Thursday, January 13, 2022

The Tale of Bim's

The years I spent not blogging I missed telling stories of places and people the most. It was always unique to read the comments from people that found what I found to be exceptional or interesting to shed light on what someone they know may be feeling. I had a bit of an impromptu blog post several months ago on my Facebook page about a pizza place I went to back in August while working the Road to Indy series in New Jersey and I feel that it is more than right to share on here.

The pizza was amazing, but that’s not the story…
My colleague and I left New Jersey Motorsport Park after a day of working the Road to Indy races there in search of dinner. The night prior had been a chain restaurant and I remembered from the year prior that the pizza in South Jersey is, well, amazing. With the chance of amazing pizza it was a quick search and the highest rated place was Bim’s Pizza so off we went.
The image on the phone map showed a red house and, as the photo I took showed, that’s exactly what it was. This brought a gigantic smile to my face right away in its… uniqueness to everything I’ve seen. My first thought was, “when you DoorDash you do not get this experience!” I didn’t know the experience would turn even more on the verge of magical.
We walked in and I approached the counter and the man behind the counter looked at me and as I processed what to say he chimed in, “I got to tell you that you’re not from around here but the menu is simple. Pizza. No subs, no calzones, just pizza!” I smiled and I ordered as did my colleague.
The man, who we learned had worked there since 1980 and was born in Millville and lived there his entire life, worked with such precision. He said that his 67 year old body wasn’t as precise or as quick as it used to be but I thought that impossible. His wit as well… here was a man that was making two pizzas while taking four pizzas out of the oven while talking to my colleague, who is originally from Denmark, about the differences in pizza in Europe and his underwhelming experience of steak in Texas… it was simply a show to watch him work.
I sat in a corner with my head cocked sideways with a gigantic smile on my face and almost a tear in my eye. It was moving to watch a person work at something with such… perfection; perfection is the word to use. He didn’t skip a beat when a person walked in and picked their order up and the man informed us that the customer was the son of a teacher who had played a role in his life many ways.
Was this Americana at its finest? I felt as if I were in a 90’s tv dramedy about a pizza place owner that had all the connections in town and sort of held the town together.
As I saw the pizzas come out of the oven I knew the moment I had feared for about a dozen minutes had come. It was time to leave, and at that moment I had a deep regret that I don’t have a daily blog because this exchange was the quintessential social encounter I loved writing about. You see, I saw and watched this man in awe. I don’t become awestruck by many and I myself have done many amazing things in life but what this man had I wanted. His ability to socialize with wit, banter, and the occasional empathetic comment was something that if I can become just 10% proficient in life I’d call it a success.
As we left I thought back to one of the first things he told us after he deduced we went from here, “I don’t mind making pizzas for you but I know that you’ll probably never come back…” to which I wrote this and say, “sir, next time I’m in Millville be prepared to make another amazing pepperoni and mushroom pizza and I expect to hear more stories of Millville and everything else that makes encounters like this almost heavenly.”
May be an image of road

1 comment: