401
9 min 23 sec

Internet Trolls Eat Their Words in This Comedic Cake Hustle

After seeing a mean comment on Dolly Parton’s Facebook page, a woman bakes up a hilarious and ironic side hustle.
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What It's About

Revenge is sweet with this NYC woman's unique side hustle.

Business Model
Service
Skills Required
Baking & Detective
Complexity
Medium
Profit Potential
Medium

Words of Wisdom

When we asked Kat what kind of advice she would give to someone starting a side hustle of their own, she had this to say:

"Launch when you feel 80% ready. If you wait until you feel totally prepared, you'll never do it. Plus, once you get started, you'll probably find that your business takes shape in a slightly different way that you'd anticipated. Give yourself room to grow in ways that you hadn't considered."

Fun Fact

Kat has no formal baking experience. She grew up making cakes every now and then, but they were continuously more and more ridiculous, often including whole packages of sprinkles. Despite her lack of professional baking experience, trolls do seem to enjoy their cakes.

Notes from Chris

Episode 401
One day in early 2017, Kat Thek was taking a mental break from her full-time copywriting work when she noticed something on Facebook that struck her as completely absurd. Someone had left a comment on Dolly Parton’s page. It said, “Your Mamma be so disappointed in you." Kat looked at it for a good, long moment. For some reason, the comment just stuck out like a sore thumb.

Why would anyone waste their time to insult a complete stranger like that? It wasn’t even a good insult. It was just absurd in every, way not to mention, grammatically incorrect. It’s a strange impulse to want to attack someone with random, senseless Facebook trolling—especially so if it’s toward Dolly Parton.

A couple days went by, but Kat still couldn’t stop thinking about it. At some point, the idea of a cake with the troll comment written on it popped into her head—something different than the usual “happy birthday” or “get well soon” messages.

She baked the cake and wrote the troll comment on it with icing. She and her friends got a kick out of it. And then the idea hit her—she should send it to the person who made the original comment!

After a little investigative work to find the address of the troll, she sent him the cake and a printout of his original comment on Dolly Parton’s page.

The whole idea was fun, sarcastic, and gave everyone that Kat told about it a good laugh. She realized that others may want to call out their internet trolls with cakes, so she bought a domain, built a basic website, and launched Troll Cakes Bakery And Detective Agency.

Kat’s never really considered Troll Cakes to be a major endeavor, but definitely a fun hustle. Though she sells at least one cake per day on average, she considers the income as “parking money” or the “weekend trip fund,” but not something she counts on in their budget for regular living expenses.

She doesn’t have big plans to scale Troll Cakes (partly because she’s still not certain how sustainable the flow of orders will be months or years from now), but she plans to keep enjoying the absurdity of it all as a fun side hustle while she continues her regular full-time work as a freelance copywriter.


MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE:

  • Troll Cakes: Make internet trolls eat their words—check out Kat's website! Revenge has never been so sweet

  • Buzzfeed & NPR: Two media outlets that put Troll Cakes on the map and sent her loads of new customers
SEE ALSO:

Inspiration is good; inspiration combined with action is better. Now get back to work!

Yours in the revolution,

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Resources

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Quote of the Day
"It's a weird impulse to be mean to a stranger on the internet, but to be mean to Dolly Parton is even weirder. It's like giving the middle finger to a rainbow—the rainbow doesn't care and anybody who sees you do it just thinks you're crazy."
—Kat Thek #SideHustleSchool

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To infinity and beyond,

Chris Guillebeau