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I had the great fortune of growing up in New York, so my pizza tasting skills are simply more naturally honed than others. This is the kind of thing a New Yorker truly believes, and the rest of the world is obligated to humor them. In return, you’ll be rewarded with pizza.

As a result of this exposure, I’ve witnessed a lot of pizza-eating behavior: the “fold ‘n cram,” the “picking off of the olives,” and my personal favorite, “just the tip.” But one that never made sense — and I do try to be health-conscious — is mopping up the “extra grease” from your slice. There is no extra grease. It’s all supposed to be there. It came from the mozzarella, and doesn’t want to leave it. If you blot it with a napkin, it will taste like not all of the mozzarella’s raison d’être is there, and that is a sad pizza thing. I do not blot my pizza. But I know people who do. 

So how much bad stuff are you taking away when you soak up the good stuff? Barring grease factories like cooked pepperoni or sausage, a quick survey of chick magazines (since I have never seen a dude do this) indicates between 30 and 50 calories per slice, and three to eight grams of fat. If I’m dedicating calories and fat grams to anything, it’s an amazing slice of “play it as it lies” pizza. 

So unless you like less flavor, and the potential of that flavor being replaced by a fiber-rich shred of oily paper, leave your pizza alone. Some things are best enjoyed au naturel. Plus, nobody wants to sit next to the person with five greasy orange napkins piled up. Next thing you know, you’ll be leaving the crust behind. Blasphemy, all of it.

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