Scott tells a story every birthday that goes something like this:
When he was turning 10 years old and his sister was turning 2 years old, his mom asked him what sort of a cake he wanted. His reply? A Batman Cake. Their birthdays are four days apart, and his mom didn't want to make two cakes, so she opted to make a Barbie Cake. For the next 22 years, Scott has told this story on his birthday, and has refused to have cake. Instead, he opts to have cookies and sherbet, and there is still a tone of resentment that a 2-year old got placed before him in terms of a birthday cake.
This year, his mom decided to put an end to this story, and bought him the Batman cake. It was incredibly sweet, and Scott seemed ready to put the story to rest. Until I stepped in.
The cake had been on the counter, and the girls kept asking for some during breakfast, lunch, and every time in between. I got tired of saying no, so I just stashed the cake in the oven and didn't think about it again. I started to cook dinner and turned on the oven. Five minutes went by, ten minutes went by, and suddenly, the kitchen had an odd smell. I couldn't place it-was trying to reach a casserole dish on the top level of the cabinet when suddenly it clicked. Scott's birthday cake was being melted in the oven. I jumped down from the counter, opened the door, and there was the previous cake, melted and morphed into an unrecognizable shape of black plastic and melted icing. Batman was gone.
When Scott entered the kitchen, his face was void of emotion, but somewhere deep inside, I think his thoughts read like this: I've waited 22 years for this Batman Cake, and you just destroyed it. I will never have a Batman Cake for my birthday.
Next year, I'll make chocolate-chip cookies and buy lime sherbet, but I know what's coming. Instead of the story about his mom, it will be the story about me, and how I destroyed the Batman Cake. This story is going to live for at least another 30 years.