Over two million people have petitioned a UN committee to add Naples-style pizza-twirling to the world list of intangible cultural heritages as the committee meets this week in Jeju, South Korea.
UNESCO has been recognizing intangible heritages since 2003, giving them publicity and prominence that may help keep them from dying out. It's an add-on to the list of physical and cultural heritages such as the Grand Canyon or Angkor Wat that have been giving heritage status since 1973.
Other nominees for the intangible list this year include Saudi Arabia's Al-Qatt Al-Asin, elaborate interior wall paintings traditionally done by women and Bangladesh's tradition of Shital Pati, an intricate weaving craft. Past additions include Spain's Flamenco dancing, Indonesian batik and Portuguese Fado music.
As for the pizza-twirling, the request goes beyond the pizzaiolo's spectacular tossing the dough into the air in order to oxygenate and spread it. The application also covers songs and stories that have grown up around the practice.