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


In May of 2008, a secret program was formed to combat the rapid proliferation of wrecked cakes. The program was dubbed "Theme and Reality Distortion in Cake Experiment," or T.A.R.D.I.C.E.

A team of highly-trained Cake Lords was dispatched, each assigned to a specific genre of wreck:

Dr. Who?

Charged with finding out why so many cakes are made for unidentifiable recipients.


Dr. What?

Seeking to decode the weird messages that get piped on cakes every day.


Dr. When?

Assigned to investigate temporal anomalies.


Dr. Where?

Alternate Universe or bad spelling? He decides.


Dr. How?

Determining how the structure of cakes failed, and how they stayed upright in the first place.


Dr. Why?

Responsible for explaining the reasoning behind the inexplicable.
(Seriously. Two nuns. On a wedding-like cake. Encircled by cookies. Supported by gilded cherubs. I hope Dr. Why comes up with a reason P.D.Q.)




Their leader, a shadowy figure who coordinates their efforts and decides what information to release to the world, and when.


Timely thanks to Wendy G., Tracey C., Ashley M., Michelle W., Susan D., and Monique R., for helping us realize resistance is futile -- and really, really boring.

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Reader Comments (82)

Well, for the nun cake, all I can think of is that when nuns take their final vows, they are said to be "marrying Christ." And in some orders, they DO wear a wedding dress that day. However, the cake looks really Christmas-y to me, so I wonder if it was a convent celebrating Christmas --- and maybe the day of someone's final vows at the same time?

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDonkaloosa

I not only support marriage equality for nuns, I decry the abuse of cherubs. Painting them gold and forcing them to hold up the good Sisters' wedding cake while standing on one foot is simply deplorable. I don't care what the theme of your wedding might be.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSuBee

Mrs. Whatsit says
"There is no Arison'a.
Time to tesseract."

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHaiku Joy

1. nappy Birthday noer
2. Super Ice Cream Birthday 30 1/2 Geoffy USA #1!!!!!!
3. Happy 200? 1988 Anniversry Deb + les
4. Arisoria or Bust
5. I think it's a mountain
6. Possibly a reception cake for religious sisters who are taking their final vows, hence the "Church cookie" decorations, the angels, and the nun cake toppers.
7. Naked Mohawk baby carrot jockeys! The emblem of this shady organization.

Did I say shady? I meant shadow..yeah. Shadow organization.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLDM

Also, if you are following the fondant babies - - - today is the first day of classes, and the babies will be making their classroom debut. I've decided to put them in a specimen jar instead of a candy dish - mostly because we're broke and I have specimen jars, whereas I would have to find and purchase a pretty cut glass dish if I wanted the more traditional route. I'm very proud of the wide variety of skin tones - reds, light and dark browns, olives, pinks. Some of them I made back in the spring, so they are kinda dusty to think about eating now, but many I made just this weekend.

I honestly don't think anyone will notice because I have many odd things on my desk. However, I can't wait for the first time someone asks me if I have kids. Now I can say, "Sure, I have a jar full on my desk. Want one?"

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHaiku Joy

Oh, boy. OhboyOhboyOhboy. I am getting a baaaad feeling about this.
I am preemptively BEGGING you to abort the efforts (all of the coordinated ones, anyway), and decide to release NO information to the world. Ever.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

On the nun cake, it appears that one and a half of those cookie buildings fell off the second layer and onto the bottom layer. And, what's with the red icing and those strange but well made orange blobs, with carefully placed gold decorations in the center of each one? I'm glad that Dr. Why of T.A.R.D.I.C.E. is on the case, maybe we will get an answer! Although I think Dr. How has the toughest mission.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterPatti

I am also very concerned that the little "Crash Bandicoot"-like critter is going to require a dramatic, helicopter "VIDEO AT 11:00!!"-type of rescue effort from that horrible impending landslide...even though that shade of blue WILL be a nice, unexpected touch. Especially for the Fox channel. =^-.-^=

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

Doctor Who + Cakewrecks makes my geeky little heart so happy in the mornings :-)

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKate

#1 Customer: "We're having a birthday party in the office today, and I've forgotten the recipient's name!"
Wreckorator: "No problem -- watch this. We just get a little free-form with the icing pen, and...voila! Could be anyone's name, right?"
C: "Amazing!"
W: "That's why I get the big bucks. So to speak."

#2 MI5's 'code cake' program was a bust -- recipients were so busy laughing that they forgot to carry out their encoded instructions.

#3 Icing pens with adjustable font size had yet to be invented in 1988.

#4 I'm pretty sure Arizona is spelled with a 'z', not an 's', but at least they remembered to dot the 'n'.

#5 This one is called, 'Technicolor Digestion'. Because some things should never leave the concept stage.

#6 Think I'll go with Donkaloosa's theory on this one.

#7 Ok, are we implying that there is a back story to the famed carrot jockey cake? Those satellite photos of Area 51 were released just a few days ago. Coincidence? I think not!

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCraig

Nun on left: "I cannot BELIEVE you wore white. I TOLD you that "I" was wearing white!!"
Nun on right: "Oh, REALLY?? Since WHEN do you have the monopoly on WHITE?? You KNOW I don't look good in black!"
Nun on left: "Well, I don't care! Besides, you HAVE that perfectly okay brown outfit that you know I like!"
Nun on right: "I give UP!! There is just no getting along with you! I want a divorce!"
Nun on left: "Me too!! Let's hurry up and get this stupid marriage done, so we can consume mass quantities of wine, and afterwards get our annulment!"
Nun on right: I'll toast to THAT! *clink* ((whispering:"bee itch!"))
Nun on right: *clink* ((scowling violently))

=^a.a^= leave me out of it

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

Ha! and furthermore...snerk! P.S. I'd absolutely rock as a Cake Lord companion...

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBeckah

LOL! Nicely done, Sharyn.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMaureen

nothing cunning to say but let me repeat what I said while reading today's offerings...
ahem and I quote " HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA REALLY!!! HAHAHAHAHHA OH MY GOSH!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAH " so thanks for starting my morning off on the right note.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDiana C

I was about to ask where Fresonia is, but the comments show me it was supposed to say Arizona. I'm not sure I'm convinced, but it makes me less concerned that I missed something in geography class.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterNagzilla

Arizovia? Whatever. Back to the nuns/sisters: An overriding concern of mine is that, while the two of them are busy scowling at each other, seemingly at an impasse regarding who is going to get the first whack at blowing out the candles, there are several gilded cherubs on the bottom layer trying their damndest to keep the Towering Nonferno from collapsing down upon them and reducing them to something that may not be even remotely tasty. It's getting scary. I'd hate for this tranquil scene to be turned into an "Oh, the non-humanity!" moment.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

By order of the Shadow, I've already said too much. *last seen diving towards a suspiciously innocent-looking telephone booth*

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSaraCVT

Haiku Joy, I read the comments to see if you post baby updates. Love the confusion is causes.

I had to sound out the Arisona one to figure out Arizona. Talk about creative spelling. The rest are just strange, maybe inside jokes? Hopefully.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

It's good that the decorator for #4 didn't decide that "Frisoria" was too hard to write and just go for drawing a bust, since s/he was given the choice.

#6 looks like a plot summary for too many of the more recent Doctor Who stories. Nuns, check; weeping-angel cherubs, check; most of the carnivorous houses are dead but not all, check. I can't make out the orange blob on the cake near the angels and the fallen house cookies but it looks slightly like a Rodent Of Unusual Size. Check.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJoel Polowin

I'm going with the final orders as well for the Nun cake. If two sisters entered into the convent with their final vows on the same day, it would make sense to share a cake. Maybe the brightly colored cake is an indication of what mission they are going to? The colors look fall like to me - red cake, orange starts, with faux snow. It might also indicate that they took their final vows in the fall.

As for Arison(i)a, I'm hoping it's next to Andalasia and not a confession of arson...

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterIsabella

1) I snortled. Out loud. Repeatedly. At work.

2) Are you sure those "cherubs" aren't actually very small, premie Weeping Angels? (Just sayin'...)

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBADKarma

I <3 <3 today's post!!

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMelody

Haiku Joy, I love you on so many levels.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCookieD'oh

Also, did they spill milk on the nun cake and randomly clean some up with a flower sponge?

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJillM

I can't explain the shiny redness of the nun cake, but I offer this take on it. Catholic lesbians getting married in Amsterdam. Don't those little cookies look like canal houses? And orange is a very Dutch color. Maybe the baker was stoned while decorating it. They should certainly be stoned for selling it.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAlexa

I must take issue with this miscarriage of reason. It is SUPPOSED to be: "Who What When Where and Why." "How" is NOT necessary as long as the others are answered! It was NOT on the list when I learned it. If you don't believe me, I can take you to the cave and SHOW you the wall that it's carved into! What is this world coming to?!? =^>.<^=

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

I, too, assume that the nun cake is for a couple of nuns saying their final vows. I find it interesting, however, that until now no one has mentioned the flowers next to the cake pushed up into the cake. I wouldn't want a slice from that side! Oh, if T.A.R.D.I.C.E. is hiring any menial office workers, let me know and I'll send in a resume. ;)

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLaura P.

I like cake. Cake is cool.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMeghanKelly

Dear god I think the cakes are beyond help-just send them to me to be safe ;)

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commentermindy1

Oh Haiku Joy, what a delight to see your M L'E tribute. My favorite classic geek girl writer.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKJill

Hmm, I believe one doctor is missing... Dr WTF! :-P

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHK

Is it possible that the "nun" cake is for a first communion? Ignorant non-Catholic here, but maybe...

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJulie G

@sendingtheclowns: Are you saying Lucy and Ethel became nuns? "It's friendship, friendship, just a perfect blend-ship...yaddle-daddle-da-da-dig-dig-dig"

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJust Andrea

Don't forget UNIT:

Universal Nutcases Involved in Talks.

(i.e. the commenters/us)

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterElissa

THE Jen,

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterms anthrope

@Haiku Joy: A specimen jar is all the better. I love your "Do you have children?" response! Teehee! I think I might need a specimen jar of fondant babies just so I can say that...

@Beckah: I thought the carrot jockeys were the Cake Lord companions. : - )

#1: 'Rappy Birthday Noer'. I think someone just wanted cake. As we all know, 'Noer' is code for 'No One In Particular'.

#2: I think this cake is sponsored by the US Olympic team and the Super Ice Cream Shoppe. Unfortunately, after piping the sponsors' adverts, the wreckerator did not have room for 'Happy' in front of 'Birthday'.

#3: 'Happy "200th" 1988 Aniuersrg Debtles'...or possibly 'Deb + les'...good luck, Dr. When.

#4: Apparently Bust, then.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJust Andrea

@Nagzilla: ( " makes me less concerned that I missed something in geography class.) Pardon my giggles, but why should you be concerned about whether you'd missed something in geography class? That's what they make maps for. Because everybody slept through geography class. Just like they make road maps so people will have something to get lost to. Gosh, didn't you learn anything in school? I sure didn't. =^-.-^=

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

@Elissa: "Universal Nutcases Involved in Talks.( i.e. the commenters/us)"
Well, of all the nerve! I resemble that remark! Wait--I mean, I RESENT that remark........
Nah--let's go with "resemble."

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

SQUEE!!!! Finally, another Doctor Who reference Cake Wrecks!!! I wish we could have more Doctor Who Sunday Sweets, though. But, hey, I'll take this any day! Too bad my birthday cake wasn't a Wreck or a Sweet... Oh, and Jen?I've noticed a stunning lack of MLP Wrecks. What happened?

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterOMNOMCAKE!!!

@Just Andrea:
(Are you saying Lucy and Ethel became nuns? "It's friendship, friendship, just a perfect blend-ship...yaddle-daddle-da-da-dig-dig-dig")
Oh, my stomach hurts from laughing! (That was one of my favorite episodes, now that you mentioned it!)
No, I'm not aware of them having become nuns...although they were almost like sisters! (Go ahead and groan...) =^~.~^=

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

@Joel Polowin: I think the orange blob is half of a cookie building from the layer above it. And northeast of that one is a whole one that fell off. Look at the right side of the middle layer, seems to be something missing!

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterPatti

Elissa - I take offence at that. I am NOT a "Universal" nutcake. I am a UNIQUE nutcake. So there.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBADKarma

@Haiku Joy: I would love to have a mental image of what fondant babies look like, but I just draw a blank. Now the image is even blanker, since you've added all of those extra colors!! =^e.e^=

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

@BADKarma ("I take offence at that...(etc)) You can do whatever you want with your own fence, you unique nutcake, you. Me, I think I'll just sit ON the fence, but that's neither here nor there. (In fact, I don't know where the heck it is.) =^-.-^=

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered Commentersendingtheclowns

Seconding Julie G here. The nun cake is definitely a communion cake. I quite like it, actually. Much better than a number of croquembouche horrors I've seen over the years...

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAtchoum

That tipsy blue mountain is a Dora can see her and Boots clinging to the front and Swiper dangling from the side..I think he swiped the supports.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMelanie

Oh Haiku Joy, if I could, I'd send you a cut glass specimen jar.
Have an excellent school year.

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSuBee

Oh, Arizona! Right. I'd read it as a mis-spelling of Freedonia, and thought it was a touching yet illiterate Marx Brothers tribute cake. So it goes...

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJeremy

All the people in Arisonia are enjoying their Dos Nuns of the Cherub City Day cake right now!

August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSusan

Super Ice Cream Birthday 30 1/2 Geoffy USA #1!!!!!!


August 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDani

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