Pepperoni and Shaquille O'Neal have at last conceived a child

Illustration for article titled Pepperoni and Shaquille ONeal have at last conceived a child
Photo: Jason Koerner (Getty Images), Image: Papa John’s (Getty Images)

Papa John’s has done us all a solid by ridding itself of its racist and unnervingly sweaty founder “Papa” John Schnatter and focusing instead on board member and American icon Shaquille O’Neal. Now that the company has become less sweaty and racist, it has forged straight ahead into a promising future full of Papadias (it’s a pizza, but a sandwich!). And now it’s introducing another pizza that comes straight from the mind of the Big Baryshnikov himself: the Shaq-a-Roni.

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The new Shaq-sized pie is a Papa John’s standard 16-inch extra-large pizza topped with extra cheese and exactly 66 slices of pepperoni, and cut into eight slices. Remember: Shaq is 7′ 1″, weighs 324 pounds, and wears a size 22 shoe. This pie is practically a Bagel Bite to him. The rest of us should probably use some restraint when ordering this pie and share it with seven other people. However, if you can’t find seven other people to eat pizza with thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, it’s perfectly acceptable to eat the entire pizza yourself. Plus, $1 of every purchase goes to the Papa John’s Foundation, so you’re doing something good for the world by eating all that pizza. Look at you!

But wait, there’s more: Those who order the Shaq-a-Roni will not only be receiving a pizza, they’ll be receiving an experience. Every box is embedded with some secret technomagic (likely genie-powered) that will unveil a world of riches (or something) to Snapchat users. Just open the app, point your phone’s camera at the pizza box, and... something happens. The press release was intentionally vague about this, probably because it wants me to order a Shaq-a-Roni pizza for myself. Oh Papa John’s, you’re so sneaky.

Allison Robicelli is The Takeout staff writer, a former professional chef, author of three books, and The People's Hot Pocket Princess. Questions about recipes/need cooking advice? Tweet @Robicellis.

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DISCUSSION

Shaq is 7′ 1″, weighs 324 pounds, and wears a size 22 shoe.

any bets on whether he’s had the nickname “Tiny” at any point in his life?