Cake With Make-Up

Cake With Make-Up
by Justin Shapiro

In bygone, yore-based, Middle Englishabethan Times, baking was such an intrinsic foundational act of life that the word “baker” became an occupational surname that went on to define generations of families. My family took its name from what was once believed to be a Hebrew word for heroic sailors, or “ship heroes,” but actually translates from anti-semitic Enlightenment-era texts as “vagrant rapists.”

Nevertheless, I believe I imbue this baking spirit even beyond a patronymic naming system. In April of 2015 in a brazen act I entered an annual cake-decorating contest held by the Pittsburgh Midwife Center as a fundraiser for its ongoing midwife crisis. Please hold your applause.

The contest’s prompt was as follows: “We’re asking bakers to bring the big screen to the cake stand for the theme: Lights, Camera, CAKE! For both the Decorated and Taste categories, this could include cakes inspired by a movie, film genres, an actor/actress, going to the theater, or film production.”

OK.

My goal, in so much as we can pinpoint and verbalize our unconscious dreams, was to have my own stupid cake displaying at this fancy event next to all the real cakes everyone worked on. My corresponding goal in lockstep was to strike the harmonious balance of the optimum idea with the minimum amount of effort.

I also resented the idea that the decorated cakes did not have to be made of edible ingredients, essentially making them arts & crafts projects made out of garbage and not, by most biological classifications, cake. Fondant? More like fondon’t. Wait, actually that zing belongs exclusively to the word “fondu.” Alright, fondant, more like fraud-dant. Thus I made a promise to myself to only utilize natural-occurring food-based ingredients, ultimately electing to work with the Pillsbury company’s “Funfetti” mix.

After consulting with a leading team of scientists in the field of oven entropy, these were the results.

Note: The raisins pictured were not used in the cake; they originate from my personal collection.

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When push-time came to shove-time and the public revelation of this concept was imminent, I started to feel highly self-conscious about showing up in front of Iron City aristocracy at this high society gala with this, let’s face it, blatant undermining of everyone else’s hard and, above all else, earnest work.

Still, clad warmly in a protective mystical cloak of ironic invulnerability, I marched quasi-proudly into an honest to goodness opera house carrying my Bad News Bearclaw of a confection. I literally faced a tall order ahead of me.

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If you’ve read Gamechange, the story of the 2008 Obama/Hillary/McCain presidential campaigns, and I have not, you’ll understand how political campaigns are precariously contested, won and lost on the slimmest, most arbitrary of margins. I believe Julianne Moore played Sarah Palin in the book according to one Daily Show interview. Allegedly, my electoral base was the dispassionate husbands who’d been dragged along to the event, assorted men and dudes acceding bemused nods of recognition as they perused the gallery of confection creation. A “Jason Bateman in Juno” type cool husband told me it was his favorite cake in all 10 years and it “had to win.” Not bragging, not mythopoeticizing myself in hyperbolic first-person narration. Just journalism. This is what occurred.

I’d braced myself all evening, but there were never any scandalized gasps. People were generally … nice. By the end of it, the professional photographer for the event had frightened me into thinking I was going to win the People’s Choice Award, a rarefied air heretofore only attainable by the television programs and films of Melissa McCarthy.

For a fleeting, pipe-dreamt moment, unlike the cakes themselves, I could taste it. But I did not win. That was a disappointing relief. On the one hand, like … obviously. But, still. So tantalizing.

And in the back of my mind, I’m left to wonder — did the inner circle of central midwives put their finger on the scale for the people, fabricating the whole ordeal as if it were some sort of the United States’ discovery and assassination of Osama bin Laden? Did they stuff the ballot box (cake box!) against me to crown a more traditional champion, one that would look better and proper when they put the event photos up on socialized media? More photogenic, more enticing for the? Where better to orchestrate something, after all, than the Pittsburgh Opera House?

Presumably not. At all. Like, even a little bit. But even accepting a second-place at second-face value, I choose to consider myself a champion. Correction: not me. The cake. The synthesis of a vision, catalyzed by science and magic — that magic known as imagination.

A $2 eBay investment and $3 cake mix.

A glowing tribute to Tinseltown and its stars of stage and screen.

A cumulative 35 minutes of work.

A night among Pittsburgh’s most fertile and elite.

A cake.

Of the people, by the people, and for the people. A champion.

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JUSTIN SHAPIRSHOW Episode 15 – Jumping Bomb Angles

On this episode of the thing, Alan Counihan (F4W, DKP) and Todd Martin (PWT, TBD) convene with J. Shapiro to cast a pod no different than and completely the same as any other they’ve done previously. In light of Samoa Joe’s appearance on NXT and only that, they discuss their favorite promotional jumps PART ONE, covering an assortment of Rics, Ricks, and Rickys from 1988 to 1995 as they depart, defect, debut, and delight from hither to thither, Crockett to Vince, Atlanta to Stamford, and vices versa. Then, as a bonus, Todd closes the book on the pages and the text with Wrestling Observor: The Lost Levols, the missing/final(?) edition of this popular feature recapping the Observer newsletter through the lense of the fall of the Berlin Wall. If you want to be a star in this business, you have to go to New York and you have to download and listen to this mp3. A show so check it out.

Note: Comprehensible version of the episode begins in earnest at 14:55.

To listen to this show, right click to download the mp3 file here. You can add the show to your music player of choice via it’s RSS feed: http://www.thecubsfan.com/cat/justin-shapirshow/feed/ . You can also find the show on iTunes.

Alan and our own Matt Feuerstein’s career retrospective of Bryan Danielson can be found here.

You can get $5 off of a PWTorch VIP membership by using the offer code iwanttodd

You can find Justin, Alan and Todd on Twitter

Previous Episodes
15: Jumping Bomb Angles
14: Booyaka Booyaka 519
13: Thirtysomething
12: Assed Reigns
11: E! BOLA
10: Shoots and Ladders
9: Dean Dogless
8: 30 Talk
7: Royal Pains with Matt Feuerstein
6: Survivor Queries
5: The Biggest Parody of the Summer
4: New York Meets
3: Dwarf Tosser
2: State of the Union of People You Oughta Respect, Shane
1: Survivors Guilt

JUSTIN SHAPIRSHOW Episode 14 – Booyaka Booyaka 519

May the 19th be with you! That’s right, our annual May 19th Shapir supershow is happening again. Senior correspondent Albert Ching (ComicBookResources.com) guests to discuss not just the history but the deeper significance of this date. Included under that thematic umbrella are: the twisted & disturbed life of Kane, Kane now being a demon from hell in relation to the Sartre quote “hell is other people,” dead crowds in contrast to Al’s live Wrestlemania week experience, some attempted devil’s advocacy for a few of WWE’s demonized divas, and a discussion of a couple of this year’s summer blockbusters released on or around May 19th and what they portend for Daredevil’s prospective team-up with Batista. A show so check it out.

To listen to this show, right click to download the mp3 file here. You can add the show to your music player of choice via it’s RSS feed: http://www.thecubsfan.com/cat/justin-shapirshow/feed/ . You can also find the show on iTunes.

You can find Justin and Albert on Twitter

Previous Episodes
14: Booyaka Booyaka 519
13: Thirtysomething
12: Assed Reigns
11: E! BOLA
10: Shoots and Ladders
9: Dean Dogless
8: 30 Talk
7: Royal Pains with Matt Feuerstein
6: Survivor Queries
5: The Biggest Parody of the Summer
4: New York Meets
3: Dwarf Tosser
2: State of the Union of People You Oughta Respect, Shane
1: Survivors Guilt

List Em and Learn Episode 8 – Top 10 WWE Angles 2000-2015

List ‘Em and Learn is back! This time, Matt, Justin and the whole gang (Matt and Justin’s boogers) run down the top 10 WWE storylines from 2000-2015. This episode is a whopper of a doozy, as we discuss all of the great stories told by Stephanie, Michael Hayes and the whole gang (Stephanie and Michael Hayes’s boogers). From the whoppers to the doozies, we talk about the twists and the turns, the great starts, the terrible endings, and all kinds of fun along the way. Listen to it while eating peanut butter for extra BONUS list items. It’s a show where eating peanut butter will get you extra content, so CHECK IT OUT!”

To listen to this show, right click to download. You can add the show to your music player of choice via it’s RSS feed: http://www.thecubsfan.com/cat/list-em-and-learn-2/feed/ You can also find the show on iTunes.

You can find Matt & Justin on Twitter.

8: Top 10 WWE Angles 2000-2015
7: These Ain’t No Holograms (top 10 greatest ECW matches)
6: Life-Affirming Life (top 10 WCW matches of the 1990s)
5: Looking Up (at) the Star(s) (ratings) (top 10 WWE PPVs since 2000)
4: Ladders and Laundry (top 10 WWF matches of the 1990s)
3: Microchips and Mood Music (Top 10 NES Games)
2: A LOT OF SAND (The Top 10 TV Dramas from 2000-2014)
1: Episode 1 (Part 1 & Part 2)

JUSTIN SHAPIRSHOW EPISODE 13 – Thirtysomething

30 … 31 … 32. There! That’s how many seconds I can hold my breath until I get what I want. Matt Feuerstein (Royal Pains) joins me (Justin Shapirshow host Justin Shapiro) to assess and attack the aftermath of last month’s Roman Reigns temper tantrum and look ahead to those tantrums yet to come. A show so check it out.

To listen to this show, right click to download the mp3 file here. You can add the show to your music player of choice via it’s RSS feed: http://www.thecubsfan.com/cat/justin-shapirshow/feed/ . You can also find the show on iTunes.

You can find Justin and Matt on Twitter

Previous Episodes
13: Thirtysomething
12: Assed Reigns
11: E! BOLA
10: Shoots and Ladders
9: Dean Dogless
8: 30 Talk
7: Royal Pains with Matt Feuerstein
6: Survivor Queries
5: The Biggest Parody of the Summer
4: New York Meets
3: Dwarf Tosser
2: State of the Union of People You Oughta Respect, Shane
1: Survivors Guilt

Joe vs. the World #79 (WWF 1996 part 3)

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Joe Versus the World is BACK!  Justin Shapiro joins Joe to review the third quarter of the WWF in 1996.  Honestly, not a lot happened in-ring, but there are plenty of shenanigans to cover, including a cavalcade of new stars, lawsuits, diminishing buyrates, a little thing called the New World Order, weekly PPV’s,the history of the Boiler Room Brawl, a battle of public transportation, coffee as a plot device, what’s gotten into Kurt Angle’s pizza, an update on our Civil War podcast, and much much more.  We somehow went for 80 minutes!

This time around, Joe would appreciate your support for his Go Fund Me campaign.

Here’s a link to the Go Fund Me to get Joe to Cleveland: http://www.gofundme.com/qgbn9s  Give ‘til it hurts!

To listen to this show, right click to download the mp3 file here, subscribe to the RSS feed @ http://www.thecubsfan.com/joe.xml, or add it to your iTunes Podcasts by clicking here.

Previous editions:
79: WWF 1996, Part 3 (04/15/2015)
78: WWF 1996, Part 2 (12/04/2014)
77: thecubsfan [Mexico 2014] (09/30/2014)
76: WON HOF (09/10/2014)
75: NXT Roster (07/31/2014)
74: WWF 1996, January to March (05/08/2014)
73: WWF 1995, Part 2 (11/22/2013)
72: WWF 1995, Part 1 (10/11/2013)
71: thecubsfan [Mexico] (10/03/2013)
70: WWF 1994 (11/19/2012)
69: No Holds Barred: The Movie (08/09/2012)
68: WrestleManias XXII to XXVIII (04/07/2012)
67: WWF 1993 (12/21/2011)
66: WWF 1992 (06/29/2011)
65: WWF 1991 (03/05/2011)
64: WWF 1990 (11/25/2010)

63B: THE END [Part 2] (09/07)
63A: THE END [Part 1] (09/07)
62: Justin Shapiro [SummerSlam, Part 2] (08/21)
61: Justin Shapiro [SummerSlam, Part 1] (08/15)
60: Naylor and Bix [ICW/IWCCW] (07/27)
59: Mike Quackenbush [CHIKARA] (07/17)
58: Bryan Alvarez [f4w] (07/14)
57: Tanvir Raquib [Rap & Wrestling] (06/21)
56: Rob Naylor [everything] (06/14)
55: Mike Sempervive [japan] (05/30)
54: Matt Foy [ROH] (05/16)
53: Alex Koslov & thecubsfan [lucha] (05/13)
52: Justin Shapiro [the condemned] (05/06)
51: Dr. Keith Lipinski [everything] (05/02)
50: party time (04/22)
49: Rob Naylor & Bix [GWF] (04/11)
48: Dean Rasmussen [everything] (03/31)
47: Phil Schneider [Best of Japan Indies Results and more] (03/26)
46: Justin Shapiro & Matt Foy [WrestleMania, XI-XXIII] (03/22)
45: Justin Shapiro & Matt Foy [WrestleMania, I-X] (03/17)
44: Chris McLeod, Chris Dempsey, Alan Counihan, Kelvin Cabrerra, Llakor, Kid Zombie and Hobbes [potpourri!] (03/14)
43: Rob Naylor [everything] (03/07)
42: Mike Coughlin [MMA] (02/27)
41: Matt Foy [ROH] (02/21)
40: Mike Quackenbush [CHIKARA] (02/14)
39: Tanvir Raquib [WSX] (01/31)
38: Mark Coale [DVDs] (01/24)
37: Christopher Robin Zimmerman [a little bit of everything] (01/17)
36: Dr. Keith [a little bit of everything] (01/06)
35: Matt Foy & Rob Naylor [year in review, ROH] (12/27)
34: Justin Shapiro [year in review, WWE] (12/23)
33: Adam & Mike [year in review, Japan] (12/14)
32: thecubsfan [year in review, lucha] (12/07)
31: Sven Mascarenhas [wrestling video games] (11/27)
30: American Balloon (2) [wrestling in Japan] (11/23)
29: Scott Christ [TNA] (11/21)
28: Tom Feely [survivor series] (11/19)
27: Rob Naylor (2) [indy] (11/12)
26: Matt Foy (4) [ROH] (11/07)
25: Vince Verhei (2) [comebacks] (10/27)
24: Justin Shapiro (4) [the Marine] (10/21)
23: Bryan Alvarez (2) [everything] (10/10)
22: Ken Dreiling and Jesse “J-tron” Irwin [IWA-MS TPI] (10/05)
21: Matt Foy [ROH] (09/20)
20: Tanvir Raquib [09/11 RAW] (09/16)
19: Rob Naylor [News and tangents] (09/09)
18: Dean Rasmussen [DVDVR, life] (08/31)
17: Phil Schneider [Best of the 80’s Japan Indies DVD] (08/26)
16: CRZ [being CRZ] (08/17)
15: Justin Shapiro and thecubsfan [WON HOF, US, Mexico] (08/10)
14: Dr. Keith Lipinski and Mike Sempervive [WON HOF, Japan] (08/04)
13: thecubsfan [lucha] (07/24)
12: Matt Foy [ROH] (07/17)
11: Bryan Alvarez [being Bryan Alvarez] (07/12)
10: Mike Coughlin [MMA] (07/01)
9: Dr. Keith Lipinski [Japan, general wackiness] (06/27)
8: Tanvir Raquib [ECW, parallel dimensions] (06/17)
7: American Balloon [his career] (06/10)
6: Justin Shapiro [RAW, ROH] (06/03)
5: Albert Ching [Judgement Day, ECW] (05/28)
4: Vince Verhei [everything] (05/21)
3: Matt Foy [ROH] (05/14)
Bonus: Hogan Knows Best recap (05/08)
2: Justin Shapiro [WWE] (04/29)
1: thecubsfan [lucha] (04/22)

Joe Gagne’s Funtime Pro Wrestling Arcade #57: WWE Legends of Wrestlemania

JUSTIN SHAPIRSHOW EPISODE 12 – Assed Reigns

Justin S. and Matt Feuerstein (Royal Pains) convene to discuss the most pressing issue in America today: Roman Reigns, and how he’s allowed to win the matches. :( Also, Daniel Bryan and the usual deal there, WrestlePlaynia 0, and the big dance competition Matt will have to enter and — by utilizing the music of the streets — win the grand prize money of, in order to raise enough funds to save indy wrestling from an impending corporate foreclosure at the hands of NXT. A show so check it out.

To listen to this show, right click to download the mp3 file here. You can add the show to your music player of choice via it’s RSS feed: http://www.thecubsfan.com/cat/justin-shapirshow/feed/ . You can also find us on iTunes.

You can find Justin and Matt on Twitter

Previous Episodes
12: Assed Reigns
11: E! BOLA
10: Shoots and Ladders
9: Dean Dogless
8: 30 Talk
7: Royal Pains with Matt Feuerstein
6: Survivor Queries
5: The Biggest Parody of the Summer
4: New York Meets
3: Dwarf Tosser
2: State of the Union of People You Oughta Respect, Shane
1: Survivors Guilt

List ‘Em and Learn: Episode 7: These Ain’t No Holograms

List ‘Em and Learn is back to warm you all up during this cold winter by…counting backwards. This time Matt is joined by the host of The Pro Wrestling Super Show (which can be found on the Place to Be Wrestling Network), Steven Graham. Matt and Steven run down ECW greatest matches. Both lists include the historic “Battle of the Bam Bams” and the night that Kimona Wanalaya danced atop the ECW Arena (they don’t actually include either of those). ECW featured the lewdest, the crudest, the shrewdest, the dudest, the gluedest, the Judas, and the Buddhist wrestling action on this side of the Pacific Ocean, so there’s lots of great stuff to talk about. It’s a podcast where we talk about 2 Cold Scorpio, so check it out!!!!

To listen to this show, right click to download. You can add the show to your music player of choice via it’s RSS feed: http://www.thecubsfan.com/cat/list-em-and-learn-2/feed/ You can also find the show on iTunes (soon.)

You can find Matt & Steven on Twitter.

7: These Ain’t No Holograms (top 10 greatest ECW matches)
6: Life-Affirming Life (top 10 WCW matches of the 1990s)
5: Looking Up (at) the Star(s) (ratings) (top 10 WWE PPVs since 2000)
4: Ladders and Laundry (top 10 WWF matches of the 1990s)
3: Microchips and Mood Music (Top 10 NES Games)
2: A LOT OF SAND (The Top 10 TV Dramas from 2000-2014)
1: Episode 1 (Part 1 & Part 2)

Joe Gagne’s Funtime Pro Wrestling Arcade #56: AAA Heroes Del Ring

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