General Question

elbanditoroso's avatar

Do you remember NOT having pizza?

Asked by elbanditoroso (24538points) 2 weeks ago

Discussion with friends – all of us in our early 60s or so.

We were talking about pizza – when did really become a popular go-to, all-purpose food?

I don’t remember pizza being a normal family thing – even for special stuff – until around 1970, when I was 16–17. After that point, it seemed pizza was available anywhere.

What’s your recollection? When did pizza become common in your life? Or has it always been there?

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42 Answers

ragingloli's avatar

It is not common for me, at all.
I usually get a Kebab, or Indian/Chinese.
Nothing beats a crispy dick.

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

I always had pizza. Its chicken to go that was new. I grew up in the 70’s. I remember when KFC french fries were gross.

janbb's avatar

My Mom didn’t like pizza so we never had it. It was only sold in pizzerias when I was younger in a rural area. You had to go out for it, there was no delivery. I remember the first time I had pizza; a friend’s family took me to a pizzeria. I was probably about 10 or 11. (I also remember the first time I had a cheeseburger and where and with whom I was.)

This would have been in the early 60s.

chyna's avatar

We got to make chef boy-r-d pizzas about once a month when I was a kid in the 60’s. We didn’t have many places to eat in my area back then. Pizza parlors were unheard of.

zenvelo's avatar

I lived in Westchester NY from 1964 to 1965, and “a slice” was always available.

We moved to northern California in 1965, and the local supermarket chain sold slices for 19 cents the were every bit as good as any I ever got in New York City.

Round Table pizza was widespread in our area by 1966.

seawulf575's avatar

I think that being near 60 now, I have a similar memory as @elbanditoroso. I wonder, though, if we didn’t really do pizza not because it wasn’t available, but because my parents believed in home cooked meals. Mom always had something. It tasted better and was cheaper than dining out or getting take out. When I hit my teen years and started driving and going out with friends, Pizza Hut was a popular stop. But, again, that was a change in philosophy and priorities over what my parents had.

Jeruba's avatar

I encountered it for the first time at a church young people’s event in the 1960s. This was on the East Coast, in a city with a large Italian population. A few of the kids knew what it was, but the rest of us needed an explanation. I remember trying it doubtfully and not particularly liking or disliking it.

It was never seen at any table over which my mother presided, at least while I was growing up.

I didn’t get used to it until I was in a college dorm in the Midwest and people would order it for delivery as a late-night snack.

rebbel's avatar

In our house the first pizza came around the late seventies.

Unofficial_Member's avatar

Seeing that Pizza is a Western food (and an expensive one at that) people in Indonesia didn’t get to enjoy that untill it’s around the start of 21st century, and even so, you’ll generally have to go to bigger metropolitan cities to get one. I still remember Pizza Hut being the first popular pizza back in the day (and still the most popular these days). Nowadays you can easily find pizza in most popular bakeries and restaurants but they actually don’t taste as authentic as the only known good, overly-popular pizza restaurants in the country, Pizza Hut.

ucme's avatar

I only ate my first pizza around 2 years ago…fact!

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Okay, I remember going for pizza and having Dean Martin on the car radio singing “That’s Amore” with the line , “like a big pizza pie” and parking in front of La Pizza in Culver City. I would have been 7.
Oh that would have been 1953.

KNOWITALL's avatar

I remember them from my skating parties in the 80’s. We had ‘real’ food at home, so pizza by the slice was a splurge. We did have frozen pizza’s. Then I believe it was Pizza Hut had a location or two in town, maybe the late 80’s or so.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I remember my folks taking us to Shakey’s Pizza in Wichita in the 60’s.

Demosthenes's avatar

Pizza’s always been there for me, just like computers. I’m a whippersnapper.

Although I do wonder if it’s regional. Was pizza “a thing” earlier in certain areas?

stanleybmanly's avatar

I too remember the days before pizza dominated the fast food multiverse. The stuff was always there in Italian restaurants and takeouts, but it was the proliferation of the chains which smothered the country in pizza and rendered
It the defining go to food for America.

Zissou's avatar

I grew up in SE Michigan in the 70s, which is where & when Domino’s and Little Caesar’s got started. So no, I can’t remember a time without pizza, though I do remember when it was more of a special, once-in-a-while thing.

Patty_Melt's avatar

I remember my very first one. Dad got one on his way home from who knows where. It was Pizza Hut. We lived 30 miles from the closest one, so he musta flown over those rural highways, it was still quite warm. It was late 60’s. That was before boxes, and it was in a little tent with the plastic thing in the middle.

JLeslie's avatar

Pizza has always been a treat. When I was a little girl I used to love going to the pizza parlor in town and get a slice and put a nickel in the juke box. I was just on a Facebook thread this past weekend about the pizza place where I grew up in Hastings-on-Hudson, NY, and so many of us have great memories.

When I moved to Maryland when I was 9 years old the school had pizza every Friday, I couldn’t believe it! The pizza wasn’t any good at school, but I still thought it was a treat. I assume pizza Friday was put in place originally to satisfy the Catholic kids for no meat Friday back in the day.

LadyMarissa's avatar

My parents didn’t believe in eating out. Still, in the early to mid 60’s we did have a Pizza Hut & Pizza Inn. I don’t remember who took me for my first pizza…only know that it was NOT Mom or dad!!!

When I got old enough to cook all by myself, my Mom declared Sunday as the cook’s day off (SHE was the cook). She cooked Sunday lunch & I had to cook Sunday dinner. Back then Apian Way had a decent boxed ingredients pizza. IF you chose the right topping, it didn’t taste awful!!! So, every Sunday night, I made pizza. My brother & dad didn’t complain as long as they didn’t have to cook it. Mom didn’t care because she didn’t have to cook it. I wasn’t a good enough cook to go for the better dinners…so pizza it was. This would have been around 64 or 65. It was the mid 70’s after I had left home that going out to a pizzeria was fashionable. I lived in DC then & that’s when I learned how terrible the Apian Way pizza really was!!! LoL

Soubresaut's avatar

I remember wishing that pizza didn’t exist. I didn’t like it, and it was pretty much the only food served at birthday parties when I was a kid. It didn’t seem to matter where the party was—either it was at a place that served pizza and pizzas were ordered to share, or it was at some location that didn’t serve food, and to-go or delivery pizzas were brought/ordered to share. Either way, it was always pizza.

Kardamom's avatar

Pizza was always available, in my memory, I was born in ‘63. But it was definitely something that you only got to eat on special occasions, like your birthday, up until around the late 70’s, when it seemed like some families had it delivered, or picked it up regularly, on a weekly basis.

My family has never once had it delivered. That always seemed like something only rich people, or lazy people had.

I love pizza, but the idea of having pizza, or any other food delivered, seems ridiculous when the pizza place is only a few blocks away.

I’d rather eat the pizza in the restaurant, or pick it up myself, or even better, or at least more common, is to make good frozen pizza, like DiGiorno, or make it myself.

Pizza was, and still is, in my opinion, something of a special meal. I have no reason to have it delivered, although a lot of people I know, rely on that at least once a week. I don’t get it.

I love pizza and could eat it every day, but I don’t, and still comsider restaurant pizza to be something special that you only get to eat very rarely.

Pinguidchance's avatar

I remember not having pizza almost every day, if only I’d known there was a chinese medicine meatlovers thin n crispy:

@ragingloli ” ...Chinese… Nothing beats a crispy dick.”

ananya1111's avatar

Yes, my little town had never heard of pizza until Domino's arrived one day. This was in the 90s.

JLeslie's avatar

@Kardamom The first time I ever had pizza delivered was in college. I don’t even know if there was pizza delivery where I grew up. You basically wrote why people have it delivered, not everyone has a pizza place very close to their house. In college, most people didn’t have cars, and even though I did, finding a parking space if I left for pizza wasn’t so easy. Plus, it was often 25 degrees outside, and I was already in my loungewear (pajamas).

rojo's avatar

I can remember a Pizza Hut not far from our house (South Texas) in the late 60’s, early 70’s. I cannot ever remember eating there, although I am sure we did, but I don’t remember eating out very often as a kid. That was something you did on special occasions, not as a regular thing.
When I went off to college in 1973 I remember another Pizza Hut and a Moms Pizza and a A&W and a Sonic (and a beer joint called the “Dixie Chicken”) all within walking distance of the campus.

rojo's avatar

Why is it that most kids only want cheese pizza or, at best, pepperoni pizza? I can understand them not wanting the veggies on their pizza but what about all the other meats?

JLeslie's avatar

@rojo I don’t know about being a kid, but in NY we grew up on plain cheese pizza, and even adults commonly ate just cheese pizza. I moved to Michigan in college and their “regular” is pepperoni pizza. I’ll never forget going to a party in Michigan and they ordered 8 pizzas, all pepperoni. It baffled me.

I think part of the NY thing was that a slice often was to go, and it’s harder to manage a bunch of stuff on top, and also the pizza was made by Italians or Sicilians back when I was a kid, who literally had stepped off the boat and set up their pizzerias. I haven’t been in Italy in years, but I don’t think of Italians as putting three types of meat on their pizza, I think of that as an American(ized) thing.

rojo's avatar

I was under the impression that the original pizza was more along the lines of the Margherita Pizza.

Demosthenes's avatar

Yup. Authentic Neapolitan pizza (where it originated) is the margherita pizza: tomato, basil, mozzarella, and olive oil. It’s simple, but may be my favorite type of pizza.

JLeslie's avatar

@rojo Right, not all that stuff that Americans tend to pile on pizza. That was my point.

filmfann's avatar

In elementary school, I noticed that some days there were a lot of kids in line for the hot lunch. It was always when pizza was one of the choices.
I looked at the calendar, and saw the next time it was served. I asked my mom if I could eat a hot lunch on that day, and she gave me the okay. (We were struggling, so eating in the cafeteria was rare)
Day came, and I got in line, anxious to try it. I ordered the pizza, and the lunch lady gave me roast beef, saying she knew my mom wouldn’t want me to have pizza. I then recognized that she was my mom’s friend Dotty. No amount of protest changed her mind.
I finally tried pizza about 8 years later.

JLeslie's avatar

I just asked my parents who are 75 years old. They always remember pizza being around. My mom said she didn’t try it until she was 18, and she fell in love. My dad said he can’t remember the first time, just that there was always pizza in his life.

@filmfann What?! I just don’t understand parents sometimes.

Patty_Melt's avatar

@filmfann, how awful. It is that type of childhood disappointment which stays painful.
I usually brought my own lunch. I too wanted to eat the pizza.
It turns out the stuff was nasty, soaked in oil. I preferred to wait for those two or three times a year my dad splurged for Pizza Hut.
Perhaps your mother’s friend knew you would be disappointed.

JLeslie's avatar

@Patty_Melt That’s interesting. The pizza in my school wasn’t greasy at all, and I find Pizza Hut pizza to have greasy crust, although I do like Pizza Hut pizza.

I’m guessing @filmfann’s mom had some sort of idea in her head that the meat was more nutritious, and a better value for the money.

Patty_Melt's avatar

It wasn’t his mom who denied him. It was her friend.

JLeslie's avatar

^^I thought the friend was acting on his mom’s behalf? But, maybe it was the friend acting alone.

filmfann's avatar

The friend thought she was acting on my mom’s behalf, but she was wrong.
I wasn’t really scarred by this. It’s just one of the fucked up things I remember from being a kid.

Dutchess_III's avatar

The Carney brothers worked at Boeing. When I was there in 79–81 an older lady who worked there remembered them approaching coworkers, including herself, asking for $500 to get in to the ground floor of this great idea for a pizza place they had.
She declined.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@filmfann those childhood memories, good and bad, surely run deep.

Where are your parents from @JLeslie? That may have something to do with them remembering it was “always there.”

JLeslie's avatar

@Dutchess_III It has everything to do with it, they were born and raised in The Bronx.

Dutchess_III's avatar

That’s where they first started serving Pizza in America, in Manhattan in 1905, so yeah.
When I was growing up I can count on one hand how many times we had Pizza, and we went out for it.

JLeslie's avatar

@Dutchess_III Exactly. The Italian and Sicilian immigrants first came into NY, a big wave of them in the very early 1900’s, so Italian food was easy to find in NYC, including pizza.

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