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Food For Thought: A Gift for Baba

Joined: 11/13/2014
Posts: 8
The dainty, blue flames dance like feathers, twirling against the bottom of the pot. The scarlet concoction bubbled and boiled and trickled off the side like a wound. The rich aroma of warm beets and beef aroused an intense desire to drain the pot dry—to devour it completely, leaving but a cloud of subsiding steam. Although the prospect of a smoldering tongue kept my distance, I tugged intently on my Baba’s apron, imploring her to spare me a glance.

Her hands seize my waist, raising me upon the the sudden, off-putting coldness of the countertop, “Oppa! Doesn’t this smell good? Breathe in the steam, it’s good for you.” I draw in the red broth, and its warmth, its sweetness, its care. The blue dancers wither away as she turns down the dial. The top is laid over the soup, rapidly gaining droplets of water on its ceiling. There will come a day when my cooking will be as sensational as that of my Baba.

A spectacular idea suddenly emerges in my mind: I will make her something sweet, like cupcakes—fantastic, pink cupcakes. I heave a cerulean ceramic bowl upon the table, gathering eggs, sugar, flour, powders, and various other ingredients that I toss, pour, and beat into a heavy, parchment-colored mixture. Reveling in my creation, I delicately situate the baking tray in the oven. I then wash the white streaks of flour from my body, listening to the tick, tick, ticking of the timer. Will she like it? I begin to pace the kitchen anxiously, attempting to imagine her reaction.

Ring! The prolonged call of the timer had ended in an intense trill.

I felt the tray gradually sear through the glove as I removed it from the heat. Perfect, it had turned out entirely perfect—or so I had thought. I called my Baba to the kitchen to present it to her to taste; to my dismay, as she unwrapped the dessert, its liquid center had spewed out a cakey, rubbery, pallid lump. The disappointment on my face must have been clear, because my Baba swooped me into her arms, encouraging me, “You made this all by yourself? Wow, that’s terrific! Don’t cry, it’s okay.”

“No, it’s terrible. I can’t do anything.” I hung my head, unable to look at her. I impulsively escaped up the stairs and locked myself into my bedroom. I held a sheet of paper against a book and tried to drew pictures of my Baba and I, massively layered cakes, and all sorts of imaginary creatures to offer to her instead of the cupcakes.

“Christine!” my Baba called, “Come here!”

I raced to the kitchen with the stack of pictures in my hand, “Here, I made these for you.” She complimented me, and took them. But then I stopped at the wondrous, fragrant sweetness that drifted through me. My Baba smiled as she handed me a cupcake that she fixed, and I would never forget this moment.
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Comment by theawesometoris32

Joined: 11/29/2014
Posts: 3
This story was so sweet and heartfelt! I loved it!
Posted: Saturday, November 29, 2014 6:28:28 AM
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Comment by thiegsr

Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
On behalf of the entire editorial board, I would like to congratulate you for your Food for Thought essay being chosen as 1 of the 11 essays in the running for 1st place for our November 2014 teen writing competition. Be proud of your accomplishment. We had almost 200 essays submitted for November’s contest.

We are in the process of selecting our top three winners, and naming the 1st place winner from the narrowed field.

We will post all winning essay results by December 31st. You can check this page for the results after December 31st:

Thanks for adding your voice to our mission “Changing the World . . . One Story at a Time” and feel free to share your accomplishment.

Rebecca Thiegs Co-Founder and Education Consultant
Posted: Friday, December 5, 2014 12:44:54 PM
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Comment by thiegsr

Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
On behalf of the entire editorial board, I would like to congratulate you for your Food for Thought essay being selected as one of our Teen Essay runners up for November 2014.

To view all the results of our November 2014 contest, please check our winners page on or after December 31st:

Thanks for adding your voice to our mission “Changing the World . . . One Story at a Time” and feel free to share your accomplishment with the world.

Rebecca Thiegs Co-Founder and Education Consultant
Posted: Tuesday, December 16, 2014 5:02:43 PM
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