Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Qu'ils mangent de la brioche

There are no calories in chocolate cake. Negative calories if you don’t even cut yourself a slice, just dig your fork right in. Double negative if you use your fingers.

All of this is true; it has always been and will continue to be true. There’s something about indulging—not caring, not thinking, just adoring the moment for what it is, that makes everything bad disappear and everything good rush directly to your taste buds. Swallow the good, exhale the bad after you down a cup of soy milk while licking fudge frosting off your thumb.

The first word the French associate with chocolate is “Celebration.” The first word Americans associate… “Guilt.” Lovely, isn’t it? One of the best, most delightful parts of our lives is weighed down with societal expectations, hours of premeditated working out at the gym, followed by an hour of lazy weight lifting and sluggish treadmill running, eventually succeeded by more guilt.

But the calories still don’t count. The escape, the moment of having gooey chocolate stuck to your teeth, the empty-headed sensation, all add up to an invaluable experience. No one can take this joy away, no one can tell you how you should feel or what you should be. It’s all about the cake. All about the deliciousness that continues to taunt you, makes you cringe as you think about taking another portion, but the flinch melts into a sigh as the sugary pleasure enters your mouth.

I want my life to be an enormous chocolate cake. Fifteen layers with chocolate sprinkles on top. I want to be able to reach out for that salvation, the paradise island, and momentarily forget whatever may trouble me.

But my dream dessert is not always within my reach. Sometimes I have to think, respond, and try not to be a pathetic, dessert-eating escapist, when something gets thrown my way. When I’m told how to be, how to act, what’s right and what’s wrong—I just want to fling my cake directly at them. But I know that a) that’s a waste of cake, they don’t deserve it and b) there’s just no reason, there’s no purpose in it. Get your own cake.

And those are the guilty ones: the ones who can’t get joy from their own cake. They try and steal everyone else’s; maybe they’re even lucky enough to catch an angry throw from someone else’s. But they can never truly enjoy it. They’re too busy worrying about what said celebrator might be doing wrong, why she’s so happy, carefree, and innocent. Stop counting other people’s calories. Stop counting your own calories. Stop telling people what they can and cannot do. Stop voting to suspend people’s rights. Stop yelling, stop abusing, stop vandalizing. Stop spitting on my cake.

I’m selfish. I want my cake all to myself. All fifteen layers of it.

1 comment:

Anna said...

you forget that after eating our fifteen-layer cake we eventually get sick of the sweet chocolate and have to take a nap and wake up craving tomatoes smothered in salt. maybe that's why we guilt ourselves- to set limits because we know the outcome.
"the key to life is moderation of everything, even moderation."

you are tops!
now if you excuse me, i have to eat a banana chocolate chip nut cake i just defrosted.