Zack Brown, a computer programmer from Columbus, Ohio, had a spare 15 minutes, and decided to put it to good use by setting up a joke Kickstarter page to raise money to help him make potato salad. It stated fairly simply: "Basically I'm just making potato salad. I haven't decided what kind yet." In return for a cash pledge he offered to send a photo of himself making the salad to his backers, post a thank you to the website, and to say the name of the person making the donation aloud.
He set a goal of $10, but he was in for a shock.
To date he has raised more than $46,146 from over 5,500 backers, and has become known as the Potato Salad Guy.
As the money poured in, he updated the page, outlining what he would do with the money. At $35 he said he'd make four times as much salad, at $75 he promised a pizza party, and at $100 he said he'd try two difference recipes.
As the total soared rapidly past these goals, he promised to do a live stream of him making it, a video for all the backers, and to hire a hall so his backers could come to a party.
As his backers flood in, Brown is going to have to work out how to meet the promises he made to those making donations. As well as the basic package, he had offered anyone who donated more than $3 a bite of the salad - which he currently needs to serve to 994 people around the word.
For those pledging over $20 he will need to send them a potato-salad-themed haiku, a signed jar of mayonnaise and carve their name into a potato (he'll need 4 of those), and for those pledging $25 or more he'll need to get them a potato-themed hat.
And that's not the worst of it. It emerged this morning that he'll have to hand over 32% of his windfall in tax.
In an interview with Business Insider he said the idea was intended as a cheeky way to invite his friends to a party, but he is now looking for a venue which could take about 10,000 for the potato salad and pizza party he promised.
He didn't argue with those people who complained that there are more worthy projects that should be getting the money, but said he took the responsibility to use the money to benefit others.