On occasion, late night drunken escapades can conclude with the arrival of a forgotten takeaway. While a surprise pizza provides welcome relief to burgeoning hangovers, it’s always slightly alarming to be on the receiving end of an unexpected meal. Unannounced delivery personnel turning up at the door feels like the start of a food themed horror flick, so anyone who wakes up to an unexplained buzzer is justified in feeling slightly apprehensive.
Now imagine this happening hour after hour, day after day. Suddenly, unsolicited pizza feels a whole lot more sinister.
This nightmare has become reality for one unfortunate individual. Over the past few months, Guido Grolle has been bombarded with a constant stream of random pizza deliveries, which he angrily denies ever ordering. According to a report in the Associated Press, over 100 pizzas have turned up at Mr Grolle’s home and place of work in what seems to be a new type of food focused psychological torture.
The lawyer, who works in the German city of Dortmund, claims pizzas have been arriving at all hours of the day and night, making it next to impossible for him to function without an impromptu arrival. On one occasion, orders began flooding in as Mr Grolle was taking his morning shower. As he put it when speaking to German news outlet Ruhr Nachrichten, “It’s infuriating - you can barely manage to work”.
There seems to be little sign of the fast food onslaught slowing down. If anything, the situation is spiralling further out of control. In recent weeks, the menu seems to have expanded, as Mr Grolle has reported receiving a mixture of sushi, sausages and Greek food, as well as his usual dose of pie. While he may technically be benefitting from a more balanced takeaway diet, the increasing scale of the assault is clearly upsetting.
There are a number of possible explanations for Mr Grolle’s fast food seige. The first, and most popular among more enthusiastic conspiracy theorists, is that the profusion of pizzas is the work of an aggrieved client, acquaintance or even a lover. As a lawyer, it seems more than likely that Mr Grolle could have built a long list of enemies over the course of his career. Random pizza delivery could be the first stage in a long thought out bid for retribution.
However, despite the exciting possibility of a deranged, revenge and food obsessed criminal mastermind, there could also be a disappointingly banal explanation for the deliveries. Mr Grolle himself believes that the orders are down to nothing more than a computer glitch, or at the very worst some malicious malware. Mr Grolle cites one particular morning where 15 orders were placed in 27 minutes as evidence for this theory.
However, comforting as it may be to blame technology, it doesn’t explain how sushi and sausages also keep turning up at his door.
If there is indeed an individual responsible and the police do manage to capture this Al Capone of Calzone, under German law the consequences could be dire. If stalking were proven, the sentence could be up to three years in jail, as ordering goods by misusing someone’s personal data is considered harassment.
Whether the police can actually catch such a fiendish foodie, however, remains a uncertain.