MUNCHIES friend and pizza delivery man Bill Meier passed away on Sunday. Bill—or "Billthy Cat," as he was affectionately referred to by his boss/friend Frank Pinello at Best Pizza—was known for being able to deliver up to five pies at a time on his track bike. And though gainfully employed, he had a non-traditional appearance which also earned him respect. I first got to know Bill when we filmed the "Best Pizza" episode of Chef's Night Out, and ended up inviting him into my home for bong hits on several occasions while he was out on delivery bringing pies to my house.
Bill was a bicycle delivery person for over 30 years. He also drove a tour bus for the Grateful Dead during their "Touch of Grey" tour. Bill let me in on a couple of rules of the road from his days driving the bus, but my favorite one was that after doing a nitrous ballon, you had to wait 20 minutes before being able to get back behind the wheel. Once, at a holiday party when he was about eight beers and three joints deep, Bill told me he was going to ride his brake-less bike home.
Bill became a bit of a local celebrity due to some short films and videos that people made about him over the past couple of years, and the attention was rightly deserved. Bill was a quintessential New York character. Whether he was smoking a loosey outside a bodega, riding past you with five pies, or folding boxes in between deliveries at a table inside Best Pizza, you were always happy to see him and scream, "Bill!"
I hope St. Peter lets him lock his bike up at the Pearly Gates. Bill, you will be terribly missed.