Cupcakes, get your cupcakes


Cupcake Days were established by our school PTA before my kids started attending there.  They are a longstanding tradition.

Each month, one grade has to bring in two dozen of the sugary boogers.  The PTA parents, I’d guess mostly moms, organize them and sell them to the kids after lunch for .50 each.  Used to be .25 but two years ago the price doubled.  Damn inflation.

Last Wednesday, I drove up at 7:45 AM, our usual drop off time, and there they were, the 5th grade Stepford moms:  aprons on, cart on the sidewalk, boxes of the delicious delicacies stacked one on top of the other.

“Geeeze!”  I had forgotten.  It was on my calendar.  Doesn’t do you any good if you don’t check it the night before.

“Dad, can we have our cupcake money?”

I scrambled through the ashtray.  I had six pennies and one nickel.

“Probably wouldn’t let you have one anyway since your sorry father forgot.”

“It’s OK dad,” my middle daughter assured me.  “I’ll borrow .50 from a friend.”

I lost the Sunday School book last week and my entire class had to change curriculum.  Now this.  I’m losing my mind!!!

I scurried home, showered and threw on my work clothes.  Snatched four quarters from the porcelain pig that DJ made when she was in sixth grade; if you’re a criminal, that’s where the Tanner Family booty is kept.  Darted to the Harris Teeter and nabbed two dozen, frosted in primary colors.

I hate buying the cupcakes.  I spent $18, and I’m afraid that I’m going to throw a kindergartener into a diabetic coma.  The red dyed butter and sugar concoction heaped on the top of their little cakes is 4 ½ inches high.  It can’t be good for you.

What’s more, I could give the school the $12 they will make from sales, save $6 and perhaps a small child’s life.

I wish I could stand on a soap box and be critical of the whole cupcake thing, you know, healthy eating and all.  But I’m afraid that someone in the cafeteria might start taking an inventory of my kids’ lunches.

“Dad, why do you keep putting bananas in our lunch boxes?  We don’t eat them!”

“It’s not for you baby.  It’s for me.  I put them in there so that I can pretend that I’m a good parent, encouraging you to eat well, concerned for your wellbeing.  Never bring them home.  Just throw them away.  Let’s pretend you eat them.”

“That’s weird.”

“One day you’ll understand.”

After dropping off the change and double pound of lard, I fought the beltline traffic to work, my guilt left on Rowan Street by the front doors of the school.

When I arrived home that night, Stephanie, the one who had so graciously given me a bye 10 hours earlier, met me at the door.

“Do you know what this is?” she inquired holding an unusual coin between her thumb and Mr. Pointer.

“It’s money,” I responded, not understanding the significance.

“Yes.  It is a Euro, money from another continent.  It’s the one that Pops brought back from Germany last month.”


“Do you think that our school accepts euros to pay for cupcakes?”


“I don’t know what that means but the answer is no!”

“Hey, Stephanie?”


“Did you see any kindergarteners in Nurse Huber’s office today?”

“Not when I walked by.”

At least one thing went right.

Leave a comment


  1. I get so mad when I think too much about our school fundraisers. I’d rather be asked to write one check at the beginning of the year instead of dying by a thousand cuts. But you’ve just got to grin and bear it… and keeping putting the bananas in the lunch bags! 🙂

  2. Two years ago I volunteered to help and someone sent in Gigi’s Cupcakes. The people with me hadn’t heard of Gigi’s and were flabbergasted when I said they cost $40 a dozen. I encouraged the woman in charge to let the staff purchase them and suggested asking a dollar instead. Crazy!!

  3. Wanda Easley

     /  November 20, 2013

    Hilarious! Maybe it was so funny because I agree. I don’t even like cupcakes! I doubt if the kids would go in for a carrot sale!

  4. This is too funny! Who knew something as cute as cupcakes could throw a parent into such a tizzy?! My daughter is obsessed with cupcakes at the moment – – I wish her school had cupcake days, so I could “share” ours instead of eating one every time I walk through the kitchen!

  5. lundygirl

     /  November 20, 2013

    I used to send an apple to school with my daughter – the same apple five days a week! But it was in her lunch box just in case the teacher did a spot check. Keep up the good work with the bananas. Funnily enough, a few years on and my daughter loves apples

    • Danny Tanner

       /  November 20, 2013

      My girls will eat fruit – but I see a lot of stuff I send come back home and it’s typically not the Goldfish!

  6. You crack me up!

  7. Love this story, so well written as well. I too dread those notices with the words ‘shared lunch’ or bake sale’….


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