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

Name That Wreck!

I think we can all agree that if your name is pronounced "Elizabeth" but spelled with three "I"s and a silent "Q", then you void your right to complain when a baker gets it wrong.

However, there are times when you think the baker might have stopped to question somewhere along the line:

"Jackign?" Is that supposed to be Jacking? And if so, who names their child Jacking??

Never mind.


I've seen "Bart" turned to "Brat," "Brian" turned to "Brain," and "Tink" turned to "Fink" - but nothing beats the nickname Chris just picked up:

Words cannot express how much I hope they served this with water.

[That's right, Chris: you just got SUNDAY SCHOOLED.]


Of course, Doug's new moniker is slightly less complimentary:

But I'm sure he rose to the occasion anyway.


I like to think this is a cake for the Riddler's quintuplets:

But that's a questionable theory.

(In reality, they asked for the name to be written in Cyrillic.)


Look, bakers, I know there are lots of unusual spellings and strange name choices out there these days, but just remember:

If at first you don't succeed, 

try it again in cursive directly underneath.

See? Bob's your uncles!


Thanks to Rae Lynn, Lizz H., Tom H., Jill C., Joel H., & Stacey T. for leaving out all the silent Qs.

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Reader Comments (91)

Is it me, or does the "Birthday" on the "Dough" cake look like "Girthday"? Either way, SMH...

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterwoodnwheel

I remember having a lady order a cake from me that was supposed to read "Happy Birthday Sam." What she neglected to mention was that she spelled it X-A-N. We went through four cakes before she would actually spell it for us. Silly me, I forgot the hyphens! I hate it when I have to make a cake wreck on purpose!

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterElizaC

No! It says "Rappy Girthday, Dough". Obviously the person in question is very rotund, and they are selling those sauna wraps to try to help him lose some of his girth, so that he will also lose that demeaning nickname.
It's a tough-love cake.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterShirley Fowley

Sung to "A Horse With No Name"

On the first they misspelled Jacking
Next girl's a felon now, for life
With a name like Christ expect good things
Dough's cake had crumbs in a ring
The Cyrillic made the baker give up 'cause
They knew it wouldn't do them proud
Poor Robert's cake got a second try
And my head began to pound

I'm so through with desserts as a course with a name
It feels good to give up all the pain
'Cause on desserts, they just can't render your name
And there ain't no need for them to pipe out such pain

La, la...

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSharyn

This reminds me of my favorite Tom Lehrer song, "We Will All Go Together When We Go!" It opens with him telling the story of a boy named H-E-N-3-R-Y. The "3" was silent, you see.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAnne

Looking on the bright side (hey, you have to at least TRY), I think that "Felony" 's cake could be the beginning of the "Next Big Thing", to wit: hand-printing and foot-printing everyone on their birthdays, as a matter of public record. On cake. It could really take off.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

For the most part, these cakes are beautifully done. Well, if you disregard the inscriptions, anyway.

As for the Riddler's quintuplets -- very often it is hard to distinguish quints one from another, but I can tell them apart. Can you?

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterPatti

Names will get you every time! Even when I take an order for "SAM", I always ask the client to spell it for just that reason - it might be spelled X-A-N or contain a couple of those silent "3"'s!

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJen @ Cup a Dee Cakes

Well, with all the"Teen Mom" shows out there, the"felony" cake might ring true!! LOL

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commenteranony mouse

The "Chris" cake reminds me of a girl we had at work. She was a new assistant, named Christine Fukumoto (I know this name shouldn't be here, but integral to the story!) IT would always make your initial login to all the programs the first 6 letters of your first name, and the first 3 letters of your last name. Needless to say, they made a special exception for her rather quickly.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKate

My grandfather, from the old country--Germany--was named Christopher, but regularly went by the nickname "Christ"--pronounced with a short "i" as in, well: Christopher. As a kid, I never gave it any thought until one day I saw it written, and thought about blasphemy. Thanks for bringing back memories of a wonderful, sweet grandfather--and he was a professional baker, too!

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentergrandma of 6

Felony. Really.

I don't know what's worse, that being a wrecked-up version of someone's name, or that actually BEING someone's name.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJoan

You'd think that the person who decorated Dough's cake would at least THINK of maybe setting his or her cigar DOWN somewhere BEFORE starting to decorate the cake. I know, some people think ashes are a nice touch, but they are an acquired taste, and not for everyone...

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

Well, at least Felony an ?????! have cakes that are attractive. The others, not so much. Poor Dough. . . . his cake looks like it has poop dust all over it.

Maybe the person deconrating Robert's cake was doing so in his robe, and wanted to pay homage to that. But then the boss came in, and things took a turn (around the corner) for the worse, and the boss told him to use the guy's real name. It did not occur to robe-wrecker, however, to correct his error.

Or maybe I should just leave the storytelling to mel and Craig.

Sharyn, I always hated the song "Horse With No Name." However, I will gladly lalalalalala along with your version!

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTLC

For the most part, these cakes are very well done. If you disregard the inscriptions, anyway.

Very often, it is hard to distinguish one quint from another. But I can tell the Riddler's quintuplets apart, can you?

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterPatti

Dang, a cute, socially acceptable baby shower cake - ruined.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDiane

I hope that #2 isn't supposed to represent "Felony" being born.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJoel Polowin

Excellent Jen! Very entertaining
@Sharyn -- well done as always young lady
@Anne -- hahahahahaha I so remember that song

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMaureen

Cheeze! If my parents had given me a name with a "silent number" in it, I would've been pretty upset. On the bright side, it's a sure-fire way to toughen a kid up against bullies and the like from his/her first day of any and all public exposure.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

Too bad. Felony's cake was otherwise quite nice.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commenteressjaytee

So, I know a kid named "Izeah." At first I thought it was ridiculous and of course it should be spelled the traditional way. But the more I think about it, I'm not so sure. At least it works phonetically! How many Isaiah's have had their names butchered either by someone mis-pronouncing or misspelling them?

Just a random thought.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAnony Nony

Based on some of the things my mother saw and heard when she worked at a public health clinic for several years, I am afraid to tell you all this, but the "Felony" cake probably IS spelled correctly.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBADKarma

All I could think of with the last one was "Robert, Robert, he's our man! If he can't do it, no one can!" Maybe that's what the baker was thinking?

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHope

I am thinking that first one was supposed to be jackson (Jacksin). But still. Wow.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterakathleen

The CW Name Game (apologies to Shirley Ellis)

Jackie, Jackie bo Jackie,
We can make a mess of this, by crackie
‘cause when we work we’ slackin’…..Jackign!

Felony, Felony, fo fanna Felony,
Your parents really named you Melanie,
At least that’s what they were tellin’ me,
But we make every cake a felony…Felony!

Come on every baker!
Let’s play the game!
I betcha we can make a Wreck out of anybody’s name!
Some of the letters – pretend they’re not there,
And then pick some others right out of the air!
If it starts with a j with an i and an e at the end,
just drop the e and ad gn!
Jackie, Jackie….Jackign!

If an m and an a appear in the same name
We can use it to play the game –
Make the m an f and the a an o, change ie to y, and you’ve got the new name:
Melanie, Melanie, your new name is Felony!

If you follow these rules and some make up some others,
There isn’t any name that you can’t smother,
Pick any name, and you can ruin it,
And we’ll add it to our song and maybe auto-tune it!

Chris, Chris, what can we do to this?
We’ll just add a t and he’ll become divinity!
(If I were gonna use this name on something I bake
I think I’d use an angel food cake….)

If the name ends in g and begins with d,
Here’s what you do (just follow me).
Just add an h right at the end
And you’ve just made a brand new friend!
Doug, Doug, add the h…Dough, Dough,
And there you go!

Can’t recall the name as you embark?
Have no fear…just use a question mark:
??, ??, bo ??, bo banana fanna, ?????...!

There’s one more thing that we can do,
And I’m gonna teach it now to you.
Take some letters and make ‘em slide
Right up the cake on the right side,
Throw that name a little curve,
Like from the edge you had to swerve,
Then write it again right down below
In a cursive letters…and there you go!

The CW Name Game! Cake, cake, bo banna bake, bake,
Fo fanna, there’s not a name wreck we can’t make, make,
And your heart break, break!

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterwell, well, bo banna, mel

@ Anne: I'm curious as to why Hen3ry's parents bothered with the silent 3 in the first place. Did they not like the kid all that much, maybe? Sounds kind of passive/aggressive...=^-.~^=

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

My guess for all of these is a combination of electronic form and spell check (and some extra baker effort on "Jackign"). Of course, imposing spell check on a field that people are going to put names into is a wreck all by itself.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterChris

I'm sensing the need for a third book: Cake Wrecks: The Back Stories. Where the real one isn't available (or those pesky legal issues get in the way), the comment-taters can have a go at making one up. You know, like certain websites that try to come off all factual and authoritative, but you know they're just making stuff up. But I digress.

#1 This one is just a spacing issue, but at least Jack Ign got his 'CONCRATS'.

#2 Maybe they were going for something along the lines of that great jazz musician, Felonious Monk. Wait, I think I might have misheard somewhere along the line. Nope, I'm certain I read that somewhere. It stands. Four thumbs is a tad concerning, though.

#3 A lot of us Christians don't 'do' luck because luck implies things can happen without a reason, and there is a reason for everything that happens. Even the VMAs. Ahem.

#4 Let's all wish Dough a happy Cirthday, and celebrate the facts that the wreckorator a.) didn't write down the recipient's name and b.) substituted their favorite expression, but misspelled it. D'oh!

#5 It's very important to take a few extra seconds (ok, hours for some browsers that contain 'Internet' in their name) and download the international font set to your piping bag.

#6 W1: "The recipient's name isn't 'Robe', it's 'Robert.'"
W2: "Yes, that looks very nice."
W1: "Not to worry, I'll write it fancy underneath and not charge extra for it. Problem solved."

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCraig

What I really want to know is this:
Is baby Felony so tiny that her hand- and foot-prints are the size of a ladybug? Or is that one freaking huge ladybug?!

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterzoomom

My married name is Sara Petersen. Often people misspell my first name by adding an "h" to the end or my last name by spelling the last three letters "son". I do not mind, because those are common spellings, and gently correct them when necessary. But once, I had to have a nametag made, and they asked us to fill out a form with the spelling we wanted. I did so, and it came back "Sarah Peterson". That's right, folks: with the correct spelling written down in front of them, these people still managed to misspell BOTH my names. It ain't just cake decorators.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSaraCVT

Bravo, Sharon and "well well, bo banna, mel"! I love you all the brilliant parodies you guys produce - someday I'll find my creative side and join you. Not up to your level, of course, Sharon -- nobody could equal the master!

In the meantime, though, I have to say, mel, that when that song came out, anybody named "Marty" or "Chuck" was very, very unhappy.....:-)

I have a friend who's been a teacher for many years. Trust me, NO name surprises me any more. "Felony" is better than the sisters (I swear I am not making this up) "Syphilis" and "Gonorrhea" (accents on the second syllable of each name), or "Female" (because clearly the child was already named when the birth certificate was provided to be filled out), and on and on and on. It makes for some interesting conversations, that's for sure!

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLaura

@mel: Love it! And, oddly, it made me think of Gilda Radner's Roseanne Roseannadanna! =^o.O^=

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

Here's "my girl" (sniff!);

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

Poor Doug's cake got autocorrected...

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDiana

well with some of the weirder names these cakes could still work...

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentermindy1

Wow, mel! Amazing! I'm exhausted after singing that!

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSharyn

@Kate: When I was in high school, there was a girl with the last name of Fukuda. I never heard a soul say anything rude at all. Doesn't mean they didn't--I didn't hear it, is all. But the language "in those days" was definitely less "anything goes" than it is now.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

@sendingtheclowns - please listen to Tom Lehrer's song:

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAnne

I use to process security clearance applications for the local defense contractor, and I actually processed one for a woman whose first name was "Vendetta", and a man whose name was "Malice" so I would not at all be surprised to learn the "Felony" one was no mistake at all - at least no mistake on the part of the decorator. Also, in other countries, "Christ" is not all that uncommon, plus there's "Krist" Noveselic which is close, so that also may be no mistake. Even the "Dough" wouldn't surprise me - there are some awfully "challenged" people out there having - and naming - kids. But the others were great entertainment! Especially "Robert"! Poor Robert, though!

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLeah

Jack King?

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterlain

Mmmmmmmm...nothing says "Happy Girthday" quite like coffee grounds and toothpaste.
A Patti: Of COURSE I can tell those quints apart! (What kind of mother do you think I AM?) There's little "Huh?", and "Why?", and "Oh?", and "Yes?", and finally,"You rang?'-who has put on a bit more weight than his syllablings. Aren't they just the most curious little darlings?

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

I named my firstborn Kia. Yes, they name a car after her. Wasn't that nice of them? To bad I don't get royalties! Her name is spelled exactly like the car maker. It's pronounced exactly the same as the car maker. So many many people call her Ky-uh, including the nurses at our doctor office! Now that she's older she generally takes it in stride when someone says her name wrong. Her response is usually "Nope, I have a car named after me."

But seriously, naming your baby Felony? That's just mean. It's hard enough coming up with a name that isn't going to get butchered on the playground (Jodee has a couple of awful ones) without just giving it away!

@Sharyn ~ I'm with TLC, I mostly hate that song, Your version is mostly acceptable however. Nice job my friend!

@mel ~ My head hurts now. o.O

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJodee

If the Riddler fathered the quints, then who is the father of that lone ! ?

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLibby

@ zoomom: I don't mind the "one freaking huge ladybug"-but the idea of little Felony being so tiny is disconcerting. And, I need data on "silent Q", or I may go mad. >^-.-^<

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

Mel wins all the internets! Awesome job!

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLaxmom

Yes, it's rough but that's not one of the 20 pronunciations we have for "ough" - nice try though!

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterStine

Felony would be kind of a pretty name if it meant something else.

It's also possible that the Christ cake was supposed to say Christy or some variant. Then again, people name their kids Jesus and it's no big deal.

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterpikkewyntjie

Can't anyone recognize Jacqueline for Chris's sake? Sheesh!!!

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSarah B.

Anyone want to take a crack at explaining why the first cake looks like a watermelon on the INSIDE, and like a Beluga whale on the OUTSIDE?? (Only somewhat-remotely-logical answers need apply.) =^e.e^=

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

ElizaC: Wouldn't it have just been much easier to do the "practice" names on paper? I can't see wasting cakes -unless, of course, you get to take the *oops* ones home...>wink<

September 5, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

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