As anyone who hangs out here knows, I have long had an antipathy for cupcakes. To my mind, cupcakes have represented what is most problematic with the world: Overpriced, tasteless, twee, empty calories mindlessly consumed instead of more usefull options. Not to mention that the sprouting of cupcake stores on every corner has not helped the US obesity crisis...well, except to help it grow.
Recent data sorting on my computer has turned up the draft of my The Manifesto
of a Cupcake Abolitionist. Last thing I did before shutting down my computer last night was move a copy of the Manifesto to my "Writing NOW" folder so I could find it.
Lacking apparent reason for my wakedulness, and unable to return to the warm bliss of sleep, I wrapped up in a robe and dragged my sleep-rumpled self to the kitchen for tea and maybe third dinner or pre-first breakfast or whatever it is when you eat at 4am.
...and there it was.
Illuminated by a shard of moonlight that sliced through the dark and led my eye like a lighthouse guides a ship. A rainbow of sprinkles strewn on the perfect swirl of pink frosting atop the perfect little cake sized just for me.
A child's Platonic ideal of a cupcake reified.
As I gazed upon the treat, my eyes tracing an icing swirl until it disappeared in shadow before moving to the next frosted furrow, a feeling came over me. Starting at the hand that reached, unknowing, for the cupcake and sweeping over my body like an electrical shock, the feeling was...
As the frisson receded and I came to myself, alone in the kitchen with cupcake crumbs, I had an epiphany.
Cupcakes can save the world.
The One True Cake.
A cupcake is a tiny bit of Joy, small enough for the littlest child to carry with them. And who among us wouldn't be happier with a bit of Joy in our hand?
Cupcakes come in an unimaginable number of hues and cultural derivations and, with the exception of Cupcake Wars, there is seldom conflict between sects. In fact, you usually find cupcakes hanging out in interflavor groups, something which holds a lesson for the rest of us.
I want to go on, spilling more of the beauty of cupcakes onto the keyboard from my fingers, but I believe you have to find cupcakes in your own way. All I can do is show you the light and hope that you will realize that cupcakes represent all that is good and true about the world and perhaps even a path to our salvation as a species.
Besides, if Dorie can acheive World Peace with a Cookie, imagine what we could do with cupcakes.
I would write more but I find myself with a burning desire to move into the kitchen and bake.
I have an idea for Can't We All Just Get Along Cupcakes that I must go try.
Now it's your turn. Please inspire me.
What are you baking today?
Which burning social problem will it solve?