The Case of the Preponderance of Pastries

Shortly after we moved into our new house, I noticed a bagel on the ledge outside the dining room window.

It was a little odd, because I don’t even know if that window opens. The window is right above the door to the basement, so it is way too high for someone to easily have set a bagel there. The only thing I could figure is that it is next to the steps leading up to the back porches of the apartment building next door, so maybe somebody dropped it off by accident? I kept meaning to get it, but I kept forgetting until I noticed there were little animal nibble marks on it. After that I got a broom and knocked it down. Don’t need critters thinking my house is a good place to look for food.

I probably wouldn’t have thought much about it until one day Sara was putting on her shoes and she looked out the back window. “Hey,” she said, “Is there something that looks like frosting on the back window? Like, sealant or something? It looks like…buttercream.”

Sure enough, it DID look like buttercream, and in fact WAS buttercream. A nice piece of birthday cake, smooshed up against the back window.

What does this mean?? Sure, a neighbor on the other side of the house ALSO could have lost some food and accidentally tossed it at an angle to get it up on our back porch I guess? But that’s a pretty weird coincidence, right? I mean, I could see a bagel rolling away from you or something, but a slice of birthday cake?

Naturally, my first thought was that the children of the neighborhood somehow left food offerings to appease the capricious and petty demigods who inhabit the walls of our new house, or else possibly the previous owners pissed the neighbors off so much that they continued to throw pastries at the house, not knowing it was under new management. Either way, it seemed ominous for us.

“Stop being so dramatic,” said Sara. “I’m sure there is a logical explanation.”

I called her about a week later. “I am at home, in the backyard. There is a cupcake on the air conditioner…”

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