As you all know by now, mine is the beat watching and commenting on funky trends, odd assumptions, and just plain…well…goofiness that one finds in wedding-related reality shows. Again and again I throw myself into the dark underbelly of the Wedding Industrial Complex to find the things that make me sit up and go ‘did I really just hear them say what I thought they said?’ and then deconstruct said whatthehellness for your reading pleasure and dose of bridal sanity.
One I’m coming across with increasing frequency is the idea that People Do Not Eat Cake At Weddings. The first time I heard that, the bride wanted cupcakes so that her guests wouldn’t think anyone would ‘catch’ them eating cake. No, really, just because its cute and in a wrapper doesn’t mean it isn’t cake, or that it’s a single-bite wonder…unless they’re really freaking tiny. Still, the bride was a professional model. I thought to myself that perhaps it was a model thing. It still didn’t make sense to me, but then many things common in the world of professional modeling run a bit counter-intuitive to my thought processes, and it did occur to me that this could be one of those things.
Besides, she was still getting cupcakes. She intended them to be eaten. She and her planner and baker all consulted and made sure there were enough that everyone could have one and they’d have a few extra just in case of need.
Since then, though, I’ve seen multiple wedding reality shows where planners counselled brides to get cakes that would serve between half and two-thirds of guests for fear of unending leftovers. These were all in cases where there was no other dessert offered, too. If two-thirds plus one guests wanted a slice of cake, tough luck.
The one that (pun alert!) took the cake for me was a bride who kept insisting she didn’t want a cake. Why? Not because she preferred to offer some other treat, but because ‘nobody eats cake at weddings and it’s a waste of money.’
When her fiance protested that cake is traditional and he wanted cake, she yelled at him again that it was a waste because nobody would ever touch a single slice. The planner sat there nodding and agreeing. The groom stood his ground, saying he liked cake and ate cake at every wedding he went to. The bride got a nasty gleam in her eye (she was one of those made for TV brides who treats her groom as a prop rather than a member of the wedding) and asked if he’d had cake at a wedding they’d attended recently as a couple. When he said yes, she asked him what flavor it was. He couldn’t remember, but he did remember having cake. That’s when the bride laughed in a really nasty way and informed him he couldn’t have had cake because the couple in question had used a styrofoam dummy cake for cutting, but served no actual cake at the reception.
The groom was, of course, roundly routed with this fact, and the wedding planner (in a much kinder tone, at least) told him of course nobody eats cake at weddings, and so he should just shut up and forget about his dream of a cake…or any other dessert on his wedding day.
Okay, I didn’t have a cake at my wedding to Mr. Twistie. Mr. Twistie doesn’t care for cake at all, and we both prefer pies and tarts. Hence we had individual fruit tarts in six different flavors instead of cake. But a) I have never attended another wedding where there was no cake at all b) we made darn sure there were enough desserts that everyone could have two…and I think we ended up with half a dozen we took home after the festivities, and c) if there’s a cake, I’m having a slice. Oh, and unlike the poor, hapless groom in the tale of the styrofoam cake, I remember the flavors long after the wedding is over. I can tell you who served cheesecake, and who served chocolate, and who served carrot cake. I can tell you in a lot of cases which ones were from bakeries and which were homemade. I’m big into dessert, and have been all my life.
So I have to ask, do you eat cake at weddings? Have you been to a wedding where no dessert whatsoever has been offered? Do you plan to serve cake at your wedding? Did you serve cake at your wedding? Have you noticed a huge trend toward people shunning wedding cake in your area? Or would there be a riot if there wasn’t dessert?
Oh, and just a quick note to a friend of mine getting married in October…I know I’m on the guest list, and I do expect dessert. Just so you know. If you tell me there’s no dessert, I’ll make a cake and bring a slice for myself. So nyaah.