It used to be that if you wanted to get something done, you got help from a few friends. But why settle when you can recruit the Internet?
That's the logic of one enterprising chef — Zach Danger Brown of Columbus, Ohio, decided to launch his freshman effort at making potato salad with a little fanfare. Or at least, that's how it began when he created a Kickstarter on July 3 with the modest goal of $10. The point of the funds isn't entirely clear — he didn't provide a shopping list (so no word on which side of the mayonnaise vs. vinegar battle he plans to take) and he didn't need to rent a kitchen.
But there was something about the project that resonated with the Internet. Maybe it was launching it at the start of a slow news weekend, or the oddball charm of his contributor rewards — among the promised items are a haiku ($20), a commemorative T-shirt ($35) and saying contributors' names out loud as he makes the dish — that got the project traction, but the Kickstarter now stands at more than $10,000. "We're really tearing through these stretch goals. I honestly don't know what is realistic anymore," Zach posted on July 5, before the project even hit $3,000.
Zach did a Reddit AMA and posted a video update, in which he thanks his backers "for helping me live my dreams" and assures them that he's been "hard at work in the kitchen, learning how to boil potatoes."
And because he got the Internet involved, there were plenty of suggestions for how to take his idea to the next level.
Collaborations were suggested, from pitching the idea on "Shark Tank" to having YouTube vlogger GloZell Green, known for her Cinnamon Challenge video, try his dish. Lauri K. McLean appreciated the modesty of Zach's goal: "I like the simplicity of your goal and request. I'm sure it will be delicious!" Others were drawn in by the swag: "I felt the need to contribute to potato salad... And then I saw hats were involved, my true weakness!" Bridie Heather Brown wrote. And yet others just stopped by to wish him well: "Potato the hell out of that salad," said Christopher Pickford.
While the world has room for some pretty extravagant dishes, including a $250 burger right here in NYC, we're not sure there are enough high-end ingredients to justify the amount raised — and the Kickstarter doesn't end until Aug. 2. Then again, he did promise the entire Internet a potato salad party, so maybe he should start by hiring an event planner.