#PizzaItForward

So, for the past few weeks I’ve been trying to convey a distinct message with a story that I wanted to share but always felt that I couldn’t quite find the right words. Something wonderful happened, yesterday, that has lead me to believe I need to share this story regardless of whether I get the messaging correct.

I’m not sure how many people heard of this story or not, I know it was big in a lot of circles, but I still think many people missed out on the goodess.

In late September the Fire Department in Slave Lake, Alberta, Canada was hosting a PTSD Seminar for Firefighters and decided to order pizza for dinner for everyone.

Local Fire Chief, Alex Pavcek, asked one of his team to call ‘Alimo’s Pizza’ in Slave Lake to order pizza for the crew, gave him his credit card to pay for it and told him to tell ‘Alimo’s Pizza’ they’d drive down and pick up the pizzas when they were ready.

Not knowing the phone number for ‘Alimo’s Pizza’ the firefighter placing the order went to google to find it. And with an easy mix-up, he used google to find the phone number for ‘Alamo’s Pizza’. He phoned and placed an order with ‘Alamo’s Pizza’ (in San Antionio, Texas) not realizing that he’d called Texas and not realizing that he’d misspelled the restaurant’s name by one letter.

An hour and a half later ‘Alamo’s Pizza’ in San Antonio called them to let them know their pizza’s would be ready for pickup in ten minutes. A different firefighter answered the phone and when he saw the number on call display, he realized something wasn’t right. They googled the area code and thought ‘Why was Alimo’s calling from a San Antonio number?’. Then they realized they’d made a huge mistake.

The Slave Lake Fire Department had called ‘Alamo’s Pizza’ in San Antonio, Texas rather than ‘Alimo’s Pizza’ in Slave Lake, Alberta. They’d paid for 18 pizzas and ‘Alamo’s Pizza’ in San Antonio had spent the past hour and a half making all of these pizza’s.

The Slave Lake Fire Chief, Alex Pavcek, called up Alamo’s Pizza in San Antonio to let them know about this hilarious, huge mistake that was made and that they wouldn’t be down to pick up these pizzas. The Alamo’s Pizza Manager in San Antonio, laughing over the mistake offered to refund their purchase but Pavcek wouldn’t have it. 18 pizzas was a large order and a lot of money for that restaurant and he didn’t want that food to go to waste.

So, instead, Pavcek suggested that Alamo’s take the pizza and deliver it to local fire departments in his area. The owner of Alamo’s obliged and the pizzas were dlievered to firefighters in local fire departments in San Antonio, Texas, telling them they were a gift from the firefighters in Slave Lake, Alberta and to ‘pizza it forward’ if they ever get the opportunity.

Photo of the San Antonio fire fighters eating their pizza! The photo courtesy of Alex Pavcek (from GlobalNews.ca

The act of kindness sparked an international campaign of paying it forward where Fire Departments, Police Depatments, Hospitals and other locations across Canada and the USA were being randomly delivered pizza for their first-responders and given the message #PizzaItForward.

It was a really heartwarming story to follow on Twitter and Instagram. If you search the hashtag you can still find photos and stories of police officers and nurses, doctors and firefighters being handed large quantities of pizza, ‘just because’.

I share this story because, for weeks now, I’ve been wanting to promote the notion that paying it forward is one of the best things that we can do for fellow human kind. ESPECIALLY, with the holidays coming up. American Thanksgiving is next month and Christmas and Hanukkah will be here before we know it. Random acts of kindness are wonderful things to do all year, but I find them especially important during the holidays! Holidays can be really difficult times for a lot of families, whether they can’t afford things or have lost loved ones or are just struggling with mental health issues. There are plenty of different things that can make holidays really hard.

I’ve been wanting to encourage every person who reads my blog to go out and ‘Pay It Forward’ to a stranger, to a friend, to a family member… just to someone who will appreciate it. Then, yesterday as I was counting ballots for the Election, an extremely thoughtful, kind individual (Katherine) who reads this blog did something extremely, extremely kind for me with a simple note that said ‘Pay It Forward’. It was so kind I actually started to cry when I saw it. I thought of how good it felt and how happy it made me, and I thought, yeah, I have to pass this on.

To the firefighters of Slave Lake, all of the people who took part in the #PizzaItForward campaign, and to Katherine, thank you. Thank you for your random acts of kindness, thank you for spreading so much good in the world.

I have plans to take Katherine’s kindness and pay it forward, though I doubt my abilities to make someone as happy as she made me, I’m definitely going to try. And, since I’m here and telling you these stories, I’d like to encourage anyone who reads this to do commit their own random act of kindness. To do something nice for someone you know, or someone you don’t, and tell them to pay it forward. Ahead of this holiday season, the world could definitely use a lot more kindness in it. And it might as well start with you and I… right here and now.

#PizzaItForward #PayItForward #KindnessAboveAll

34 thoughts on “#PizzaItForward

    1. It was pretty awesome. There’s lots of videos of surprised police officers and doctors and nurses and firefighters all over twitter and their surprised faces when people give them all this pizza!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s such a wonderful story, I don’t think I’ll ever forget! I try to remember good things like these so when I’m down and out and doubting the world, these stories serve as a reminder there are good people in it!

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Absolutely amazing post! I love “pay it forward”! Kindness is so very important in this world. I saw a picture a few years ago with a cute little kitten and it said “Kindness, Sprinkle that shit everywhere!” Have a great day Vee! Thanks for sharing this!

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  2. This is so sweet Vee. Thanks for sharing. You know my grandma also taught me something on these lines. She said, if you meet someone and find that person struggling through something in life. You may not the reasons always, but try to leave that person a little better than how you find them. And coincidentally it’s her birthday tomorrow. And your story has just been read at the right moment. I’ll do something in her name for someone tomorrow. I believe in acts of kindness. And a little goes a long way. Thanks! Keep writing 😊

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    1. Awe! Well I hope you bring a little kindness, or a lot, to whomever you’re paying it forward too! ❤ I'm sure it'll brighten their spirits.

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  3. Great story! I’m hesitant to share this, because I feel like I’m trying to toot my own horn, but that’s definitely not the point of it. A few years ago, I wanted to do something special for my birthday, but I didn’t really care about a party or anything. Instead I invited my friends to go out with me to perform random acts of kindness in the community. Sadly, no one got on board with that part (but they showed up to sing karaoke, go figure). But I decided to still go out by myself and try to do as much as I could. Not much of it was memorable because it didn’t affect anyone immediately. But I did take a dozen fancy cupcakes from a local bakery to the nurses’ station on one floor of the hospital. They were really appreciative, but some of them just looked at me like I was crazy. I guess that’s a normal response, though, when we’re not used to people doing nice things for others just because.

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    1. Awe, that’s a really nice story. Sounds like you live your mantra of promoting kindness wherever you go. You’re sign is up in your place for a reason!

      I think that we should always share the good things we do for one another. If people take it as bragging, they’re likely not the type who would ever do that for someone. Me, I take it as motivation. It’s a reminder that kindness should always come first. I love stories like these because they make me think I need to be doing nicer things for people more often.

      So thank you for being such a kind soul and for being an important piece of motivation for me.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. What a tear jerker! I bet that fireman never lives this down..but his start of pizzaitforward is worth the teasing. Last year I joined in with a local group to make holiday cards for seniors and home bound individual’s..we donate small items to be gifted to them as well. Ive spent all year ofd and on making them…and I hope they have a smile in their faces when they recieve their packages

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