At last, the proof America needs that Twitter isn’t just entirely awful: Thanks to the social media platform, British novelist Neil Gaiman has agreed to a live performance of the entire Cheesecake Factory menu. And, to the delight of lovers of fantasy writing and comically large menus, the absurd mashup is really happening — providing those fans can raise $500,000 on Crowdrise to donate to the UNHCR, the United Nation’s refugee agency.
The pairing of the cult-favorite author with one of America’s greatest suburban chain restaurants is entirely the brainchild of writer-comedian (and Eater contributor) Sara Benincasa, who explains: “Last week I watched an episode of the sublime TV adaptation of American Gods, went on a goddamn elegant date to Cheesecake, woke up, drank coffee, and went into some kind of inspiration blackout. When I came to, I discovered I'd asked Neil if he'd read the entire Cheesecake Factory menu onstage in exchange for a $500,000 donation to a charity of his choice.”
I have said Yes. If she makes it happen, for charity, I will do this thing. https://t.co/vkJWVDiYTJ— Neil Gaiman (@neilhimself) May 20, 2017
For those wondering if Gaiman has the chops to sustain a live reading of the notoriously lengthy menu, Benincasa notes that Gaiman lent his vocal talents to the audiobook of The Graveyard Book, which won an Audio Publishers Association Audie Award for multi-voiced performance in 2015. She says the Cheesecake Factory menu, brought to life by Gaiman, could be even better: “I believe this may be his most groundbreaking artistic endeavor yet, and I fully believe everyone will agree with me once they consider the notion of him pronouncing ‘avocado egg rolls’ very clearly.”
Look out for details of the event as it comes together, including where the event will take place, and a possible livestream for all those who wish to tune in remotely to hear the word “cheesecake” repeatedly pronounced in a British accent.
Update 5/22/17 4:30 p.m.: This post has been updated with the link to the event’s crowdfunding page.