I decided to experiment on a number of fronts with this batch of cakes.
First up, rather than drizzle the oil in slowly while beating with the hand mixer, I instead just dumped it straight in without a care in the world. The oil still incorporated just fine, though I think the batter was a bit thinner at that stage than it usually is. So maybe there's something to the whole slow emulsification thing, I dunno.
The next experiment was to use baking paper rather than buttering and sugaring the cake tins.
I was hoping that the wrinkles in the paper might even themselves out as things cooked, but that did not come to pass. Thankfully, it's no match for the power of experiment number three.
There is no cake sin that cannot be hidden by a layer of frosting. As is traditional, I made the frosting from scratch, because it's literally easier than scooping the canned stuff out of the tin, and tastes way, way better.
I did resist the temptation to make the full recipe on the bag of icing sugar, though, which called for 4 cups of sugar, an entire stick of butter, and then however much whole milk was needed to make it spreadable. The temptation was strong, I'll admit. Instead, I opted to cut it back to 1 cup of sugar, a quarter stick of butter, and the milk. Oh, and vanilla too, of course.
The vanilla made it come out a little tan colored, which doesn't really show up in photos, but I didn't feel the need to become the owner of a food coloring set just to make it some other color, so slightly tan icing it is.