The Icing on the Cake

It's not just for breakfast anymore

As many of you are well aware, Saturday, February 26, is Tony Randall's birthday. Unfortunately, Tony passed away last year (RIP, our beloved Felix Ungar) -- but that doesn't mean you can't bake and decorate a birthday cake in his posthumous honor. But instead of simply scrawling "Felicitous Natal Greetings, Dear Sir" across a sheet cake, perhaps you should do something special. Something beautiful and sensitive, to reflect the beautiful and sensitive nature of this consummate artist. Maybe a marzipan-and-fondant likeness of Tony pointing his finger primly at an exasperated Jack Klugman, with a few buttercream musical notes to signify that memorable Odd Couple theme song.

Of course, you don't know your fondant from your gum paste. But the cake and confectionary artists showcasing their craft at the Missouri Botanical Garden (4344 Shaw Boulevard; 314-577-9400 or www.mobot.org) this weekend know their fondant and their gum paste. And on both Saturday and Sunday (February 26 and 27), at least six of these pastry-bag wizards are on hand throughout the day to answer questions and provide advice for the earnest amateur decorator. The event, called "Sugared, Spiced and Everything Iced," also features several examples of sugar art created by the St. Louis Metropolitan Sugar Art Guild, which should inspire you to even greater heights in your own cake-work. The show is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days and is free with regular garden admission ($1.50 to $7). -- Paul Friswold

Always a Bridesmaid
So this event's not for you

SUN 2/27

Weddings: Where to begin? If you're unmarried and smack-dab in the middle of the Decade of Weddings, you can barely hear the "w"-word without instinctively hiding your money and feeling completely overwhelmed by just the idea of going to yet another Saturday-long extravaganza. You're not some bitter old maid, but you don't want to talk about halls, centerpieces or, horror of all horrors, bridesmaid dresses anymore. So send all the brides-to-be to Saint Louis Bride magazine's "Wedding Connection" at Windows Off Washington (701 North 15th Street; call 314-968-4940, extension 10, or visit www.saintlouisbride.com to register). From 1 to 4:30 p.m., for $5 to $10, the soon-to-be-weds can check out dresses, taste reception food and drink, consult wedding experts, and stay out of your hair for the afternoon. Enjoy the serenity now. -- Alison Sieloff

A Gallery of Poems
In a gallery of art

FRI 2/25

Underwood Poetry -- that sharp collective of broadside-printing, poetry-loving rebels who named themselves after the twentieth century's typewriter of choice -- closes out this season's Underwood Reading Series with two masters of verse: Jeff Clark and Dan Beachy-Quick. Both have won accolades aplenty for their work, both released their second books (individually) last year, and both appear at Gallery Urbis Orbis (419 North Tenth Street; 314-406-5778) at 7 p.m. Whether these poets know each other is a mystery to us right now, but it seems like they should be friends. We do know that their styles are different, if not radically different, and that poetry (we've said this for years) is meant to be heard, not necessarily read. Did we say that? Well, we're saying it now. So go be cool and soak up the verbal stylings of these two fine craftsmen -- and find more information on the free event at www.underwoodpoetry.org. -- Mark Dischinger

You, Robots

SAT 2/26

Robotics are the future, even after that horrible I, Robot movie. Let's make friends with robots now, or, even better, let's make friends with the people who make the robots. Dozens of high school robotics aficionados strut their mechanical stuff at the St. Louis Science Center (5050 Oakland Avenue; 314-289-4444) from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. as part of the SLSC's Engineer's Week. You can ask these young smarties questions about robot reality (such as why robots hate Will Smith) and learn useful facts about how and why robots work. Admission is free. -- Paul Friswold

 
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