Can the pulse of the nation be measured by pizza deliveries?

There is sociological significance, perhaps, in the fact that Domino's Pizza orders went up 11 percent in affected TV markets every time Amy Fisher or at least one Buttafuoco appeared on "A Current Affair."Likewise revealing: White House pizza orders increased an average of 18 percent every night First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton was away on an announced trip. Over all, the Clinton administration's pizza orders to the White House - where youthful, workaholic staffers routinely pull all-nighters - were 31 percent higher than in 1990, the Bush administration's top pizza year.

These findings are reported in the 4th annual Pizza Meter, a year in review based on Domino's sales data and a survey of more than 200 of the firm's delivery drivers.

Late-night orders to the White House, CIA, Pentagon and other institutions greatly increase on the eves of international crises.

During this fall's standoff in Moscow between Russia's president and parliament, for instance, pizza orders to the Russian Embassy went up 27 percent but tipping decreased 8 percent.

Nationally, the biggest pizza ordering day of 1993 came the night the House of Representatives voted on the Clinton budget.

Domino's drivers said the worst tippers are lawyers, lobbyists, and customers in TV studios. The best tips come on orders from the Department of Agriculture, nonprofit organizations and military bases.

Join the Conversation
Looking for comments?
Find comments in their new home! Click the buttons at the top or within the article to view them — or use the button below for quick access.