So here we are, one week out from Election Day, and all this politicking has left me, well ... kinda hungry.
For the record, I'm a Democrat and an Obama supporter. Over the past year or so, I've enjoyed numerous encounters with friends who do not share my political beliefs. For the most part, these have been well-reasoned, reasonably sober, even-toned discussions where we respected each others' opinions and behaved as adults. But there have also been a few knock-down, drag-out confrontations that stopped just short of blood-letting ... and this was with people I'm related to.
For the life of me, I can't understand why these decent human beings can't see things as I do and vote the same as me, but that's what makes this world so interesting, eh?
We have a friend, Bob, a diehard Republican, who has been after my wife for months to bake him his favorite cake. It's a Portuguese honey-almond cake that comes from a 30-year-old recipe out of Bon Appetit. Debbie makes it for special occasions and, for my money, it's the best damn cake in the world. If ever there was a cake that could make someone re-think their political beliefs then this is it.
The other day, Debbie baked this most wonderful cake and we presented it to Bob and his wife, Darby, and said: "We've enjoyed our political discussions over the past year and respect your point of view. Please accept this cake as a symbol of our belief in our system of government and the good things that can come from civil discourse. Yes, this is a bribe to change your mind so you'll vote for Barack Obama. But if it doesn't work, then so be it. Enjoy the cake."
So why not have a little fun in these last few days before the Nov. 4 election and, at the same time, get rid of the acrimony that politics can create? Why not offer a respite from rhetoric and the freaking economy and attend to creature comforts? Why not let people on both sides of the political fence support their candidates and honor their differences with... pastry?
To that end, I introduce: Bake a Cake for Obama/Make a Pie for McCain.
Here's how it would work: Pick someone with whom you have been at political odds over the past year. This could be a friend, like my friend Bob, who has held fast to opinions that differ widely from your own, so widely that at times you might have wanted to bash him over the head. Or, it could be a neighbor who has stuck up a political sign in her yard and you've considered it a direct affront to your beliefs.
If you are a Democrat and an Obama supporter, you will give that person a cake. And if you are a Republican and a McCain supporter, you will make that person a pie. You will offer a few kind words, try one last time to change their minds and, done with that, tell them to enjoy the pie/cake.
Will this change the outcome of the election? No way. Will it go a long way toward easing some of the ill-will that has been floating around during this seemingly endless political campaign? I hope so.
And come Nov. 5, the world will be a better place. It has to be ...