“This Emergency Spill Response Will Officially Kick-Off Once Domino’s Delivers Those 746 Party Pizzas,” by Jack Caseros

Aug 30th, 2017 | By | Category: Fake Nonfiction, Prose

Can I get everyone’s attention?

My name is Terry Clemette, and I am your Operations Sections Chief.  It’s a big group, please get in close. Closer, please. We have a lot of material to cover.

We have all been brought here with one task in mind: to safely, effectively, and efficiently clean up the aftermath of a blend crude oil spill that happened at a line break about 40 miles upstream of where we are standing on the banks of the Missouri River.

The pipeline is believed to have been isolated, but it’s unclear whether the flow from the break point has likewise stopped. We are hopefully far enough ahead of the leading edge of the plume to be able to deploy containment booms and skimmers to get this thing in the bag. We have a lot of work ahead of us.

At this point, we have been cleared by Incident Command to proceed. But folks, I told them I would not officially close this kick-off until all 535 workers across our response operations have been taken care of. An army marches on its feet, and I’ll be damned if I send a single pair of boots out there hungry.

This is exciting, folks—this is a live update. I just received a notification that our pizzas have entered the oven. This is an enormously important undertaking by the good people of Domino’s, and I’m a little disappointed that they have only now started to cook our pies.

That is out of our hands, so we need to focus on what’s important. The Missouri River is the centrepiece of a watershed that supports over 12 million people. It’s also true that a quart of oil can contaminate two million gallons of water. But I have been informed that this river pumps out a quarter million gallons per second. So this oil spill is like four seconds of flow. We blink, we miss it. It all flushes on by. Seems like simple enough math, are we all getting this?

This next math is even more crucial to the task at hand. In total, we have 535 workers executing various critical roles to ensure this oil spill response runs safely, effectively, and efficiently. Company policy requires 900 calories per active worker before any labour can commence.

Thinking out loud, I just realized I will need to update the Incident Action Plan to account for a minimum work stoppage of 30 minutes following the final bite of each meal, to reduce the possibility of indigestion. We can’t run up our budget with Pepto Bismol and slow-moving labourers with tummy aches.

Back to the math. 535 people, with a requirement of 900 calories per person. According to the literature, each slice of Domino’s party pizza averages around 125 calories. That’s about seven pieces. We added a conservative standard deviation and rounded up to eight pieces. Believe it or not, our calculations determined that the 24 slices of the party pizza feed only three of our highly-skilled and food-motivated response personnel.

That brings us to 178 pizzas. Again, we added a 10% contingency factor and settled on 196 pizzas. Domino’s offered us 13 differently dressed pizza styles. We not only talk the talk in environmental stewardship, we walk the walk in diversity and inclusion. So we are ordering 15 pizzas in each style. And one with all possible toppings on it.

This is a tragic day for the people in this watershed. However, this is the stuff that keeps our industry thumping in a downturn. A little hardship makes the heroism worth the pay cuts. We are also engaging five of Domino’s regional offices. They are dispatching pizza from three states. We have some 85 pizzas being delivered by UPS.

While we are doing good cleaning up this river, we should probably feed those hard-working pizza makers and deliverers as well. 50 pizzas for all those workers.

But you know what? That’s not good enough. I will task my Deputy with contacting the Logistics Section Chief, to request party pizzas delivered to the closest 500 affected residents.

That brings us up to a total of 746 pizzas. This is a huge undertaking, my friends. This is a big day for pizza, as well as it is for the Missouri River. The Italians, as well as the Founding Fathers, would be proud.

Another live update, folks. It says the pizzas have gone into the oven. But I thought they already were in the oven? What the hell is going on here?

Another notification has come in from Incident Command. The leading edge of the oil slick has been spotted six miles upstream of us. I can’t believe the choppers are up there before the pizza arrived. Who ordered them to do that? This counters every fucking span of control principle in the Incident Command System. Didn’t anyone read the goddamn brochures this morning?

Okay everyone, calm down. We are all here with one task in mind. Let’s not forget it. Let’s get re-focused. We will resume this kick-off meeting once pizza has arrived. Until then, stand by.


Jack Caseros has worked on many emergency spill responses. There was never enough pizza. You can read more from Jack at www.jackcaseros.wordpress.com.


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