My Army mess sergeant during long-past military service managed somehow to produce leathery pancakes that were about a half-inch high and were filling, but no epicurian delight. It wasn't until going to Washington's Capital Hilton that I found pancakes that were not only delightful but sensual. Thin. Light. Gorgeous!
Okay. The lady who produced 1,820,000 "delicate thins" at the Statler -- a slip of the tongue since the Statler's long been the Capital Hilton -- recently celebrated 40 years of service at the hotel at 16th and K streets NW. She's Bertha Smith. She makes an average of 1,000 "delicate thins" each week, which works out to 200 a day during a five-day week, or 50 orders of four pancakes each.
Some folks have asked the hotel for the recipe, which calls for eight cups of flour, one cup of sugar, 37 eggs, a half-teaspoon of salt, four quarts of light cream and two quarts of water.
At this point -- 37 eggs, an odd number at best -- we had suspicions. Looking back at the top of the recipe sent by the Cap Hilton's publicist, we realized this is a recipe for serving 60.
As for me, I'll go to the Hilton's Twigs for Bertha's cakes. If you want to know how to serve 59 other people, you can call the Hilton's public relations office. State Society Officers
The new president of the National Conference of State Societies, the group of outlanders who maintain tugs from their home turfs and sponsor Washington's annual Cherry Blossom Festival, is Cecil C. Corry of Georgia, who comes from a place named Union Point.
And the new first vice president, which ordinarily puts him on the escalator for the presidency a year hence, is William H. Barbee Jr. of New Carrollton, a fifth-generation Washingtonian, with the Veterans Administration since 1970, who -- remarkably -- doesn't claim the District of Columbia as his home base.
Barbee went to Guam in the mid-1950s and is active in the Guam Society of America, now serving as chairman of its board. That's his claim to state societies officeholding.