[by Jeffrey | Oct 28th, 2022]
Dedicated readers of Orulio News may have noticed that there was no new installment of our new column “Slice is Right” last week and it is with a heavy heart that we must report the passing of one of our journalists, Ralph Guanhulio, while researching this weekly column on-location in the pizza capital of the world- Van Nuys, California.
Nicknamed “Big Ears” after a freak medical anomaly resulted in his striking appearance, he would often say that he was “less Dumbo and more Trumbo” due to his habit of writing his articles from the bathtub and his penchant for regularly declaring that he was being “blacklisted” and “silenced” by the executives at our company. His fiery attitude and unmistakable wit became undeniable trademarks of his writing style and he turned out countless articles for our esteemed publication over the years.
At this point, readers may be asking themselves: “if he wrote so many articles, why don’t I remember any of them?” The answer for that is simple: he was a pretty bad writer and to be completely honest, most of what he wrote wasn’t even deserving of publication on a leaflet- let alone a reputable news source such as Orulio News. I mean sure, we let him post that article about the Sonic buy-out but in the effort of full transparency: I had to punch-up the SHIT out of that. It was missing most of the contextual information and was mostly just an anti-capitalist screed that denounced both Sega AND Inspire Brands, major silent partners of Orulio News.
Ralph would regularly raise his voice and come to blows with other journalists in the office, routinely throwing inkjet printers at anyone who dared disagree with his misguided takes. When we called his family to tell them news of his passing, they hadn’t communicated with him for years and had even assumed that he had passed back in 2015. He was a real one-of-a-kind guy, and thank god for that. He leaves behind no family and will be missed by very few. Oh yeah, he also mixed an album for Soundass one time. Chucklin’ on the Road. Pretty good record! I used to have it on cassette and would listen to it and laugh and laugh and laugh and laugh. Hehe. It actually kind of reminds me of driving out to Chicago with Cindy Stein. We laughed and laughed and laughed and laughed… Oh, look at silly old me. Getting sentimental again!
In honor of Ralph’s passing, we present to you the last article he submitted to us before tragically choking on a pizza crust alone in a Pizza Hut bathroom. We had told him that we hadn’t planned on publishing it after the dismal response to the first installment of his column, so I think he was acting out. Also, the bathroom he died in wasn’t even like a public bathroom, mind you. He demanded that he be let into the employee bathroom with an extra large cheese pizza or else he would “go Trumbo on their asses”. Whatever. I never liked him anyway. Here’s his article:
I’d like to be able to return to my weekly column here at Orulio News and tell all of my readers that last week was but a bump in the road on the way to greasy enlightenment. However, I regret to inform you that my luck has only taken a turn for the worse. For the first three days I was unable to get a a hold of any of my supervisors back at Orulio HQ. I fear that Tish is in the midst of some kind of power play, using my absence to stage a coup of sorts while there remains a power vacuum at the company. I cannot be sure of this though, as my communication has only been through the disgraced journalist Beth, a Mann of little-to-no note. Not even Jeffrey is answering my texts, which is especially depressing as I was one of the groomsmen at his wedding and had assumed that we shared a very close friendship outside of work. Having a friend right now would be nice, but nice doesn’t pay the bills at the end of the month.
And speaking of the bills, I was upset to learn that Orulio cancelled the company card that was paying for the Marriott Inn I was being put up in. Why the hotel didn’t bring this to my attention sooner? The concierge said that I “looked so sad” when I got back from Pizza Man last week and that kicking me out would have been “like having to crush a bee that had already been viciously drowned in a Pibb Xtra”. Confusing metaphors aside, I was enraged when informed of this and threw an inkjet printer out of the window of my fifth story suite. After being forcibly removed from the premises, I wandered the streets until it appeared before me like a glimmering oasis in the barren desert that is my shitty, shitty life- it was the Costco on Sepulveda and it was glorious. I fell to my knees and wept just at the sight of it. Did I really deserve such good fortune at this moment of deep despair. Fuck yeah I did.
Entering the Costco proved tricky, as I’ve always relied on the kindness of whoever I considered close to me to let me mooch off their membership. Out here in Van Nuys I was starting fresh, I knew no soul and possessed no soul of my own at this point. Someone even called me a “withered husk of an individual”. After sucker-punching them and stealing their membership card, I made a mad dash to the food court. What happened next I can only faintly recall… it was as if a long dormant beast had awoken deep within my belly. My fingers tapped the kiosk at an ungodly pace, I didn’t feel in control of my own body and couldn’t stop myself. I approached the pick-up window and was greeted by an employee with a deeply concerned look on their face. I grimaced as I struggled to balance a hot dog, a chicken bake, a fruit smoothie, a churro AND a full pepperoni pizza over to the soda fountain to serve myself a tall glass of Sierra Mist.
You didn’t click on this article to have me tell you how great a Costco chicken bake is. You don’t come to Orulio to hear us espouse the value of the $1.50 hot dog and soda combo. Hell, you probably won’t even listen when I tell you that yeah, sure- I LIKE the churro but get annoyed that they lightly wrap them in paper as opposed to a proper bag. No, no, no… you sick fucks clicked on this article because you wanted to hear what ol’ Ralph thinks about the pizza at Costco. I almost don’t want to even give you the satisfaction, but fair is only as fair or my name ain’t “Big Ears” (editor’s note: I tried to get Ralph to revise this line when he initially submitted this but he threatened to throw himself off of one of the Disneyland parking garages if we didn’t print exactly what he mailed to us on slightly-stained printer paper).
The pizza at Costco is FINE. I mean, it’s practically a steal at $9.99. But if you want me to be honest, I’d rather just make a frozen pizza at home and I could probably get TWO at that price-point. As far as the offerings go at your average Costco food court, I’d put almost everything else above it. But if you’re planning a party or are just looking for a cheaper alternative to the Dominos and Pizza Huts of the world, it might be worth it to suck it up and head down to the local Costco. I ate the whole thing and I’m worse off because of it. I’m disgusting and if I’m already feeling this low after two weeks, I’m worried about my future well-being. Fuck you, Tish Remmly.