Monday, May 24, 2010


We decided to do an experiment on the wedding cake. There were several questions requiring investigation. We have, after all, never experienced a rice Krispies wedding cake before, and the big day will be only a memory in less than eight weeks. With pressure mounting, we needed to know the quantities of supplies required, the most desirable consistency of the final product, the feasibility of removing the cake from the pan.
In a display of true father-of-the-bride devotion, David got out a calculator, pen and paper, parchment, Rice Krispies, marshmallows and butter, bowls and mixing spoons, and our shiny new four-tiered industry quality baker’s pans designed for cakes other than these.
By the time he had finished drawing, trimming parchment, measuring, melting, stirring, revising the recipe, packing and removing he had produced the second-to-the-smallest tier, approximately 13% of the total cake mass- an 8-inch square, 3-inch deep Rice Krispies block. We admired it, and waited for more observers to arrive.
The future bride and groom came to dinner. Together we gazed lovingly at the cake. They are, to be sure, in a loving mood these days, surprisingly easy to please. Still, even by exacting standards, early evening indicators pointed to experimental success.
Yet, one vital question hung unanswered in the air. “Who,” we wondered, “will eat all that cake?”
Exhausted from a long day’s science, we left the answer to chance, turning our attention to other pursuits. The evening passed pleasantly. We ate dinner. We walked in the park. Six of us sat for a few hours, engrossed in a game of cards, each of us tensely wondering who the winner would be.
Here are the results. Lawrence won the game, but not before 13% of the total future cake mass had disappeared, and all the questions had been answered—except for one.
“Who,” we wondered, “ate the most?”

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