Last night, Mitch and I found ourselves at a Holiday Festival, where a Gingerbread-House-Building contest was underway. I don't think I'd ever fully appreciated the art of gingerbread houses until I beheld the intricacies of building rooftops out of everything from Frosted Mini-Wheats to wee, teeny, undoubtedly hand-cut squares of chocolate. Little stone walls, made of thick white frosting and rock candy. Trees built from green star-shaped cookies, stacked one atop the next in dimishing sizes!
We're not talking about gingerbread houses made from a kit, oh no. These are people who do this every year, who somehow manage to construct Whatcom County landmarks like the county museum, Mt. Baker theater or Mt. Baker itself out of all things candy-coated and edible, who probably draft out their houses before they begin and stock up on stale candy months in advance.
These are hardcore gingerbread-house-builders.
And none more so than the participant who submitted...a skyscraper. A four-foot-high, gingerbread skyscraper, with lights in the windows, a full city block as its base (complete with taxi cabs and police cars made of artfully rearranged Peeps), and, as a finishing touch, a foot-high recreation of the giant gingerbread man from Shrek 2. Hanging from the side of the skyscraper, angry and clutching a miniature Santa in his cookie hand.
Utterly amazing. Breathtaking to behold. And entered, of course, by an engineering company.