Nobody loves a tie. We create layers of local, regional, state, national, and world championships and we need someone to be declared a winner, unequivocally. An unwieldy trophy, a sleek gold medal, or a laurel wreath must be bestowed. Can you imagine if, after the Final Four or the NFL playoffs, we announced that the two teams about to play for the national championship or the Superbowl could just head home: “Hey, let’s quit while we’re ahead. You both win!” Uh-uh. Wouldn’t fly.
One of the things I love about Wimbledon is that slightly sickening realization I get when two very well-matched players are battling it out. I’m always aware that this match could, in theory, last forever. Deuce. Ad in. Deuce. Ad out. Deuce…. Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe could still be playing their classic 1980 tennis match today, right now. We cannot let any game end without declaring a clear-cut winner.
Given our love of victors, I’m a little uneasy about the results of my chocolate chip cookie world championship. Officially, it’s a draw. Unofficially, I declare the NY Times chocolate chip cookie recipe the world champion. My democratic nature bridles at this edict, this monarchic decree, particularly when I lassoed my neighbors into a one man-one vote system.
But it was a split decision. The two husbands liked the Ad Hoc cookies best. The two wives liked the NY Times cookies best. That left it to the four children, ages 1, 2, 3, and 4, to break the tie. It was not lost on me that little Ben, age 1, grabbed a NY Times chocolate chip cookie, took a bite, then reached his tiny fist back into the bowl for a second. I wish I had a photo of his face, smeared with chocolate and cookie crumbs, to insert here, particularly as he cast the final and deciding vote.
I’m very happy to crown the NY Times chocolate chip cookie the winner — it is my personal favorite. And yet. I’m aware that new challengers will come along. This project is not complete until I’ve conducted further testing. Can’t rest on our laurels now, can we?
Thanks to Cathy of The Tortefeasor for inspiring the sports metaphors and giving me the idea to hold a chocolate chip cookie championship. She conducted a taste-off between the NY Times ccc, Alton Brown’s “The Chewy” ccc, and Dorie Greenspan’s ccc, so be sure to check out her results.