Thursday, February 4, 2010

Recycled Wrecks

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Ever wonder what happens to the personalized cakes customers refuse to buy?

Why, they get "fixed" and set out for another unsuspecting schmo valued customer to purchase, of course!

Sometimes you can even spot these Wrecky rejects, if you look verrry closely and have a keen eye for detail:

Just think of the lucky eight-year-old who got this for his/her birthday:

"You got my name wrong?!?"

"No, of course not, Sweetie!
We just bought you a cake someone else didn't want."


There are a few accepted methods for recycling a Wreck. In addition to the "Scrape 'N Sell" we saw above, there's also "The Schmear":


"The Glob":


And, my personal favorite, "The Ice-Out":

Like Wite-Out - only way, way more obvious.


Jonathan Y., Leslie E., Erica H., & Jake S., how wrong is it that I'm thinking buttercream Wite-Out is a pretty good idea? 'Course, you think the office supplies go missing a lot NOW. Heh.

- Related Wreckage: Recipes for Wreckage
Taylor@MyOlderBrothers said...

Why wouldn't they just use a different cake sheet on the first one? How long would it take just to move the cupcakes to a new piece of cardboard?!

Anonymous said...

This happened to me for my daughter's 3rd birthday! They wrote "8" instead of "3" (what 8 year old wants Dora?). Then when I pointed it out, they scraped it off - and said the decorator wasn't there so they couldnt' fix it any more!!!! It was AWFUL. 1/2 hour before party. Cake was stale too!

Mike Owens said...

How sad is it that on the first "cake", they wouldn't even have wasted any cake by starting over, if you look, the "cake" consists of two rings of cupcakes on a piece of cardboard. The inscription is on the cardboard, not even the cake, so they wouldn't have lost anything but a $0.02 cardboard sheet by redoing the inscription. Not wanting to waste a whole cake is a little tacky, but makes sense from the bakers viewpoint, but cake number 1 simply blows the mind.

Trevor said...

Wait, wait... back it up there. You let Wreck #1 off WAAAY too easy. Look at that thing. Those are CUPCAKES. And I think they are on a board, NOT on a cake itself. So why in the name of all things sugary good could they not just USE A NEW BOARD?! Seriously, Whisky Tango Foxtrot. That's real laziness there, which I think also needs it's own wreck category.

mn_me said...

Stores actually sell these? People really buy these??? Really? Seriously???

OMG

Renee said...

ya need the scrape & sell/ ice out combo! then you can resell that cake! ;o)

Evalis said...

In "The Schmear" cake i love how the balloons seem to be leaning away from the actual schmear, as if they were embarrassed to be associated with it.

...Although, i have a burning question about this cake too. Why did the decorators feel the need to go out of their way to FRAME the disaster site? I know everyone loves sprinkles and all that, but isn't the idea to obscure your errors and not draw attention to them?

Karen Valinda said...

It seems to me that between a careful 'scrape off' and an even more careful 'wite out' the 'new' customer could come away with a fairly decent cake... but there is NO incentive to spend the time or effort when the bakery knows that people will buy the poorly "redone" cakes!
How sad
Or am I giving the wreckerators too much credit???

Allison said...

Apparently when I was young (4-6 years, I'm 16 now) my parents tried to get me a cake for my birthday. When they picked it up it said "Happy Birthday Allson!" They forgot the i in my name. My parents mentioned this and they took it back and "fixed" it. When they handed it to my parents again, it said "Happy Birthday Alison!" They had changed the second l to an i, but they still misspelled my name. Finally they had to cut the entire top of the cake off and redo it. :)

Sandi said...

so. wrong.

JelliDonut said...

Wow. What better way to say "I hate you" then to give somebody one of these cakes.

Gary said...

On Number Two, The Schmear, it strikes me that putting sperm balloons next to something that looks like a used condom made an unfortunate combination.

Anonymous said...

I like that last one, as it's exactly the kind of thing my cheap-a** relatives would come home with. "Happy Birthday" (Gauze, Gauze).


"Mmmm, this cake is so chewy. Kind of like cotton."

Terry Lee said...

the balloons look like lil sperm guys on the "schmear" cake.

uh huh. not unheard of to see them on a "schmear" slide, either.

ack!

Anonymous said...

All these are wrecks - and you're all correct noting that the cake board could have been replaced.

My theory on the "Schmear" is that there is an edible image beneath the schmearage, hence the original need for the framing. As Evalis noted, there is no other reasonable explanation for the framing.

Lauren Borquez said...

These are just SAD! lol

Stella said...

I'm usually that schmo but by then the cake is in the bargin bin...YAH! CAKE!

Kate said...

Interesting that the ice-out cake appears to be a "yellow cake" that is also chocolate. :P YAY for someone being sticker happy!

Kelly said...

As much as I would like to, I cannot fault anyone for fixing any mistake with more frosting. So creative! So tasty! Besides, I think this is evidence that cakes can heal themselves - tell me that isn't a cake scar on the last one!


WV: deacot "Deacot heck for these cake mistakes, but I'd eat 'em!"

Christie, Jeff and Kennedy said...

I'm still laughing at the "moistest cake" sticker. LOL.

morriganscrow said...

Love the sticky plasters on the last one. Or is it loo paper, and did the poor thing cut itself shaving?

WV: 'randy'....

FinnBear said...

I actually have a small confession to make. When my fiancee and I are really craving cake we go to the grocery store and but the 'reject' cakes because they're almost always on sale, and we just want cake.

Mary Connealy said...

I don't get the ring of cupcakes. I think someone isn't even trying AT ALL.

Sara Doane said...

Ok, so I'm a cake decorator and when someone doesn't pick up their cake, we do have to try and sell it. If we don't sell it...that's a good chunk of change we're missing out on.

But really...I just don't get it. Its really, really simple and easy to remove the writing from a cake, plop down some buttercream, smooth it out, and write it over again. It looks like nothing ever happened...

So why...WHY...would any decorator use any of these techniques to "fix" a cake?? WHY????

Gloria J. Ruesch said...

Okay, the moistest cake ever is moist because somebody spilled water all over it.

Gloria

Ashley H. said...

In regards to the cupcakes I would just like to point out that they wouldn't have even had to move the cupcakes to another piece of cardboard, but cupcake containers would have also been an option. Somebody was just being lazy that day.

Anonymous said...

surely the brown pine-cone "roses" on "The Ice-out" deserve a shout-out of their own?

MrsCyg said...

Too bad about that last wreck. The lettering was beautiful!

Heidi D said...

How hard is it to get a new board for those cupcakes? I must say though, those cupcakes are the loveliest shade of Cookie Monster blue.

Marianne said...

you know, these bakers had better be putting some serious discounts on those pieces of crap. if they're trying to get full price for secondhand cakes, these folks should get smacked in the face. with cake.

That's a Hot Mess!!! said...

the white out makes me wonder what was said in front of birthday? while it, of course, could be the sterotypical "age", i like to think it was "Happy freakin birthday" or maybe "happy...birthday" which would go well with "It a Boy" and your other "we really mean it" cakes. either way, the birthday boy or girl will love it!

Emily said...

Is it worse the bakery actually thinks someone will buy these cakes or that someone actually does buy them? Hmmm...

BethanyB said...

The bakeries should learn some self respect and put those things on the discounted baked goods aisle for those of us who want cake for cake's sake.

In other thoughts...

My hubby worked in a Dillon's bakery for about a year. I remember one story of a woman who came in, ordered an ice cream cake with "Happy Birthday(whoever)" and any color was ok, then after he did it, she decided red wasn't ok even though it matched. He was going to try and go over it with another color and a thicker tip, but she got all you-know-whatzy, so he made his friend buy it later that night.

Poor hubby - what's the term for "wreckerator by happenstance"?

Josin L. McQuein said...

No. No. NO. Those are not smudges and smears. They're prep work for affixing edible paper photos. And white out is just to give the cake that special 3-d look, like those sections are leaping off the cake.

Elizabeth said...

What a shame about the last one, with the slabs of frosting (like cheap "My Name Is" labels). Otherwise the colors are beautiful, the detailing lovely, and someone who can write legibly and attractively with an icing bag. Shame. (But Buttercream Wite-Out? Oh, yes, I'm there!)

Lenny said...

For some reason, I take that "moistest cake" label as a challenge... not as a cake maker, but as a cake taster!

bluemoon said...

FinnBear said...
I actually have a small confession to make. When my fiancee and I are really craving cake we go to the grocery store and but the 'reject' cakes because they're almost always on sale, and we just want cake.
___________________
Exactly.

Or if the cake will NOT be displayed and you are just serving, by all means go ahead and buy these.

Ive been to supermarkets, where the reject is cut into squares by the piece....

Ace said...

I just watched "The Bonnie Hunt" on my DVR from Tuesday... did you know Busy Phillips said this is one of her favorite sites??? How cool is that!

CookieMonster said...

Hahahahahahahahahahahahaha! Can you believe this stuff!? I mean, the I-dea! Apathy reigns.

Great commentary.

The Black Dog said...

Ya know, "The Glob" kind of works, until that one needs to be personalized

Norkio said...

It's like covering a tattoo. Only tattoos are actually cool and sometimes funny when they have been fixed/altered.

Fluffy Cow said...

Wow. So wrong.

Confessions of a Closet Hoarder said...

My favorite by far is the last cake. Perhaps because it looks like someone used Wite-Out on an heirloom writing of generations ago. It's just in such stark contrast to the beauty of the cake in general.

WV:repar

"Ya see, if you make a mistake when y'all are decorating a cake, ya can just repar it with a glob of icing made to look like a hunk of masking tape. See? Problem solved!"

andygirl said...

The glob is by far my favorite. "I know you asked for My Little Ponies, Sally, but this Glob is much cuter and WAY less expensive."

Jen said...

Ginger Ale nearly flew out of my nose with the "moistest cake" sticker. LOL

I'm heading to the store...wonder if I might spy any wrecks?

Qatie said...

So, they'd lose HOW much money by re-writing Happy Birthday on a new board?! Is that bakery so econmically unstable that it would break them to pay a little extra label and materials? Cuz you know they already had to move all the cupcakes so they could scrape off the name...

The Denny Family said...

I love how the cake with the giant glob on it is labeled as "the moistest cake ever"

deemack said...

That glob of blue icing definitely makes it the moistest cake I've ever seen! Look, it has a beautiful blue lake in the middle!

Though I have to say I kind of like the flying carpet white out on the last one...

Anonymous said...

What a shame. That last cake is so pretty otherwise! and nice penmanship!

I wonder if anyone ever ordered a cake for someone they hated or just fought with and then had to "change" it by covering it up? it still has a little "you're not that important to me" sting to it, but at least it doesn't say "happy birthday A** Wipe" anymore.

The Shitty Astrologer said...

Hey - now there's an idea. Why waste a perfectly good cake wreck?

WideAwakeWife said...

When I took a cake decorating class, my instructor said that "Icing will cover a multitude of sins." These cakes prove her wrong!

Kristi said...

Is moistest even a word? Some people really need to learn proper English!

Suzanne Dargie said...

I feel like crying for some reason when I look at these.

Allyson said...

I work at a supermarket and the decorators at my work put the unwanted cakes into the lunch room for the staff instead of trying to palm them off to unsuspecting customers. Having said that, if they did cover anything up, they would do too good a job to notice. I have never seen a cake wreck at my work because the decorators are fantastic.

Average Jane said...

I like the pine cone-like roses in the last example.

Kathleen said...

at least the Glob is crowning "the moistest cake ever!" Maybe the glob is there to keep all the moisture in? *lol*

WV: slize: I'd like a slize of the moist glob cake, please.

Culinarychiq said...

LOL I just LOVE how "The Moistest Cake You've Ever Tasted" has a big ole lake slapped onto it. Now had they stuck/piped a couple of rubber duckies on to it they might have gotten away with it... hey I said MIGHT;)

Evil said...

the moistest cake you have ever tasted? Can you really taste moist, and if so.. do you want to advertise that? ;)

Anonymous said...

"Now had they stuck/piped a couple of rubber duckies..."

Perhaps it is due to the late hour, but these unfortunate words set in combination seemed to jump from the page at me.

jiminycricket said...

Isn't the word "moist" sort of on par with others like "damp" and "dank" and "humid?" And just shy of "mildewed?"

Christina said...

"The Glob"...but it is "The Moistest Cake You've Ever Tasted"!
hahaha
I had my own near Cake Wreck recently. It was a very close call.

the mouse said...

That first one brings a whole new meaning to the thought of a "cupcake cakewreck." I mean come on: it's just cupcakes in a circle. They're pretending to be a cake. And seriously, how long could it possibly take to slip a new piece of cardboard under there, hm?

shikishinobi said...

I can see a theme running in the first three cakes; if you are using blue icing, don't make a mistake. Icing it out doesn't work. Kind of like the whole 'don't wear a black bra/underwear under white shirt/shorts.
Yes, like white out, just far more obvious but at least twice as tasty, which is the only thing to save the cake.

Becky C. said...

"Moistest cake you've ever tasted"? I think I'll pass.

- Becky of Love, Lust and Pixie Dust.

Sarah said...

This was a running joke with my family when I was growing up. For my 16th birthday I got a cake with palm trees on it that said "Bon Voyage Trip & Buffy!" Another birthday cake had "Happy St. Swithen's Day" on it. Everyone knew the cake wasn't someone else's leavings - it had been ordered that way - but it was still a lot of fun.

Autumn said...

How? How does this happen???

Leslie said...

these pictures are so funny!!!! everytime I come to your blog, I laugh so hard at every post you make! You are so hilarious!

Ann said...

In all fairness, at least the "Blob" could be re-imaged into a pond with a few dabs of icing and some plastic bits and bobs... Snerk...

siltedrepose said...

I used to work for a grocery store, and if someone returned a cake that was too customized to resell, it would show up in the break room for the employees to eat. I loved those cakes.

P90X_Kalie said...

Wow-- I just found this blog the other day and boy am I glad! It makes me laugh until I cry. It's some much needed stress-relief!

laura. said...

i really want to leave a comment but i can't stop laughing out loud at these. :)

Alex said...

What annoys me is that the really bad ones don't go home with an employee. (Being bought by someone who just wants cake is perfectly acceptable though.) But the really embarrassing ones, let them go home with an employee who probably has someone to give it to that isn[t going to be buying a cake otherwise.
Why not? because the bakery is to afraid that the bakers will make a mistake purposefully and rip them off. This happened at a restaurant I worked for, who make us throw PERFECTLY GOOD food if the customer refused it for whatevcer reason. Because the policy protected the company from conspiracies between the cooks and the wait staff. seriously? I had also worked at a more reasonalbe one who let us take home the untouched but sent back food. No one abused the system, but we didn't have to WASTE food when there are hungry people in the world, including underpaid scraping by waitreses.
sorry for the rant. that was a tough time in my life. I feel better now. Please don't chare me $90 for therapy session. :-)

Alessandra said...

Did you send those pictures to There I fixed it?!

Emily said...

Hey cake decorators, how hard would it be to just decorate over the scrapped-off remains of your errors? I think you should take a lesson from tattoo artists on this one. A big red heart with "Mom" in the middle can cover up anything!

Nick said...

*shudder* "Moistest" is a word that should be forever banned from the English language.

satal said...

The part that I love about the last one is that, ineffective correcting aside, the previous version omitted a somewhat important comma. Le sigh.

Ashley Montemayor said...

I ran across your site from a yahoo news a while back and I'm glad I did! I love your sense of humor!!! You crack me up literally everyday! Well at least everyday I get on! So keep writing and I'll keep reading! Thanks for the laughs!

Sincerely,
A Happy Follower

Scarlett Robyn said...

"The moistest cake you've ever tasted"? Is that to convince you to buy it?
"Hmmm... it's got a great big blue cover-up smear on it, there are random swirls everywhere and it just looks...yuk, but it's the moistest cake I've ever tasted, so I'll buy it!" ?!?!?

Anonymous said...

These are the kind of cakes that ended up in the break room at my old job. One decorator's screw up is another minimum wage worker's free cake at lunch break.

Aimee said...

I know I'm late to the party here, but the cake with the blue smear is an actual cake from the book. I think it's called 'cinco de mayo', and in the middle there's supposed to be a food color smear/smudge thing that isn't supposed to look that crappy. It's still an ugly cake though. I work at Safeway, and it isn't a very popular design.... but the smear isn't a mistake!

K. said...

Very late to the party -- I'm a baker/decorator at a local chain, and smears and stuff like that are usually the result of either 1) the color of the original icing (i.e., blue, red, black -- colors that easily smear and are difficult to cover); 2) the person removing the mistake not knowing the "tricks of the trade" to cover it up; or 3) a combination of the two. Giving the messed-up cake to the help is considered shrink; a lot of managers would rather sell the cake at any cost, no matter how ugly the repair.

And yeah, the big white smear was definitely a photo cake.

Badger, Bob said...

In the Janet Evanovich books (Ten Big Ones, Fearless Fourteen, etc) Stephanie Plum and her family always buy birthday cakes that some family didn't want...It's like their special treat: It's ALWAYS someone's birthday, why wait for a special day to have cake?

Badgerpdx