to make cupcakes for Conor's birthday at school. His birthday is still a week and a half away, but it was his last day of school, so any excuse for a party. I show up at the requisite snack time with cupcakes in hand, all ready to pass out my safe and exciting funfetti and sprite cupcake snack.
So as I walk in, the pre-school director
(we call him Doc to protect his identity)
turns to me and says "that looks great, do you have the candles ready?" I of course thought I had planned out everything, since I know Doc can be a little, well, lets say, misguided. I had Conor's separate juice, paper plates, etc. Of course it never occur ed to me to bring candles.
Seeing I did not come bearing the requisite birthday candles, Doc said "Don't worry, I have some" He goes to the cabinet and pulls out a little glass cup with about 10 used candles inside. They all have black wicks, and are in different shapes, sizes and colors. He starts sifting through this little cup o' candles looking for 4 that are similar. I look over and try to calmly ask, "are those used candles?" My mind quickly thought of all the cakes, icing and kids mouths those candles had been stuck into over the many many years Doc had been recycling them. Doc responds, "of course they are, we try and re-use what we can here." After congratulating him on his efforts to protect the environment, I kindly pointed out that perhaps we should not put those candles in the cupcake Conor was going to eat because of CROSS CONTAMINATION!!!!.
Doc looks at me for a second, gives it a thought that perhaps those candles had just come out of a peanut butter cake or something, and says "that is a good point, I never thought of that. Just put the candles in a cupcake for him to blow out, and then I will eat it." Being the intelligent man that he thinks is, Doc continues to think about the situation, and then says, "oh wait, I should not eat the cupcake they have been in either. Those kids always lick the candles after they pull them out and I am immuno-suppressed." (Doc had a kidney transplant earlier in the year)."
So, it all turned out great in the end. Conor had a nice party at school, Doc learned another lesson about cross contamination, and I learned to always carry my own birthday cake candles.
Party on Food Allergy People!