Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Undeserving of Congrats

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The mom-to-be was having triplets, so they ordered a cake with "congratulations" written on it three times:


Nice.

On the other end of the spectrum, all they asked for here was "congratulations". Unfortunately the decorator took that to be plural...


Aaand much hilarity ensued.


Melanie U. and Wedge C., er, well done.
The Courteous Chihuahua said...

On the first cake, I think they might be better off with what they got. It would be a crap shoot to see if the decorator could correctly spell Congratulations three times in a row.

Lauren said...

First? First? First?

Three times!

How could one mistake "congratulations" for plural "congratulation"? >_<

Lauren

Judas_Iscariot_79 said...

What I have learned from Cakewrecks: always order cakes in person and write down exactly what you want it to say on a piece of paper and give it to them. Another thing I learned from Cakewrecks: There are cake decorators out there who would still screw it up.

Alix said...

Well, I'd say three times is a charm, but...

There is just no excuse for the second cake. I used to think such stupidity didn't exist in the world, but Jen proves everyday that 1) IT DOES! and 2) It is a lucrative business.

Alixandra Hice
http://casahice.blogspot.com

Taylor said...

LOL. I guess this goes to show... never take anything for granted when asking for your cake caption. At least they got to laugh about it!

Matt said...

I'm really dismayed by the second cake. I don't know whether to be more disappointed by the words or the design.

Anonymous said...

Are we sure it's not supposed to read "Congratulations Times Three"? That would make more sense.

Erik said...

When I saw those, I couldn't help thinking of those old console games where you got "Congraturation!" for winning. And that in turn made me think of Strong Bad, so everything's good.

Caitie Miller said...

I am absolutely amazed at how difficult it appears to write in a straight line. It just amazes me how crooked everything is.

Kristin said...

What is up with the black? Who wants black decorations on a cake. Spelling congratulations would be a great way to start.

RobynNewt said...

What's with the black frosting? "Congratulations on your death!" Come on.

And what have we learned today children? That's RIGHT! NEVER order a cake over the phone.

maryjack said...

I love your blog! I just introduced my daughter to Cake Wrecks yesterday, and let me tell you, we laughed ourselves to tears! What really makes it hilarious is your commentary. Your brand of humor is very similar to our own. It's amazing that these "wrecks" happen so often! If only everyone read your blog!

Kore said...

And are those three blobs on either side of the writing supposed to be the three fertilized eggs? Because, that's what they make me think of.

That second cake is just fugly.

Jill said...

Ha!

Anonymous said...

Are those supposed to be ceremonial sperm on the first cake?

Wrong on all levels. Just plain wrong.

HorribleLicensePlates said...

Jeez, that first cake is a choking hazard!

All Adither said...

Holy Cow, there are some literal cake decorators out there on auto pilot.

Angie (from over at www.HalfAssedKitchen.com)

Judy said...

In response to judas_iscariot_79 "Another thing I learned from Cakewrecks: There are cake decorators out there who would still screw it up."

What I have learned from cakewrecks is that many people who are being paid to be cake decorators are not in fact cake decorators. Thank God the screening process for, jobs like ,..... oh say,....BOMB DISABLER, or you know, the like...appears to be a little more thorough.

Mandee said...

That second cake...my first thought was, "Are these decorators really that stupid?" then I realized that "Big Box" decorators get $8 an hour and don't care!!

Liz said...

The second one is now one of my new faves... not only for the duplicate "congratulation" but also for the crappy icing work in general!

Liz
http://eternallizdom.blogspot.com

Alix said...

HIGH FIVES to Anonymous at 10:02 for ceremonial sperm. Genius is born on this site all day long.

joyce said...

Too funny ! Congratulations three times means six balloons?? Is that symmetry math?? And I don't think it is black icing. Looks more like dark chocolate syrup. Our Scrabble dictionary allows CONGRATS or CONGRATULATIONS. No such word without the S. Too, too funny. Wonder what we are celebrating.

Rebecca said...

One of the local high schools when I was growing up had black and white as colors -- a graduation cake might well have been black and white.

(At least you can kind of pretend 'Congratulations Three Times!' was intentional, as opposed to some of the other overly literal inscriptions.)

Havocec said...

I think even if you drew some decorators a picture they'd screw it up. I have a secret fantasy about being a decorator and making screwed up cakes so that someone will send them to cake wrecks.

wfcotd: kylatic: is a form of seizure that occurs after eating too much black icing. "The grannies went into kylatic seizures after eating my Fathers birthday cake last year."

Sondra! said...

Oh my! Thank the Lord for my local bakery.
What could you be "congratulation" about with black icing?

This site makes me feel soooo smart. It is really good for your self esteem.

diopsideanddiamonds said...

Blech to the second - black frosting, ew!

Our Adoption Journey said...

I love your website! Last year for Christmas I made a Christmas tree cake by layering a cake in smaller squares. It was about 7 layers. I put a few wooden skewers in the center to hold it together. We traveled 30 miles to my mom's house with it on my lap. I had frosting all over my coat and my hands trying to keep it together. We set it up on the counter and then went outside for family pictures. When we came back in the cake and tipped over and fallen on the floor! I was devastated. Sorry no pic, but I am trying to laugh about it now.

Kamity said...

There needs to be some kind of official Cake Decoration Union that requires that all cake decorators comprehend English before they're allowed to write on cakes. =p

Sara said...

Has anyone else ever noticed the directly proportional relationship between handwriting neatness and message fallacy? The messier the handwriting, the higher your chances that your message will be screwed up.

Twistie said...

I don't know, I may be severely whacked out but I find the Congratulation, Congratulation inscription oddly charming.

Yes, it looks like hell. Yes, that black frosting is going to look unappetizing going in and ungodly coming out. Yes, that is a complete wreck of a cake. But there's something about the inscription itself that reminds me of those homemade cards I gave my parents before I learned to spell that makes me go 'awww' at the same time.

Speak not of spotty, bored, untrained young people marking time doing a job they hate for nearly nothing so they can have a little cash in their pockets to buy the latest first-person shooter game and a bit of weed. I prefer to think that somewhere in the back is a sincere - if slightly...okay, hugely inept - person who put heart and soul into producing something that sad for someone's party.

No, I'm not tearing up. There's just something in my eye.

Mari said...

Well, come on, if they actually had to write "congratulations" 3 times on that first cake, they would have had to, like, space it properly! Can't you see there's not room for "congratulations" on the next line down? :p

Stunbunny said...

I don't wish to impugn an entire profession but... why is the cake decorating field so heavily populated by idiots who cannot grasp seemingly the most basic of instructions and concepts?

Can anyone representing the professional cake decorating industry answer this? Are you surrounded by sugar- and flour-encrusted dolts? Do the hiring requirements stop at a single working thumb?

This site, while entertaining, truly makes me weep for the future. No Child Left Behind Three Times!

Amy said...

How about 'Triple Congratulations?" Maybe it would've been easier on the decorator.
Actually, I wonder why the congratulation congratulation cake is black..again?
~Amy B.

Miss Cee said...

OMG...silly friends...who does that??

Wedge said...

In the second cake's defense, that's not black, it's brown (it was chocolate icing on an ice cream cake) and it was delicious.

But there was NO excuse for the writing.....

MaryO said...

ROTFLMAO !!!!!!!

I especially love the comments by Kamity, Sara and Twistie. Man, their insights were GREAT! Especially Twistie:

"Speak not of spotty, bored, untrained young people marking time doing a job they hate for nearly nothing so they can have a little cash in their pockets to buy the latest first-person shooter game and a bit of weed"


BRILLANT & HILARIOUS & probably MUCH closer to the truth than we think!

This blog makes my day!

*~*Lis*~* said...

The scary part is that these people actually had to get in their car and drive to work - which means we're out on the road with these people all the time! Yikes!!!

Flartus said...

I may be reaching here, but I have a suspicion that a great many of these "literal" cakes are decorated by non-English speaking immigrants. Something about the handwriting on some of them make me think of Asian women trying desperately to do the best job they can, for a crappy hourly paycheck, in a culture and language they barely grasp.

Which doesn't make the results any less wrecktastic, but does make me feel some pity for the decorators. Unless I'm wrong, in which case, they're just ijits.

Kara said...

Despite the error, I think the first cake actually works as worded.

The second cake is just bad all around.

msyendor said...

Congratulations. Three times. That, that, that. Another Winner. Woo-Hoo.

Jane said...

Seriously, how are people like this in business? And how do people find them and actually order cakes from them? The mind, it boggles.

Aviatrix said...

I think they should be pleased with what the got. Congratulations is spelled correctly and the balloons are not penises. Although, as has been pointed out, they may be sperm or fertilized eggs.

My captcha is premorky, the state of something before someone morks it, e.g. by writing 'congertuladins' on it in black icing.

Dakota said...

I too think the first cake still worked out okay.

But hey, congratulation to the mom-to-be!

kikibibi said...

How sad. Hilarious, yes. But sad, too. kk

kikibibi said...

I averted a real cake wreck on Saturday. My friend was hosting a surprise 50th for her husband. She asked me to pick up the cake "at 5:10pm" which to me of course meant pick it up on the way to the party at 7pm. I got to the store and the (high-school aged, smoking while talking on his cell phone) clerk opened the walk-in cooler and said "we don't have it. It's probably at the other stop-n-shop. Did you check there first?"
No, of course I didn't go there first, you dumb***. I ended up needing to call my friend, and her husband answered, and I ALMOST ruined the surprise!
Silly boy, at my insistence, checked ALL the walkins in the bakery area and, of course, found it!
The cake was beautiful, by the way, and tasty too!
I believe at 5:10pm the actual decorator would still have been onsite. Live and learn I guess.

The Blue Ridge Gal said...

Pretty crummy penmanship too.

Di
The Blue Ridge Gal

Jamie said...

"Some people jus ain't got no sense!" Haha, okay I don't really talk like that but that's the first thing that came to mind when seeing these pics :-)

jackie31337 said...

Wedge said In the second cake's defense, that's not black, it's brown (it was chocolate icing on an ice cream cake) and it was delicious.

That actually explains a lot. Whoever made that was getting paid a low hourly wage to scoop ice cream, and occasionally scribble on cakes, and probably had no training in cake decorating whatsoever.

Judy said...

To: "Stun bunny" - Okay here's the real industry answer to your question. I am a journeyman baker and a 30 year veteran cake decorator. Somewhere around 10 years ago the entire baking industry changed. All products in the major grocery bakery field became either pre-mix, premade or frozen product. So to put it all quite simply, the "Trade" part of it all died. You can hire anyone green off the street to place a frozen product on a pan and shove it in the oven. And so that is exactly what the industry has done. The got rid of, bought out, or fazed out all their experienced baking staff and started hiring...yep...pretty much anyone with a pulse at minimum wage. All of this of course included the cake decorators. All those eager faces that said....oooooh...I'd like to try that...finally got their chance. Did they have any experience? Nope. Any talent? Nope. Any ambition to make something of quality? Nope. So what did they have????? The willingness to work for minimum wage...oh and as I mentioned earlier....a pulse! Bottom line is that if you want a quality cake now you need to seek out those that left that field and are now working privately like, ....ahem,...ME! :D

Collin Knoff said...

I can't believe how dumb some of these cake makers are... Amelia Bedelia anyone?

Anonymous said...

My gosh. Do people not have any pride in ANYTHING they do? Or are people really that stupid?

Suzyhomemaker said...

I find it funny that the second cake is a congratulations cake and it's black bordered and writing and such... it's just... so... funeral like.

I'm Losing It! said...

There are so many of these cake wrecks that come out of "in-store" bakeries, that as a former grocery store cake decorator, I am thoroughly embarrassed for them! No one that stupid should EVER be hired to be a decorator. Not that I have never made a mistake, but even if I had written, "Congratulations three times", the script would have at least been centered and written straight across, and in much better hand-writing than this one!

Linda said...

I am a professional grocery store cake decorator. I am writing in response to stunbunnys questions: "Can anyone representing the professional cake decorating industry answer this? Are you surrounded by sugar- and flour-encrusted dolts? Do the hiring requirements stop at a single working thumb?"

Yes, no and no.

In my experience as a cake decorator, I have been very lucky to have worked with some decent decorators whose work ordinarily would not be featured on Cake Wrecks. (Not to say that I don't love reading this blog!)
On the other hand, in defense of grocery store bakeries, it is hard to find good talented help. (duh!) There is usually some sort of cake decorating skills test performed by potential decorators before anyone is hired to decorate cakes. Often times when a store is in dire need of a decorator they will hire someone out of desperation who says they decorate cakes, or just 'promote from within' because they ARE so desperate to have anyone. Good decorators are never paid what they are worth in a grocery store bakery. That is the unfortunate truth.
In my experience, sometimes a bakery has people that are working in the afternoon after the decorator has left for the day. These employees are often asked to write on a pre-decorated cake that a last minute cake customer has picked up out of the case. If a customer forgets to special order a cake or they waited until the last minute to pick up a cake on the way to the party, that is their own fault and they are at the mercy of the bakery clerk to inscribe something on the cake. Often times, they are inexperienced young girls, not fully trained with the skill of writing on a cake.
Some folks think "Oh yeah, my handwriting is good, yeah I can write on it for ya"..and they try...only to discover it is harder to accomplish than they think it is. Which I can honestly say with my experience in training those people it IS hard to teach someone to do it right. It takes a lot of practice.
I have suggested to our inexperienced bakery employees to NOT write on a cake until you are trained. Get someone else with experience to do it, until I can train you and then see how good you become with practice. Otherwise, I will be left with cakes that have to be fixed the next morning because the customer got mad and didn't want it because it looked bad.
I also have to say in our bakery we always read back the order to the customer to make sure we have exactly what they asked for. I always ask for correct spelling of names, even if it sounds simple. You would not believe how many different ways that people spell the name Brittany!! I encourage customers to be specific about their requests, even bringing in an idea on a piece of paper, or color samples. I am not a mind reader. I take pride in my work, and the last thing I want is an unsatisfied customer.

cherokeefox said...

This reminds me of a cake I ordered for my sons 16th birthday. I told them I wanted it to say "Happy 16th Birthday" with a BIG 16 and they literally wrote"Happy BIG 16" on it. I was so mad! My sone thought it was funny.

Carmen said...

Idiotic is the only word I can think of. :D

Stretch Mark Mama said...

Why does that first mistake never cease to amuse me?

Carie said...

Really??? Unbelievable.where do they find these decorators. If you are not sure, ask the person who took the order.

DUH

holly said...

I think 'Congratulations Times Three' would have been good. I also think that maybe cake#2 is chocolate frosting/trim and not black?

Clare K. R. Miller said...

The first one is still a pretty good cake. It means the same thing. But the second one... that is absurdly hilarious. Wow. Glad no one was around when I laughed at that, or they might think I was crazy.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations...cubed.


http://robotballoon.wordpress.com/

Anonymous said...

I remember once at work, each store was supposed to order a cake congratulating the boss, take a picture of it and send the pic to him. I remember telling my best friend, on the way over, that I was writing it out because I didn't want to send in a pic with any retardedness on it and I knew how often congratuations was mispelled. I handed the girl the slip and waited. It seemed to take a long time. And finally, she comes out and hands me the box. As I open it up to inspect, she says to me, "Thank God I caught that spelling mistake." And I died inside.
On my cake it said:
"Congrabulations Richard"

Kris said...

Hahaha, is the second one from BR? I decorated at a BR for a few years and it sure looks like one the decorators before and after me would make: the tumors on all of the sides, the smeared fudge, bad handwriting and misunderstood message... ahhh, memories :D It *is* fudge, by the way, not black frosting :D

Back then I never really thought about why some customers would be SO explicit with what they wanted. I'd understand the order form perfectly, but they would staple a sketch to it or write out the message EXACTLY how they wanted (line by line). A couple times people had left their order with my coworkers, and then called back to talk directly with me about it to confirm it. Now I know why they were like that...they must have gotten cakes like the ones on this site.

I'm reminded of my brother's 3rd birthday cake. My mom pretty much just said "oh, he likes Ninja Turtles. Make something like that." What she got was a green half circle with a red stripe around it and some eyes and a mouth. My brother even asked her at one point if it was really supposed to be a Ninja Turtle. I should find a picture :D

I think decorators (and even other employees or clerks) who don't understand how the order forms work, or who don't understand what the words and phrases that are typically written on cakes actually mean, or who use quotations for emphasis (oh GOD, my biggest pet peeve ever) are a vast majority in this world. It's also too bad that many employees really do assume that since they know how to write with a pen, they could handle a pastry bag. It's super easy with a lot of practice, but they really do need the practice first.

This blog makes me miss decorating SO much. I wonder if it makes any other former decorators reminiscent, or if it makes them glad to not have to deal with all this mess anymore :D

"I encourage customers to be specific about their requests, even bringing in an idea on a piece of paper, or color samples. I am not a mind reader. I take pride in my work, and the last thing I want is an unsatisfied customer." ---- I totally second this :)

Jennifer Foster said...

The first one...terrible handwriting too. Why do people write so badly on a cake? I still don't get it.

Katie said...

These are my favorite kind of wrecks. Keep 'em coming!

Alex said...

On the first cake, are they trying to cover all bases with those balloons?

We've got pink, for a girl, blue, for a boy, and... Orange?

Maybe we don't want to know what orange is for.

Alex

searching_for_something said...

Congratulation
Congratulation
lol, how on earth could you come up with that and think it was right?

jackie31337 said...

Alex said We've got pink, for a girl, blue, for a boy, and... Orange? Maybe we don't want to know what orange is for.

Why, orange is for naked mohawk-baby carrot jockeys, of course!

Kenya Starflight said...

ROFL! They should have swapped decorators! :D

The second cake was ugly anyhow. Why black icing? And the pattern on the sides of the cake looks rather sloppy.

Miranda said...

And these are made by professionals???

I don't get it. Seriously. I can decorate, write, spell, etc. better than that in my kitchen at home with nothing but my little Wilton books and videos and advice from girlfriends.

I'm starting to understand now why all my friends are coming to me when they want a cake for an occasion rather than going to a bakery. I thought it was just because I charged less, but I see there's more to it!

Pam said...

i think the weirdest thing about this entry is that the triplet cake is not for a mel u. that i know with triplets.

Alex said...

Jackie31337 said Why, orange is for naked mohawk-baby carrot jockeys, of course!

Hahaha, true, it probably does.

Alex

Pienovski said...

I love you! You just saved my day! Thank you for the laughs!

Anonymous said...

This reminds me of a cake I bought for my SIL after a promotion. I asked the bakery lady if she could write Congratulations on it. She said yes and proceeded to write on the cake. I could tell she was having a hard time and pausing a lot to read what she had written. When she was done I looked at the cake and discovered she had written - Congraduation! It was funny so I didn't say anything and we had a good laugh while we ate cake. -Ginger

Anonymous said...

Two "congratulation"s equal congratulations (pl). This one is clear. You can see how it occured cause any sentence requesting the word 'congratulations' can yield this result to a person unfamiliar with the language, would have though he heard a plural.

"And write congratulations on it" means "write multiple instances of the same word on it."

(No excuse, mind you.)

thebubblegumchild said...

I can picture this in my head. My friend had a similar accident once.