i was told there’d be cake, sloane crosley


The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington/ PO Box 96140/ Washington DC 20090-6140


Philadelphia Weekly review and excerpt of I Was Told There’d Be Cake, Essays by Sloane Crosley


this title definitely caught my eye while skimming through the stacks and mounds of books at the bookstore. how many times have i been lulled to an event b/c there’s free food? how many times have i 20080421190140_crosley2eaten crap food that’s totally bad for me, but tastes so good, just because it’s free? too many times. the hoarding behavior i developed in college has transferred over to my real life now that i’m even more poor as an intern living in the city who has to pay rent and buy groceries, and sometimes lives in the dark b/c lightbulbs are an extra expense.

any collection of witty, real-life short stories, and the david sedaris comparisons start. i love Mr. DS. along with eddie izzard, there is no one who understands the frustration of learning french better.  when i first began reading I was Told There’d Be Cake, i thought about David Sedaris and Me Speak Pretty One Day. but crosley has a way of being insecure and curious about life events and scenarios that is easily relatable, and totally charming.

on suddenly being asked, out of nowhere, to be part of the bridal party of a high school best friend she hadn’t seen or spoken to since high school,

So I agreed because, barring exorbitant plane fare or typhus, you can’t not agree. Not only is it a social slap in the face and a personal kick in the feelings, it also puts a silent price tag on the friendship, no matter how faded that friendship is. If the average bridesmaid’s dress costs $250 and the average bridesmaid’s shoes cost $125, and you refuse to participate, that’s like saying you wouldn’t pay $375 to maintain that friendship. It’s like saying if deranged pirate terrorists kidnapped the bride and demanded $375 and a few hours of your time in exchange for her life, you’d hand them the musket yourself. Sure, Francine and I had drifted apart and the last time we hung out we were wearing Z. Cavariccis and intentionally shattered heart pendants. Mine said “be fri”, hers said “st ends”. Sure, I couldn’t remember her middle name or her natural hair color, but what kind of bitch lets someone get kidnapped by deranged pirate terrorists?

Or like the time she tried to move from one manhattan apartment to another, and subsequently lost her keys, and locked herself out. twice. once she volunteered at the natural history museum, and accidentally brought home a rare butterfly with her. her thinking and methodology of bringing the creature back without making it look like she stole it – as someone who is also prone to miniature freak-outs, it’s great to know i’m not the one, whose attempts to do good fall through due to my own awkwardness, or ineptitude. recently with my own personal life stories of having a neighbor who has band practice till 4 in the morning, and signing up to paint a community mural and then sleeping in, or getting lost on my way there, i  only hope my writings & recountings would be as eloquent, humorous and endearing.


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