As any romantic comedy will tell you, weddings are filled with Rules. There are the big ones, which a wedding-wise girl can recite by heart: Don’t wear white to a wedding, always R.S.V.P before the deadline, and never violate Kate’s dibs on the cute groomsman. Even the pre-ceremony events have their own traditions. Each lingerie shower or engagement tea has an etiquette to follow. For bachelorette parties, there is but one rule: don’t be a party pooper.
Ostensibly, this is easy to follow. It’s one last hurrah for your almost-married friend. What’s the worst that could happen? Oh, my brave little toasters, just you wait. You are about to be exposed to more edible massage oils and That’s what she said! jokes than you thought possible. By the end of the night, the word “penis” will have lost all meaning, so often have you heard it. Unwanted knowledge of the groom’s left-leaning tendencies will haunt you for days. However, one horror stands above the rest. Like T-Rex among tiny, squashable raptors, The Baked Phallus looms large on the horizon of bachelorette parties.
That’s right. Someone will bring a cake shaped like a one-eyed trouser snake. Betty Cocker will have raided an adult novelty store for the pan (this being the one socially-acceptable time for a young woman to enter one, as long as she giggles nervously throughout the visit, so everyone knows she does not approve), debated the potential connotations of chocolate and vanilla cake mixes, and then painstakingly measured food coloring for that perfect curdled flesh color. At the party, this gateau de schlong will be left in a place of honor, for all to see. Nothing says Have a Happy Marriage! like baked genitalia.
Your initial cake reaction is pivotal, friends. Whether you are shocked or delighted will determine your bachelorette party role. Play this carefully. There are generally three party archetypes: the all-knowing siren, the begrudgingly amused bystander, and the horrified prude. Much like the first time you played truth-or-dare in middle school, try to avoid the prude option. You’ll be safer, if you play it cool. Just like in the good old days of seventh grade, this hen night can quickly devolve into a game of Shock Naive Nellie. I recommend grabbing a glass of champagne and acting like Black Forest Cock is an everyday treat at your abode.
Personally, I find the whole penis obsession ridiculous. If we’re not eating phallus cake, we’re wearing light-up tallywhackers around our necks. It’s like the twisted version of my childhood birthday parties. Only, instead of a Barbie lip gloss in the goodie bag, it’s a lollicock.
The psychology of this is befuddling, at best. Are we supposed to be preparing a supposedly virgin bride for her first glimpse of the manhood? A human sexuality textbook seems wiser. I don’t trust the anatomical accuracy of buttercream icing. Besides, most brides I know are wise in the ways of whoopee. What could they possibly gain from a giant, fondant-covered model of their man’s junk? It’s not exactly the most appetizing shape. A heart-shaped confection seems much more conducive to celebrating impending marriage and staving off the gag reflex.
Unfortunately, the ultimate rule of bachelorette parties still applies: don’t rain on the parade, no matter how penis-laden the floats are. If the bride wants to drink through a dinglehopper straw and stuff her face with sausage sandwiches, that is her right. I plan on banning any phallic pastries from my own bachelorette festivities, but to each her own. If Future Kate or Mae decides she must have a penis cake, I’ll even bake the damned thing myself. Just know this: it will be from scratch. If one has to eat
cock cake, it should at least have homemade icing.