Paulelmo's Blog

Cinnamon Roll Perfection

I don’t believe in earthly perfection. When I hear people say, “Oh, that’s perfect,” I think, “No, it’s just hyperbole.”

Most things are okay with me. Typically, nothing, aside from the joy I get from family, friends, and art–and those are spiritual things–is so great that I couldn’t have missed it. In like manner, nothing has ever proven so awful that I couldn’t live through it again.

If that is so, why do I have such a hard time picking which cinnamon roll to choose from the eight available on the pan? Surely, any of them will be just fine, better than fine even; whichever one I pick will be just darn tasty and enjoyable. Still, I pour over them with my eyes, knowing that one of them is superior to the other seven.

I tried to be as diplomatic as I could be when I iced them, knowing that their number would be eaten by a decent number of people. Still, I am but a man, imperfect, and without well-calibrated, maintained, and oiled scientific engineering equipment–as there was no guarantee that the folks WalMart paid to make and package the icing supplied me with a squeezy dealy thingy that would infuse me with the capability to dispense eight equally precise portions–there was indeed one of these eight that had more icing on it.

**

That’s right, I use the store brand, and the store I go to is WalMart. Sue me. It’s funny, when we’re young, we’re all on about how much we spend on everything, but as we get older we change our focus to how little we spend on things. Then you add kids to the mix… Don’t be surprised if you hear three soccer moms having an interaction like this.

MOM 1: Well, I went to the end of season sell at Baby Gap, and I got them for six bucks a pair.

MOM 2: Oh, you missed out. You should have gone to Gabe’s; I spent four bucks each.

MOM 3: Ya’ll are both silly. I met these two dudes from Hoboken named Fingers and Vinnie, and we knocked over a freaking truck. In fact, I can sell you each some for three.

**

And it isn’t as if the amount of icing is the only deciding factor. It could turn out that the best of these doesn’t have the most icing on it at all. Ovens cook unevenly, and there’s no telling what the undersides look like. Maybe some of them are a bit darker than the others. Not burnt, mind you–I cooked these puppies, after all–but maybe just dark enough to add a touch of unwanted flavor into the mix. There’s just no way of telling without picking them up, and, well, I just can’t go picking them up, there’s company in the house for Heaven’s sake. Heck, it was them that I made the rolls for anyway. I should be concerned about one of them getting the best one, the perfect one if such exists.

I know they understand because ceremony goes out the window when it comes to cinnamon rolls; everybody wants to pick the best one. Everybody pours over them with the same caution. After the fact, I’m sure each person feels as if he or she picked well. Dan Gilbert would know the reasons for that.

As it turned out, I didn’t even have one, but I’m certain the one I would have had, had I eaten the one I picked, would have been the best. It would have been just perfect.

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