2020-11-01: Pizza Night with Vegan Ham

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Pizza Night with Vegan Ham
Vegan ham arrives at Twisted Toppings. A number of people discuss and try this, many already know each other.
IC Date November 1st, 2020
IC Time Late Afternoon
Players Bobbi, Midge, Ross, Thorn, and Vic Rasmussen
Location Twisted Toppings

When they first met on Thorn's first day in Prospect, Bobbi 365th, there was discussion of the pizza at Twisted Toppings, a shop owned by Steele where Topeka works. Making plans for a late lunch or perhaps an early dinner, Bobbi and Thorn agree to meet there. It's a lovely November afternoon, 77 degrees and a light breeze. Standing in front of the shop, Bobbi waits for Thorn's arrival. Today she's wearing a short high-waisted black dress with light pink polka dots of varied shapes and sizes, her dreadlocks up with a matching light pink ribbon gently woven through, a pair of fashionable black plastic frame glasses, and black ballet pumps. Holding a small black purse -- likely vegan mushroom leather -- in both her hands, Bobbi waits, a small smile on her face as she looks to the ground almost shyly.

When you're working on a house, dinner is always a good idea. The invitation came when Thorn was in the middle of finishing the floor in the living area, a final coat of polyurethane going down to give the floor a muted shine and protect it from anyone who might wander through with rough things on the soles of their shoes. It honestly might be a requirement, for visitors, to go without, in order to keep the floor nice.

After showering and making sure she didn't smell of chemicals and flooring, a quick flick of time over the room ensures that, when she got home, things would be nice and dry. Dressed for the weather in a lacy off-the-shoulder top and some khaki shorts with her everpresent chucks tied on, the trip over didn't take very long. Sure, she could have taken an Uber or the borrowed motorcycle, but the weather was nice and she hadn't walked this way yet. Messsenger bag in tow, Thorn arrived a little before the agreed-upon time and caught sight of the tattooed woman waiting.

"Bobbi!" She calls, waving her hand as she approaches, in case the teeming crowds somehow conspired to keep her invisible. "Been waiting long?"

Still looking to the ground, Bobbi hears her name called, and her smile brightens. Looking up her eyes -- with a light twinkle -- meet Thorn's. "Waiting long?" Bobbi echoes back to Thorn, "depends on what you're asking about." A beat and she lightly shakes her head, and responds, "No, not long." Stepping towards Thorn, Bobbi wraps her up in a big ol' hippie hug, gently rubbing her back as she takes time for their hearts to synchronize and their chakras to align. Stepping back, she keeps hold of Thorn's shoulders and gazes into her eyes telling her, "That thing called Yelp? It works. I got them to carry vegan cheese and gluten free crusts. Still waiting for them to get the vegan ham, but they said that was because of an issue with the distributor. I'm thinking maybe I should just get into the SHAM business, what do you think?"

Sure, 'waiting long' depends entirely on the point of view of the person that's observing it. What's long for Thorn might be not so long for Bobbi, and with a smile, she leans into the hug, giving Bobbi a tight hug, crossing holding one wrist in the other hand to squeeze. And that hug is held for just as long as it takes for hearts and chakras to synchronize. It's not something she understands, but being hugged is always a good thing, and makes her feel better, so...heart and chakra alignment go!

"I've heard of it, but haven't had a chance to do much exploring. Getting something done, though? Behold the power of the internet!" Her hands stay on Bobbi's hips, just above the waistband of her shorts, the distance between the pair minuscule at best. Seems Thorn is comfortable with Bobbi being in her personal space. "I've got to admit, I've never exactly had vegan cheese...when I do vegetarianism, it's generally with me being okay with butter and cheese. Is it good? And...SHAM?" She tilts her head to the side, curious. "Selective Ham...something?"

Or perhaps 'waiting long' depends on just what it is you've been waiting for ... "I know!" Bobbi says of the internet, "and it has kitties and puppies and -- " Bobbi looks to Thorn with a huge grin, eyes wide, as if telling her something she might never have heard before. "Do. you. know. what. a. SLOTH. is?" Bobbi asks, dragging out the question for emphasis. Apparently Bobbi has becomes recently acquainted with animals the internet. "Well, you don't have to have that," Bobbi notes to Thorn, "and I don't get the gluten free crust, I think I was just being helpful and difficult that day, but it's there if you want it." Bobbi nods lightly and says, "Well, I made the SHAM so it's gotta be good. Just hopefully the distributors will deliver it soon ... " Foreshadowing. "But SHAM, like SPAM meets Actual Pain, y'know? Champagne? Sham Ham? SHAM? Oh forget it ... " Bobbi turns and opens the door, letting the two enter the pizza place together.

Enthusiasm, about anything, is almost always a good thing, but when it comes to puppies, kittens, and sloths? Thorn, basically, lights up, eyes wide, mouth open in a genuine smile. "I know! They're so slow and cute, aren't they? I've got to send you this one video of baby sloths that they wrap in these little Christmas sweaters and they're just so /adorable!/" No, she doesn't squeal, but she's close, bouncing a little with excitement. The explanation of SHAM - sham ham - kind of went over her head and she giggles, blushing a little with a shake of her head, her hair bouncing before she looks back up. "I've got to try it, though. If it tastes just as good minus the exploitation of animals, so much the better." Vegan butter, though....that can't be a thing, right?

"Why, thank you!" Thorn says cheerfully as the door is opened, walking through the double doors alongside Bobbi, taking in the sight of the pizza place...well, that and the smell. "Oh that's nice..." she says at the scent of crust becoming crusty with just that little whiff of burnt. "What do you think? Pineapple and cheese for preparation for the SHAM?"

"Docile too," Bobbi concurs with a light nod as she makes her way into Twisted Toppings with Thorn, "and yes you've got to send me that. I know it's not the same, but there's this one girl who shows up at the Roasters Basement occasionally who has a pet Slow Loris. You can tickle it gently and it raises it's arms. I think technically it's trying to present it's poison glands, but really it just looks darling." Bobbi notes, "Well, we can't try to the SHAM yet as there's -- " Bobbi pauses wide eyed staring at the board. "THEY. GOT. IT. IN," Bobbi notes sound more than a little like Elaine from Seinfeld. "Ok, I know what I'm getting." The excitement of the arrival of SHAM has Bobbi's head happily nodding like some sort of bobble-head doll as she waits in line to make her order. Likely the staff has already heard her order.

Being with Bobbi in public is an interesting thing that Thorn has learned to deal with. She can be capricious when it comes to things, Thorn has found, and when something happens that ticks a box for Bobbi - I.E., the introduction of the vegan ham at the pizza shop - of course she's going to show a little...or, rather, a lot of excitement! Thorn giggles, almost expecting Bobbi to start bouncing and, leaning around, she smiles at the hapless gal at the counter waiting for the order. "You heard the lady. One large, pineapple and vegan ham, vegan cheese. Regular deep dish crust." A pair of bills are slipped out of her hip pocket and pushed across the counter with the tip jug, a repurposed soda pitcher, tapped with a fingertip to indicate where the change should go.

As Thorn places the order, Bobbi nods along in eager confirmation. Though when Thorn pays, Bobbi seems a bit surprised, though doesn't make any attempts to stop her. "Well that's sweet of you," Bobbi says as she looks to Thorn with a smile, "Tell you what, when we get to the booth, I'll let you feel me up for ten seconds." Bobbi pauses, perfect poker-face, letting that hang there for a moment, the stunned cashier looking on. Finally, though, Bobbi cracks and let's out a giggle, indicating a joke. "Still," she says as she takes Thorn by the hand, "let's get a booth."

Thorn blushes faintly at something Bobbi said, giggling, brushing her hair back behind her shoulders as they head for one of the open booths near the door. "Ten whole seconds? I'll have to be efficient. Plan my route. Let's...let's take a rain check on that. I'll bank the time and use it at a later date, okay?" Thorn winks and slides into the booth after gathering water glasses and one of those pitchers. The little paper 69 (nice) hung on the peg near the edge of the table so the pizza, when ready, will be delivered to the right place.

Having gotten a call from Ross to meet him at Twisted Toppings, Vic caught a ride on a bus and walked the last half block from the stop. Stepping into the restaurant she sees two familiar faces among the customers and smiles. She waves to them and walks up to the counter and puts in an order for a junior sized (personal) pizza with pepperoni, sausage, black olives and jalapeno slices as well as a kiwi strawberry Snapple.

Ross arrives at around the same time, lining up behind Vic and waving to the others. One of those faces over there is familiar, at least. "Let's see, personal with roast beef and green peppers? Though I should look up what a Sherman Tank actually is, there."

"They're not going anywhere," Bobbi says with a laugh as she makes her way to the booth with Thorn, "at least I don't think they are." Sliding into the booth across from Thorn, Bobbi places some napkins on the table, and begins to pour water for the two of them. "I was realizing as you were ordering," Bobbi begins to say to Thorn, "that the gummy bears are probably not vegan, which means that's the next thing I need to take care of. Like a half pineapple and vegan ham and half gummy bear and jalapeno pizza? That sounds pretty good, right?" Bobbi pauses, before adding, "Don't look at me like that, I'm not pregnant."

Sitting at the booth, Bobbi gets a bigger smile as she notices Ross and Vic enter. "Ross! Vic!" Bobbi calls out to them, "They. Got. The. Vegan. Ham! We ordered a large pie, you'll have to try a slice." Realizing she's excitedly shoutting across the restaurant, Bobbi gets a big sheepish toothy grin as she shrinks back in the booth, giving them a shy little wave with the fingers on her left hand.

Midge arrives looking a bit too well dressed for the place but in a business fashion, she certainly isnt looking to grace a runway. The too tall woman moves toward the front counter to order.

One of the new faces, Thorn recognizes. Vic gets a cheerful wave and a smile. "You should, Vic. Bobbi's raving about it." The other two, not so much. She sits back in the booth with her legs facing out so she can watch the whole place.

At the left booth, Thorn says "I hope they don't. Just having to get the ink redone would be a tragedy."

Grinning, Vic says to Ross, "Did you want to talk privately or join up with those two?" indicating Bobbi Thorn with a nod in their direction as her hands are soon to be full with her pizza and her Snapple bottle.

At the left booth, Bobbi says "My tattoo artist had a face tattoo he didn't like anymore. He excised it with a knife and then tattooed over that."

Midge orders quietly and is directed to a table to wait. She smiles politely enough at those who give her a second look but is generally not intrusive.

Ross stares at Bobbi like she just grew a second head and it is pregnant. "Excellent, I've got a new hydraulic press that needs testing out, I'll take some home with me." He nods to Vic and starts over in that direction, after tacking on an Arnold Palmer to his order.

Thorn makes a face at something Bobbi mentioned - horror? Yeah. Face of horror at something Bobbi mentioned. It's a cross between surprised and 'EGAD' which translates rather well withour words. "Plenty of room if you don't mind chat about sloths, vegan ham which this lovely lady convinced this place to carry, and whatever esoteric things come into conversation." Midge is noticed but since she doesn't know who Midge is, simply gives her a smile and a nod before continuing on with her conversation.

"Hmmph," Bobbi utters as her enthusiasm for vegan ham isn't shared by all, but it seems clear she isn't actaully upset and kind of knows how ridiculous she can be to others. "Still welcome to join us," she informs them. Looking back to Thorn and seeing her horror she notes, "It's true! but I guess I won't be telling you about the other things he's done. I thought /that/ was interesting and polite conversation." A beat and she adds, "Well, I had to actually /make/ the vegan ham in order to get them to carry it, but it all worked out."

Vic slides into the booth next to Bobbi following Ross' lead. "Hey gals," she says to both of the other women she's joining.

At the left booth, Vic asks Thorn, "Have you met Ross?" And to Ross, indicating the woman she just addressed, "Have you met Thorn?"

"I have now." Thorn says with a smile, dimples appearing as she offers a hand. "Thorn Montoya, at your service. A pleasure."

Midge gets a pizza for one and moves across to a table not too far away from the rest of you. She settles down to enjoy her dinner and stop displaying how tall she is. It works.

At the left booth, Ross shakes hands briefly with Thorn. "Ross Strickland, likewise. And 'vegan ham', really? They should just call it what it really is, Advanced Ham Substitute." Yeah, he's not actually bothered either, it's just an easy target for kidding around.

At the left booth, Bobbi sliding in to make room for Vic, Bobbi eyes Ross's Drink and notes, "You know what they call an Arnold Palmer with Vodka? A John Daly." Bobbi tilts her head to side-to-side as she considers this and says, "I went with SHAM Brand Vegan Ham. The distributor required a unique name. I don't get why they had vegan cheese, but not vegan ham, but ... problem solved." Bobbi gives a single emphatic nod, quite proud of herself.

Vic laughs at something said at the table and says something at the table after which she eats a slice of her personal pizza.

At the left booth, Vic says, "Vegan meat... its an oxymoron and shall never pass these lips willingly," with a grin before attacking her first slice of pizza.

"I admit, I've never tried the stuff but, as I told Bobbi, if it tastes the same but doesn't have the cruelty attached, why not? Might be healthier, too." Just don't ask Thorn about vegan bacon because that's just sacrilegious. She takes a sip of her water, watching the pizza being formed behind the counter, up to and including the addition of several handfuls of the diced vegan ham along with the cheese before it's alls lid into the pizza oven. Another five minutes and it'll be out and ready for sampling.

Midge eats her now dubbed 'cruel' pepperoni slice. There is a slight frown but since the vegans arent preaching the end of her bacon, she doesn't interject. She hunches her shoulders a little now though, not wanting to be noticed for her extra mild evil.

At the left booth, Ross glances over to Thorn. "If." That's as far as he gets into anything resembling a real political issue, though. After all, it's already too late for anything that's already in the kitchen. "Anyway, besides, that, what've you guys been up to lately?"

"Cruelty free?" Bobbi begins to say to her table, "Sure. Healthier? Well, I don't know how healthy actual ham is for you, but there's kinda a ridiculous amount of salt involved in the makings." Bobbi licks her lips lightly as she too eyes their pizza being prepared. "We only have about ten seconds of our day planned, otherwise just pizza and hanging out. Nice relaxed Sunday."

At the left booth, Bobbi says "Oh! Though Ross, I do need to show you the car I just rebuilt. I think you're into that stuff, right? You ever see a Subaru BRAT break 200 before?"

"Jesus, that thing..." Thorn laughs and rocks in the boot. "I swear, Bobbi, I could barely keep my head out of the back of the seat. It was like some giant thing was pressing their hand on me and just saying 'you stay there while the world blurs.'" Apparently Thorn has dealt with the BRAT or, at least, experienced it for herself. Vic's comment about Vegan Meat is met with a nod. "It's really not that bad. That Impossible stuff is fairly decent. I even know a place that does impossible chorizo for some pretty decent breakfast burritos - if you do eggs, that is."

At the left booth, Vic snorts, "Watch out for the impossible, the Dox'll get you sooner or later."

After adding a quite but biting comment to the conversation at the booth, Vic proceeds to drink some of her Snapple and works on another of the three remaining quarters of her personal pizza.

At the left booth, Ross offers Bobbi a shrug, he doesn't /mind/ cars but he's not particularly a car guy, it seems. "You wouldn't really see it, though, would you? This sounds like that old urban legend about the guys who hooked up a jet engine to a truck. Hopefully just putting a rock on the gas pedal."

Just like magic, the pizza comes out and is sliced into eight equal slices with a blade that looks like the bottom of a rocking chair made for sadists, gets slid on to a platter, and is brought out to the table. "Number 69 (nice), pineapple and vegan ham on hand tossed. Enjoy, you four." Thorn bounces and grins, nodding to the server. "Thanks." Plates - two of them - are distributed and slices are passed out to those who want them, thorn leaning close to sniff at it, squeeze one of the bits of ham with thumb and forefinger, plucking it off and tasting it. "Not bad..." she says as her initial assessment. "I'll have to do more experiments."

At the left booth, Thorn says "No dox here. Just...tasty."

At the left booth, Bobbi says "You'd see it just fine if you were in it. Rebuilt it myself, bunch of custom welding too. Evie asked me to make her a 'Stig' outfit and she ended up borrowing the BRAT and driving around town in it. Well, whatever, you should still come check out my workshop someday. Something there might interest you."

Midge tidies up her place after finishing the small pie. She decides to talk after all. "Well the issue is whether its sustainable. Right now regular meat is cheaper. If the environmentalists really want to compete with real meat that tastes better and is psychologically what everyone wants, they're going to have to cut cost....sorry." She stands and tosses the cardboard box in the trash.

"ooooh," Bobbi says excitedly, eyeing the pizza as it arrives before them. ~~ Pizza, We got Pizza, Tasty Pizza, Yummy Pizza ~~ Bobbi begins to sing with an almost childlike. About to grab a slice, she pauses as Midge says something. "Well," Bobbi starts to say, "at least for the Vegan Ham here, I sell it to the distributor at cost, and he takes a nominal fee, but ... ends up cheaper than the ham. I went for taste as opposed to nutrition, but if that was the focus ... " Bobbi looks back to the pizza and grabs herself a slice. "Try one if you like," she says as she bites into the slice. "oh-ho-ho-ho yeah," Bobbi says with a euphoric smile as she melts slightly in the booth, "That's what I'm talking about."

Vic turns in her seat to look at Midge for a moment and nods in agreement. "Also, there's cruelty free and there's not using prey animals for food out of misaligned morals. You can have beef, pork and other meats without the cruelty. Maybe its harder to do, maybe its a bit more expensive, but..." She just trails off and returns her gaze to Bobbi and says something quietly to her at the table.

At the left booth, Vic says "Kind of like how the Spirit of a mug of coffee wants to be drunk."

Midge shakes her head. "Hunting with a rifle is cruelty free if your a good shot. Everything else carries some degree of suffering. We just pay to have someone else drop the knife." SHe shrugs and takes the offered slice. "Well okay I will." She chews it with a curious expression by her face. "Well it blends well with the cheese and grease hold on." She picks a piece of not ham off and eats it alone. "It doesn't taste like ham but it doesn't taste bad either."

Ross glances over toward Vic for a moment. "And that is how we get the Dish of the Day. Which-- I dunno, I'd need to wrap my head around it if and when it actually happened, I guess." Not that this slows him down from attacking the Philly cheese personal, mind you.

At the left booth, Bobbi says "I think you'll find that the Spirit of an animal has interests beyond just being eaten, but it will give freely of it's body in certain circumstances. I mean, we all would, right?"

At the left booth, Ross says "That's why we have two spleens."

At the left booth, Thorn says "One, actually...two of a lot of other stuff, though."

Vic doesn't return her gaze to Midge but, in response to the other woman's comment, raises a hand in the air, one finger pointing and shaking in support of the words. "Amen, sister!" she says.

"I am a good shot," Bobbi notes as she takes another bite of her pizza. Bobbi, the vegan, is apparently also a hunter, and a damn good one at that. She contains multitudes. Also contains another bite of pizza. *munch*

Midge's accent marks her as Middle Eastern though her dark skin might have suggested African American on first glance. She grins as Bobbi claims to be a good shot. "Oh Im sure, you just get that fake ham in your sights and kapow!" She laughs.

Thorn takes a bite of her piping hot slice of pizza, very nearly burning the top of her mouth with molten cheese, ending up doing the 'hoo hoo hoo' blow out thing to cool it, chewing and finally swallowing. "Ain't bad at all." she observes. "A little salty, like bacon, doesn't chew the same but...for vegan, I can deal with it." Bite. "Hunting, sustainable farming, and all that stuff is another discussion. Right now, this..." She taps the pizza on the tray. "For what it is, face value, ain't bad."

At the left booth, Ross says "Anyway, yeah, workshop. I got a few experimental rigs I've been tinkering with, I just need to get around to bulling through the last part. Standard 80-20 rule, the first 80 percent takes 80 percent of the work and the last 20 percent takes the other 80 percent."

"Sustainable and biodynamic," Bobbi gently corrects regarding her preferred method of farming. Because nothing optimizes crop yield like Feng Shui. Taking another bite of her slice, Bobbi nods in agreement with Thorn.

At the left booth, Bobbi swallowing her bite, Bobbi looks to Ross, and notes, "Well, if you ever care to showoff, I'd be interested in seeing what you've been working on."

Vic listens to the conversation at her table and continues working on the second half of her personal pizza.

Midge chuckles. "Well I appreciate the sample. I'm assuming you don't want it back so Ill just make it disappear, no?" She takes another big bite of the slice.

Ross looks over to Midge and shrugs. "Consider it my share, I'm fine over here, really. That chorizo sounded like it's worth checking out, though."

"It's really not bad, Ross. Don't knock it until you've tried it." Thorn takes another bite, following it with a third. Midge's comments on farming and Bobbi's shooting prowess get a grin. "You'd be surprised at how wiley those vegan hams can be. Take your leg off if you're not careful and get them with the first shot. Hunters of Vegan Hams have to carry two guns - one for the ham, and one for themselves in case they miss." Thorn taps her nose. "I'll get you some. Make you some tacos. Tortillas as big as abuelita's knee."

"She can totally have any share set aside for me," Vic says before tackling the last slice of her pizza.

Midge frowns. "Sorry about that. I thought it was hers." She looks a bit chagrined as it now appears Bobbi shared Ross's pizza. "Well ughm, nice meeting you all.." She looks like she wants to disappear now. She moves toward the door.

Bobbi covers her mouth as she giggles a bit while eating some pizza, thanks to Thorn's joking. As Midge leaves, Bobbi watches her for a moment, before looking back to those at her table, giving a little shrug, and starting on her crust.

At the left booth, Bobbi says "I taught a friend how to flirt awhile ago. She was tasked with trying it out in public. That was the girl she tried it on. Worked. I was kinda in the background, but I don't think she remembered. Probably for the best."

At the left booth, Ross shakes his head. "I'm pretty sure 'nice shoes' would have worked on her. I could be wrong, though."

At the left booth, Bobbi says "I never said it was hard mode."

At the left booth, Thorn says "Either it worked really, really well or really, really poorly. Flirting lessons from Bobbi might be an interesting gift for something like a white elephant gift exchange...."

Thorn bounces. "We should totally do that, you know. Big white elephant gift exchange for those in the know, as it were."

Vic finishes her pizza and drink. She says, "Thanks for inviting me out for dinner Ross, sorry if you had an agenda we sidelined," then, addressing Bobbi and Thorn, she adds, "Nice running into you two again," and to Bobbi only, "When are we doing that opera with your friend Joe and do we go shopping for outfits first?"

Ross shakes his head. "Nah, it's fine, 'getting out for dinner' pretty much was the agenda. Where you headed, though?"

"Just let me know," Bobbi says to Vic with a smile, "I can generally make my schedule available. We'll want to do it before December though, as I still have free slots to actually work the base then." A beat and she adds, "Thanks for joining us. Ross, let me know if you wanna do workshop visits."

Vic says, "Back to the gym, got a class with Raise that I'm attending this month that'll help me out if I ever have to face any trouble. Defensive training."

"One of the advantages of owning your own business is that you can do what you want most of the time." Thorn observes, gnawing on her pizza crust. "She's good with teaching. Showed me how to sauna the other day and, let me tell you, that was eye opening." Vic's defensive training is noted. "Do you get into trouble enough to require knowing, or are you of the school that knowing is half the battle?"

Thorn's comment about the sauna just gets a tilt of the head and a grin from Bobbi.

Ross rises to his feet and nods to Vic. "Yeah, that's cool. I'll catch up with you guys another time, then. And hey, she's a woman on Earth, there's always someone out there ready to be a jerk. I think it's a good idea either way."

Vic stands and takes the almost empty Snapple bottle with her. "See you all later," she says as she heads out to catch the bus back to Raise's MMA gym.