Birthday Cake


My first job out of college was as a graphic designer at a studio in Arlington, Virginia. On my lunch hour I liked to carry a sandwich and wander the small side streets of Clarendon, which is now practically unrecognizable with its spiffy high-rises, marble-and-stainless-steel condo lofts, and hot night spots. Back then it was an edgy, scruffy (and to me far more interesting) neighborhood of funky, dimly lit antique stores, second-hand bookshops, and family-owned Vietnamese groceries.

In a Vietnamese bakery one day I discovered among the unfamiliar and brightly colored sweets a collection of odd plastic toys meant for…cake decorating? Well, I don’t know, but I bought a bunch of them, and our family has made use of them for years, on birthdays and other occasions. One of them is a rather confused-looking Girl Scout in a semi-seductive pose that my husband likes to put on my cake. Hmm. I don’t know what THAT means.



5 Responses to “Birthday Cake”

  1. Anne says:

    Happy birthday!

  2. Sheila says:

    Thank you, Anne!

  3. Ellen Symons says:

    Happy birthday, dearest Sheila. You fill others with joy; it is your turn today. I wish you great happiness.

  4. Susan says:

    Now that IS a birthday cake!! glad to see it. yummy. You painted it – did you have to bake it?
    Hope the day has been grand.

  5. Sheila says:

    No indeed–it magically appeared. And, thank you, it was a lovely day, spent painting, drawing, and swimming.

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