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

Old Time Wreck 'n Roll

For decades now mankind has been left to wonder: Just where did the first Cake Wreck come from? We may never have the definitive answer (outside of "42", of course) but an historic find has recently been unearthed in the area of Gilbert, Arizona, that may shed some light on this weighty issue.

I give you, Magic in Frosting!

Breathtaking, isn't it? This artifact, discovered by Luz G. of Beautiful Impermanence, is believed to date back to the "free love" era of the 1960s, when the word "magic" was interchangeable with the names of many and varied forms of hallucinogenic drugs. Coincidence?

I think not.

Especially when you consider that the author claims to be the original creator of the Smashed Pink Elephant cake here. [arching eyebrow] Highly suspicious.

Regardless, this priceless find demonstrates some truly remarkable feats that our ancestors were able to achieve using nothing more than buttercream, a few simple tools, and the belief that any woman who plays tennis is a low-browed neanderthal with a thyroid problem.

Further evidence of the decade's inebriation includes this lovely (not to mention leggy) specimen:

The "Merry-Go-Round of Bisected Ballerinas" was a popular party motif during the summer of '67.

And lastly, here's a delightful reminder of simpler times - when the hair was long, the skirts were short, and first-degree murder was a "groovy" party theme:

(Note the smoking gun and perfectly-piped pool of blood. Such accuracy! Such talent!)

So, where do modern-day Wrecks come from? Well, in light of these examples I believe there can be only one conclusion: they're made by the people who got these cakes as children.

- Related Wreckage: LIFE Wrecks

« Here comes the bri...AAAAUUGGHHH!!! | Main | Rooby Dooby DOOO!!! »

Reader Comments (204)

CHEEKY CHEF SAYS: Nah, '60's' drugs didn't create this piped poodle travesty; hallucinogenic drugs SAVED us from this reality.

Valium cased THIS.

January 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

love the 'hitchhiker' reference!! new to the blog, love it love it love it!!!! don't ever stop...

July 3, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterjillyjen

I have been doing cakes since 1959 and would you believe I was one of those tourists who had their face pressed against the huge glass windows at Humphrey's Bakery at the Farmers market in S. Cal. Watching John McNamara piping those wonderful pink elephants? Well they were wonderful to me then but I was only 19 years old in 1958. Later in 1972 I took a piping class from John McNamara in Walnut Creek, Ca.

His icing actually wasn't buttercream,it was called figurine icing and was similar to 7 minute icing in taste and texture, a boiled icing made with meringue powder.

You have to remember that at one time children read Grimms Fairy Tales as a bedtime book, ( I'll grind your bones to make my bread)wonder why we had nightmares? And we laughed at the Three Stooges when they poked each other in the eye. Times have changed my sugar friends and thank goodness it has. I look back on the wonderful Lambeth class I took from Edith Gates in 1964 and now see it as so outdated. Still, it was considered works of art at the time.

If John McNamara were living today he would probably look back on some of his piping work and have a good laugh.

March 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterShirleywilson39

In the early 70s my after school job was working at Gill's Ice Cream in LA's Farmers Market. This was right next to Humphrey's Bakery where they were famous for their Pink Elephant cakes. By this time they had been making them for at least a decade. They were making these in all sizes from modest ones like the one pictured to multi-tier masterpieces. I have looked several times over the years to see if I could find a picture. This is the first authentic looking photo I have found but doesn't come close to the quality of composition and execution that I remember. I spent many hours watching the woman make them, including drunk pink elephants passed out in a champagne glass complete with little Xs for eyes. I still marvel at how she could squeeze her pastry sack and an elephant would magically pop out.

February 5, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterBill B

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>