I Still Don’t Like Boston Cream Doughnuts

Here we go again. The debate of the year. Over a doughnut. An official doughnut.

Yes, a doughnut. The question before the Massachusetts House of Representatives being, "Shall the Boston Cream Doughnut Be the Official Doughnut of the Commonwealth?"

This is big news! The Boston Globe even carried a story about it last week. And three years ago, a Boston columnist called it "a cream filled controversy" and credited me with writing an "anti-doughnut diatribe" and, alas, defeating the doughnut legislation.

At that time, with tongue in cheek, I wrote a column for this paper about this very doughnut. Asking if we had a Boston Cream Doughnut, also known as a Bavarian Cream Doughnut, would the Irish or Czechs or Norwegians take offense? Would the doughnut lead to ethnic strife?

Unfortunately, the Senate sponsor didn’t think my opposition to the doughnut was, well, at all humorous.

In a letter to the editor, he pointed out that he introduced the legislation because a group of third graders wanted him to. He further pointed out that it was part of kids learning how a bill becomes law, how legislators respond to constituents, and that my comments were petty. He was right, of course. And, the Senate passed the bill. The House didn’t.

With all due respect to the sponsor, Senator Charles Shannon of Winchester, I ask again. Shall the Boston Cream Doughnut Be the Official Doughnut of the Commonwealth?

Or should six be the Official Number of the Commonwealth, just because we were the sixth state in the Union, home to the sixth President, mine six minerals, and founded on February 6th.

Or why "Make Way for Ducklings" should be the Official Book of the Commonwealth.

Because there’s legislation pending on both of those, as well.

But doughnuts? Do we really need an official doughnut? We already have the official bird and tree, flower and rock, poem and gem. Even an official insect, dog, fish, cookie, beverage, pie, horse, mammal, fossil, heroine, muffin, cat and bean and berry and polka.

Lots of official days, too. Lithuanian Independence Day, Jaycee Day, Armenian Martyrs Day, Joshua James Day, Lafayette Day, State Walking Day, Liberty Tree Day. Hardly any just plain days.

Official weeks and months, too. Senior Citizens Month and Keep Massachusetts Beautiful month. American Indian Heritage Week. National Family Week. You get the idea.

Is there anything we’ve missed?

Oh yes, the doughnut. But if we want to choose the doughnut of all doughnuts, should it be the Boston Cream? Isn’t that just a little too Eastern, too Boston, too inside 495?

Should selling Boston Cream Doughnuts be mandatory of bakeries? How about mandatory eating? Should we eliminate all other doughnuts? No more blueberry? No sugar? No glazed? Will Mrs. Murphy’s have to stop selling their Long Johns? Or those Bavarian Creams?

Will Krispy Kreme be able to come to New England? With their warm frosted doughnuts, laid flat in a box, instead of packed on their sides from Dunkin Doughnuts. Which started in Quincy. And sells 14 million doughnuts a year in Massachusetts alone. Maybe Dunkin should be the official Massachusetts Doughnut Company.

I mean, the Boston Cream doesn’t even have a doughnut hole. It’s just a piece of dough stuffed with custard and frosted with chocolate.

I don’t like it. Give me a good cinnamon, or sugar doughnut, please.

In fact, maybe I don’t want an official doughnut at all. Maybe I’ll walk down Beacon Hill from the State House and visit the Omni Parker House, home of those famous Parker House rolls, and enjoy their version of the Boston Cream Doughnut. A liquid version. With Stoli Vanil, Bailey’s Irish Crème and a Godiva chocolate liquer.

Then I’ll come back to the State House to debate the "elephant bill." Officially, Senate Bill 139, An Act Prohibiting the Use of Captive Elephants. Whoever shows or exhibits an elephant or allows another to ride an elephant would be punished with a year in jail and, or, a fine of up to $250.

Or, the bill to make Captain Samuel Whittemore the Official State Hero. Another to declare Jack Kerouac Day. Still another for Public Employee Appreciation Day. Some to put up State House plaques for Clara Barton and Edward Cohen and former members of the Great and General Court. Thomas Paine Day. An Official POW/MIA Memorial. Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Day. The first week of October as Massachusetts Safe School Week. To make blue, green and cranberry the Official Colors of the Commonwealth. To designate the Great Spangled Fritillary the Official Butterfly.

Decisions. Decisions.

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