For President’s Day, a palette cleanser… still meaning to come back and finish this one day…

My readers will be disappointed to learn that my first memory is not of the fire that baked me, but rather the mitts my mother used to pull me from the oven. If you have purchased this autobiography in hopes of gaining some insight into the origin of life, I am afraid you will be disappointed. As all children are, at one moment I was nothing, the next I was alive. This is the great unspoken mystery which begins all biographies and it will be left a mystery here.

My mother used two mitts, for the oven in which I was baked was large enough for any infant. I was alive even then, warm and aglow with life-force. My mother recalls that my chest rose and fell while still stuck to the sheet. Before my other senses, I possessed touch and I remember hers. It was kind.

First, her pastry bag gave shape to my eyes and I saw her face. Even without knowledge of expressions or humanity I knew she was good and wise.

Secondly, her pastry bag gave shape to my ears, and I heard her heavenly hum. It remains the sweetest music to ever reach my ears.

Thirdly, her pastry bag gave shape to a nose, and I smelled the delectable ginger of my own constitution.

Lastly, her pastry bag gave shape to my mouth, and I cried out loud in wonder to be alive.

I remember more of my creation than most children, I suspect. This easily might have been a curse rather than the blessing I have found it to be. The whole affair was as pleasant as it possibly could have been. I remember how my mother’s first instinct was to hold me, not at all afraid. This taught me that pain was natural but that comforting pain is also natural and necessary. I remember her strength in accepting without question that she had somehow created a son.

It was that strength which would guide me in later life. Her instinctive willingness to accept that I was alive and good gave me the courage to believe the same of others. It taught me to hold as my highest virtue that all life demands value and dignity. I believe without such strength I may never have risen to hold the office of President of the United States.

I am a Gingerbread American, and this is my story.


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