Bloomberg / Getty Images

Forget to buy those special glasses? Pizza Hut has you covered.

Mike Pomranz
August 21, 2017

Today’s total solar eclipse truly is an event worthy of the hype. Rarer than a once in a lifetime experience, scientists believe that the average occurrence of a total solar eclipse at any point on the Earth’s surface is once every 375 years. The last time a total solar eclipse could be seen from the U.S. was on February 26, 1979. And interestingly enough, according to the BBC, the last time a total solar eclipse was visible exclusively in what is now the United States was back when the colonies declared independence in 1776.

Here’s another fact: The only thing getting as much hype as the eclipse itself is the discussion on how to safely view it without burning your retinas off. Unless you’re viewing from the area of complete totality, looking directly towards the sun can damage your vision. Even if you are in the path of totality, if you don’t time your viewing properly, the first rays of light emerging as the sun peeks out from behind the moon can still be harmful. Yes, special viewing equipment does exist, but ensuring that these items will definitely work can be tricky. In the end, the only surefire way to avoid any damage is to not look directly towards the sun… and when it comes to protecting your eyes, your old friend Pizza Hut has you covered.

A “pinhole projector” is a simple eclipse viewing device that’s easy to make yourself with a couple pieces of cardboard. Realizing that its pizza boxes are essentially two large flaps of cardboard, Pizza Hut decided to post a video tutorial on how to make one of these projectors after ordering some delivery. Granted, the half-minute clip doesn’t provide any information unique to Pizza Hut, but at the same time, Pizza Hut is only trying to help: It’s not like they suggest that the best way to view a solar eclipse is with a stuffed crust Pepperoni Lover’s Pizza.

Once your pizza box pinhole projector is constructed, you’ll be able to watch the eclipse as a tiny dot of light shining on a piece of paper. Sure, it’s not the most exciting way to view an eclipse, but you’ll be thankful that you still have your vision next time you’re trying to order on the Pizza Hut app.