The Amazing Zero-Calorie Cupcake

I have two serious weaknesses when it comes to food:

Cake (which includes cupcakes) and Del Taco. Makes for some good drama with the waistline, lemme tell ya.

The agency where I currently work is [deliciously] blessed to receive many a treat from media reps and the like. It’s not uncommon for a box of cupcakes to be delivered midday, especially during upfront season when the networks come in and tell you about the upcoming year’s program lineup.

Some of you may know that while I love a good hunk of cake, I’m not the biggest fan of Sprinkles. I find their cake to taste more like flour than anything else, and their frosting leaves a weird aftertaste. It very well could just be me, but based on those I’ve spoken to, I think otherwise.

Anywho, not the point.

There comes a time that when the going gets tough, the tough eat whatever cupcake that’s around — even if it’s from Sprinkles.

Yesterday I was cranking on a PowerPoint deck that needed to be sent to our client prior to our weekly conference call. I got it done, sent it, we discussed it, and everything was all good in the ‘hood.

On my drive home, I was thinking about said conference call. I was rehashing details, next steps, things I needed to follow up on, and as I was thinking about our client’s media plan, something felt funny to me.

Hm…what could it be?

OMG. I think the thing that isn’t sitting right is the fact that I might’ve done some math wrong.

Oh dear.

It was never my best subject in school, but really…? Now it’s haunting me at my job?

All I really wanted to do last night when I got home was water the flowerbeds and fertilize some roses. But my garden hose sprayer went haywire, and to top it off, the math issues had me all spun up. Two thumbs down.

I’m someone who balances her checkbook digitally. Meaning I don’t balance one that’s tangible at all. Everything’s online, and everything is rounded. I used to be that girl who, if you told me that I spent $173 at one store and $246 at another, would hear, “One-something and two-fifty,” then in my mind something like $350 would stick, when in reality I just spent over $400.

This job doesn’t have such wiggle room.

But that’s not what happened. Without going into too much detail, we’ll just leave it at, “My math was wrong.” I needed to fix it, and after I raised my hand and called attention to the possible (probable?) error, I did.

So where does the cupcake come in?

After worrying myself most of last night, even while trying to water the garden, and after crunching numbers all morning and working with our media team, things got sorted out.

But, dude: I was ravenous. And all that was around was…

…a leftover Sprinkles cupcake from yesterday.

Now, let’s be real: a cupcake takes a good while to go bad. It might get a little crumbly, but between the cupcake paper it was baked in and the giant mess of frosting that could double as a miniature toupee on top, that cake is pretty well-protected.

At least it tasted well-protected. (Please note the comment is solely pertaining to the freshness of the cake, and not necessarily the flavor, the texture or the aftertaste.)

But now it’s time for the payoff:

I figure last night’s watering (which I did to release some stress) burned about 100 calories. This morning, after running back and forth to my media gal’s office numerous times, I burned another 150 calories. Walking back and forth to the printer to pick up spreadsheets so that I could cross-reference other documents burned approximately 73 calories, and the combination of walking to and from the coffee maker so that I could ingest multiple cups of coffee (needed to fully wake up after a poor night of sleep caused by said fretting) as well as the combination of walking to the ladies’ room a few times burned another 146 calories.

After completing the fix and resending a document to my clients, I was starving. Not just “I feel hungry” starving, but stomach-growling-during-Excel-spreadsheet-creation-in-a-quiet-office starving. I headed to the kitchen to fetch a cup of hot tea, and ended up leaving with none other than the leftover Sprinkles cupcake.

I didn’t care that it was about to bestow its aftertaste upon me. I didn’t care that the cake was more the consistency of a corn muffin, and I certainly didn’t care about its nutritional information.

All I cared about was scarfing. It. Quickly. And voraciously.

After looking it up as best I could online (don’t ever do this, regardless of whether you like Sprinkles or not), and they generally range anywhere from 450 to 500 calories per cupcake.

Evil, evil things.

That said, my math worries burned 469 calories, and my Googling of nutritional information burned another 37, I’d say…so, really, all of my stress made the cupcake not only zero calories, but also negative calories. Right?

At least that’s how I’ll choose to think about it. (Go with me on this.)

Tonight I am thankful for access to sweets — however delicious (or not) — and for the comfort that they provided to me in my time of need. If I was someone who made a point of venturing out during lunchtime, my nerves would likely have been calmed by a bean and cheese burrito or Chicken Soft taco from the Del, but a resourceful girl makes use of that which is nearest to her.

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