It would be ironic that the moment I seriously consider making a career out of writing, I get a wretched case of writers block, knocking the verbal creativity out of me like an anvil to Wile Coyote’s head. Sitting at my laptop with my fingers resting lightly upon the keys yielded scant prose but a few tweets in 140 letters or less. In an effort to squeeze some use out of my rebellious fingers, I found myself hunched over a mini assembly line last Friday putting together wedding favors for my lawyer friend’s wedding reception.
There I was, mindlessly and methodically folding one hundred and twenty-four little boxes and lining them up just so on my coffee table, trying to keep them from taking over my entire living room. And as I cut tissue paper into confetti with which to line the boxes, I gave up on trying to keep everything nice and tidy as strips of red paper exploded everywhere like a trail left by a ticker tape parade. It was tedious to be sure but I didn’t mind not having to stare blankly at my empty computer screen.
Anyways, I was plodding along, one confetti filled box at a time. I had a method to my madness. Make the boxes first. Line the boxes second. Put the chocolate truffles in next. And tie the ribbon last. The first two was simple and didn’t require much thought except to ponder the meaning of life and whether NBC would renew Chuck for another season. And then I got to step three. The chocolate.
I thought I would be immune and the task would be completed as easily and distraction free as the first two. That’s when my eyes adjusted to the print on the box: La Maison du Chocolat. Holy Superman and kryptonite! Bill Clinton and a Big Mac! Self-important pundits and hyperbole! Rebecca Bloomwood and Prada! What in the world?! I have to fill one hundred and twenty four boxes with La Maison du Chocolate truffles without succumbing to temptation? This when I hadn’t had a quality chocolate fix since some time last winter? But an unemployed friend does what an unemployed friend does when a friend needs some favors wrapped with pretty ribbon.
Like a resigned martyr, I applied myself to the task, holding my breath every so often to keep the intoxicating scent of fine dark chocolate from driving me mad. I kid you not. As I was sealed in my apartment making these things all morning and afternoon, with red confetti sprayed on my floor and chocolate dust permeating every available airspace, I was thankful to have a meeting downtown to break the routine. After the meeting, with at least 80 boxes left to go, I knew I couldn’t face them without getting a chocolate fix so I ran over to the Ferry Building and got some rather disappointing Joseph Schmidts truffles at Scharffenberger. But it was enough to sate the appetite so I could face what lay ahead.
There were only two boxes left to fill as the clocked ticked away the minutes to the time I had to deliver the boxes. I was quite proud of myself at that point. It was close to 10pm and the precious truffles had so far escaped unscathed and uneaten. And then, the unthinkable happened or mabye opportunity knocked. Whichever way you think of it. I didn’t do it on purpose but it was getting late and I was tired. A truffle wobbled as I was spooning it into the box and it fell onto the floor.
My immediate reaction was “five second rule!”, and I picked it up. It’s a La Maison du Chocolat truffle for goodness sakes!! And then I paused and pondered because that is what I do when I’ve been working in a wedding favor sweatshop all day. Five second rule as it applies to whom? Me or the guests who would unwrap the boxes the next day? And who am I to decide for others what their tolerances are? If a truffle falls to the ground of it’s own unbalanced accord, does it have the right to become a wedding favor or should it offer itself up for my enjoyment?
The answer was obvious. Mmmmm chocolate. It was delicious just like I knew it would be. Rich, creamy, and sublime.