Saturday, September 15, 2012

Love in an Elevator

Now that I've got that horrible tune in your head, I'll try to redeem myself.

This blog isn't about Aerosmith.  I just lost half of you, but that's okay.  This blog is actually about smart people.  Not your average smart people...your MIT Media Lab, Mechanical Engineer, smart people. 
Suffice it to say, that the first two line items on the groom's virtual resume are as follows: Max/MSP chiptune externals and virtual circuit bending-enabled emulators.  Template-directed bytecode instrumentation for program visualization. 
 'Nuff said.

Laura and Kyle met at MIT.  They both worked in the Media Lab there, where, I still have no idea what they do. I do know two things.  One, they shared their first kiss in the elevator at the Media lab, and two, Kyle proposed four years later in that same elevator.  I instantly went for the elevator cake, but Laura reeled me back in, and pointed out that the Media Lab's elevator is nothing to write home about.  Instead, she and Kyle recommended that we use the Media Lab building as loose inspiration for the cake.  She also suggested that we make little frosting robots to top the cake.  Did I mention that I heart Laura?

As we began sketching, we copied the paneled texture of the atrium of the building, worked in the gear motif from their invitations (engineers, people) and even incorporated my first-ever cut out, overhanging cake, again, inspired by the Lab's architecture.  They suggested that the Cake-Bots be building their initials on top of the cake, as  MIT students are known for "hacks" (pranks), many of which involve building things on rooftops.
Laura even requested that her Cake-bot be holding her "favorite drill".  No kidding, she has a "favorite drill".  I'm liking this girl more and more.  When I asked her for a photo of her with the drill, she didn't have one, so she gave me the make and model of it, and sent me this little beauty of a pic instead.  It was entitled "best picture of me with a power tool". 
Now, I've recieved a ton of extranneous collateral from my clients in my day.  Photos of their pets for our frosting ASPCA doggies, photos of wedding dresses, centerpieces, and honeymood destinations, but none will ever delight me as much as this one.

With the bulk of the cake designed, we had one blank tier (by luck, or maybe subconciously by my own brute determination to share the elevator story with their guests).  So, I laid it out there once more.  With my best sales pitch, while whining a bit and bouncing up and down on my chair like a third grader who has the answer to the teacher's question, I once again suggested the elevator.  It would look like the button panel of the elevator, and we'd even carve out the cake behind the 3rd floor (Media Lab level) button. We'd put an LED light behind the number, printed on a sheet of vellum so that it lit up.  Not sure if it was my incessant nagging, or the LED light that did it, but it was a yes!

The wedding day came, and while setting up the cake, one of the Caterers asked about the meaning behind the Cake-bots.  I began to explain that the bride and groom worked in robotics, and turned to one of the bridesmaids (also from MIT) for verification.  She got as far as "well, robotics is a small part of what we do at the media lab..." before my brain shut down as though she were surely speaking another language that I will never understand. 

Suffice it to say...Smart People.
Many thanks to Shelley Paulson for the beautiful photos!!


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