I’ve been blogging for seven years. Mostly I’ve written essays, reviewed snack cakes, and done science experiments. These days I’m trying to lay off the snack cakes, and it seems I’m doing the ultimate experiment in raising a small human. Although the experiment isn’t on him. It’s on me. Self-experiment. Parenthood is the ultimate self-experiment.
I’ve written a lot about childhood on this blog in the last seven years. I’ve written a lot about nostalgia. I love the filter lens of nostalgia. I also like those little filter lens effects on my phone. I like the colors. They remind me of something but I don’t know what it is. Nostalgia is that — the fleeting idea of something you can’t fully remember.
Seeing childhood again through my kid is without the lens. It’s great. It’s exhilarating and hilarious. It’s real life, the real deal, not just memories. And it’s also as monotonous as real life. It’s draining and dull at times, mindless and boring, watching the clock, waiting for the kid’s bedtime to come.
Other times it’s intense. Something as simple as going to the grocery store can be intense, which can take extraordinary tangential and sudden leaps into SUPER INTENSE, and then months later it’s just weird and hazy and what were we even thinking, like some drunk fight you used have with an ex in college. Whatever was so important and righteous and worth arguing passionately for that evening, whatever it was, is about as insane as going to the grocery store with a grabby, not-napped toddler.
And later in life you’ll learn not to drink so much.
And later in life you’ll learn that person wasn’t right for you.
And later in life you’ll learn not to leave the house before naptime.
And later in life you’ll learn not to eat so many snack cakes.
You’d think I would’ve learned my lesson by now about baking experiments. I have not. In fact, I invited it upon myself. I asked for cake suggestions and now I’m baking them. Here is the first in a series of Interpret Baking Posts:
I Bake The Surfing Pizza Logo.
A few years ago, the wife wanted an expensive Kitchenaid Mixer for Christmas. I had no idea what purpose this served, since obviously you can mix anything with the brute force of your arm for about four-hundred dollars cheaper. Well, I used it for the first time to make my cake, and now I know. In fact, I have no baking crime-scene photos to show you because the mixer made it so easy.
I went with a “Blue Velvet” cake mix because all delicious things in life are made of the color blue.
Bam. Frosted. What What. In previous years of baking disasters, if I hadn’t already started losing it, the frosting stage was totally where I’d begin showing cracks. But maybe I’ve finally grown up and learned patience, because I frosted this like a baller.
Also, I’ve learned that decorating tips are important on those little tubes of frosting. In previous artistic baking disasters, I’ve attempted to just decorate straight from the tube. But clearly I’d brought my A-game.
Alright, let the decorating begin.
Nailed it. Well, okay not really, but I feel genuinely proud of it, and the wife thought it was so good, she acted like I’d painted a replica of the Sistine Chapel. She really supports me. At seven years, The Surfing Pizza done grown up, by which I mean, made a cake without making the kitchen a Chernobyl-zone.
Now. Let’s talk about The Shoney’s Bear. Yes, the Shoney’s Bear. A long long time ago, I used to post a lot about the Shoney’s Bear, which is a stuffed animal of the Shoney’s Restaurant mascot. I used to pose the bear around the house and take pictures. It was sort of an inside joke that even I didn’t understand.
I think in the Shoney’s Bear’s last appearance on the blog six years ago, he “pooped” on things, including in the neighbor’s yard and on a picture of Billy Joel. My roommate at the time was a little embarrassed and all like, “you didn’t really put that bear in the neighbor’s yard did you” — and I sheepishly said no, even if I really did. That’s when I thought maybe the inside joke had gotten too weird.
Oh, the Shoney’s Bear had big future plans on the blog. I had created a personal email address for him (email@example.com; write him, I imagined it could be like PostSecret) and even had him ordained a minister.
This is sort of the “Lost Blog” where the Reverend Shoney’s Bear (ordained on Friday the 13th!) was going to perform marriage ceremonies. (He’s available for your wedding!)
But yeah, maybe the inside joke got too weird…
Anyway, here is a picture of the Shoney’s Bear jumping naked out of the Surfing Pizza logo cake.