I forgot it wasn't my birthday. It was Auburn Pisces' birthday.
I wanted to make it the best birthday ever for my dear friend. So I enlisted the help of my personal caterer, The Handsome Prince. He loves to cook, and we struck up a deal that if I bought all the food, he would prepare a Mexican-themed buffet. Auburn Pisces loves her margaritas, so we thought the theme would be appropriate.
Friday night, while sitting in The Vortex planning the party with The Handsome Prince and The Math Whiz, I drunk-dialed AP and asked her what kind of cake she'd like. I put her on speaker phone so she could interact with all three of us.
"I want a Betty Crocker Cherry Chip Cake," she said sweetly.
"That sounds good," chirped The Handsome Prince.
"Yummy!" twittered the Math Whiz.
"Oh my god. That is so white trash," hissed Hot Toddy, who is Satan incarnate.
"My mom used to make me that cake every year," angelically spoke AP.
"Whatever. Fine," spewed drunk Hot Toddy.
A few minutes later I received a text message from Auburn Pisces:
"Can I change my cake order to carrot cake?"
I made a mental note to myself to tell The Handsome Prince to make carrot cake instead of whatever that other silly cake was. Then I made a mental note to myself to buy more lube and then I remembered how cool Nellie Oleson's dress was in that episode "Country Girls" when she reads her essay to the class about how rich her family was.
Anyway. Saturday morning I told The Handsome Prince, "Oh, Auburn Pisces wants carrot cake tonight instead of that other cake."
"That's because you said her cherry chip cake was white trash," he said.
I think it only took about twenty seconds for tears to form in my now sober eyes. "What? You think I really hurt her feelings?" I ran into the house to grab my cell phone and call her. By the time she answered, I had a lump in my throat the size of The Rock's biceps.
"Did you take me seriously when I said your cake was white trash?" I asked.
"Well, I knew you were joking, but after you said that I began to worry that other people at the party might think the same thing," she answered while the evil devil horns on my head grew another three inches.
"No! No, I was drunk and joking. I didn't mean it, AP. I'm white trash, not you! My family's favorite meals growing up were frozen Sarah Lee Chicken 'n Dumplings or Creamed Chip Beef on Wonder Bread toast!"
She then told me how her mom, may she rest in peace, made a Betty Crocker Cherry Chip cake for her sweet daughter every year on her birthday. And since AP won't even get a card from her darling mother this year, she wanted the cake to remind her of their special bond.
At that point I think I wailed and fell to my knees as I ripped at my clothes and put dirt on my head. After ending our phone call with the assurance that she could have whatever kind of cake she damn well wanted, I ran inside to tell The Math Whiz how awful I felt. "Oh, I forgot to tell you she text messaged me last night and asked if I thought the other people at the party would think she was white trash if she had a cherry chip birthday cake."
"I am Hitler," I told him.
Well, the party went off without a hitch. Auburn Pisces enjoyed the buffet and the margaritas and her Wonderful Elegant Godly Perfect Divine Classy Betty Crocker Cherry Chip Cake. I even made the cake as penance instead of asking The Handsome Prince to do it as originally planned. I worked extra hard to break up every tiny flour chunk in the mix. I beat the batter until my arms were sore, and believe me, I can usually beat things for a long time before my arms get sore. Sometimes my hand starts tingling a little, but my arms rarely get sore. Anyway.
The night was wonderful, and Auburn Pisces told me it was one of her favorite birthdays of her life. And she said the cake was as good as her mother's cake. I made her take back that claim, because I didn't want her mother to hear that in case she was hovering nearby her daughter at that moment.
Sometimes I can be really selfish. I was acting like it was my birthday instead of hers. For a few hours, I managed to focus on her instead of myself. I think I successfully conveyed my love for her, and I hope I made her happy on her birthday.
After she unwrapped her presents, I stopped thinking about her and went back to being a selfish attention whore. I unwrapped a gorgeous present of my own. He spent the night with me, and it was wonderful. He confirmed that I give off a lot of heat when I sleep. There is a reason I am called Hot Toddy's Toaster Oven. Oh, but you don't want to hear about that, I'm sure. The point is, it was Auburn Pisces' party. Not mine.
Happy Birthday, Auburn Pisces!