Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Chocolate Cake with White Icing

Whoops, a whole month went by. I checked my sitemeter expecting to see tumbleweeds…and whaddya know, someone had just visited from a domain called WideOpenWest. I took it as a sign I better post something before this blog becomes a ghost town.

In the midst of all the unbloggable events going on in my life, I had sudden thoughts of elementary school (a subject many writers probably visit from time to time) and cake (a subject pretty much everyone enjoys).

Those thoughts popped up when I decided to bake a chocolate cake with white icing, for no particular reason. Right smack in the middle of trying to get dinner on the table, I thought to myself, you know what would make me feel better? Chocolate cake with white icing. I can mix one up right now! I have all the ingredients! Dinner can wait.

Back in elementary school, chocolate cake with white icing was the one thing that could make me happy about being in the cafeteria. I hated everything about the place – the hot plastic trays and leaky milk cartons, the lonely search for friends while standing with a clod of beefaroni on my tray.

When I was in first grade, my teacher put me at the beginning of the lunch line every day and appointed someone to stay with me at the dining tables after everyone else had gone back to class. I guess she was worried about me because I was skinny and didn’t eat my lunch. I didn’t eat because the food was gross and the cafeteria freaked me out. The solution was to force me to spend even more time there.

Ice cream sandwich days weren’t too bad, but chocolate cake with white icing really was my deliverance. If I spotted kids coming out of the lunch line with those precise squares in the corner of each tray, even the smell of Pine Sol and gray-green corn couldn’t get me down.

In fact, eating chocolate cake with white icing may have been my favorite part of elementary school. Funny that my favorite thing occurred in the one place I dreaded the most.

So, what about you? What takes you back…what conjures up your best and worst school memories?