This story originally ran in 2019.Although the headline of this suggests I became a parent after an evening of consuming way too much wine at Pizza Man and had an spontaneous fling as a result, but that, alas, is not the case.
What did happen, though, is that the smooth adoption of my now-18-year-old son and the iconic East Side pizza joint are forever fused. And since it's National Pizza Day, I'll dust off this story and share it once again.
In 2003, I was in Guatemala City, Guatemala, finalizing the adoption of my son. It had been a slow, frustrating, legal process and I was warned that things could still go wrong during the very last step at the American embassy.
On the morning of our appointment, I waited outside the embassy in a long line for more three hours with my 9-month-old baby. I was nervous. Already, I had jumped through so many hoops and crossed through so much red tape, that the thought of a glitch during the final step was too much to think about. So I bit my nails and overfed the baby instead.
Finally, it was my turn to stand at the window and talk to the man behind glass. He seemed very serious at first, his brow furrowed while he read our paperwork.
"You’re from Milwaukee?" he finally asked.
"Yes," I said.
"You ever eat at Pizza Man?" he asked in a very serious tone.
"It’s one of my favorite restaurants!" I said.
And although my enthusiasm could have been received as trying to "butter up" the embassy guy, it was indeed the truth. I grew up on the East Side and Pizza Man – the North Avenue location which sadly burned down in 2010 – was one of my family's favorite eateries. As an adult, I regularly stopped in (and still do) for the artichoke à la mode at the new location, which opened on Downer Avenue in 2013, with the familiar, phallic sign that survived the fire.
"I lived in Milwaukee for a short period of time, but I always remember Pizza Man," he said, simultaneously stamping a bunch of paperwork. "Great restaurant. Congratulations."
When we returned home from Guatemala, you know where my son and I celebrated.
Molly Snyder started writing and publishing her work at the age 10, when her community newspaper printed her poem, "The Unicorn.” Since then, she's expanded beyond the subject of mythical creatures and written in many different mediums but, nearest and dearest to her heart, thousands of articles for OnMilwaukee.
Molly is a regular contributor to FOX6 News and numerous radio stations as well as the co-host of "Dandelions: A Podcast For Women.” She's received five Milwaukee Press Club Awards, served as the Pfister Narrator and is the Wisconsin State Fair’s Celebrity Cream Puff Eating Champion of 2019.