In the last year of my twenties, I was chatting with some friends about our hopes and dreams—it’s a habit we call “H&D-ing”, and yes, you’re welcome to steal that expression. We started listing off the things we’d never done, stuff we wanted to do some time before death or our thirties (whichever came first). On our lists was bizarre shit like “learn how to throw knives” and “toast two beer mugs together so hard that the glass shatters,” alongside more normal activities like skydiving or visiting China. I had a few items on my checklist, some of which were a little complicated to execute, like driving a car around a race track super-fast*, but one of my dreams was pretty attainable: smashing my face into a cake.
I don’t know why I hadn’t ever smushed my face into dessert. It just never seemed like the right time, I guess? Was I all wrapped up in The Man’s expectations of how to behave in public? I mean, it seems weird to invite friends over for your birthday party, and then destroy the cake they’re excited to eat, by pressing your greasy mug into it. I suppose I could’ve bought an extra cake just for face-smashing? But a part of my sicko fantasy was that I’d get to eat said cake with my hands afterward, like a demented baby. And I didn’t want to ruin my parties by forcing my friends to watch an icing-covered adult fist some Devil’s Food. I guess I could’ve done it alone, in the privacy of my own home, but that would’ve entailed buying a shitty sheet cake at the grocery store, just for the purpose of pressing my cheeks into it, then mashing it with my hands. That behavior seemed somewhere between insane and “future morbidly obese person who needs to be carried out of their house by a crane.” You see my dilemma.
Plus, it was just childish and pointless, something reserved for babies wearing pointy party hats. Here I was, a theoretically grown woman with a Netflix membership and a Roth IRA. Why would I even need/want to dive face-first into cake? I should just eat some wheat bran and get ready to die.
But when my friends heard about my goal, they stepped up to the plate and encouraged me to check off that box on my life list. They said they’d all do it alongside me, but with a twist: each person would get to pick which form of dessert they’d stick their face into. A couple of weeks later, I was baking a couple cheap box-mix cakes and mixing up two salad-bowl-size servings of pudding. It was on.
I went with a classic cake, the kind you’d make for a 4-year-old’s birthday in the 1960s: strawberry with vanilla icing. And when it was time for the face-smashing, I forced my head down into that pillowy carb and came up a changed woman. Is it possible for your face to orgasm? It felt a little like that. Hysterical laughter bubbled up from within me and would not quit. There was a nose-shaped dent in the cake, and I tore off chunks around it and shoved them into my Duncan Hines hole. It was like doing ecstasy, minus all the teeth-grinding.
Another friend asked that she have someone surprise her, by forcing her face into a chocolate cake when she least expected it. So about 20 minutes later, when she was in the middle of telling a story, I walked behind her to “get a beer” and then shoved her head down into the icing. My two other pals both opted for pudding, and watching them baptize their faces in dairy was so freeing, like seeing two Jell-O covered birds take flight.
When we started GAL, one of our guiding principles was that we wanted to promote hedonism and lawless fun among ladies. To paraphrase Ferris Bueller, life moves terrifying fast, and if you don’t stop and act like a total dickhead once in a while, you could miss it. So go ahead and make a list of the dumbest shit you’ve always wanted to try, then actually do it. Cover your face with icing. Dream the impossible dream. Keep reaching for the stars, grown-ass ladies.
*A few years ago, I trekked out to New Jersey and drove a Lamborghini around a NASCAR track, and it was one of the top funnest experiences ever. I highly recommend it: 4 stars, A+, would do business with again.