Let 'im Eat Cake!


“I got you a treat,” my good wife said to me as she continued to empty a bag of groceries onto the counter.

“Thank you, Peach,” I replied. “What's the occasion?”

“You've just endured surgery and will need a few days to recover. You deserve a treat,” she said, smiling as she pointed to a square, white cardboard box with blue script that she'd placed on top of the refrigerator. I immediately recognized: Entemann's Chocolate Fudge cake! And while it was true that I'd just endured some uncomfortable day surgery to remove a few nasties from a very delicate area, I didn't think it warranted a celebration.

“Wow! I love that cake,” I exclaimed, “but I thought we'd made a solemn pact to our waistlines to severely limit our involvement with Entemann's?” Indeed we had, for this cake, to us, was the crack of desserts.. Time after time it had proven to be dangerous to submit to our chocolatey, cake cravings, for as history had taught us, we could empty a store shelf and fill a freezer with Entemann's Chocloate Fudge cake without any provocation. Our expanding waistlines were evidence. Our pact dictated that we were allowed to purchase one cake for each of our birthdays. That translated just two per year, no exceptions noted, and we'd been honoring our pact well for about five years. Until today.

“What about our pact?” I asked.

“There are extenuating circumstances. And this is one of them,” my wife said as she put the remainder of the groceries away.

Ignoring any legitimacy this pact may have ever had, I asked, “Would you like some cake? I'd like a piece right now.” I was discovering that as I was slowly emerging from the gossamer, groggy cloak of post-op anesthesia, I was feeling quite tired. And more than a little hungry.

“Sure, I'll get you a piece,” she replied. She carefully (dare I say “ceremoniously”?) opened the Entemann's box, slid out the shiny aluminum tray that cradled the holy grail of chocolate cake, and handing me my fork, cut me a generous piece. Eagerly anticipating chocolate nirvana, I glided across the room to the kitchen table, sank to my chair and beheld the plate of chocolate love before me. I raised my fork. I took a mouthful. Nirvana found!

“May I have another? And a glass of milk, too, please?” I asked.

“Are you sure?” my wife asked, tilting her head and squinting her eyes in suspicion.

Am I sure? Ami I sure? Did you really just ask me that question? She poured a glass of cold milk and then placed another piece of cake on my plate and watched the ecstasy spread across my face. “Would you like some?” I asked, licking my fork.

“No thank you. It's for you.” I truly admired her monumental restraint.

How did I ever find such a wonderful woman? I didn't think too long about it as there was an untouched piece of Entemann's cake before me that needed attending to. I silently succored each moist, crumbly morsel. My wife left the room to attend to other things. I was alone. With the crack, er...cake.

I finished my second serving. But I wanted MORE! But did I need it? Yes. Yes, I did. I got up and took my plate to the counter where the cakebox awaited. I opened it and slid out the tray. I cut a third piece and returned to my seat. Zounds! – it disappeared even more quickly that the previous two. I polished off the glass of milk and sat looking out the window - dismal, grey skies, ceaseless rain and Fall leaves that dropped from the trees like withered brown bats . I began to feel the anesthesia beginning to wear off. Things were looking and feeling really bleak. But I had CAKE!

I sat for a moment as questions ricocheted around in my brain. Should I eat more? Could I eat more? What about my waist-line, what about sharing? Yeah, what about it? Should I eat more? Why, yes. Yes, I should.

I looked around. My wife was still preoccupied elsewhere. I surreptitiously got up and very quietly placed my plate and knife into the sink. I poured another glass of cold milk. I grabbed the Entemann's Chocolate Fudge box and repaired to my seat. I secretly slid open the aluminum tray, tossed the cardboard box aside, grabbed my fork and unceremoniously dug in, savoring each heavenly mouthful. The cake's delicate, moist chocolaty crumb; the creamy, silky-smooth fudge frosting as it dissolved upon my tongue on its way to my eagerly awaiting stomach. “I shall blame this all on the lingering effects of post-op anesthesia,” I rationalized. However, in truth, I know it's really the CAKE!

I sat and ate. Then ate even more. Suddenly I realized that I'd actually eaten nearly all of the cake - only a few mouthfuls remained! Really, had I no shame at all? I called out to my wife “I've saved you a small piece of cake. Shall I set it aside for you for later?”

“No thank you, it's all for you,” she called out from the next room.

What?! Well, OK then. One can't just leave that tiny little piece of cake sitting all alone there now, can one? No. No, one can not. I ate the rest of the cake. I had eaten the entire cake. In one sitting.

I have no shame.

 -September 26, 2023


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