Let them eat cake

Sometimes a girl just wants needs a piece of chocolate cake. Plain chocolate cake, like the kind your grandmother or mother made. Without anything on it like coconut, or peanut brittle or caramel sauce or marshmallow fluff. I needed some cake like that today.

The artist formerly known as ‘the other jason johnson’ has abandoned me, this first week of the New Year. He’s technically in town, but when one leaves before 8 in the morning and doesn’t return until 2am – save a 2 hour drop-in at home – it’s abandonment. At least in my books.

I don’t pretend to understand what it is the artist actually does. In the early part of our marriage he was just a regular architect, working at an architecture office. And the strangest question I ever had to answer was: ‘what KIND of architecture?’

But then things morphed from straightforward churches and airport terminals to futuristic, sculpture-esque stuff. And frequent use of the word ‘scripting’ (like this week’s little project designed by Marc Fornes.)

I’ve been clueless ever since.

Part of what draws me to the artist, and at the same time drives me crazy, is his unfailing tendency to take on extraordinarily complicated projects that have to be completed in a (impossible) finite amount of time. These projects inevitably encounter tremendous, unforeseen obstacles, and as a result he can usually be found staying up until sunrise in the days preceding his deadline. And making emergency runs to Lowe’s or Home Depot five minutes before they close.

There was the Eurofiles exhibit made entirely of styrofoam pieces suspended from the ceiling. There were the highly fragile pieces of the ‘sun’s trajectory’ made out of glue and dipped in melted wax. Right before and after the Hen’s birth. There was the graduate school thesis that had him subsisting on fries and bananas and coming home on the night bus because the tube was closed.

Sometimes I wonder if his late nights are really due to his having another family nearby, like that Lifetime movie from ten or fifteen years ago. I imagine one day I’ll walk down the street and see a couple of little blond, blue-eyed children that resemble my own. And I’ll cry in my pillow while everyone around me will shake their heads at my naivete for thinking my husband was just a really busy artiste.

Of course, the rational part of me is pretty sure Jason’s not really up for having any more kids than the ones we already have. Much less double wife maintenance.

So, until he returns on Saturday, or Sunday, I’ll be eating chocolate cake.

I’m not sure this recipe is exactly what I was looking for. Cake batter without eggs and chocolate chips scattered on top? It sounds like something out of a church cookbook. And despite its high fork rating, it had a lot of negative comments, which almost kept me from making it. But, I couldn’t find another recipe and I had all the ingredients on hand…

To my undiscerning palate, it tastes good enough. And may be just the fortification I need to survive the next three days

9 thoughts on “Let them eat cake

  1. I can’t really claim credit for this one (I am just curating and assisting in the installation). I will say my other family never makes me cake, which is why I only visit them semi-annually. That and an inability to pull a full week of all nighters anymore.

  2. The very idea that Jason would want to maintain more than 2 wiley boys makes me want to laugh uncontrollably. Sorry… no Lifetime magic for you.

    On the otherhand, I do have a fabulous recipe for chocolate cake (includes melted bittersweet chocolate bars and powdered cocoa. Unfortunatley, it is also made with rice flour which would hardly be worth your time.

  3. I know, that’s probably why he gives me the ‘you’re crazy’ look whenever I bring up my theory and the movie. If the cake tastes good, even with the rice flour, I’d give it a shot! Maybe we’ll all become as thin as the P-family šŸ™‚

  4. The fries (chips!) were because there was a fish ‘n chips stand near the school and the chips were only 1 pound, and filling. And the bananas…I think because a nearby convenience store sold them for 50 cents, or maybe his Taiwanese/Chinese friends brought them to studio. No, I think that was oranges. Yes, the artist is certainly one of a kind!

  5. its like a binge and purge cycle only very delicious. Now its back to my other favorite cycle of chocolate cake and granola. Its good to be home.


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