Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Shame about the cherries

I went to a very small rural(ish) Easter fair and competition the other day and was taken aback by the rather sarky judge's comments for some of the exhibits. There was a competitive display of cherry cakes, cheese straws and flowers entered by locals of the church/community centre. One of the judges had stuck little yellow post-its with scribbled comments onto all the exhibits, both winners and losers.

Some seemed rather harsh to me, making very public the perceived failings of the entries. 'Looks ok but a pity about the cherries'; 'a bit dry and a shame about the cherries'; 'could have done with more cheese'; 'not enough cheese and not straight enough'. I suppose for a true connoisseur of home-made cheese straws, standards must be adhered to for the perfectly shaped and aligned straw, though I am still wondering what the problems were with so many people's cherries.... each cherry not equally spaced within each slice of cake? Not enough cherries? Too many? Cherry pieces chopped too small? Too large? Too near the bottom....?

If you'd spent the past year perfecting your cherry cake in anticipation of the annual competition, being written off by a judge's sniffy post-it note could be a public humilation too far. It could be the last straw for someone, as in so many Miss Marple and Midsomer Murders scenarios....  [dark warning about the strangeness of human behaviour]