Hostesses With The Mostest > Entertaining and Hospitality

Dessert wars

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This situation is playing out right now in my circle of extended friends/family.  I primarily know about it because the two main players (Tom and Tina) are both using me as a sounding board/sympathetic ear. 


Every year Tina uses the occasion of her birthday (early Dec) as an excuse to throw a party and have a lot of people over.  Typically she has a huge buffet spread of small plate items/tapas.  The piece de resistance of the meal/event is The Cake.  The Cake is a recipe that she has from her great-grandmother, and is her favorite cake, but which she only makes once a year where there are a lot of people around to help eat it because it is incredibly rich. 

Enter Tom, who has a fairly new food restriction that means he cannot partake of The Cake. Tom is rather fixated on this fact and is upset that Tina will neither alter the recipe so that he can eat The Cake nor make a different main dessert. 

(It should be noted that there will be plenty of there that Tom can eat.  Tina knows a lot of people with food restrictions and the reason that she always does tapas is so that there will be plenty for all diets.  There will also be other dessert-type items - a fruit and cheese platter and several kinds of ice cream and sorbets.)

Tina is putting her foot down about The Cake.  Her stance is that it is her birthday and she is going to have The Cake.  She contends that there are plenty of other things that Tom can eat and doesn't understand why Tom is "being such a baby" (her words) about the whole thing. She has offered to Tom that she can provide a cupcake just for him from a bakery that caters to his diet if it is that important to him to be able to have "cake" at her party. 

Tom is angry at Tina because he thinks she is being an "ungracious host" (his words) by making a main dessert that not everyone can eat, and is insulted by the idea of the special cupcake for him because "separate is not equal!" (again, his words) He thinks that she should just make The Cake some other time and should be focused on catering to the needs of her guests at the party by making a main dessert that all can enjoy.

Frankly, I want to shake them both a little bit, and I think that they both have points... however, I also think that Tina is trying to be more than accommodating to Tom (and it IS her birthday after all!) and that Tom needs to either learn how to be a gracious guest or just not go to Tina's party.

So, oh ehellions... should I say something to Tom and/or Tina?  Or should I just just smile and nod when they kvetch to me and otherwise stay well out of it?

Harriet Jones:

I'd tell Tina not to change The Cake, and tell Tom to suck it up.

Curious Cat:
Tom's being a jerk and should stay  home if he's so offended at the idea that his host would get him a special dessert.  Tina is being very generous in offering but would have been under no obligation to do so.

Tom needs to be in the SS thread.

Outdoor Girl:
I'm summarizing to make sure I have it right:  Tina is throwing the party, providing all the food, including The Cake.  Tom will be able to eat a lot of the food but not The Cake.  Tina has offered to provide a cupcake that Tom can eat.  And Tom is whining because Tina is still going to serve The Cake, that he can't eat.

Tom is just a tad bit entitled, isn't he?  Tina is fine.  Accommodating doesn't mean catering to.  Tom either needs to suck it up or not attend.

As for what you should do, I'd stay out of it.  At most, I'd tell them to talk to each other and leave you out of it.


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