I wasn't sure if I was supposed to attend this focus group or not. The posters plastered in the elevator, in front of the elevator doors, by the water cooler (yes, an actual water cooler), and in the stairway, plus the email sent a few weeks ago, weren't quite enough.
Oh, but the pizza was.
"Free Bazbeaux's pizza!" the posters advertised. They added the Bazbeaux logo at the bottom, just to make sure we realized what we were getting here. The Indianapolis Monthly editorial interns discussed attending the focus group. Originally I intended to go because these are the things you do at internships; go to meetings, any and all meetings, and see what you learn. But as soon as we knew pizza was involved, we all said:
There's free pizza; of course we're going.
So we went. The pizza was good, even if the focus group made the almighty sin of free pizza--no cheese. We talked, they listened. We looked at pictures and came up with words, they took notes. We went on our way an hour and a half later, satisfied.
Satisfied with the pizza, that is.
What is it about free pizza and college students? When we're on campus, every event throws pizza up on a sign to get us to come to things. A sheet sign hanging in the student union could read "Watch Someone Do Their Taxes- Free Pizza!" and lo and behold that room would be stuffed to the brim with temporary tax enthusiasts, permanent pizza lovers.
Pizza's cheap. A crowd pleaser (unless your vegan or gluten-free. Why are they always ignored?). Pizza says, "Hey, we're hip! We're cool! We know what you like!" Especially when the meeting dares to branch out from Papa Johns (hey, I love ya, but you're overused). Like bees to honey, college students swarm to the promise of free food now and a cheap dinner later.
Cliché? Maybe. But free pizza pulls us away from Netflix and sedentary lifestyles and says "Hey, learn this!" And we do, with cheesy, saucy goodness in hand. So what if we need a bribe to get there. We still get there, and grow because of it.
So an internship that gives me free food? Hey, I'll take it.
But an internship that gives me free pizza? That's something else entirely.