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

Maybe We Should Stick with "Good Job"

Graduation season is upon us, and with it comes the irony of those who cannot spell congratulating those who have (hopefully) learned to do so. In writing.

I suppose it would be easier if "graduation" and "congratulations" didn't sound so much alike. As it is, we end up with a lot of Franken-style mash-ups:

Putting a "d" in "congratulations" is now so common that I've had folks tell me it's a new word created specifically for congratulating graduates. [burying face in hands] *sob*

Admit it: Now you want to see a cake that says "Congradulations Gratuates" as much as I do. Well, I don't have one. (Yet.) But I do have some more fun manglings:

"Congratutahons, Sus & Robert!"

What's that? Her name isn't "Sus"? Meh. So Sue me.

After a while you start to see the same mistakes over and over again. There's the "Something's Missing...":

The "End of the Road!":

(Complete with a truly epic grad cap - wow.)

And of course the classic "Letter Switcheroo":

Actually, this is a Switcheroo combined with "Something's Missing", since there's no "e". And while "Gradutas" does sound like something from Taco Bell, it kinda has a nice ring to it, don't you think?

Some decorators successfully navigate the "congratulations/graduation" minefield only to stumble right on the home stretch:

That's quite the stumble though. "Comminsoning?"
(It was supposed to be "commissioning".)

Then there's this...thing:

CCCs with "s"s that look like "g"s, gratuitous ellipses, and sloppy icing piled higher than the cupcakes themselves have no "honor". Only "honers".

Anony, Donna, Sue M., Ila P., Sarah L., Jessica R., Christine H., & Rosalie C., congratutahons! You've gratulated from Wreckporter school!

« Cake Wrecks, World Educator | Main | Insulting Inscriptions 101 »

Reader Comments (142)

This drives me crazy! I had to correct SO many of these cakes when I was managing an ice cream shop. All the employees wanted to decorate cakes so they would "help out" by taking care of the cake orders when I wasn't there. I had to correct 30 misspelled grad cakes in a single June!

Verification Word: crien (what I was doing when I came in to another freezer full of misspelled cakes)

June 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

First I was confused by the "preschool" gratuation cake; previously to now I thought the first thing you could matriculate from was Kindergarten (or is it -garden?) Then the whale cake blew me away...not getting the tie to etucation there.
But Gradutas? I don't think these people are understanding the gravitas of the situacion...graduashun is a big deal!!!

WV: ansuri...all of my grammar questions are now ansurid!

June 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJacqcooks

You know, I remember making a card for my dad when he got his MBA that said "ConGRADuations!" on it...thing was, I was 6 years old at the time, and I spelled it that way ON PURPOSE. Granted, I was a fairly precocious child, but still, if a 6-year-old can come up with this, should it really be that hard for adults in bakeries to figure it out? Or at least to consult a dictionary? Seriously.

June 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterElizabeth

Where can you buy these cakes? My class has to purcase cakes for the after-graduation reception and these are perfect!

June 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKaty M.

It's really too bad the person making the Navy cake couldn't spell because they have gorgeous handwriting/piping skills.

June 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAllokago

When I graduated from high school, my mom actually *tried* to get a cake that said "Congraduations Gratulate" as a joke. Of course, on the one cake where it was actually *supposed* to be misspelled, they spelled it correctly.

June 3, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterbionelly

That Navy cake was so close to great! Nice decorations, the decorator has beautiful handwriting, then on the next-to-last word, whoops!

June 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterFelixAndAva

Fail whale!!

June 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAshlee

wv: iniste

I iniste that you honer my wishes and spell congratulation correctly.

June 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJulie

The amount of icing on that CCC is...amazing. That had to have taken some work.

If it makes you feel any better, I bought one of those "congratulations" banners with the individual words stuck together with brads yesterday. When I opened it today and hung it up, I realized it said "Goncratulations." I'm going to the Dollar Tree tomorrow to buy another to see if they're all like that...

I actually like to say "ConGraduation!" at grads.

June 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAaron

i can't stand people confusing the spellings of "graduation" and "congratulations", but the "sus" on that one cake I can understand. my name is suzanne, and a lot of people call me "suz" (pronounced "sooz"). maybe a susan that people call sus?

June 4, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

it was an honer reading this. congradulations on your blog success.

June 4, 2009 | Unregistered Commenternoel joy

Whats that on the end of the road cake? It looks like a chicken's foot sticking out of a black toilet pedestal or something.

June 4, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAleya

Yota Armai said Bakers need a commonly mispelled words poster in their kitchens, but it probably still wouldn't help.

I think you have just invented the next Cake Wrecks retail product! How about it, Jen? Maybe with a photo of the offending cake illustrating the wrong way to do it.

June 4, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterjackie31337

Amazingly enough, I saw a gift bag at a local chain pharmacy that was spelled "congradulations" I had to take a double look as the letters were all wonky to start with. Crazy world- you can now get a gift bag to match your misspelled cake.

June 4, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

When I was in high school I worked for a bakery where the decorators thought it was super clever to write "CON - GRAD - ULATIONS!" on all the graduation cakes. Which I thought was moronic, but at least they KNEW that's not how the word's spelled.

June 4, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterboardom

Oh dear. There's so much frosting on that that at first I didn't even realize there were cupcakes under there!

June 4, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLaura


June 4, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDiane

The "epic grauduation cap" looks like a zombie arm crawling out of a grave....

June 4, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

The gradutas balloons put me in the mood for lobster.

June 4, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

My name is Sus. And my boyfriend's name is Robert. But that is not my cake.

June 5, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSus

I wish I had a "before" picture of my brother's graduation cake last year. He was a the valedictorian. I went to go pick up his cake, and then name of the high school was spelled wrong. I was pointed out this misspelling and the answer was "Oh, well will it be okay?"
"No, it will no be okay for the valedictorian to have his school misspelled on his cake."
It did get "fixed."
Here's one question... do YOU know how to spell the name of the town yo live in?

June 5, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

With honers---thy name is IRONY.

June 5, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I'd like two gradutas, with hot sauce, and a large diet Pepsi...and a side order of chalupas..........

June 5, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

hooray! i was the lucky finder of the "honers" CCC, and i immediately called my bf over to see bc i, too, instantly thought of boners. And then, the more i looked at it, the better (worse?) it got!

they had a whole slew of CCC and they were all covered in about 6 inches of frosting!

June 5, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterrosalie

I remember when Crissy, from "Three's Company," made a banner which said, "Congraduation." It worked for me.

my cousin likes to use "congraduations", which i think is awesome.

June 5, 2009 | Unregistered Commenternora

Taking a 'can you spell like a 5th grader?' quiz should be a requirement to work in the bakery. Ours just recently posted a sign saying "CONGRATULATIONS, no T" in the decorating area. I don't know why they didn't think of it sooner!

June 5, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I'm commiserating on the commissioning sad because the writing is just beautiful!

June 6, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMav

yo Jen,
Just thought I'd let you know that graduating "with honers" is something that is common in high school and college, like if you were an honor student throughout you are said to be graduating with honers. At least where I'm from anyway.

June 6, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTaylor

Taylor, I'd be very worried about a school that could graduate honOr students who can't spell the word "honor". There is no E in any accepted spelling of that word.

June 6, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterFelixAndAva

Oh my stomach hurts now from laughing so hard. Thank you for the afternoon guffaw!

June 7, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMiss Bliss

I would have not noticed the fact that it was on cupcakes if you didn't say anything about it. YIKES!!! All that icing.

June 10, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermelaine

OMG, I laughed so hard when I read this and resolved not to make the same mistake on my sister in law's cake. Just to be safe, I made myself stop and check it. Thank goodness I did! I managed to fix "Congratulai" into "Congratulations!" I have a *little* bit of sympathy for cake decorators after that experience...but not much, HA!

June 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterWe are the Guerra's!

Isn't that the "Whale of a Wife" cake from The Simpsons?

June 29, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMs Avery

If I'm not mistaken, that whale cake comes from Culver's Frozen Custard. It is a STANDARD and they ALWAYS look that ugly. Even in the stock merchandising image.

It's kind of like the founder made an ugly wreck of an ice cream cake, and for half a century no one had the heart to correct him.

July 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJerry

I remember seeing another misspelling somewhere (not on a cake; probably a badly translated video game) where it was written "Conglaturation." That one was so bad it was almost funny. These just make me cringe.

And I like frosting as much as the next person, but I've gotta say that CCC is simply disgusting. And a good way to give yourself diabetes. Blech.

WV: solio (Working in the soil. On your own.)

May 13, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMonica

Oy! That last CCC (patooey!)... The directions are simple enough that anyone could make this, though I don't know why any sane person would:

1. Get a bunch of cupcakes.

2. Mix enough frosting to cover two dozen real cakes. Use a wheelbarrow, so the shovel will fit.

3. Apply frosting. Take frequent breaks during this process so that you don't hurt your back.

4. Finish with either a trowel or a steamroller (it looks like the former was used, but I would have suggested the latter).

Maybe there were several kids at the party in question, and all of them lived at least two hours away. By car. Any adults in attendance thus learned that they should never order a cake with 'extra frosting' (in case the wreckerator measures in cubic yards as this one did), and 'honer' was restored to the land.

By the way, 'gradutas' has a nice, Latin sound to it. Sounds very important and honerable.

June 12, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCraig

So I'm wondering how many of those cakes were misspelled on the order form too because at a grocery store the decorator isn't necessarily the only one taking the orders, that means at LEAST two people looked at those orders and still no one caught the mistake. I'm a cake decorator and you have no idea how many messages are misspelled on the order (at least 5 a week).

August 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKatie4788

That's not a zipper. It is a pair of balloons with curly ribbons instead of string tied to them.
I guess.

May 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterChrisf

I admit I didn't read all 141 comments on the thread, so it may have already been brought up, but the Epic Win Graduation Cake of All Time was definitely the Graduation Cat Debacle of 2013.

Welll... does the wreckerator at least get points for spelling "congratulations" correctly? :)

February 19, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterKami

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