Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Half Baked

I've discovered that not only am I a compulsive baker, I am potentially a compulsively baking stalker. Seriously, whenever I become a fan of someone - really really a fan - I tend to contact them, encourage them (everybody gets discouraged sometimes), and offer them baked goods.

For example, I once wrote an encouraging letter to President Bush, and if I remember right I offered to bake him cookies if he was ever going through Hillsboro. So here's the list.

People I have offered baked goods to:

President George W. Bush,

Laura Bush (same letter)

The designer of a children's website (as a bribe to tell me how to find the "secret passageway")

Our pastor

The designer of the website, since he was in England, declined my offer of oatmeal cookies but was very helpful and told me the key to the secret passageway. I got a lovely form letter from our President with a charming gold seal upon it, and from my pastor (granted there are 7,000 in the congregation) I got a nice email too.

Here are some people I would like to personally deliver baked goods to:

Dick Francis, novelist, homemade bread

Anne McCaffrey, novelist, a bubbly pie

Nastia Liukin, olympic gold medalist, the buttery oatmeal cookies my mother makes

Gary Paulsen, novelist, Iditarod runner, Chocolate chip, chocolate cookies

Laura Bush, First Lady, homemade bread

Aung San Suu Kyi, homemade bread

I don't know exactly why my affection, or respect for writers, world leaders and athletes takes this form. I think it has something to do with the instinct to feed that which you love. If I'm proud of someone I want to feed them, cook them a dinner, bake them a pie. One part of the Bible that I always thought made perfect sense was Esther cooking two dinners for her husband. Teachers always tried to stress that she did this because he was the king, he could chop off her head, etc. But I always thought it made perfect sense! She probably cooked him chicken fried steak. And that widow that Elijah went to (or was it Elisha?) was making dumplings as a last dinner! Makes sense.

One of my favorite books as a child was little black Sambo. I hear it's been criticized as being racist. I've never understood that. You have a well-dressed little African boy. He is beset by tigers and intelligently, though sadly gives up his beautiful things. BUT! they get their just deserts and in a delicious turn (quite literally) of fate turn into - of all things - BUTTER! I mean how much better can it get? Ferocious man-eating felines or butter. Sambo gets all his stuff back (and in my book, all his things were these lovely saturated colors like hot pink and teal, and gold, and you get the idea), and when he goes home his mom makes him pancakes with the butter!

Another food story that I like was when Jesus cooked fish for all the disciples when he got back. I think everyone should throw a fish fry right after Easter in honor of that. In fact, I may start that tradition! I'll think about it while I go whip up some sugar cookies for my son's teachers.