Eskimo Pies and My Dad

by Karen Topakian

It’s quite ironic that today January 26, the anniversary of my father’s death (number 10), should occur during the same week that we recognize the Patent Day for the Eskimo Pie (January 24, 1922). Here’s why.

My father, a slim man, slightly less than 6 feet tall, always kept in good shape. But he liked his sweets. He could afford to eat dessert every day. Though he held the lofty title of President and co-owner of General Plating Company, he performed physical labor. 8 hours a day

During the evening, he would look to my mother and say, “Hey Al, got one of these?” to which he would make the gesture in the photo. This was the universal sign for an Eskimo Pie. The chocolate covered ice cream novelty. His dessert of choice.

If my mother said yes, his eyes would light up.

That was the cue for one of us, my sister, my mother or I, to get up and get him one from the freezer. (This was the 60s. It was what women and girls did.)

If she said no. He would follow with, “Pie-my? Cake-make? Cookie-mookie?”

My mother always had one of those. Thanks to the parade of home made baked goods produced by my grandmother who lived a few blocks away.

My father rarely went without dessert. But we all knew what he preferred. The simple Eskimo Pie wrapped in tin foil.


  1. Karen is this your blog? I’m in. I loved Eskimo PIes too but never thought far enough ahead to come up with pie-my or cookie-mookie.

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