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Monday, May 10, 2021

Core Incident by Sydney Salter

In high school I worked very briefly as a delivery driver for the Cake & Flower Shoppe in Reno, Nevada. In the morning I delivered pies to casino cafes. In the afternoon I backed the van into a thick metal post, rendering the sliding door useless only minutes before a wedding delivery.

We packed all the flowers and the large tiered cake into the van through the front doors and drove to the outdoor wedding venue. I felt terrible about denting the van door, and wanted to be helpful, so I finished setting up the cake by myself, placing the layers onto the plastic columns. I ran off to help carry flowers.

We returned to find the cake on the ground: balls of frosting and grass. 

I was immediately fired. 

All these years later, I still feel terrible about ruining that wedding cake. The scene showed up in My Big Nose And Other Natural Disasters, and I wrecked another wedding cake in Not A Doctor Logan's Divorce Book. I visited my old boss after My Big Nose came out. We were both a little surprised about how young we'd been back then--she'd been in her early 20s and maybe that's why she hired a 17-year-old delivery driver. She sure remembered me though, even though I had only been employed for a few hours! 

Writing helps us work through various traumas, right? 

3 comments:

  1. !! I love that you keep coming back to this scene. Kind of reminds me of the Christmas Story leg lamp. I think it showed up in more than one of the Jean Shepherd flicks. (Was also in the Great American Fourth of July?)

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  2. Well, the lemon tree does bear fruit more than once. Thanks for sharing. What about a protagonist meeting an attractive auto body repair person after promising to pay for fixing the damage?

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  3. Oh dear! What a story! Now, I'm going to wonder about every disaster in every novel I read... ;-) I'm sorry that happened to you, but it does make for a delightful scenario. And yes, writing does help us work through trauma for sure! Thanks for sharing.

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