while messing around on FB, as one does, i came across a post referencing this website about a girl who gives cake to the poor and i shared the link with this commentary:
What are your thoughts on this? I admit, when I saw the title ‘Girl with Cake’ I thought ‘here we go, Marie Antoinette 2.0’, but after reading a couple of her posts I have to say I’m impressed with this girl whose name I don’t know. I was ready to judge her for giving cake to the cold and homeless, because really! -But she doesn’t just show up with cake and a camera and be like ‘soothe my white guilt’ – well, that’s not the impression I’m left with anyway. She also gives a ‘blessings bag’ filled with goodies such as warm clothing and toiletries, in addition to the beautiful, decadent and I assume delicious cake.
Before you judge her harshly, share what YOU are doing for the homeless in our city, because as much as her efforts are ‘nothing’ in comparison to the scale of the problem, at least she is doing SOMETHING that likely would have gone undone.
While I think the money spent on the cake could have bought another fleece jacket, I honestly feel ashamed for daring to begrudge somebody a little sweetness in their life, especially since I haven’t bought that blanket or that hoody and taken it to the guy at the robot, while Girl with Cake has done something to make sure that that guy is a little warmer, and has the memory of at least one act of kindness. If you haven’t given anything, please check yourself before judging someone else for giving too little, for giving cake and for giving bags of blessings, no matter how small.
i am happy to report that of the people who commented on that post not a single one made a nasty comment of the sort that i saw elsewhere: talk of how cake is not doing much for the needs of the poor she gives it to, and so on. i initially rolled my eyes at the thought of a white woman helping the poor by giving them cake, but my eye-rolling quickly turned to admiration and then i had tears in my eyes once i had read a few posts about exactly what she does; i was thoroughly impressed by her courage, her selflessness and of course her generosity. beyond being impressed though, i was challenged. why challenged? well, let me tell you.
i have talents that i’m not using for any number of reasons, chief among them being laziness and an inordinate fear of failure, not to mention ‘not knowing where to start’. Girl with Cake didn’t wait for a thundering voice from heaven – i don’t even know if she believes in heaven – or for ‘an organization’ to support her. she didn’t, as far as i can tell, do much shouting from mountaintops about what she was doing, she just did it. if people are talking about her now it’s because she’s stuck to her walk, doing what she does – the fanfare is commentary to the action, not the motivator. how many times have i said i know what i’m supposed to be doing with my life, i’m just not doing it yet because i haven’t found anyone to do it with? shameful.
Girl with Cake is blossoming where she has been planted, she is using her talents to touch lives and hearts and she is, must be, inspiring many to similar acts of kindness, as documented on this page. you may not agree with what she is doing and you may have valid arguments against it, but instead of just arguing i hope that you are doing what you’re saying SHE should be doing. i have my own path to walk and for now i am confident that it doesn’t include baking cakes for anyone, but be that as it may, despite my calling being different to hers, that should not stop me from being kind to those around me both in my home and outside it, at work and elsewhere, particularly those less privileged. to that end, i reached out to Girl with Cake and assuming she responds and is agreeable, i guess i’ll be filling a number of blessings bags; i’m sure she can never have too many. we who are not living on the fringes of society oftentimes forget that even the poor need love and laughter and joy just as much as they need food and shelter and clothing. Girl with Cake stepped out of her own issues and her own sadness to help the needy with a smile and a little bit of sweetness; i’m sure her life is so much richer for that. She doesn’t just throw charity at people, she sees them, really sees them as people. she asks their names. she asks about their families. she talks to them. when she says ‘with love’, you can really see that she means just that. i’m not yet doing what i know for sure is what i’m meant to be doing, but in the meantime i’m putting my money where my mouth is. are you?