Whether techno-dystopian or just regular dystopian, sci-fi authors’ visions of the future seem to agree that, given the option, most human beings would be fine with having tubes inserted into either end of their digestive tracts, TVs placed directly in front of their eyes, and a nice comfy couch propped under their slowly growing butts so they never have to move again. We’re lazy bastards, in other words. And soon, we won’t even have to face the shame of looking another human being in the eyes when we’ve finally roused ourselves long enough to secure another round of the sodium-laden garbage corporate interests have trained us to crave. In other words, the pizza ATM has now officially arrived in America.
Cincinnati Magazine rings the warning bell, reporting on a “pizza ATM” recently installed in the Fenwick Place residence hall at Xavier University. The device has both a refrigerated compartment containing ready-to-bake “artisan” pizzas, and a convection oven into which the pizzas are dropped when a student approaches the machine—which, no, doesn’t know how high you are right now, so relax—only to emerge, hot and hopefully at least a little bit crispy, three minutes later. When the machine begins to run low, food-service employees will be notified on their phones and prompted to come and refill the machine. (Until the machine figures out how to get another machine to make and bring it more pizzas. Then we’re fucked.)
About the pizzas, Xavier University Assistant Vice President Jude Kiah says, “This machine delivers a pizza which is really second to no other pizza I’ve had,” which seems like hyperbole until he adds, “It’s serving the exact same quality pizza that’s in the dining facility.” And, as anyone who attended college can attest, A Little Caesar’s Hot-N-Ready seems like gourmet cuisine compared to the slop dished out in most dining halls.
“But,” you might say, “pizza ATMs have existed in Europe since 2012. This is simply the first one in the U.S. You’re being a little overdramatic here.” Sure, that first part is true. As for the second? Well, as we all know, things in Europe are going just fine.