When you are LeBron James, every little thing you do is magnified.
Even birthday cake.
As we documented here on the site, over New Year’s Eve LeBron James celebrated his birthday and also celebrated his engagement to longtime girlfriend Savannah Brinson.
In the days after, we saw pictures of Savannah’s engagement ring and the cake, which you can see here:
One of the people who saw the cake online was South Florida Baker Alethea Hickman. (pictured at top)
Imagine her surprise when it wasn’t the cake she had made for the party free of charge at the hotel’s request.
Turns out that when LeBron’s people saw the cake they didn’t think it was worthy of the King and brought in their own.
In frantic all-caps emails, hotel marketing coordinator Samantha Rosen promised publicity for Hickman’s Passion for Pastry. In exchange, the Shelborne would receive the $3,000 cake as a freebie. Managing principal Jared Galbut called it “sponsorship.”
So Hickman designed a Heat-red cake with edible gold dust and an edible crown on top.
“I don’t even know where my cake went,” Hickman said. “I was mortified. They had me do it in the middle of the holiday crush and I hired additional people. Someone needs to pay.”
Of course the haters are going to criticize LeBron James and paint him as an elitist snob who rejects a small business owner, but the fact is, the Shelborne Hotel is the one who screwed over Hickman.
The fact is, the hotel was bending over backwards to accomodate the royal court and presented them with a cake they didn’t like. It is wholly within the client’s perogative to not like the cake and bring in their own.
The problem is that the hotel offered a sponsorship opportunity and the positive exposure of making LeBron’s birthday cake and they didn’t deliver. She held up her end of the bargain and should be paid accordingly.
There probably wasn’t a contract, so the Shelborne can hide behind that, but when you promise someone steak and give them beef jerky, it’s the right thing to make good, especially considering the money the hotel made from the Party. Guaranteed they didn’t give away their services for free as a “sponsorship” for the positive exposure.
You could say that Hickman is getting that publicity now, but it is for having an “ugly” cake, so while people will support her against the South Beach nWo, that support will probably will not come in the way of cash spent on her services.
If I’m Maverick Carter, I issue a statement from LeBron saying something along the lines of “We appreciate the effort of Ms. Hickman in providing a cake for our event but in light of the engagement, we just felt it was not appropriate for the occasion. We do believe that Ms. Hickman should be compensated for her efforts in light of not receiving the exposure she was promised by The Shelborne, so we will be covering her expenses and wish her continued success in her growing business.”
Of course, I wouldn’t be surprised if Dan Gilbert, Scott Raab, Skip Bayless and Ric Bucher and pooled their money together to pay the lady twice as much as she is owed.
Because of course, this is all LeBron’s fault.
It isnt like the cake was this: