I took a break from working today and actually escaped the house. It hit me last night that I hadn't so much as walked outside since Sunday evening and had, instead, been virtually tethered to the family recliner, pounding away on my laptop keys trying to meet work deadlines. Un.heal.thy.
So, with Texas temperatures finally cooperating, I took a break to run some errands with my mom's car. Angelo State University was my first stop, the alma mater that I hadn't seen since I graduated 12 years ago (gulp). I went with the purpose of visiting a high school friend who is now a lecturer with the math department. I spend so much time whenever I'm in San Angelo trying to avoid anyone I might possibly have known in high school, so I decided to take a different tactic this time. The more evolved part of my brain decided I should actively seek out the people I know (and know where they are) in order to just face the awkward small talk head on. With that in mind, I girded my loins and made the drive.
Small talk did indeed happen. I heard all about the kids and family vacations. There was also the obligatory discussion about whether we kept in touch with anyone else from high school. Despite the mundane conversation, it was what it should have been...a decent way for two people who used to be close to share part of their lives and a much better way to make a connection than friending someone on Facebook.
Cupcakes and the support of a local independent business were next on my agenda.
My mom has been talking about a new cupcake shop that opened inside a local florist, so in my quest to sample new cupcakes wherever I travel, I went to pick up a few for the family. I tried my best to be unbiased, but the name had me skeptical before I ever set foot inside the shop. Cakes in a Cup? I understand the desire to be cute and come up with a play on words, but it comes off as more annoying, less clever.
Honestly, though, the name is the least of their worries. While the cupcakes maintain the appearance of similar cupcakes in well-known bakeries throughout DC (*cough* Georgetown Cupcake *cough*), their appeal ends there. I judge all bakeries by their vanilla cupcake and usually a couple more unique flavors. The vanilla cupcake offered up by Cakes in a Cup was one of the worst vanilla cupcakes I have had in a while. The icing was hard and extremely dense. One of the cupcakes above actually rolled over, and the icing didn't even dent. To make matters worse, there was very little flavor outside of huge amounts of sugar. We sampled 3 or 4 of the flavors offered and were continually disappointed (family consensus here). Of the cupcakes we tried, the Freshly Squeezed cupcake was by far the best with a lighter icing and just enough lemon zing. Even this wasn't enough to save the place from my criticism.
So, kids, public service message of the day: If you're ever in San Angelo and feel like a cupcake, skip Cakes in a Cup and go try a cookie from Hauffman's Cake Cottage.
P.S. There are plenty of people I probably wouldn't waste my breath on from high school. Those weren't even in consideration for looking up.
P.S.S. I actually had one more person on my list to look up at ASU but couldn't bring myself to do it. Too much baggage associated with this one just to walk in blindly. Maybe another day.