I get obsessed with certain things, and it's wrong of people to say being "obsessed" is an unhappy thing. My obsessions make me happy as shit. But they do get tiresome. I got looking at those magazine pictures of desserts, you know, the really gross or extreme. flourescent-looking/baroque ones from the 1950s. The Betty Crocker stuff. And at once, I began to make a collection. I can put this on my blog! I told myself. But it began to seem too, too much like something I had done before. So I began to combine obsessions: my bizarre attempts to animate, and my usual ho-hum slide-showy-giffy stuff. I could regulate the speed, of course, and repeat and alternate frames any way I wanted to. Really, that was about the extent of it, and the result is enough to give you a migraine.
There was one I left out. I had already made the gif, and damn if I was going to go back and do it all over again, since I'd already chucked the first three or four attempts (as usual). But the one I left out. . . it was magnificent. It was just the epitome of everything tacky, tasteless, overelaborate and basically unappetizing about these things.
I don't know if Coronation Cake had anything to do with the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II some time in the early '50s (and NO, I don't remember it!). Some time in my rifling around to find good photos for this project, I found an actual picture of one of these cakes that someone had made. It got deleted along with a lot of godawful other stuff. My recycle bin doesn't even work any more. It keeps shutting down. It hates what I am feeding it.
But I dredged it back up with my indispensible Tin Eye feature, which can find nearly anything:
So somebody must have actually made this cake. There are whole web sites, blogs and YouTube channels devoted to testing out those awful-looking post-war recipes. This one looks like some bizarre hat, or a merry-go-round without the horses (more likely, an ugly-go-round). But I have to hand it to Tammy Tingles (the only name I could find for this creation). With that hole in the middle, it must be angel food, and I do not know how an angel food cake could support all those devil-horns of frosting and inedible-looking gumdrops without collapsing.
The original is far uglier and more menacing, reminding me of nothing more than one of those creepy abandoned carnival rides that should have been junked a century ago. I had to do something with it! I had thought of making the cake jump around, or the gumdrops fall off it or something. Then I had this demonic idea, but it didn't work. It ended up like this: