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

Happy Wending!

So Jen and I are in Texas, a state which apparently holds a deep and sordid hatred for me. See, I'm sick. Not dying-in-the-hospital sick but sick, nonetheless. And it's cold. And wet. And in the past week, we've moved ten thousand pounds of knick-knacks across Texas which, it turns out, takes approximately 7,000 hours to drive through, the whole time praying we don't plow into some random cow or windmill. Oh yeah... did I mention Jen's a bit grumpy?

So I'm doing today's wreck, and I'm pretty much just gonna rant. Let me set the stage:

Expensive wedding in the Philippines.
The finest catering.
The perfect beach setting.

And this:

I know, right? I feel the same way. But what I want to know is how hard is it, when you're on a freaking tropical island, to find fruit that isn't so close to being rotten that it makes your kids tipsy. And what's with the icing?!? I've iced a few cakes in my time and I've never seen anything like that. I take that back. Last week, my cat licked my shmeared bagel when I wasn't looking and it looked a lot like that. I mean seriously people!

*propping self up in hotel bed*

And another thing!


Nah... that's enough. Just one last thing: I've met a ton of Texans while I've been here and one thing is true of them all: they're all so stinkin' nice. What I want to know is how do you stay that way when your state is constantly trying to KILL YOU?!?!?!?!

(me sneezing)
(yet again)

Thanks to Erica.

Related Wreckage: Tour Wreck

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Reader Comments (209)

this is the ugliest cake ever.
I my, soooo baaaaad

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPierro

that there icing looks like a half finished drywall texture job...I'm sure most of the mexicans know what I mean...

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered Commentertimmy

"In my defense, my list was never meant to be comprehensive."

That's OK, Gary, you have a lot of state to cover. But I was just thinking about cactuses, so be careful where you sit down, John and Jen, for that and a lot of those other reasons. Happy Wending!

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterjj

Texas loves you! If you are in the Austin area, we'd love to meet you. The sky opened up & the sun came out. Drive safe & get some good CFS while yer here.

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAngi

Feel better soon, John! Give those germs hell. And yeah, Texas is huge. I've had to drive across it three times (once because of a canceled flight, twice for moving purposes). I can't say I really enjoyed any of those experiences. Rant on! I totally understand.

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterContemporary Troubadour

I think that white dog had something to do with it.

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDecadent Housewife

We stay sick too. The sun came out today! I saw it! It did really!


February 5, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermystyxiii

I had my birthday in the Philippines one year (which included a cake) was so hot, the icing literally slid off the cake as we cut into it. It actually sorta looked like the icing in the photo.

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

um... the paper that is covering the cake boards reads "Happy Birthday"... that's a nice touch. Classy...

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKathryn

You have to be a teensy little bit fair to the decorators of that cake... I was married in Bali and can tell you that you can take nothing for granted about planning a wedding in a foreign country. When the top layer of our cake was returned to our villa on the morning after , in order to be taken home and saved as is customary where we come from, it was brought to us on a plate with two cake forks. An entire fruit cake, enough for 30 people! The photographer asked us to change the time of the ceremony so the light would be better. WTF ! And that was at a 5 star hotel. It was elegantly presented and the service was impeccable but the understanding was absent. So I see this particular example of wedding cake as being the local interpretation of the request for " a cake topped with a selection of fruit", only it is clearly not a 5 star hotel they were dealing with.

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

They could have, at least, peeled the fruit.

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

This Austin local can testify: the weather here is EVIL right now. It's swapping from winter mode to spring mode, so going from dry but chilly to half-rainy and cold and half-hot and humid. It's not usually this bad, though; in a couple of months things will go back to the usual scorching heat. (Just be glad you didn't come in August or September; freezing rain is better than being roasted alive.)

Get well soon!! Be nice to Texas and I promise it will stop trying to murder you!!

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I'm glad everyone has been so nice to y'all :) I think we can stay pleasant even with the weather and the allergies because the food keeps us fat and happy.

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterThe Introvert

It looks like they used stiffened egg whites for the frosting, eww! And what is with the black specks that look like coffee grounds all over the place? LOL.

Yeah wrecktastic.. birthday wrapping paper and all! I would NOT put that in my mouth!

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAthena

Good lord that fruit is awful looking. "WTF" is what I said out loud when I saw that cake. Except of course I didn't say the letters, I said the words. EXACTLY, you're on a tropical island for crying out loud, go pick up some d@mn fruit out of the sand!

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

@MaryAnn---Goldilocks!!! OMG, I haven't had that in years. My tummy is rumbling now.

February 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBuffy

I laugh every post, I swear. My cubemates at work can tell when I've hit your blog because of the muffled laughter that emanates from my area.

Thanks for keeping the funnies comin', even when you're under the weather.

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJennyF

Sorry to hear the trip is rough, but glad to hear the secret is out (that Texans are darned nice folks despite all the braggin' about our fine state.)
Some fer-ners think we're all ego, but it's really just about having a pretty good life and being all friendly-like (despite trying to be killed by rattle snakes, scorpions, killer bees, fire ants, water mocassins, and crummy weather.)

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMissy

Welcome to Texas! I wouldn't worry to much about the weather, you never know it might be 70 and sunny within a day or two. I hope you start feeling better.
...not only is the fruit rotten they couldn't even take the time to peel it.

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Ha, I'm a recent Texas transplant (Austin, specifically. Which may or may not count, depending on your opinion of Austin...and I'm from DC, which is essentially the most opposite of all opposites in Oppositeland.) and I noticed the same thing. SO NICE! Everywhere I go -- even the flippin' clearance section of Target -- everyone is super nice and ready to chat like we're all just friends hanging out in one giant living room. FREAKY, I tell you.

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Wow, that's one crazy cake!! You just gotta love the happy Birthday wrapping paper on the cake boards. That's an especially festive touch!!

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

The cake looks like someone took to it with a few cans of shaving foam.

I'm not sure which I like more - the heavily bruised bananas, or the rapidly browning apple quarters. All coyly peeping past the few carefully(?) placed bright purple orchid blooms (which only serve to highlight the sad state of the fruit).

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermorriganscrow

anyone notice "happy birthday" paper on the cake boards....good stuff!

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMelanie

I'd have to disagree with the person who said that most people in the Philippines would just be happy to have the food and Americans are too picky.... I've meant people from the Philippines, they appreciate beautiful things and I doubt many would accept the frosting job as ok, and I'll give a little and say maybe the fruit had a hard ride to the site, but everthing else in the scene shows a nicely appointed simple wedding and the pic had to be sent to CW. Probably by the bride to let off some steam for a horrible looking cake on her special day. Did anyone notice the boards under the side cakes say "Happy Birthday"? Cake decorating by professionals has a standard world wide regardless of the country the cake is in. So I'm not buying your hating on the good ol' USofA.

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

LOL! I have been a Texan for 2/3 of my life and this post was the funniest ;-) I have the worst allergies year round...but I do love it here somehow ;-)

Take care ;-)
Candi in Mckinney

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I always know I'm getting close to Austin (home) when I start sneezing! The cedar fever has been known to knock down even the hardiest of people. You learn to live on allergy pills. (And look out for the rattlesnakes, coyotes, scorpions, brown recluses, and copperheads! Other than that it's a great place to live.)
-Jessica in Austin

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

gosh, I hope you're all feeling better soon! I totally agree about the cake -- the fruit on top looks sort of icky-icky-overly-ripe!

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDina

The cake is hideous, but fruits in tropical countries are not modified to look perfect. I am Colombian and fruit there always has brown spots and doesn't look like perfect, wax fruit. Fruit in the United States is not what natural fruit looks like, sorry to break it to you.

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

LOVED the sneeze but I felt it right through my laptop. They do everything BIG in Texas, eh? Feel Better Soon John!

LOL no really. I am being sincere.

I have NOTHING to add about the cake. 178 people in front of me have already done a great job.

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMarieA

PLUS - all the cakes look as though they were just plopped down on those table, nothing between the edible cake and the unsanitary table - BLECH!!


February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

sorry you're sick! also, the being nice to everyone is allll part of that great southern hospitality!

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterThat's a Hot Mess!!!

Wow...can we say cultural differences? On the islands that's a damn fine cake. They have less hang ups about hollywood perfection than Americans. 99% of the people on the island would enjoy the fruit and be happy to have it. Its not up to American standards but it still fine to eat.

Same for the paper. They tried they just have no clue how high the standards were. They are on a beach where the wind blows. The wind blows sand.

I enjoy laughing at true wreaks made by clueless 'bakers' but this is nothing more than laughing at some poor woman or man in another country that tried their best to please a super picky American.

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterUsually funny around here

Howdy from another Texan, born and raised here in the Alamo city!

I LOVE TEXAS, and I'm allergic to EVERYTHING! Just stay pumped full of the Zyrtex and I'm all good--no more Death Becomes Her. :) Enjoy your time in the lovely state! I stay here because of the SUN!

I should have been born an Aztec.

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAmber J

just an fyi. the fruit isn't close to being rotten. i guarantee it has more depth and complexity than any of the super-homogenized, monochromatic, pesticide-sprayed crap we see in our markets... it looks rotten to us because-oh you know-it's natural.

but everything else about that cake is atrocious...

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMandrew

The icing looks like the do-it-yourself 1970's ceiling stippling in my Grandma's house.

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Welcome back to Texas! It takes 12 hours to drive from Wichita Falls to El Paso. It only takes 9 and a half to drive from Wichita Falls to Graceland!
Sorry you're sick again, but like stewbie2 said, if you ain't got allergies when you get here, then you'll def have 'em by the time you leave!
Get to feelin' better.
Melanie in Austin

February 6, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

For those calling foul due to cultural differences:

I'd like to point out a couple of things if I could. First of all, this cake was made for a very high end wedding at a very high end hotel in the Philippines. It was not made by some poor old lady in a village. It was made by professional bakers.

Secondly, I have seen some pretty amazing cakes that were made in the Philippines. There are skilled and lousy bakers everywhere. To assume that a certain ethnicity must be proud of a poorly made cake is oddly bigoted.

Lastly, well made cakes are not the sole property of Americans. Venture into a bakery in China or France or Uzbekistan and you are likely to see true works of art. I guess I think that cake has become universal.

Sorry to rant.

Wreck On!


February 6, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterjohn (the hubby of Jen)

Texans are really disguised Canadians? Lol! I love that. I remember the Canadians temporarily here for fire training were convinced every snake and spider was dangerous and out to get them, and one actually asked if it was usually this hot, and when would it start cooling down? It was the beginning of summer and only 89 degrees that day! Poor guy sure got a rude awakening.

February 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNick

I'm in the Philippines right now, and all of the fruit looks like that - sorry! Love the blog!

February 7, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterabipolz

I understand what you mean. I have lived here all my life and I'm plagued with chronic allergies. The minute I leave the state to go live in Missouri for a couple of months, I cease to have allergy symptoms. It's worse when you live near the coast like I do.


February 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCandace

That fruit looks delicious! I can't say much for the presentation, but the bananas have the perfect amount of black on them, showing them to be ripe and sweet but not over-ripe and mushy, the whole apples have a very nice colour and apple pieces will look like that soon after being cut. The cake itself looks yummy in a home-made type of way. It's not pretty, and the fruit doesn't belong, but it's not terrible, or unintentionally funny, or nasty-looking. It just looks amateur, and who says it was made by a professional cake-baker?

February 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJameson

Wow, that' interesting cake. I was born in the Philippines, and I remember many of my birthday cakes being tiny works of art (a carousel, Snow White and the 7 Dwarves, a Rapunzel with her tower) and they were just gorgeous. I'm not sure what happened here! In fact, one of my childhood treats was being taken past the bakery to look at all the awesome things in the window.

February 7, 2010 | Unregistered Commentersienamystic

That cake is not beautiful, but I have to say that those bananas, while not pretty, look nice an ripe and sweet. Yellow bananas with green ends might be prettier, but they don't taste as good.

February 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKaren

Awful for any cake, horrendous for a wedding cake.

I'm trying to figure out why anyone would put whole, unpeeled fruit on a cake, let alone overripened, unappetizing, whole, unpeeled fruit. Shouldn't decorations on a cake be cut-serve-eat?

Guess this cake will be the couples' "wedding glitch we'll laugh about someday."

February 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Margaritas, sweetie...margaritas. a slow and steady infusion of tequila & lime into your system will take care of pretty much anything that's tryin' to kill ya. Sorry you're sick, but glad you're in Texas:D

February 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTeddy Started It

Everything is bigger in Texas! Including the suckage.
I've lived in Texas for nearly ten years now and the key is to figure out exactly how many allergy meds you can be on without passing out facedown in your chilli.

Hope you feel better soon.

February 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterFresh Hell, Texas

I might be the one Texan NOT on any allergy meds. Somehow I've managed to avoid seasonal allergies although I've lived her 26 years. My husband is not so lucky.

We've driven many times between Houston and Amarillo (I don't know where Alamo is, but I'm going to look it up!) I can completely commiserate--that panhandle can seem ENDLESS. I mean, once we leave Fort Worth, we practically have to brace ourselves mentally and emotionally...we won't be seeing anything interesting or eating anything tasty for the next several hundred miles (you see, we've got Colorado in our sights when we're making this journey...Amarillo is not the final destination). It is quite exhausting, even physically, to drive that north-west-ward leg. The wind is fighting you the whole way, the sun's in your eyes, there is dirt and dust everywhere, it smells of cattle and not much else...

Anyway :D Welcome to Texas, please feel better! Enjoy your stay, if possible!

February 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLindsey

My daughter got married in Nicaragua, and the wedding guests brought gifts in all kinds of wrapping paper. Some said Happy Birthday, some was Christmasy looking, etc. I thought it was really weird, until it dawned on my that they didn't speak (or read) English. They had just chosen paper they thought was pretty. I suspect the cake decorator here did the same thing.
And John, I hope you feel better soon. I'm a native Texan, and suffer from cedar fever. But I've lived in other states, and came back here for the barbecue and Blue Bell ice cream. And Mexican food.

February 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

and margaritas

February 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCourtney

Texas loves you! Feel better soon!

I know! I moved to Texas 3 years ago. Who knew you could have allergies in January?

February 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSunny J. Hedrick

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