Yes. That’s the answer to will she know what to do with a chocolate cupcake. Children are born with the cupcake gene and by their first birthday, it is in full bloom.
Nora, our second grandchild, turned 1 recently. She is genetically normal and her family genetically in love.
There was a moment after her mother, Lauren, placed the cupcake on the tray of her highchair when the audience, which included parents, grandparents, great-grandparents and friends, wondered if the cupcake might survive.
It was similar to watching a bull enter the ring, the matador standing silently on the other side twirling his mustache. The matador and bull eye one another but neither moves a muscle. Maybe, the crowd thinks, the bull will live to see another bull fight.
No, and neither did the cupcake either. Within seconds, chunks of the cupcake were being tossed around as if they were survivors of a ship wreck - crumbles on the floor, underneath the dining room table and a healthy portion mashed on the birthday girl’s neck, forehead, nose and hair.
Cupcake decimated, it was time for presents. A rocking horse, giant Legos, books, puzzles and clothes. Ours was a Little Tikes Cozy Coupe.
“Toddlers love this riding toy car’s classic design and easy maneuverability, a bestseller since 1979. Perfect indoors or out. The Cozy Coupe encourages active play, imagination, and the development of large motor skills.”
The online description was enchanting. “Bestselling,” “classic,” “easy,” and “perfect.” What wasn’t there to love?
“I think there may be some assembly required,” Sue said, several days before we were scheduled to celebrate Miss Cupcake’s birthday.
“Several days before” gave Nora’s grandfather time to study the colorful photographs on the box in order to absorb the directions subliminally without having to read them.
“Some assembly required” veterans know it is best to begin assembly when one is fresh rather than at 10:30 p.m. after downing a half bottle of zin aged in bourbon barrels.
“Some assembly required” called for a hammer, which prompted, as it often does, a comment from the non-assembler: “You know you don’t have to use so much force with that hammer. The parts should fit right together.”
I don’t have to, but I’m going to. I’m going to because I find that I am not my usual cheerful self. I’m an hour into the project and I haven’t attached the “bestselling” doors yet nor the wheels known for their “easy maneuverability.” If I take a swing at the “Toy car’s classic design” it’s because I am “developing my large motor skills.”
Will Miss Cupcake mind if the Little Tikes Cozy Coupe doesn’t have wheels on it? Doors? This is the Bakersfield version of the car. The one that includes wooden blocks so as to “encourage active play and imagination.”
The Cozy Coupe took three hours to assemble, which means, should I have another opportunity to put one together, it will take five minutes and that includes walking the box to the recycling bin.
Three hours. Two hours and 59 minutes longer than it took Nora to eat the cupcake but worth every sweaty minute. Flush with wheels and doors, the Cozy Coupe was icing on the cupcake.