To judge these works of art is no mean feat because, quite frankly, these teams are insane………..and amazing – all at the same time! Each and every competitor involved donates so much time, effort and stress................all in the name of charity and for no personal gain, putting themselves and the reputation of their business on the line to create something incredible! Each year I have watched in awe and wonder how the teams stay so focused with so many people standing around and critiquing every little thing they do, each one a self appointed judge.
And another thing, 8 hours is a long time right? Wrong! Ever tried building a house in 8 hours? No? Thought not…………..so forgive me when I laugh at you for commenting that there should be no problem finishing that metre tall creation in 8 hours if your time management has been planned out effectively. You could do that at home yourself, on the kitchen bench, right?
Running alongside all of these pitfalls is the fact that each team is decorating remotely – they aren’t used to the environment, don’t have the comfort and familiarity of their usual kitchen around them. Instead, a bench, a stand for the cake and a kind of sweatshop atmosphere. Having to clean down with wetwipes and keep their mess to a minimum which they can normally distribute across the whole kitchen without anyone watching so intently.
And finally, the distress and mortification if something goes wrong! Not only up against a tight schedule, scrutinized by a very critical onlooking crowd but now a disaster has occurred. In your own kitchen you can rip the offending area right off, throw it on the floor and stamp on it before sitting in a small quiet corner and crying for a while. Not here, not in the limelight, carry on, conceal your worry and try to fix the problem as best you can hoping that everything stays in place and nothing drops on the judges head as she bends down to look at the beautiful details at the base of the cake.
So what I can say to each and every team is this – yes, there has to be a first place, second, third and fourth………that’s the rules (and I’m a judge so I should know!) but there is no last. Each and every one of the teams that takes part in this event is incredible and you should be so very proud of the lengths you have gone to in order to create such an amazing work of art that you will never be able to charge $$$$ for, that you may not ever have the opportunity to make again and which, at more than one time during the course of the day you would have willingly kicked over and stamped on! Well done teams! You all rock!