I ordered a pizza from Papa John's last night. As my friends and I were enjoying its cheesey goodness, I noticed something interesting on the label. This label listed out the contents of the order, the price, and my address. The interesting thing is that, right at the top, next to my address, it said "Pizza Lover."

Now, I order something from them somewhere between 3 and 4 times a week, and have been a steady customer of that particular franchise for over a year. That is, I'm sure, quite above average. I dont remember ever seeing the "Pizza Lover" designation on the label before, but I never really looked too closely. So, is this actually a designation stored in their customer database that tells them I am a great customer, so the deliverators dont piss me off, or is it merely something they put on all of the boxes, hoping they'll be morons, like myself, and assume it means they're special?

Another interesting note, is that I've noticed they seem to have gotten significantly more polite since I moved into their delivery zone. Is it due to my status as an elite member of the Pizza Lover's guild, or did they just get a new manager who fired all the assholes?

By the way, never order extra cheese from Papa John's. It's a total ripoff, as they dont give you jack.

As an employee of said pizza chain, I can explain the origins of the mysterious "Pizza Lover's Guild." Now, if you'd like to continue believing that you're a member of an unadvertised underground society of pizza comsumptioneers, you probably should stop reading right here.

When you order a pizza for the first time, the order taker must input your phone number, name, and address before he or she can take the order. Some Papa John's employees will conveniently "forget" to ask for your name. This is done intentionally (in most cases) for two reasons:

  1. It's a superfluous entry that's not required for successful delivery of a pizza. It's really only a courtesy. It's not that we don't care about your name, but:

  2. It can be a pain in the ass to get someone's name. The average Papa John's store during the evening rush is a terrible environment for phone conversation. You have a huge oven blaring, often no less than 10 feet from the phones. Also, there are many other employees talking loudly (or in some cases, singing loudly*) over the drone of the oven. We're trained to hear and understand rudimentary toppings and such over the din, but names are nowhere near as simple. You want to get a a customer's name right, so you don't look like a doofus, but trying to understand someone spelling out their full name over the phone can be near impossible. Asking a customer to repeat something upwards of five times will often cause them to hang up in frustration and dial for the nearest Domino's. Sometimes it's just easier to not get the customer's name.

This only applies the first time a customer orders. After the first delivery order is confirmed, the system records all the data for the customer. Database entries are indexed by phone number (which is why we will usually ask for your phone number first).

The operating system that takes care of all this information is called the Profit System (the word "Profit" being an acronym, not just a symbol of the company's greed). It used to be that if the Customer Name field were left blank, it defaulted to "Pizza Lover," but through a revision to the system, the Name field became a required entry. This was done, most likely, in an effort to ensure that the order takers got a name for the customer. Entries that already had the name "Pizza Lover" remained that way. Nowadays, "Pizza Lover" occasionally gets entered manually, but it is more likely that the order taker will fight the noisy environment and get your name anyway.

So, the Pizza Lover designation dosen't mean anything, except that you're an old-school customer. (SlightlyMadman, the manager probably did just lose the assholes. In my experience, assholes at Papa's tend to get fired easily. And you're right about the extra cheese.)

Next time you get a pizza from PJ's, you might want to check the tag for yourself. There's an off-chance you'll find something interesting. While we don't usually put anything non-PC in the place of your name (unless, or course, you've really pissed us off), we do occasionally get more creative than Pizza Lover. If you live in my area, maybe you've recieved something like Pizza Enthusiast, Pizza Fanatic or Pizza Consumption Engineer. Recipients of these designations should feel equally as special as the Lovers.

*I won't mention any names here, but myself and a certain area supervisor have a penchant for singing Grandaddy songs while there aren't any customers in the store. I think that's just us though.

Apologies to the Papa John's corporation if I've exposed just a little too much inside information. ;)

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