Is there anything as sad as the very last piece of cake?
It's never the piece that was graced by the candle. It's never the pretty piece. It's never the piece that everyone wanted to eat.
The last piece of cake is always the piece that people kind of avoided for one reason or another. And while every other piece had only one side that had become dry due to air exposure, the last piece has two sides (or more) that have become just a little dryer than you'd like.
So it sits on the plate for just a little too long, as you contemplate whether to eat it or put both of you out of your misery and just relegate it to the bin.
But then you pour yourself a glass of milk and settle in.
The frosting is a little sturdier than you had hoped. The cake has a kind of outer shell that seems just a tad off. But the center is just as nice as the other pieces had been.
As you work your way through that last slice you find yourself thinking about the first slice - not just of that particular cake, but every cake. The frosted brownie shaped like a shoe. The chocolate teddy bear and the white bunny. The cupcakes and wedding cakes and shower cakes and anniversary cakes.
And by the time you're tipping back the last of the milk, the cake has become one of those memories. And it wasn't the last slice after all, but simply another piece of the strange cake puzzle that is your life.