TurkeyCakeFest 2013 happened in March. It’s a tradition that started in 2011. People complain that social media gives a false sense of intimacy to friendships, that you can’t possibly have more than 150 real friends. Maybe that’s true, but TurkeyCakeFest (TCF) started because of Facebook, and without TCF, JSP and I wouldn’t be as close as we are.
You probably saw the recipe and pictures for the Turkey Cake back in 2011 – it’s turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and mashed potatoes (both regular and sweet) shaped to look like a regular cake, the kind you’d eat on your birthday. My friends had widely varying reactions to it, from revulsion to love at first sight. I fell into the latter category. When I posted the link to the recipe and said I wanted to make it, JSP commented that if I visited her in Boston, she would make it with me. Two days later, I forwarded her my itinerary.
JSP worked at our strange little company for many years, since before it went public. Most employees joked about “drinking the Kool-Aid,” because the firm “put the CULT in culture.” We had our own vocabulary and lore, and JSP was one of the company’s legends. I’m not sure when or how we became Facebook friends, but after she left the company, I posted a status update informing the world (before Facebook’s disregard for privacy became well-known) that I would be in Boston for work, and JSP invited me to meet for coffee. I wasn’t sure what we’d talk about, given our acquaintanceship, but I liked and admired her, and it beat hanging out in front of my computer in my hotel room.
Meeting for coffee was pleasant enough, but what struck me was that JSP had a gimlet eye when it came to her former employer, and it made me like her more. We met again for coffee when we were in London at the same time, and then for dinner in DC before TurkeyCakeFest. I wasn’t sure what to expect from a whole weekend, but I was game.
It was one of the most fun weekends I’ve had, and shockingly, the TurkeyCake was delicious. It wasn’t so delicious that we’ve ever made it again, but every year at the same time, I fly to where she lives, and we spend the weekend cooking and drinking wine and laughing. For all of Facebook’s flaws, I will be grateful to it for bringing JSP and me closer together.
How did I not see this before? I love this, and I love TCF for exactly the same reasons. So glad that I get to read your writing in a slightly longer format.
I hadn’t seen any of your blog before, and was entirely MISLED by the title TCF 2013. I expected, at the very least, a mention of the pie. I will grudgingly admit to thoroughly enjoying the blog, even without pie.
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