When I lived in Idaho one of my creative outlets was baking. It helped that I had a huge beautiful kitchen...for me spaciousness is fabulous incentive. Or maybe it's the opposite, I'm claustrophobic and too little space dampens my creativity.
I was adamant about constantly trying new recipes, new food combinations and perfecting a recipe that was 'almost there'. I always write comments in my cookbooks right next to the recipe so I remember what to do or try, or not do or try, next time; some of them say "Yucky!" and some get the Grand Prize: "Yummy!"
One day the Idaho (mis)Statesman newspaper food column had a recipe for the many versioned cake called "The Better Than Sex Cake".
The cake is simply a regular cake mix prepared, and while still hot you poke holes in it with the handle of a wooden spoon and pour Sweetened Condensed Milk and Caramel over it to seep in the holes, let it cool and then put Cool-Whip over it.
I get to starting this cake and while poking holes I realize the recipe doesn't tell me how many holes to poke! I mean, you're pouring an entire can of sweetened condensed milk and a jar of caramel over it, that's quite a bit of liquid! For all the liquid to seep into the cake that would be quite a few holes, and then what's left of the cake? Or is that the point?
So on the following weekday I called the Idaho (mis)Statesman and the call goes like this:
I.S.: "Idaho Statesman, where may I direct your call?"
Me: "I'd like to talk to the Recipe Column Writer about a recipe."
I.S.: "Well she doesn't actually work in the building, can I help you with the recipe?"
Me: "I want to know how many holes to poke in the Better Than Sex Cake"
I.S.: "Let me transfer you to that department."
I.S.: "Focal Department, how many I help you?"
Me: "I'd like to talk to the Recipe Column Writer about a question I have about last weeks recipe."
I.S.: "They are not here, maybe I can help you?"
Me: "I want to know how many holes to poke in the Better Than Sex Cake."
I.S.: "Ummm, let me get you the Department Editor."
I.S.D.E.: "This is the Editor, how may I help you?"
Me: "I have a question about a recipe in last weeks paper and I'm looking for the Columnist."
I.S.D.E.: "Well she doesn't actually work in the building, she just submits her column. But I can probably help you."
Me: "OK, I want to know how many holes to poke in the Better Than Sex Cake."
I.S.D.E.: "Ahhhh, let me give you the Columnists home number..."
(Call Columnist at home who is surprised that I have obtained her home phone number.)
Me: "Hi, I am trying to figure out something about a recipe that you wrote and the employees at the I.S. gave me your number to ask you directly. Your recipe for the Better Than Sex Cake says to poke holes in the cake and I want to know how many holes to poke in the Better Than Sex Cake."
Columnist: "I don't know, I just found the recipe and put it in the paper. I didn't actually make it."
Me: (trying to get over shock that someone wouldn't even try a recipe before putting it in a column that has her name on it! Holy crap, how stupid is that?) "Oh, I see, well ok then."