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

Gee, thanks, "kids".

I'm not really sure what the "20th" denotes: 20 years of being a "dad"? 20 "children"? Or maybe the cake is for the 20th "dad" to come along? Eh?

Regardless, any cake decorator who thinks the title Dad deserves quotation marks probably needs therapy. Or an English lesson. One of those two, anyway.

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Reader Comments (59)

It could be the 20th birthday of the their stepfather. Isn't it awkward when your "Dad" is younger than you are?

June 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterBen

It's the style of those who don't know proper grammar to use quote marks to emphasize words. It drives me up the wall. And it makes it seem that there's doubt as to the true paternity of the children.

July 22, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterrptrcub

I think I know what's going on here. I used to live in a house with 5 other guys, and one of them was always telling people to clean up after themselves, how to park their cars, etc. So we called him "Dad." Keep in mind we were all 20-21 years old at the time. We never bought "Dad" a cake, though, or made one. Oh, and yes, there was a "Mom." Fortunately it wasn't me.

July 22, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Could also be the 20th anniversary of their biological mother and step-father.

July 23, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Also, uh, that cake is on the floor.

July 23, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterIsaac

I like how they put the cake on the floor for the picture, but they were classy enough to put glitter around it.

July 23, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I've seen plenty of counter tops that look like that. I doubt it's on the floor.

July 23, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Maybe the kids are 28 and 29 or something and it wasn't until they were 8 and 9 that their "Dad" got his act together. Here's to 20 years to having your crap together! Also, I'm imagining the kids throwing up the air quotes when they introduce him to people.

This is my "dad." He wasn't around for 8 years, but then he got his crap together and has been a solid "dad" for 20 years.

July 25, 2008 | Unregistered Commentergoldie


"throwing up the air quotes"

made me LOL for real. Love it.

July 25, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJen

I would assume that the quotes are there on request, as "dad"(said that way, whether through inflection or air quotes) is the accepted title of the recipient.

July 26, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterakukoomori

Maybe he's worked at a place for twenty years, and his co-workers call him "Dad."

It does seem most likely that somebody thought quote marks were for emphasis - or they reasoned that, since "Dad" is not the recipient's legal name, it required indication as a nickname.

July 27, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

I just bought a cake for my team mate at work and spelt her name wrong lol

July 31, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSpot The Lady Boy

or, maybe it's the 20th year since their guardian adopted them...

August 2, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterBrigid

looks like "20th thanks" - like they've thanked this character twenty times - for what, who knows?

August 3, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterken

i think it is most likely a church cake for the "father".

August 8, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterLori

Must be the 20th dad. Like every time mom brings home a new man, he's "dad."

August 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRonnica

I think the first anonymous has it right. This cake is addressed to a friend that everyone calls "Dad." Likely, it's a rare case of properly used quotes. I'm guessing he's turning 20, but the 20th bit is beyond me.

August 13, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterWolf

Maybe this was a sweet girl celebrating her 20th time with her loving sugar daddy - I know I'd count every "time" if I had to call my man "dad".

August 14, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

My favorite theory on this cake is the "20th Thanks" Theory. Like the 19th Thanks was a Blow-Pop Bouquet. The 18th Thanks was a coupon for a foot massage. And so on and so on...They really owe "Dad!"

August 15, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterFlip

I had a friend that I called Dad because he was always taking care of everyone.. designated driver, bail you out of trouble.. He actually got me a birthday card saying happy birthday daughter.. it was a running joke for years..

August 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I could see a cake like this being made for the pastor of a church group or something... for instance, the pastor hits his 20th year with the church and there's a party. There are a lot of interpretations that make sense. Maybe a volunteer worker for troubled boys/teens?

August 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterLindsey

Perhaps i'm asking for too much, but shouldn't the word "Happy" be somewhere on this cake, like before "20th" ... Or could it really be "20th Thanks..." ???
This cake's got lots of 'splainin' to do! Lots!

August 19, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterknitsista

I love it when people write how they actually speak, i.e. Isaac. I was chuckling until I read his post, then I started to laugh so hard I cried. Thanks so much for that!
This is my favorite cake so far. Everything about it is so non-commital, maybe it was meant to look like this. Hmmmm...

August 19, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterjme

Great blog! The cakes with quotations made me laugh as we bought a cake from our local grocery store and they put my son's name in quotes on it. I thought it was just a one time error but I see it happens every where!

August 22, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSheila

Could be a floor, but my guess is it's actually a '70s countertop with ceramic tile and really dark grout. Funny cake. :)

August 26, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I'm going to err on the side of the quotation marks being indicative of a nickname. My dad (ex-step-dad, how's that for a mouthful?) always told our friends that he was "Dad", and that's what they called him. We're close to the mom of a friend of ours, and our kids call her "Grandma". *shrug* To each their own. I loved reading all of the theories, as well as the original blog! (And yes, the period outside of the quotes was intentional. That's one punctuation convention I refuse to observe, unless the sentence ends in a statement.)

September 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Believe it or not, I can clear this one up. The one who guessed that it was 20 years from an adoption wins.

This cake was for my Dad who adopted me and my two older sisters when I was 5 years old. We refer to this as the "cake."

A friend of mine was just showing me cake disasters and I took her to see our own personal cake disaster. A moment later, we discovered this one. Needles to say, it stirred up another chuckle.

September 6, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterBob

I think it's on a tile table not the floor.

September 18, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAmy

Well, now we know the real story, but Flip's comment made me laugh the hardest. I love the "blow pop bouquet".

September 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterLauren

Now that it is cleared up I have to say I still like Flip's explanation the best. I really had to laugh at that one. I especially like the "Blow Pop Bouquet".

September 21, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterLauren

Isn't it possible that it is their stepfather who stepped up and was their "Dad" for the last 20 years since their real dad didnt't.

September 28, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKatie

If he's turning 20, I doubt the kids would be old enough to order his cake. I think this is for an older brotherly type or father figure for someone, thus the "dad" ('cause he's not REALLY dad, but he feels like it).

I'm "sorry"!

October 2, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I love the "interpretations" on the purpose of this cake.
I also love that Spot the Lady Boy spelled her co-worker's name wrong...and the word 'spelled'. I'm pretty sure there is no such word as spelt.

October 14, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

That cake is definitely on the can see shoelaces in the bottom right corner! Ha!

October 27, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMary-Ann

Spelt is a word it is a type of wheat that some breads are made of. Sorry had to say it.:)

November 30, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAli

Spelt is a word, and it is a grain, but it is also the British spelling of the word "spelled."

December 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I think this cake is for a sports coach, maybe Little League baseball. The coach is like a father to his team (hence the "Dad"). It is either a young assistant coach who has turned 20 or his jersey number is 20.

December 18, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Definitely could be valid use of the quotes in this case, you never know. But in the interest of furthering this illustrious debate, I present to you:" REL="nofollow">The “Blog” of “Unnecessary” Quotation Marks.

December 31, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Is that......ketchup? xDD

February 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Maybe it is the 20th time the "kids" have said thank you to their "father."

Like, "For the 20th time, thank you for being our 'dad.' Now stop badgering us."

February 25, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSara B.

Hey can you submit this to They would love it - I think it would fit right in!

February 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMandapanda

I am thinking that the "20th" would mean that they were picking the cake up on the 20th and it shouldn't have been on the cake at all. possibly a case of the cakorator taking things too literally.

March 6, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKarmen M

Could be a foster dad.
Or a nickname.
Or a prison dad. erm... not sure what I mean by that one.

March 14, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterstage3design

It could be someone's brother. My siblings regarded me as their mother at some points. I get "mother's" days gifts.

March 15, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterK.C. and Her Puppies

This reminds me of my grandmother - she would always sign cards for my mom as Love, "Mom" and cards for me as Love, "Grandma." She was related to us biologically, but she didn't think it was right to use a name other than her real one without quotes. Nobody else in the family does this.

May 27, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterbibberly

I'm trying to eat my cereal, but I started choking on it when I saw this cake-- TOO FUNNY. I was completely focused on the "Dad" in quotes, then I read what you said about the 20 and I spit cereal onto my monitor.

July 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I used to be involved DeMolay, which is like freemasonry for kids, and "Dad" was the term for the actual Masons who helped run things. One of the "Dads" in my chapter was around 20.

August 11, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDan Gallagher

A few people have posted that the cake is on the floor. Could it be on a tiled island?


August 14, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I think it's on the floor. Check the top of the pic - looks like chair legs.

August 18, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Yes, the term "Dad" could mean lots of things, and maybe the quotes are appropriate, but it's more fun to think they're not!

I wonder what "bakery" this came from, and who the "baker" was. Too bad if they paid beforehand, otherwise they could have paid with "money" after seeing it. I hope the "occasion" went well. "Dad" probably took it all in stride.

(The 20th one, anyway. I doubt the previous "Dads" would have though.) Anyway, nice "cake"!

September 27, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTom

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