There is a gentleman (Duff’s relation?) trying to convince Duff that he needs to be chaperoned into the Playboy mansion, where he will apparently be making a cake. What is this cake going to look like? Will that part of Ace of Cakes need censoring? When will this episode be? What’s going on?!

The Maryland Zoo benefit has come up again, and everyone reminds Duff, “This time, measure the van” – last year, the Flamingo did not fit into the van, and they had to do a very complex move that involved angry Duff every time there was a bump. Which there are a lot of, in Baltimore. This time, it’s an elephant, and that means Duff gets to justify a trip to the zoo as a business expense. Mary Alice thinks that this elephant-petting trip is unnecessary, but obviously she is wrong. Or something.

The Harbor School’s theme or whatever is “Guiding Light” and their symbol is thusly a lighthouse, which they now have commissioned Duff to create in cake. Duff, being Duff, is demanding that the lighthouse completely function. Because that would make it so much more awesome.

They are also doing a cake in tribute to Ella Thompson for the Night at the Wire benefit. It will be a row house cake – which will make two? three? in my memory, they’ve done this before – but this is because Thompson used to fix up old places and plant gardens as well as being the coolest child-helping lady ever.

Duff managed to break the fridge by setting the thermostat too low (ironic, neh?) Therefore, Duff has to get it fixed. You can’t work with perishable items and not have a fridge! However, it does bring about the point that he has way more to do than make cake. The more I watch the show the more I wonder when the last time was that Duff actually *touched* cake. No wonder he needs interns…

The elephant comes together nicely in Styrofoam – they aren’t making a real elephant cake, as it would be obscene to be in the zoo passing out pieces of decapitated elephant, even if it was chocolate flavored. They will instead be passing out pieces of sheet cake, which is far less disturbing to small children.

Mary Alice is convinced she could make money by giving people “The Wire” set tours. Geoff is not convinced. Mary Alice is not deterred, and instead decides to stalk them. After a quick talk with someone they’ve done a cake for (a camera guy) she decides she’s cheating, and that she has to wait until the show is actually on TV.

The lighthouse cake is really tall. The schoolchildren whom it is for are probably shorter than this cake. They have also managed to discover the best motor for using in cakes. However, they didn’t tell us, so if you were interested you have to continue your own quest for the perfect in-cake motor.

The elephant, which is purple, is amazing. The wrinkles and everything are just amazing – at the end it didn’t even look purple anymore. Amazing! However, at some point someone decided to put a pile of black fondant on the ground near his butt. The offending poo was removed. He was given peanuts, as well – and he got to keep those. To quote Mary Alice, “Endangeredly delicious.”

Say what?

The lighthouse cake was delightful. The lighthouse itself was perfect. Duff and the principal argue over which cocker spaniel is the cutest (fondant replicas of faculty dogs were requested at the base of the lighthouse.) I say they are all adorable, and the cake a Charm City Success.

The row house case is really pretty, and makes row houses look like a spectacular place to live. Mary Alice is wearing a bright yellow strapless tea-length dress at this benefit. She proves that despite the fact that no one, ever, looks good in a bright yellow dress with black trim, Mary Alice does not need to follow the fashion rules that govern normal human beings. She looks great!