I work at a grocery store and, today, as I was stocking the 5-cheese pizzas, it occurred to me how utterly symbolic of America as a nation (and, these days, of the world in genereal) the 5-cheese pizza really is. Granted, there are other, more popular, varieties out there, but there’s just something about those particular pizzas that got me thinking. Bear with me while I lay out some really tortured logic to explain the connection.
Putting cheese and other delicious toppings on flatbreads goes back at least as far as the Roman Republic, and the earliest documentation of word “pizza” goes back to 977AD in (of course) Italy. But pizza as we know it couldn’t even have begun to exist until centuries later when ships began regularly traveling from Europe to the New World and back again. Because that’s when these beauties were discovered:
And, let’s face it, while cheesy flatbread may be delicious, it’s not pizza, it’s just delicious, delicious cheesy flatbread. To make real pizza, you have to start like this:
So, like America, and like the modern world in general, pizza as we know it just wouldn’t be possible without the Columbian Exchange. But why 5-cheese you ask? Why is Kat so fixated on that gooey, delectable combination of different varieties of the same thing? Because diversity is awesome, that’s why. You have a bunch of different things that, despite all coming from the same source and being made in pretty much the same way, all have completely unique flavors and textures. You can very easily tell one from the other, but they’re all still clearly recognizable as cheese. And, the best part is, when you throw them all together, they work (and taste) even better than any one could on its own. (Just like people! Okay, I’m done now. Back to enthusing about pizza.)
So, I guess the cheesy lesson in diversity is that sometimes it takes a lot of different and unique parts to make an amazing whole. And, if you can’t appreciate that sentiment, at least you can enjoy some delicious food images, right?
And pizza can not only teach us a lesson about accepting different people, but about accepting different ways of doing things, too.
So, if you take nothing else away from this post, take away this: Kat is very enthusiastic about her pizza.
All images taken from http://www.publicdomainpictures.net