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.

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Reader Comments (320)


Well, I guess it was the bakers right to make it. But I can't see that anyone is going to buy least I hope that no one is going to buy it.

The making of it is less tacky to me then the EATING of it.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJust Jinny

It's weird and creepy, although I'm sure the intent was good. Next year I hope someone will just write a bad poem or something.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMolly

i am sure there were good intentions but...

without reading the caption, my initial reaction was a loud, audible, "Oh No!!"

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

The baker has a talent, and he used his talent to remember 9/11. What's so wrong with that? He may not have any intention of eating it. Or maybe he will eat it with a group of close family and friends, while they share quality time together, remembering those that no longer have some of their close family and friends.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

This is terrible! Very bad taste.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMama Hen

I think it is fine as a store-window tribute (which it sounds like it is)- though maybe a cake that depicted a flag, and eagle - a tribute without physically re-creating the fallen towers.

However I think it would be horribly tasteless to serve. Even if the towers were cut out of site, and/or if only the base of the cake were served, I still would not be able to bite into any part of the WTC without getting very sick to my stomach.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJulia

Hi, this is my first post. Your blog is very nicely done.

A themed, decorated cake to commemorate a huge tragedy seems rather odd to me. Not tasteless, just sort of unusual and awkward. I haven't attended many funerals, but is there usually a cake with even an indirect reference to how the person died on it? I've never seen one.

I think most of us would agree that cake (especially a decorated one) is almost always served on a celebratory occasion. This isn't one of those occasions.

Finally, I thought the message on the cake was the weirdest and made me feel the most uncomfortable: "Those who still suffer." I don't want to be eating cake while I'm reading that.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMargaret

I figured it was a display cake intended as a tribute, not to be sold and eaten. If that's true, then I have no problem with it. If it was meant to be sold and eaten, then I'm not so sure about that.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterStacy

Yet another 9/11 memorial. I have no doubt of the good intentions of the creator of this cake.

Still, maybe it would be better to be low key about all this ... too many people have too much wrapped up in 9/11 still. Why keep reminding them?

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJames

It was the chocolate icing that really got to me, too. I don't know why that pushed it over the edge, but as Homer Simpson put it: "mmmm.... sacrilicious." It just looks too tasty.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterweb

Where exactly was this cake? In a bakery window? I think it's a tribute (there wasn't a price tag on it was there?)

Let's imagine the occasion at which this cake would be served - it doesn't exist. We don't follow solemn moments of silence and reflection with cake.

I'd bet this cake isn't meant to be eaten. Even if it was, about the only way it would be remotely acceptable would be for the entire top to lift off and stand as it is, with the simple sheet cake below being served. I'd bet there isn't even real cake involved - it must be a styrofoam model and will probably go in the window every Sept 11 for as long as the fondant continues to look good.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I'm pretty insensitive, and this offends me.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterElliott

Oh, good Lord, that's horrible!

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAlida

I think it is a nice tribute if the cake is not eaten. If, however, they serve the cake, I think it is tacky. Like you said, once the towers come down, totally uncool. But if they put the time, energy and money into it for display and tribute only then its nice.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKermitGreen82

Cutting into with a knife... like a plane? It's a supremely stupid idea. HOW could the baker not think that some people would be offended? You EAT a cake. Eating a memorial where thousands of people died? If you have to explain it, it's not a good idea.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterNatasha Becoming Something

the baker may possibly have been well intentioned but eeesh. i can't imagine people not recoiling from this when it's served. would you make a cake of the "arizona" to commemorate pearl harbor?

i'm thinking cake is meant to celebrate something happy. other commenters mentioned cakes at funerals and such but i've never seen a cake at a funeral that was decorated to remind people of the deceased or their manner of death. cakes at such events are generally nondescript and subdued.

eesh..macabre is the right word.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterlime

It's horrid. Even as tribute, it's macabre.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I've always thought Cakes were meant to be celebratory, and a commemorative memorial cake just seems odd to me.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterskatej

I personally think it should have been left at the beautifully made flag with the written tribute; left the towers off.

I'm not an America, and there is no way I could cut into/eat those towers.

I agree with those that say so long as it's not cut into, it's a tribute. But if it's meant to be eaten, then it's a wreck.

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered Commentercrazychickmia

why chocolate?

September 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSayra

This actually reminds me of the time that I was working at a party goods store around the Fourth of July. People would come into the store and ask if we had any American flag pinatas.

And then we would stare at them.

Sometimes the customers caught on; other times we had to explain that we didn't sell flag pinatas because, if you were to use it like you would any other pinata, you would essentially be beating the crap out of the American flag to get some SweetTarts.

And then the lightbulb would appear.

This cake is kinda the same thing: while it's great to want to show your patriotism, there are more permanent, and less edible, ways to go about it.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

The photo was taken by Marc Felion from the Feast of Fools podcast." REL="nofollow">Click here to listen to our podcast on the cake and how we found it-

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterFeast of Fools

Not something to make a cake about.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJadine

Why are people calling it tasteless? It looks delicious.

Would Americans be opposed to eating Lady Liberty? When you look past the political aspect of it, it's just a cake. It shows the towers in their complete form, not falling apart or in pieces.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterBritt

Wow. These people are just freaking clueless.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I agree that the motives of the baker are probably good, but good motives and bad judgement don't mix. Just because you CAN make a cake of the towers doesn't mean you SHOULD.

I can't think of any human tragedy worldwide that should be recaptured in a cake, even if the goal is to honor and remember those who died.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMattDoc

Let them eat cake!

Yeah, just as ridiculous.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJulie

I have to agree with several others, the baker probably had good intentions and as long as this cake wasn't actually meant to be carved up and served its fine. It's if someone bought it and then hacked it up that the problem comes in.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I have to agree with several others, the baker probably had good intentions and as long as this cake wasn't actually meant to be carved up and served its fine. It's if someone bought it and then hacked it up that the problem comes in.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Cakes should never make you sad.

Thus, there should be no such thing as a "memorial cake"


This cake is an oxymoron.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterelcynic

I think it's okay, as long as nobody starts cutting it up the towers and eating them. Some cakes are not to be divvied up into crumby parts and consumed. Some are there to be seen.


September 12, 2008 | Unregistered Commentersciencegirl

I think it's kind of sweet. A bit odd perhaps, but many of the 9/11 memorials I've seen are a little odd. I can't imagine being really offended by this cake as it was obviously intended as a tribute.

And like gothicbeauty21 at 5:14pm I too have often eaten cakes (even fancy decorated ones) at post funeral gatherings. Those are celebrations -- celebrations of life. Food and often booze and all sorts of cakes, pies and pastries -- comfort food.

I wouldn't personally commission this cake, but I wouldn't be bent out of shape if someone else did. I don't see it as a wreck.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered Commentereek

Wreck... sorry to the obviously talented bakers, but 9/11 is not the sort of day we commemorate with edible confections IMHO.


September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterThe Five Nomads

I personally do not know why people are so offended by the cake. To me that is absolutely ridiculous. I'm sure the baker must have thought to him/herself "Self, I am going to make a cake so that when you eat it, it will be reminiscent of the towers burning to the ground." Now, if you want offensive, he could have added planes, or smoke, or people jumping from the windows or maybe some terrorists.

If I saw that cake in the window and it was made with icing and filling that I liked, you better believe I would eat it. It's a CAKE for goodness sake.

I think it is just the baker paying tribute to the world trade center as a reminder of what it once was, not as a reminder of grief and death and the lousy excuse for the war on terrorism.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterHere you will find:

I honestly don't see what's so offensive or "bad taste" about it. It's a cake, move on.

I'd eat it.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

It's just a cake. A cake that is meant to be viewed and then eaten. I don't see the big deal about eating it at all to be honest.

Then again, I'm really hard to offend in most areas.


September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterThe Promo Homo

I think I agree that the designer's heart was in the right place...Like with the infant cake in an earlier CW blog, I just think they forgot that people would be carving into those towers and making it look a lot like they did in 2001...Got caught up in the "art" of it.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterHelen Ann

I have no problem with someone making a tributary cake as long as it's not meant for consumption...or at least the towers. I agree with Julie that plastic towers (that actually resembled the Twin Towers) would have been more appropriate, and I'm not thrilled with the decorators execution of only putting one like of windows in at that level. The base cake is beautiful and were the towers removable to be set aside it would be one thing...though I still see cakes as something to be eaten for celebration and this is certainly not an event to be celebrated.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterV. Nicharico

Well at least it was done with better taste than this one.
Still, seems disrespectful somehow.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterA

Its a cake. Cakes are meant to be eaten.
We dont fret about cutting into a persons face when its on their birthday cake.
I think its a nice gesture on the bakers part. A nice memorial.
However, perhaps I'm just insensitive.
But I don't see anything wrong with it.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Maybe we should memorialize the Holocaust with a cakey Auschwitz?

This is tacky -- who on *Earth* would memorialize the death of 5,000 people in a terrorist attack with food? The very concept is tasteless. If you must make a Sept. 11 cake, why not make it about national unity or perseverance or resilience or something tangential? Or how 'bout you don't make a dessert at all, but you act like a grown-up and do something meaningful to remember the attacks, like volunteer or read the Constitution? Do you really have to recreate the grave of thousands in cake form?

The answer: No, you do not.

The skill involved may be top-notch, but, man, this is a treacle too far.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I think it is a wonderful tribute. I would eat it.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I was going to read on and on and on the many comments about this cake. Trying to see if I could see both sides of the story and if I could get off the fence to dive in my opinion. However, in the end I gave up after the 200th comment.
So I sd it the first time and I'll say it for the last time. (At least on the subject of this cake.)

[In a dry tone.]Yes, Anonymous, I guess it would be inappropraite to eat it with that particular airplane spoon. [Hi-yuck, Ye-yuck, Ha, Ha.]
To the baker who says he works their: Yeah, new immergrints go thur that phase of being Urber-Patriotic. Nothing you can do now but wait a couple of decades. Then they'll be whining, complaining, protesting, Americans in no time.
Kind of like everybody else here.

Via Va, Via Va, Via Va Americans!


September 12, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterclueuin

To me it seems as though the decorator wanted to make a tribute to the lives lost with his own form of art work. I do not see a price tag on it and nothing with a price around it so I assume that it is not to be sold or ever eaten. I think it is nice that he can show his support in a very artistic way. Alot of artists do this. They have taken the steel beams from the Twin Towers and sent them all over the world to make memorials out of, why not a cake? Also do we know if the towers are made out of cake and not styrofoam?? Alot of decorators do this and just put icing over those types of objects.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Wierdest. Memorial. EVER.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRachelRenae

Maybe its the optimist in me, but I would think that the decorator of this cake made it more as a in-window tribute, not as a cake for sale or for eating...maybe?

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Yeah, hmmm, seems like they, the bakers, had their hearts in the right place but those dont even look like the World Trade Center.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterDarth Rob

I think that if the cake is intended to be eaten and not just observed for the skill involved then it would have been more appropriate to leave the towers off. I still like the cake and don't see it as being disrespectful. We all work with what we have and I think the baker was just trying to say hey, we remember. -Christine

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterShiny Things

Call me crazy, but I've been thinking about this cake, and what other people have commented about it. Maybe we should eat cake after moments of silence, and memorialize lives lost with cake, and eat it too. Maybe those people who lost their lives, loved cake as much as we do. Maybe they would want us to eat cake in remembrance of them. Just a thought, why should cake be just for happy moments. When I die, I want my family and friends to celebrate the life I lived. I dont want them to wallow in grief. Be glad that I finally escaped this world. I would be happy if they made a cake in my honor, why not, I had one for every birthday. Cake = Joy, put some joy in sad times. Think about it folks.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterDarth Rob

Commercialization of a horrible day, much like politicians and the media have done. Blegh. Not to mention it's horrible that the decorator HIGHLIGHTED the floors on each tower where they were struck - yuck.

September 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterDea

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