A last wish and a slice of life…

May 11, 2007

A century ago there was a writer named William Sydney Porter, who wrote wonderful stories under the pen name O. Henry. His tales, like ”The Gift of the Magi” and “The Ransom of Red Chief” had surprise endings, and I mention it because he could have done justice to the Philip Workman story.

Workman was a murderer, who was executed in Tennessee this week. As is traditional, he was offered his choice of a final meal, and instead he asked prison officials to buy a vegetarian pizza for a nearby homeless person. They said forget it, the taxpayers don’t give us money to donate to charity, and then they carried out the death sentence.

Then an amazing thing happened. People heard about the request, and began ordering large numbers of pizzas for homeless shelters. Even PETA, the animal rights group, got into the act because of the vegetarian angle. Their Website says, “Nothing like a few veggie pizzas to give a sad story a happy ending.” ”Happy ending” might be a stretch, but you get the point.

One more thing, since I began this with an author. There’s another famous writer, Charles Dickens, who could have done a crackerjack job writing about the prison folks who wouldn’t get a pizza for a homeless person. Here’s the story

More Oddly Enough Blogpizza300.jpg

What do you want on your tombstone? A pizza in a 2006 file photo. REUTERS//Eric Gaillard 

5 comments

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…And so begins the story of the Vegetarian Pizza Ghost…

“Rut roh, Raggy!”

Posted by K | Report as abusive

There has to be a way to capitalize on this marketing opportunity. Just spitballing:

– Death by Pizza (All toppings, extra pineapple)
“The last pizza you’ll ever want.”

– Dead Man Walking (Spicoli’s double sausage and cheese, hold the sausage)
“If we’re not there in 30 minutes, we’ll deliver to your next of kin.”

And to think, I almost used “What do you want on YOUR Tombstone?” as my main headline, but thought better of it.

Posted by Robert Basler | Report as abusive

Wait — you think about this stuff?

Of course not, but I had you there for a minute, didn’t I?

Posted by Robert Basler | Report as abusive