BONNIE S. BENWICK COOKIE MON­STER’S CRUMBS OF WIS­DOM

‘Me al­ways make time to fol­low me pas­sion, work­ing to­gether in per­fect cookie harmony’

Edmonton Journal - - YOU -

Like an­other clas­sic fig­ure in his­tory whose name be­gins with C: He came, he saw, he con­quered. Cookie Mon­ster, at The Washington Post.

Then again, there were no signs of re­sis­tance.

The beloved blue Se­same Street char­ac­ter has a new book, you see, called The Joy of Cook­ies: Cookie Mon­ster’s Guide to Life (Se­same Street Im­print, $16).

It is post­card-size, thick as a flat-iron steak and chock full of apho­risms put through the spin cy­cle of mon­ster-speak. Me Eat Cookie, There­fore, Me Am.

By non-mon­ster stan­dards he is 49, hav­ing evolved, ini­tially un­named, from an early cast of char­ac­ters cre­ated by the late Mup­pets founder Jim Hen­son.

To most of us, though, he is age­less, with a sen­si­bil­ity rooted in gen­tle hu­mour and in­no­cence.

His mes­sage of joy through cook­ies has been amended in re­cent years to a state of gus­ta­tory cor­rect­ness. Of course, he rec­om­mends a bal­anced diet. Sure, he eats veg-e-ta-bles. This makes us a lit­tle sad, but only un­til we re­view the self­ies we took with him that day at the of­fice.

In the book it­self, he is thought­ful in a way that will cir­cle back to cook­ies — or any food that can be gob­bled with furry hands, just as he is in his “life coach” ses­sions on YouTube.

Joy has a first print­ing of 100,000, which is a mon­ster num­ber by any stan­dards and es­pe­cially for a first-time au­thor who rarely uses ar­ti­cles such as “the.”

You’ll find three recipes tucked in among the mon­ster’s Cookie Truths and Cookie Crumbs of Wis­dom.

Com­posed with vary­ing de­grees of fi­nesse — as in, the yield is miss­ing from two out of the three, and is that co­conut oil solid or liq­ue­fied? — the guid­ance is just about as breezy as you’d ex­pect.

The most promis­ing and in­clu­sive of the lot were his EveryMon­ster Cook­ies, which are ve­gan, nut-free and gluten-free. We are pretty sure you might not get the recipe to work ex­actly as writ­ten in the book, given the batches of cookie pud­dles and er­satz flo­ren­tines we pro­duced in test­ing.

But we are also think­ing Cookie Mon­ster was not in­ti­mately in­volved in the mak­ing — only the eat­ing.

Q Cookie Mon­ster’s Guide to Life — why now?

A Well, reporter-type per­son, over the years Me has had many pro­found thoughts about cook­ies. Big, im­por­tant, de­li­cious thoughts. Me could not just keep them to me­self for­ever!

Q When did you first no­tice cook­ies = hap­pi­ness?

A Back when Me was cute lit­tle baby mon­ster. One bite, and Me knew.

Q You ded­i­cated the book to Grandma Mon­ster. Tell us about her.

A Grandma Mon­ster made me the mon­ster Me is today. She taught Me ev­ery­thing Me know. She gave Me me very first cookie! Me use her patented cookie-eat­ing tech­nique to this very day.

Q Judg­ing from your crumby writ­ing, you are widely read and well versed in pop­u­lar cul­ture — ref­er­enc­ing Shake­speare, Erich Se­gal, John F. Kennedy, The God­fa­ther. When do you find the time?

A Some­times Me is very busy mon­ster. Me spend time with me friends, read lat­est books, get some ex­er­cise in, catch up on Me pres­tige tele­vi­sion. But Me al­ways make time to fol­low me pas­sion: Cook­ies!

Q Yes, you have been a tire­less pro­moter of cook­ies …

A Thank you for notic­ing.

Q … but, in fact, you eat ev­ery­thing. Cor­rect?

A Me en­joy a well-bal­anced diet. Cook­ies, meat, fish, fruit, veg-eta-bles, cook­ies … ca­noe, truck, bi­cy­cle … cor­ners of very tasty book … did Me say cook­ies?

Q Ten years ago, tele­vi­sion per­son­al­ity Stephen Col­bert ac­cused you of eat­ing his Pe­abody Award. Care to clear that up? (We have the video­tape.)

A No com­ment. Me not re­call. Me can nei­ther con­firm nor deny. Me fuzzy on whole mat­ter. Def­i­nitely not men­tioned on Page 22.

Q Which is bet­ter: Mak­ing cook­ies, smelling cook­ies, bak­ing cook­ies or eat­ing cook­ies?

A Me can’t pick just one! All work to­gether in per­fect cookie harmony.

Q Tell us the story be­hind Every-Mon­ster Cook­ies.

A The only thing bet­ter than eat­ing cook­ies is shar­ing cook­ies. Me want to share cook­ies with all Me friends — even ve­gan and gluten-free mon­sters — so Me found per­fect recipe that every­one can share.

Q Cook­ies in bed: Yes or no?

A Yes. Cook­ies ev­ery­where! In bed, and on couch, and in kitchen, fresh out of oven, with lots of choco­late chip­pies …. What was ques­tion again? Me got dis­tracted.

SARAH L. VOISIN/THE WASHINGTON POST

Cookie Mon­ster over­sees a batch of Every-Mon­ster Cook­ies from his new book, The Joy of Cook­ies. Th­ese ones fea­tured white choco­late chips. And yes, there is a bite taken out of every book.

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