Some personal stories are too good to not share... this is the story of the ugly cake. Short and sweet (pardon the pun)...
My daughter and her fiance' recently graduated college. Foregoing the ceremonies, they instead opted for a celebratory dinner with their parents. Nice, huh?
Feeling a cake was in order but lacking the time or cake-decorating skills to make it myself, I called a local grocery store bakery department and ordered one. Chocolate cake, white icing with red lettering -- that was my request. I made sure the young man on the phone had the correct spellings for the names. All was set.
It's about a 2 1/2 hour drive to the dinner's location. The plan was to pick the cake up on my way out of town.
The nice lady at the bakery counter took a long time to come back after I requested the cake. When she finally appeared, boxed cake in hand, she had an odd look on her face.
"Is this what you asked for?" she wanted to know, holding out this very red cake with big blobby brown lettering and strange brown tendrils overlaying the white edging.
Nope. Not really.
I tried to make light of it as she explained that the employee who had taken the order and done the deed was new and obviously untrained. "I'm sure it will taste fine," I said, taking the box with the ugly cake out of her hands. The cake was so red, the lettering was unsightly, but at least the names were spelled right.
She offered to redo it, but I explained I was on my way out of town and didn't have the time. "No problem," I told her, repeating that it would no doubt be delicious.
I walked away, ugly cake in my cart.
Before I got as far as the checkout the nice bakery lady, manager in tow, chased me down. The manager took one look and said that he could not allow me to pay for the ugly cake and that if I insisted on taking it, it was free.
Now, of course, I was feeling just fine about the red cake with the brown lettering. Free is my favorite price!
It wasn't until it was on the table at my daughter's place that we realized that the word "congratulations" was misspelled and lacking an "s". Honestly, I think that made us love it even more! And it was delicious!