I took this photo last week at a deli here in Las Vegas. It’s an example of a cake you can order there:

It’s supposed to be a Louis Vuitton handbag, such as this one (image found here):

The cake is called “Happy Birthday Mommy Diva Cake.”

Might be useful for a discussion of the glorification of conspicuous consumption and the way we often portray women as high-maintenance divas. Or the way advertising and marketing has shifted from focusing on function (i.e., all a purse really needs to do is effectively hold some stuff) to symbolic “lifestyle” messages (you buy a Louis Vuitton bag for what it says about you that you’d have one–that you’re rich and have “good taste”–not because Louis Vuitton bags are superior vessels for carrying your car keys).
I am always fascinated by the way companies are able to so connect their products to qualities we want to have (coolness, class status, etc.) that we’ll wear or use products with their logos or brand names all over them, providing them free advertising, as a way to announce to others that we have those qualities.

Of course, I just stood there and stared at it for a while with no more insightful sociological thought than “WTF?!?”

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