The Cake is not a lie.

The Cake

My cake. Yes, that's a miniature excavation scene on top, complete with trowel, tarp, micro rite-in-the-rain notebook, flagging tape and marker flags indicating surface lithic scatters.

Today was my birthday. My folks came over for a visit from Vancouver and Chris (my wife) presented me with the cake to end all cakes. This thing, Chris’s first attempt at baking a cake, was a work of art: not only delicious, but thematic and just generally delightful.

Clearly, my wife is not only brilliant and creative (and archaeologically inclined), but is also as big a nerd (or close to it) as I am. As indicated above, the decorative topping included all of the equipment necessary to conduct a (very) small scale excavation. The only part that was not made by Chris is the screen- a souvenir I picked up at the CAA conference in Halifax. Of course, the hard candy lithics were made by me. I had an inkling that some sort of archaeo-culinary mash-up was in the works, but had no concept of how awesome the end result would be.

It must be noted that Chris is not one to simply make a regular cake and stick some cute archaeology doodads on top; this cake is archaeological to the core. She carefully crafted the cake’s internal stratigraphy using layers of chocolate cake, spice cake, icing, walnuts, coconut, Oreo crumbs, mint-chocolate squares, and hard candy lithics. The result was incredible! If you could control your appetite long enough to excavate the cake in a controlled manner, not only would the “lithics” be found, but also some postholes, remnant collapsed roof beams above the housefloor, and a small hearth feature(!). I was in archaeology-nerd/chocoholic heaven.

The sidewalls of the excavation unit sagged a little overnight. No mini plumbob was included, but since we expanded the 1x1 to a 6x3, it didn't matter too much.

Yup. Sure am.

A fun day. Back to the grind tomorrow.


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