My Other Blog

What's a Wreck?

A Cake Wreck is any cake that is unintentionally sad, silly, creepy, inappropriate - you name it. A Wreck is not necessarily a poorly-made cake; it's simply one I find funny, for any of a number of reasons. Anyone who has ever smeared frosting on a baked good has made a Wreck at one time or another, so I'm not here to vilify decorators: Cake Wrecks is just about finding the funny in unexpected, sugar-filled places.

Now, don't you have a photo you want to send me? ;)

- Jen

Is This a Wreck? You Decide.

Today we Americans and our friends around the world should pause and remember those lost in the attacks on 9/11/01. We each do this in our own way, and some people commemorate the day a little differently. Some people, for example, make a cake:

I've received several different pictures of this cake - each taken from a different angle - so it's obviously getting a lot of attention from passers-by. Some believe this is just the baker's way of using his unique skills to make a tribute. Others think it's disrespectful: halfway through serving those towers the cake is going to look pretty darn macabre. Personally, I'm on the fence. I see the skill involved, and I think the baker's motives are pure, but in execution I can see why so many are offended.

Your thoughts?

Thanks to Anna B., Patrick C., Dubi K., and Marc Felion, who took the original photo.

« Inappropriate, Much? | Main | Don't Do It, Billy! »

Reader Comments (320)

Definitely a wreck, unless those towers are styrofoam covered in frosting and won't be disassembled when the cake is served.

The tipping point between "marginally tasteless" and "true wreck" might lie in the fact that the only windows drawn on it are positioned where the planes struck.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterChristin

I'm going with wreck. But then, i'd just feel weird eating a national tragedy.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommentermMm

Oh, I was just coming here to send you this one!

I'm on the fence too. I love love love the bakery this came from, so I give them a little leeway based on that. Also, I can further give them benefit of the doubt and say perhaps this was ordered by a customer and not something they made up of their own volition? If so, not a wreck, because it's well-executed.

Still, I can't get past the fact that it's tackier than ten tons of shit.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterBelle Plain

Not sure. There is the old adage: "pain + time = humor." Don't know if it is too soon to make with the 9/11 commentary. Then again, no one thought that eating the towers was in poor taste? At least there weren't tiny plastic people on it...

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAyanna

people are so damned odd. its a cake. it's a tribute. get over it. they could cut it into pieces before serving it to save form any discomfort.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMiss Kolleen

At least they didn't put candles on top!

Or mix pop rocks into the icing.

What I don't understand is why people get so bent out of shape when someone burns a flag, yet nobody bats an eye when someone suggests you EAT the flag.

Maybe I'd understand if I was an American, but I know for sure that wearing the US flag as clothing and using it in advertisements is a federal offense in the US that nobody enforces. Not sure about rendering it in icing but surely cutting it up into bite size chunks and serving it to people is worse than burning it. Unless it's some sort of patriotic version of Communion.

There you go, hopefully I covered off anybody who wasn't offended by the actual cake.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKevinsky

i'm not offended - i also wouldn't serve the towers themselves - they could be removed & just the base cake b served....but i think the baker's intentions were purely in tribute

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commenter~Mama Skates~

WOW. Total wreck. It would be like a eating a piece of cake in the shape of a dead family member.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKelly O

You pose an interesting question...the cake is rather well done, and looks good BEFORE being cut. However, I think the cutting up of the towers and consuming them might be a little much. I'd say not a wreck in theory, but definitely a wreck in execution. Much like the famous realistic baby cake. Looks nice...would feel weird eating it.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMegan

Disturbing. Don't like it at ALL.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I find it disturbing. I mean, you have to disassemble and eat the towers. Yikes.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commentersamann1121

Without knowing the creator it's hard to make a judgement either way.
I'd like to think that this person wanted to make a tribute and thier best skill was that any different than a singer composing a song, or a film-maker creating a movie?

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterwildrosepony

I agree that the baker was well-intentioned. I'm sure that no disrespect was meant at all. IMHO, this well-executed cake misses the mark with class for just the reasons you mentioned. Who wants to look at the towers become a mess of crumbs and think of that association, let alone *eat* it?

The cake would have been a nice commemorative without the towers, with just the flag and banners. I could eat the American flag without feeling sad.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

I think that the intentions were pure... but aren't so many for the cakes here? I agree that when the cake is cut.. it's a little too much of a reminder of what it's commemorating!

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterDevin

Hmmm. I guess I'm wondering why 9-11 is a cake-worthy event. Seems a moment of silence would be more suitable, or a patriotic hymn-sing. Perhaps if the cake were left un-cut???

Love your blog!

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKaren

Are you sure the towers are meant to be eaten? Decorators sometimes build structures out of cardboard and then ice those. Maybe the towers are supposed to be removed from the cake before serving.

It's still a little weird though. I love me some cake and I don't feel like this is a cake memorial occasion.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Perhaps I shouldn't be offended, but I am. I understand the need to make a tribute but hang a poster for goodness sake. My parents were both military and I have always been told that it is disrespectful to use the American flag for anything other than its intended purpose (ie. wearing it, having an american flag towel, etc.) so I can't imagine that eating it is any better.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

By the way, this website is hysterical. I have to suppress my laughter at work.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

They should have just left it without the towers, then it would be really nice!

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterestinger

I quite like it, regardless of what the cake might look like once you start eating the towers, it is quite a lovely cake.

On the morbid side... I'd love to be the one to eat it!

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterkuro

Those that are offended really need to just settle down. Whoever did this meant well. It's obviously meant as a tribute. Everyone expresses themselves in different ways, so get off your soap box.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterenuffalreadi

I find this cake to be on the right blog:


September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

@kevinsky - "a patriotic version of Communion"? Ok, that made me chuckle. You present an interesting point, though. I guess cake flags are Ok because they are usually served during times of national celebration, whereas flag burnings are always a form of protest. Huh.

Color me introspective, not offended.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJen

I think an American Flag would suffice as a memorable tribute. How could you eat that cake and not feel guilty? The baker probably had the best of intentions, and may not even intend to eat it, but then how could you just throw it away?

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterShorty

I, personally, see it as a tribute, and I think it's kind of sweet,(they even included a dedication off to the side). Sure, maybe they would have been better using something else as the towers, but they didn't, so why can't we just take it as it is: a tribute to the fallen men and women of a terrible tragedy.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterLBrianne

I truly don't believe the baker had anything but the best of intentions, but it is disturbing.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterLittle Fish

I am a self-proclaimed Pollyanna and insist on seeing only the good. I see a beautifully executed cake expressing a sweet sentiment.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterwebbie

What's that saying?? The road to hell is paved with 9/11 cakes? I think the baker probably meant well but strategically it was not a good move. Seriously. I don't ever remember seeing Pearl Harbor Day cake or a Holocaust cake, but perhaps I have been running in the wrong (or should I say right) circles.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

My inital reaction was disbelief. But the more and more I look at it, the more impressed I am by that ballsy baker who took a chance. Bravo, baker. We all remember today differently, and this is just another way to commemorate. What's the difference if she'd cast a bronze statue or made this cake?

The difference is that we wouldn't be having this discussion if it had been a bronze cast. Let's all be a little more open to expression, eh?

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commentergastronomeuse

Oh. My. God. This is in such poor taste! When you cut it!? How it will LOOK when it is cut!!? You know, I'm not a "deeply" patriotic person, but this is just offensive to the core.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJenni

I'm sure I have a dark sense of humor, but this post cracks me up. "when cakes go horribly, hilariously wrong"

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterStretch Mark Mama

PS. A flag cake would have sufficed just fine, if they HAD to do it. Towers just make me feel offended. But this isn't the Fourth of July, it isn't supposed to be a cake "holiday".

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJenni

Interesting. Good skills, used in poor taste, in my opinion. It is a beautiful memorial, but gee, paint a picture rather than bake something that will either be eaten or decay.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterWendy W.

I see it as a tribute! I hardly doubt that anyone would intentionally make something that they thought would offend...Hey at least they tried!

The way I see it, it's a celebration of those that were lost and when there's a celebration we must have cake!

Many thoughts & blessings to those that lost loved ones on this day 7 years ago!

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterThe Barnes Crew

I don't understand wha tthe big deal is. I see the cake a a lovely tribute by an artist who used his/her skills and preferred medium to relay that tribute. I'd have no problem eating the cake (base OR towers) either. It's cake, it's meant to be eaten. As long as it was disassembled off-site and sliced and served (much like they do wedding cakes) instead of being hacked into, I just don't see the problem.

I think society as a whole is too quick to cry "I'm offended".

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRed

Yeah! My picture made it onto Cakewrecks. I'm thrilled!

I have to say the bakery that made this cake is my favorite bakery. They have a strange aesthetic but their cakes taste wonderful.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterFeast of Fools

I really do not think it is offensive at all. Perhaps it was never intended to be eaten. A baker was using his medium as a form of expression. If this was any other type of artist there woud be no issue. I think that just having the cake in the window and not actually serving it is a very nice tribute.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterjaxx79

Looking at it---it's more of a tribute in its artistic form.

I seriously doubt it will be cut up and eaten.

It is on display and just wonderful way to honor the memory.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKirstan

I sincerely hope it's not a cake to be eaten...just one made as a tribute.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterWife and Mommy

I'm coming to this post a bit late, but I'm sure that if someone took the care and time to make a cake like this, they didn't do so with the intention of selling it. And depending on their views on wasting food, they probably wouldn't eat it, either.

I don't see any problem with an artist creating a tribute like this with their preferred medium. The fact that the medium in question is cake is immaterial.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterEd

Cutting into this would be like cutting into a Joan River's Face Cake, a Lance Armstrong Nut Roll cake or a John McCain Face Tumor cake.

Taking a knife to it would be wrong.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterNick

Nowadays it's almost impossible to do anything without offending someone. However, that said, I think that this cake is totally tasteless (pun intended). Obviously the creator of this cake wasn't using his or her head...

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commentermlanezoo

Ok, looks like no one commented on this: someone mentioned that it is good there was no little plastic plane on the cake... but I wondered about the white bands around each of the towers. Are those meant to represent the particular floors that were hit or something!? Egads!!!

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commentersarah c

I honestly think some people just *want* to be offended. It's a cake. It's on public display in the window of a business. If the baker thought it would be offensive then he's no businessman. Take it in the way it was obviously intended.

If you want offence, check out the lighters for sale in Asia that are shaped like the twin towers. When you flick them, little LEDs flicker on the upper storeys and it plays a tune.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMosher

bad, bad, bad.

I actually just posted a blog post about how bitter I feel that people try to capitalize on tragedy.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterShelli

Even if it is offensive, we live in a part of the world where we have freedom - we can bake cakes in whatever form we choose. And really, that's one of the most important things we should remember and celebrate - our freedoms. We start stopping originality like this and the terrorists win.

So I think wreck yes - but at least we can make political cake wrecks without losing our liberty. And that's worth a slice in celebration in my books.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJSlayerUK

Think of it as comfort food.
I know I ate alot of food on the day it happened. (I also drank alot and smoked [cigs] alot and cried alot. You get the picture.)
So, I'm kind like our blogger patron Jen here,kind of on the fence about the whole thing.
I guess someone is going to have to confence me to either one side or the other.
((((Le sigh!))))
I can just see it now.

In Memoriam,

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterclueuin

I don't think it's offensive. People commemorate and honor what happened on 9/11 in different ways... how else would you expect a cake decorator to do so? There is nothing offensive about it. Putting the towers on a cake is no different than showing a picture of them on television.

Now, at first I thought the cake said "Merry 9/11 2001!" which would have been pretty offensive =P. But I just misread it.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterLindsey

The towers could be "dummies", too, covered in fondant; you see that a lot in display cakes (since they need to last longer than actual cake). I choose to see this as a tribute rather than a wreck, because I think that the intention was an honourable one, and that the odds are low anyone had planned to serve it up.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterophelia

My general impression of this cake as inappropriate have already been repeated several times in the comments, so let me just add this: If you could get past the fact that they were the WTC towers, would you want to eat something with that much black frosting in the first place? I didn't think so.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterCarisita

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>