Thomas Reigstad, Buff State professor and author of "Scribblin' For a Livin': Mark Twain's Pivotal Period in Buffalo," gave a talk about Twain in Elmira on Nov. 30, Mark Twain's birthday. It was sponsored by the, ahem, Elmira College Center For Mark Twain Studies.
Present were two huge sheet cakes from Wegmans, which Reigstad reports were decorated with the gold and purple colors of Elmira College.
One cake was frosted with the words "Happy 168th Birthday Olivia." Twain's wife was born November 27, 1845.
The other said "Happy 178th Birthday Mark Twain." It also had a huge picture of the house, pictured at left, that the Twains received as a wedding gift, at 472 Delaware Ave. in Buffalo.
Olivia's cake was cut up and went fast. However, Reigstad observed ......the Twain cake was untouched. A watchful scholar, he noticed that campus food service boxed it up and whisked it off somewhere after the reception.
"Couldn't help thinking that the real house partly burned down, then was demolished in 1963," he reflects. "Yet the cake version survived intact in 2013 at his birthday party!"
And was no doubt eaten by someone else later that night.
The party may have been in Elmira ... but that is so Buffalo.
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