At Tonawanda’s Fat Man Pizza orders for pies were down, but delivery tips were up.
“They’re just surprised that we’re open. And happy,” said Dena Aksoy, a co-owner, whose two out-of-school children hiding beneath the counter could be heard happily playing iPad video games.
Nearby businesses on their quiet and snow-crusted stretch of Niagara Falls Boulevard were closed Tuesday. It was the residential customers who were calling in with orders for pizzas and wings, including one hopeful request for a beer delivery along with his food. “No, I don’t sell beer,” Aksoy told him.
By late afternoon, Driver Greg Harris made five deliveries, earning $5 tips instead of the usual $2 to $3.
“If people would shovel their driveways, it would be easier,” said Harris, who had been parking on the street instead of pulling in. This winter he’s also taken the extra step of putting a sweatshirt on instead of making deliveries in his usual t-shirt. “The weather doesn’t bother me,” he said. “I’m used to it.”
Aksoy had come to work curious to see what business would be like during this horrible winter’s second blizzard. She had relocated home to Buffalo from Florida last spring. Friends were obviously wrong when they promised winters here were milder than ever. “Since I moved back,” she said, “instead of sunshine, I’ve brought the cold.”