Psychedelic Panic Pizza, Heat 120 Seconds

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blog pizza catSo many unexplainable things happen every year, it was only a matter of time until the fantastic reached me. UFOs in Jerusalem. Spontaneous human combustion on the Seoul subway. The high ratings for Honey Boo Boo. Things like that. And then last week, I had a personal experience that walked the same path, out of our reality and into another one. I probably sound facetious, but that’s just out of habit – after 25 years of being a sarcastic asshole, it’s difficult to sound sincere. As crazy as it sounds, this post is done in true sincerity. It is the story of how I had an intense journey, a trip across the dark side of the mushroom, brought on by a microwavable pizza bought at Walmart.

I’m aware of how crazy it sounds. People don’t have their perception altered by pizza, and the worst thing microwaveable food can do to a person is give them a muffin top. My rational side understands this. But then I think back to what happened, and I shudder.

It all began around 5:00 PM on Wednesday. I needed to pick up a few things, so I took the 21 bus from my school to the Walmart located in Chang Ping. The bus was packed and the ride was hell. I’d been in an edgy mood all day, and the crowded bus/crowded store didn’t help any. I bought some crap, and then wondered what to eat for dinner. I haven’t had pizza in ages, and I came across some microwaveable ones in the frozen food section. Not DiGiorno or Mama Celeste or anything like that. I found a different brand with a promising name – Pizza Delicious.

blog pizza delicious box

Now let’s pause for a moment to analyze the box. First, let’s note the text used to spell the words “Pizza” and “Delicious.” Clearly, this is the same font utilized by The Grateful Dead and other bands of the psychedelic era. The box sort of looks like a poster you’d see hanging in Haight-Ashbury in the late 60s. Secondly, notice the green swoosh above the words. It’s as though they’re telling you this pizza will take you places, another galaxy, the sixth dimension. Hey Mr. Spaceman, won’t you please take me and my Pizza Delicious along, we won’t do anything wrong. Thirdly, note the shape of the pizza. It sort of looks like an LSD microdot with toppings.

Turn on, heat for 120 seconds on high power, drop out.

The pizza pictured on the box is one thing, but the monstrosity inside was a whole different story. Here, below, is what I discovered upon unsealing my Pizza Delicious.

blog pizza delicious itself

Yes, I know. It looks like scrambled eggs thrown on top of a dry pita. After microwaving it, the enormous mountain of frozen cheese melted, revealing a hidden assortment of mushrooms, sausage, and corn. No sauce to speak of. Although it still appeared to be made by someone with dementia, I was starving and so I decided to eat the thing. The crust had a nice sweet taste to it. The glob of random items on top had no taste, which might have been for the best.

About twenty minutes after I ate the fucker, strange things began happening. I felt euphoric, lightheaded and blissful. Everything seemed hilarious and I couldn’t stop laughing at shit on my Facebook newsfeed. At the time, I thought I was simply in a good mood. In hindsight, the pizza had obviously intoxicated me, making everything appear wonderful. That all changed when I made the poor decision to go to sleep.

I woke up at one o’clock in the morning. My proprioception was gone. I felt as though my body had vanished on me, like I’d been drawn and quartered in the night and all that was left of me was a torso. Where were my arms? I couldn’t feel my legs. I was hysterical. I stood fast, looking down on my body’s completion, a dandelion that hadn’t had its appendages blown off yet. Still, something felt incredibly wrong. I was drowning, sensations sinking into the interior of my head, my brain fluid was a green river carrying away my thoughts. Skin burning, sweat soaking my hair. I had to move, couldn’t stay still or I’d die. I ran out into the living room and turned on all the lights, kicking my legs, hopping up and down. Hands had gone numb, feet were tingling. My blood was out of circulation, red light stopped, my tongue had fur on it. The dryness in my mouth was unbearable, it felt filled with cotton, and I started drinking water but that only made me vomit burp, acid filling my throat as if I had some kind of internal straw running down into my stomach and I was sucking the liquid up through it.

blog pizza deathIn reality, I was having a panic attack. I’ve had them all my life, and they never seem to get any easier. I felt so incredibly helpless. I saw the pizza box in the trash, laughing at me, the bastard had poisoned me and was going to kill me. Why the fuck did I eat it? Obviously the pizza wasn’t right, a death trap, as smart as eating raw beef. Part of my mind was convinced this was the BIG END, that I was going to faint and never wake up. The other part of my mind tried to stay rational. I had to find my neutral space, create an environment that would settle me down. In the meantime, I’d keep running around the living room. Stopping could prove fatal.

It took two hours before I was able to sit still. I had to find the right amount of light (full darkness except the soft glow of my desk lamp). The silence was terrifying, and so I put on Joni Mitchell, turned her voice to the exact volume I needed. I made myself tea. And ultimately I laid in the bed and let the calmness take over. My body started to reappear, gain focus, as if I was looking at myself through a camera and adjusting the lens. Eyes shut, I saw two black birds fly up to the top of my skull, its morning, twirling in circles, intertwining, a braid of dark hair escalating through the sky. A feeling of full relaxation overtook me. Shear delirium, I was split into two, a child and its own care giver. The idea was beautiful. All of this, the entire experience, had a purpose, and I could sense that inside this gentle division.

I was a patient and a nurse, an infant and its father. I could feel my own forehead for fever, kiss my own bruises. Fuck, this is what the Pizza Delicious needed to tell me. That I could take care of myself, not be afraid, that I was my own protection against the world and against death and maybe against myself as well.

In the morning, I felt exhausted. I took a hot shower.

Everything was back to normal, and I wanted to cry.

*

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30 thoughts on “Psychedelic Panic Pizza, Heat 120 Seconds

    • Wow, that would be awesome to be a bear. That must have been exciting! It would’ve been funny if your husband came downstairs and you were catching fish out the fish tank with your mouth. Just a fun idea. : D

      Thanks for swinging by, Lisa!

  1. Oppa, are you pulling our legs, and that really didn’t happen to you? If it did, omg, BE CAREFUL OF WHAT YOU EAT ! ! !

    No, really, it didn’t happen to you, right?

    Come back home. I think it’s time.

    • Hi Nene! Well, yeah it happened…I just got a panic attack. Fun to think that the pizza was hallucinogenic though. I think I knew that the thing was awful and that caused me to freak out. I was also freaking out over the water, which I’m scared to drink even after I boil and filter it. I don’t need to go home, Miss Kyoko, I think I just gotz to chill. : )

  2. Oh my gosh Bill! Take care…when I was working abroad, I was brought to ER twice because if their good. Not those instant food of course but watch out what you eat and drink. :)

    • I will never ever forgive you for that typo! Jk. I forgive you. Hi Jeps! I’m fine physically, just mentally having some adjustment troubles. Love the concern! Next time it’ll probably be some kind of boy who cried wolf situation and I’ll think I’m having a panic attack when I really have fatal food poisoning. :D

      It’s a fun thought. Take care Jeps!

    • Yes! Tell me about it! I Googled “psychedelic pizza” and that pizza cat is what came up. Score! Sometimes I Google something to try and find an image for the blog and I don’t get anything good. Not the case this time. Pizza Cat is freaking gold, baby!

      Anyways, thanks for swinging by Mama Mouse.

  3. I had similar experiences, but not recently. Wavy Gravy told us not to take the brown acid at Woodstock, but he never said anything about the psychedelic pizza. The lettering does look like a poster for a Hot Tuna concert with a special appearance by The Mommas and Papa Johns.

  4. Maybe if you want a taste of psychedelia without all the accompanying weirdness, you oughta check out Phish Food or Cherry Garcia…you really can’t go wrong with ice cream ;) Unless of course you have a dairy allergy or intolerance! Also, Mommas and the Papa Johns was hysterical!

  5. Oh God! This reminded me of the episode in House MD, about mass hysteria where the mind tricks the body into thinking it’s sick. There was nothing ‘mass’ about this incident, but do you think your initial perception of the pizza packet when you bought it could have tricked your body into manifesting the hallucinogenic effects?

    • Hahaha. Excellent. It’s always nice when you remind someone of an episode of House! I think after I ate the pizza I got scared because I felt funny and then my mind went totally nutzoid. Sometime I should write a blog about how I freaked out smoking pot once and called 911. This is how I roll, Aparna.

      Sigh.

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