The Rules – Redux

After all the lovely talk about the “cake” yesterday, I felt…I felt…ashamed. You see, it wasn’t really “cake,” but I didn’t want Child C to feel her birthday dessert wasn’t worthy. But…it just wasn’t cake. So I’m re-running The Rules so that next time, we can all be clear.

Those who know me well, or who know me a little, or who met me once for eleven minutes on a bus they didn’t want to be on but were forced to take because their car broke down at a really inconvenient time, know that I have rigorous standards in regards to the proper semantic use of certain names of certain confections.

These are The Rules.

Pay attention, take notes, keep your arms and legs inside the blog at all times.

There will be a test.

Rule Number One:

If it doesn’t have Chocolate, it is not Cake, it is bread.

Carrot bread, strawberry shortbread, French bread. See? They all go together.

Ce n'est pas un gâteau

Rule Number Two:

If it doesn’t have Chocolate,  it is not  A Cookie, it is a cracker.

This is a cracker.

And this is another cracker.

And finally…

Rule Number Three:

If it doesn’t have Chocolate, it is not Candy, it is a cough drop.

But they're pretty cough-drops, aren't they?

I would like you all to review those again. Commit them to memory. Write them in a prominent place. On a sticky next to your desk, perhaps, or your left arm. Maybe tape a sign to the dog.

Now, I do not deny that there are  delicious breads, crackers and cough drops out there in the universe. I partake of such things not infrequently.

My objection is to the improper use of the nomenclature. It is heartbreakingly disappointing to think you are getting cake only to find out that you are getting bread. Trust me. Heartbreaking. We’re talking years of therapy here.

And imagine getting home from a raucus night of Trick-or-Treating, dumping your bag of so-called “candy” onto your bed to take stock of your haul, only to find that instead of the candy you were expecting, you’re swimming in hefty pile of cough drops. Can you even stand thinking about that poor, disappointed child? Well, I certainly couldn’t stand being that poor disappointed child, and I vow to do my best to ensure that no future 9-year-old fairy princesses will have to live through the same trauma. I still have nightmares.

So today I charge that for the sake of all those people who swallow their disappointment at the office party when they find that they’re really getting dished a slice of bread instead of cake, for all those wives who send their husbands out to satisfy a night-time craving for cookies only to be presented with crackers, and for all those little mask-wearing, pumpkin-carrying trick-or-treaters who deserve truth in Halloween advertising, that we commit to a clear, uniform vocabulary.

The populace will rejoice.

And did I mention that Himself wants carrot bread for his birthday?

All photos in this post courtesy of sxc.hu.

48 comments

  1. Love the blog.

    I actually have a coaster in my kitchen (on a tiny easel no less) that says, “Martha would DIE here”. It’s often covered in dust. How many points would you deduct for that?

  2. Excellent points to make. I refuse to order dessert in restaurants if none of them have chocolate in. Because it is *not* a dessert.

  3. Hi,

    I’m sitting in a hotel room in India (US is home) and I’m supposed to be working but instead I’ve found your blog. I might be in big trouble because I don’t see getting anything done until I’ve read every post.

    Great stuff, keep it coming!

  4. Loved your post! I have been living by those rules my whole life (46 years), and they have NOT been unwritten. All 3 of my kids would tell you my rules on Chocolate (especially the dark stuff). I keep my Dark Chocolate locked in a climate controlled wine cellar…..it would last forever, except I keep eating it. And whereas I may partake in a small piece of non-chocolate cake (bread), you will NEVER finding me eating non-chocolate cookies (bread), or candies (cough drops).

    1. I have heard that chocolate would last forever in climate controlled wine cellars, except for the eating it part. ;)

      And I applaud your strict avoidance of the bread and the cough drops!

  5. You and I would do very well together. In my kitchen, I have three signs. They read, “A balanced diet is chocolate in both hands.” ” Dip me in chocolate and call me dessert.” And, “I never met a chocolate I didn’t like.” Nuff said.

  6. So I have decided that at the next family together-ness function I am going to stand up and declare that all the so called “deserts” are really imposters, then hand my MIL & GMIL a list of the rules.

    I will be the highlight of the par-tay xD

  7. Aye! Rejoice says she! Rejoice!

    The cough drops in MY bag at halloween? They go to the kids. They haven’t been schooled yet on the intricacies of this stuff. Easily fooled. I’m all “here baby, you don’t want that nasty snickers! this butterscotch disk is soooo much better!”

    I am SUCH a good mom.

  8. If anyone clicked the red X out before they got to the second paragaraph, then they know not of what we speak.

    You gotta walk a mile in these shoes to understand what you’re laying down here, understand? can you pick up what I’m puttin’ down around town, funky clown?

  9. At first glance I was going to be like, um… “so, Lori, you grew up being given cough drops as candy?”

    Then I realized I’m an idiot.

    But that’s good, ’cause if it doesn’t happen twice a day I just don’t know what to do with myself.

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