- The Southern Buffet of the Arroyo Wedding on Week 40: Saluting, Swinging, and Santa Fe, Baby.
- Lisa on Sorry Mom, You Suck at Cooking
- Rachamn Benhava on Brocato’s and Join Chickens, Like Your Aunt Nina Probably Had
- admin on Week 47: No Brunch: Just Some Vows, Goat Cheese Balls, and Neil Diamond.
- admin on Get your Happy Ending at The Wharf
Week 23: The “Inn”-laws
May 27, 2011
We’re off to North Carolina to attend a wedding, but more significantly I am meeting Ryan’s family for the first time. My mom always tells me to be careful because when you marry a man you marry his family. I want to tell my future husband that he should be the careful one, because when he marries me he marries MY family, and that is scarier than anything someone else’s family can bring forth.
I’m not too worried. After all, I do have some redeeming qualities such as my willingness to dedicate time and resources to charity every month, a piece of property, and my college studies in Holland. Seeing as his family is Dutch, they may appreciate that. It’s the strange and sinful qualities being uncovered that I’m remotely concerned about, such as the fact that I eat kiwis with the furry skin on, that I own cats, or that I have a second cousin who is a self-proclaimed wiccan and got married on a broomstick.
I hope my encounter with Ryan’s family is not as awkward as his was with mine. My father, upon meeting Ryan, told him that they have a lot in common: Ryan grew up on a cow farm, and my dad was a cow for Halloween. Just when I thought that was an unnecessary statement, my father took it to the next level, proclaiming “Ya can’t milk me!!!”
When we arrived in Beaufort, North Carolina, I was pleased to immediately feel at home. The town reminded me of Cape Cod, but with nice southern accents instead of obnoxious northern ones. We were sharing a hotel room with Ryan’s sister Susan and her husband Rusty and someone thought it would be a great idea to go for a 4 mile run within minutes of arriving. Yearning for acceptance, I joined. You know what they say though, “The family that runs together……..” Nothing. They say absolutely nothing of the sort and the idea was outrageous.
If we can fast-forward through the 72 hours it took to get to brunch on Sunday, I’d like to stress that A. It was a beautiful wedding B. Southerners are much nicer than Northerners C. His mother makes amazing banana bread. D. I won’t be curling my hair in humid environments anymore E. I love pigs, everything from the t-shirt I bought at Piggly Wiggly to the hotdog I inhaled at a family cookout. And, F. I’m not the only one who pee-proofs a room before Ryan arrives home from a late night of drinking.
So, Sunday morning comes and we’re debating where to go for brunch. I begin to imagine shrimp and grits, southern platters, and fried seafood. It takes approximately five minutes before everyone has decided on “Pizza Inn.” We are Beaufort, North Carolina, a waterfront haven for the notorious Blackbeard Pirate, and the kids want pizza. I bet Blackbeard didn’t eat fucking pizza.
A sense of concern comes over me. Having never been to Pizza Inn, I begin to worry that Pizza Inn is related to Village Inn. Even if they are distant cousins, the place will suck. My thoughts are interrupted by Ryan who overeagerly shouts “This is going to be fucking awesome!” Well, that’s the attitude, let’s do this. Mushrooms, all I want are mushrooms. And not the kind you put in peanut butter sandwiches.
When we walk in I’m slightly confused as to why their employees are wearing shirts with cartoon drawings of Hitler. I don’t bother asking and just stare at the buffet of endless pizzas while we wait to be seated. To be honest, I was worried that Pizza Inn was going to have a selection similar to Cici’s pizza buffet, but Pizza Inn is on steroids. They are far from the soup kitchen for soccer moms that serves pizza and calls itself Cici’s.
Once we’re seated I order a beer, it’s after noon anyway, and then the execution of food begins: buffalo chicken pizza, potato pizza, cheese pizza, bacon pizza, sausage pizza, chocolate pizza, pudding pizza, ham pizza, taco pizza, hawaiian pizza, everything pizza. No mushroom pizza but I forgot all about it anyway.
My eyes were so much bigger than my stomach. I wish I could have went back up 3 or 4 times but eventually I was in a food coma zoning in and out of consciousness and staring at the staff as they walked back and forth. Ohhh that’s not Hitler. That’s a tiny pizza man. Is he supposed to be Italian?
Just when I thought I couldn’t move, Ryan let one rip and our entire table evacuated. He is the only person I know that is capable of physically clearing a table of 7. He is disgusting and I love every bit of it. I actually appreciated the evacuation because it forced me to get up and make a few loops around the place before it was safe to sit back down. Sunday’s exercise: check.
While Pizza Inn was amazing, I don’t think I’ll be back. It’s one of those places you have to limit yourself to once a year…or maybe lifetime. They are entirely capable of making you gain weight and the effects are immediate. At a minimum of 340 calories for a simple thin crust pepperoni slice, I think I’d much rather gamble my carbs and calories on the Chinese buffet. Somehow, there is always more room for them.