“You are an absolute bore after you’ve gone on a long run,” The Devil chided from his end of the couch. “You sit there like a bump on a log, with absolutely no energy. Our fans want witty banter, the rapid fire back and forth that makes our Sunday adventures a must read. All you’re giving them is a moping, irritating silence.”
My guest, who was dressed to the nines in an impeccably tailored suit, was one hundred percent correct.
I had absolutely no energy, my entire body ached, and my desire for total silence was trumped only by my wish for a full body massage.
“I’m sorry,” I offered as sincerely as possible while also using the least amount of energy. “I ran nine miles yesterday and another five this morning. I really just want to sit here and vegetate until I become one with the couch.”
Lucifer looked me up and down, then shook his head in disappointment. “You didn’t prepare anything for today, did you? You never sent me an outline, or even a list of random thoughts to use as conversation starters. We can’t sit here and stare at each other. That doesn’t translate well as a blog post!”
I nodded in agreement. I was not prepared and this was totally all on me.
“You’re always saying you have big ideas you’d like to use in our Sunday adventure, so why don’t you take the lead on this one? You’ve earned the right.”
A smile slowly grew on The Prince of Darkness’ handsome face. “Are you sure? This is your blog, and I wouldn’t want to step on any toes.”
Seriously? The guy crashes at my house every Sunday, eats my food, drinks my Snapple, and he doesn’t want to step on any toes? A little late for that.
“Go for it,” I encouraged. “I’ll just sit here and be the sidekick for once.”
I just shrugged and took a long sip of my Snapple. “Whatever gets you through the day, pal. Now wow me with one of your big ideas from the depths of Hell.”
He straightened his tie, even though it was already perfect, and cleared his throat.
“Last week, when you were talking about your idea for the Forever Single chain of stores, it reminded me that I’ve always wanted to open my own store,” The Devil admitted.
Now that totally caught me off guard.
“But don’t you already run a very lucrative business of trading in human souls?” I questioned. “On top of that, you oversee an enormous hospitality business that provides accommodates for billions of the Damned for all eternity.”
“Sure, but that gets boring after a couple of thousand years,” Lucifer grumbled as he reached into the cooler for a Snapple. “I want to branch out, expand my horizons, and take on something that really speaks to me.”
“I’ve got to know,” I confessed and summoned up the energy to sit up straight, even though it made my entire body moan in pain. “What is this endeavor that so entices you?”
“I want to open a pizzeria,” The Prince of Darkness said the very last thing I expected to come out of his mouth. “Deep dish pizza, baked in the Hell Fire. No other pizzeria in existence can offer that.”
As far as reveals go, this one was even more disappointing than Geraldo Rivera’s opening of Al Capone’s vault. Then again, he did have a point about the uniqueness of his product.
And who the Hell doesn’t love pizza?
“Back before J and I got married, we went to Chicago to visit her Mom,” I decided to tell a story from back in the day since it was related to this conversation, and I didn’t even care that it had to do with my ex-wife. “That was when I had authentic Chicago deep dish pizza for the very first time. It was so good that I insisted we go back a second time before we returned to New York. I still love New York pizza, but deep dish pizza made in Chicago makes me want to cheat on my first love.”
“I’ve researched recipes for decades, and I’m constantly making deep dish pizza for myself and some of my top Demons,” Satan went on the explain. “I think I’m ready to share it with the world. I’ve got eternal Hell Fire, so I make pizza around the clock. And I’ve got plenty of free labor to help with prep and delivery.”
“I know you are a pizza connoisseur,” The Devil stroked my ego. “I was afraid you’d hate it and my dream would be crushed.”
“Dude, do not show up here next week without some,” I ordered.
“You’ll be my very first customer outside of Hell!” Lucifer excitedly exclaimed. “I’ll make sure it’s absolutely perfect. Better than the ones you had in Chicago.”
I don’t always look forward to visits from The Prince of Darkness, but now I could not wait to see him again next week…