This was once a pizza. Now it is a cautionary tale.

The once proud frozen disc of dough, meat, cheese and sauce was transformed late last night in a three-hour, 375 degree ritual I can only imagine was excruciatingly painful. It certainly smelled painful, and if I know anything it’s the smell of pain.

At 2 AM this Sunday morning I found myself a bit peckish. Between a massive computer hardware failure and The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, I’d spent most of Saturday thinking of anything but putting non-caffeinated things in my body. Awakening from a brief controller-handed chair nap, I decided it was the perfect time to do something that would require my attention some 25 minutes into the future.

On the one hand, I should have known there’d be no way I’d remain conscious for the near half-hour it would take for a frozen pizza to succumb to the heat of our ancient snack forge.

On the other hand, look at this thing. It was custom made for my digestive system. The crust is even shaped like my intestines!

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And so I preheated the oven, slipped the frost-rimmed disc of red and gold into my oven’s ample cavern and returned to my chair to do something that doesn’t really matter now, because obviously I didn’t do it.

At 5:30 AM this Sunday morning I awoke to the scent of horrible damage done to something that once smelled quite pleasant. Realizing immediately that the pizza I dreamed I ate and reality’s pie were not one in the same, I dashed to the kitchen and turned off the heat. Then I went out onto my back porch and reflected on the snack murderer I had become. Also because it smelled better outside.

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Like a fledgling sorcerer reluctant to gaze upon the horrors his dark arts had wrought, I didn’t open the oven until 4PM.

Gaze upon this once-delectable hellscape and know my despair.

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I’ve been staring at this image for 10 minutes, trying to figure out which alien bits were which tasty morsels. I believe the light brown is the bacon, while the deceptively brownie crust looking bits were once cheese. If I were called down to the morgue to identify this body, I’d be hard-pressed.

Contrary to popular belief, eating before bedtime will not make you fat—the calories in a bedtime snack have the same effect on your body as those in daytime munchies. As long as you avoid foods that might give you trouble sleeping by causing heartburn or overstimulating to the point of insomnia, you should be fine.

But I will never know if this pizza would have given me heartburn or caused insomnia, for it is a dead thing—even more so than before. I hurt it before it had the chance to hurt me, though that’s no excuse.

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My failure is complete, but it’s not too late for you. If you’re up way too late or haven’t slept properly in ages and feel the urge to cook something in a device that could potentially set your entire house on fire, ask yourself this: “Is that Optimus Prime in the top image with the burnt pizza?”

More or less.