hungry. Wish he had a dog, sometimes. Dog'd love some pizza. Keep him company, too. Roseanne's on now. Roseanne's okay when it's the older ones but all that lesbian shit and then she started getting a tan and her tits shrank, what's with that? Bullshit. PC bullshit. It wasn't believable. Well, what the hell, there's nothing else on.

Can't remember seeing this one. He has another beer and laughs a few times but it's a definite "nothing else on". At 11:30 it's over and the doorbell rings. It's the kid with the pizza.

Bullshit. He's paying attention this time.

"I didn't order that pizza, kid."

The kid looks at the slip. "312 Elm Street?"

"Yeah." What the fuck?

"Looks like you ordered it. That'll be eight bucks."

The kid has blank eyes. His mouth stays open a little bit when he's not talking. Long-haired stoner kid.

"I didn't order it. I didn't order the last one. Three pizzas tonight. What gives?"

The kid's getting pissed off. He's got the gall to get pissed off.

"Sir, it says here..." He cuts the kid off.

"DON'T GIVE ME THAT FUCKIN' PIZZA! Got it? I ain't payin' for it."

The kid shrugs and shoves the pizza into his hands, and just walks off.

It takes a moment for that one to sink in. What the hell? He throws the pizza after the kid, slams the door and goes to bed. He's just falling asleep when the doorbell rings. It's midnight. It's the same kid with another pizza. He slams the door again and goes back to bed.

The bell keeps ringing all night. He has a few more beers and he quits answering the door. After the 1:30 pizza -- you could set your watch by it -- he thinks to call the place and ask what's up. He gets the number from the second pizza, the uneaten pizza, still there in the living room. Luigi's, over on Maple. They make a good pie. He calls.

"Hello, Luigi's!"

"This is Stan Dadadada, 312 Elm Street. You've been sending me pizzas all night. I didn't order any. What gives?"

"312 Elm Street?"

"Yeah, 312 Elm. Your kid's keeping me up all night. I got a job, I don't need this shit."

"Mr. Dadadadada, I..." He was okay until the dumb bastard fucked up his name, but that's the last straw.

"DA-DA-DA-DA, what's so fuckin' hard about that fuckin' name? What the fuck's wrong with you, you got it in for me or something? Just don't send me any more fuckin' pizzas, I don't want 'em, I ain't payin' for 'em, keep 'em!"

The man at Luigi's takes a deep breath and lets it out.

"Mr. Dadadada -- you said it that way, not me! -- we got an order here. We take the orders as they come in, we make 'em, we send 'em out. You order a pizza, we send you the pizza. We got a business to run."

"Shut the fuck up and don't send me no more fuckin' pizzas, asshole. Got that?"

He slams the phone down. Twenty minutes later, the doorbell rings. He gets another beer. 2:30 comes around and the doorbell rings. By four, he's so drunk and tired he can sleep through it.

The next morning, he never even hears the alarm. He wakes up at 9:15. The doorbell rings while he's in the shower, and on the way out the door he falls over a pile of cold pizzas. He's late to work, he feels like hell, and he's no good all day at the dealership. He doesn't tell anybody about it.

He stays late to make up for it and gets home at quarter of six. There's quite a pile of pizzas on the doorstep, and the ones on top are still warm. The kid comes back while he's taking them around to the trash.

"Take it away. I don't want it. Don't leave it here. DON'T..."

It's like the kid doesn't even hear. He drops the pizza and leaves.

Stan piles up all the pizzas by the trash can but the new one. He saves the new one. May as well eat some dinner. When it's raining lemons, right?

He calls Luigi's again and gets the same guy.

"You realize I ain't payin' for these, right? You got no case against me if you want your money. I ain't ordered 'em. You got nothing. It's costing you money."

"We have our orders, Mr. Dadadada."

Click. The bastard hangs up on him.

That's when Stan unhooks the doorbell. The kid knocks instead, but you can't hear him from the basement. With the TV in the basement it's okay, and you can sleep on the couch down there. He gets a good night's sleep.

At 7:40 the next morning, there are twenty-four pizzas on the front porch. He leaves them there and gets to work on time.

At 5:20 that evening, there are forty-three pizzas on the front porch.

At 5:25, Stan feels like a runaway train. He has not made a conscious decision, but he has loaded his revolver and sat down on a chair by the front door. He doesn't have to make any decisions. It's as if he's been fired out of a gun himself: He is free. The consequences don't matter. They'll sort themselves out later.

There's a knock. Stan opens the door. It's the delivery kid again, so he holds the gun up to the kid's face and speaks very deliberately. His hands are unsteady, which is strange because he is not frightened.

"Get out of here. Get the fuck out of here. Take your goddamn pizza and hit the road."

The kid backs away slowly. His eyes are empty. Stan keeps the gun trained on him until he's halfway to the kerb, then slams the door.

He hears the pizza drop on the walk. He goes back to the phone and calls Luigi's.

"Your kid's coming back and he'll tell you I damn near blew his brains out. That's fair warning, pal. Next time he's dead. You hear..."


He sits down in the chair by the door. He doesn't need a beer. He doesn't need anything. He sits there for half an hour, listening to himself breathe.

There's a knock on the door.

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