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Food & Drink Society & Culture

How to Get Out of Eating Pizza in a Group Setting

While most children’s favorite food is pizza, some kids are picky eaters who either get grossed out by foods with many ingredients that can’t be deciphered or just simply don’t like pizza. While a little odd, it’s not terribly unusual to dislike pizza as a kid. It becomes weirder when you reach adolescence and you’re still holding out. How do you actually make it through the teenage and, for the very stubborn, even college years without giving in and eating pizza with everyone else?

This scenario presents itself constantly. It’s the trademark food of any teenage get-together. Whether you’re dishing over the cutest guys at a sleepover, participating in some sort of church youth group activity, or the team bus stops off for a bite after the game, there is sure to be pizza aplenty. While everyone else is chowing down, you’re once again made fun of, pressured into trying some, or flat-out forgotten.

What are your options to avoid eating the pizza, not causing a ruckus, and not having your friends give you a hard time? There are ample ways to get out of eating pizza and saving face, but in many instances you’ll likely go hungry.

  • Fill up on the crust. Whether you’re just eating the crust scraps off someone else’s pizza or taking your own pieces and discarding the flavorful part, you could conceivably fill yourself up on bready goodness until you are able to enjoy a real meal.
  • Take a few pieces and feed it to a dog under the table, if possible. There’s no trace of any discarded food and you’ve made a great friend!
  • Pretend to eat it to avoid making a scene. Take a few slices and strategically discard them in a paper cup or crumpled napkins when no one’s watching.
  • Don’t want to cause a scene by complaining “pizza again??” Pretend to be sick! When people see you sulking to yourself with no food, just tell them your stomach hurts.
  • When ordering, insist dessert pizza, bread sticks, and/or chicken wings are added to the order. Most pizza joints carry these items and a few people are sure to agree with you that additional side items are a good plan. In dire situations, a salad could even suffice.
  • Continuing with the salad theme, claim you’re on a diet with a strict calorie count. Or you’re on a low-carb diet. “Ahhh, that looks so good you guys, but seriously, my doctor says I can’t. Can we just get a couple side salads? Ugh, this sucks!”
  • Gaining steam on the excuses-to-avoid-pizza list is dietary restrictions. Whether the crust has glucose or the cheese has lactose, you have several options to consider. Of course, if you claim lactose intolerance, you have to keep that charade alive whenever there’s ice cream.
  • Dental or oral injuries are surefire ways to avoid eating pizza. “I have a loose crown, I can’t bite down on anything until I see the dentist. Ugh, this blows!”
  • Be the last one in line. Maybe it will be gone!
  • Ruin it for everyone and knock the pizzas over or vomit all over them. Now they’ll have to go to Plan B. “God dammit, Ricky puked all over all 24 pies! Now what?!”
  • If there is miraculously someone else present who doesn’t like pizza, become their best friend. Stick together. You’re less likely to be demeaned as a duo.
  • Religious reasons are rarely questioned. Claim you gave it up for Lent. If any Catholics in the crowd call you out, claim you’re some smaller little known branch of Catholicism.
  • Say you’re fasting. Whether for Ramadan or a morning surgical procedure, few can argue.
  • Leave the room, if it’s not too obvious. If you’re at a restaurant, go hide in the bathroom.
  • Pretend to take a call that takes the entirety of the meal. Pace back and forth outside the window shouting at no one. Come back inside just in time to find out it’s all gone! But make sure your friends aren’t being nice and saving you some… that puts you on the spot even more!
  • Claim that you saw the chef use the restroom and not wipe his hands, à la Seinfeld, where “Poppy was a little sloppy”. Refuse to eat the pizza on those grounds.
  • Claim you saw a mouse scurry across the floor, and you won’t eat anything that has been near a mouse. “It could have pooped in the dough, you guys! I can’t believe you’re eating that!”
  • Finally… It’s a very tough thing to do, and you’re opening yourself up to all sorts of hateful commentary, but you could simply be open and honest. “Guys, I don’t like pizza. Can we agree on something else please?” No doubt many will say “Whaaaat??! Oh my god, Ricky, you have to try this!” and cram it down your throat. But if you continue to make your stance known, maybe one day it will hammer home with everyone. “Hey let’s swing through Domino’s and grab some—-oh, right. Ricky’s here. Fuck. Well, let’s just go to KFC instead.”

If you’re even a remotely social individual ages 12 to 18, there will be countless situations where a group of friends is getting pizza. Being that oddball is no fun, but truth be told, you’re probably better off health-wise, and money-wise if everyone is chipping in. Hold your ground and never give in! If you’ve reached adulthood and still don’t eat pizza, you’re likely to get badgered occasionally, but the situation of eating together with a group doesn’t come up as often.


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My Hot Take:
I was this person. From kindergarten through college, I never once gave in and ate the pizza, and I used many of the above suggestions. Most frequently I pretended to be sick, or took a few pieces and fed them to a dog under the table. When I turned 25 I could no longer take the constant ragging from friends and just started eating it.

tl;dr
If you don’t like pizza, you’re going to be the odd one out in a group. Make up an excuse why you can’t eat it.

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