Saturday, July 4, 2015

Happy 4th To The Biggest Eaters Of All Time!

Oh my goodness! What has finally gotten me back to my blog? What has inspired me to sit down at my (rotten, new, impossible-to-use Windows 8) computer? Another new barn being built by Ina? No. A shakeup at the Food Network? Nope. Decimated marriages of various Food Network stars? No, even though that has actually happened. So what has gotten me to finally post again? Well, it’s July 4th and Nathan’s Hot Dog Championship happened earlier today!

I’m not bragging when I say that I totally called it before the event even started! And I have witnesses. Moments BEFORE the legendary contest at Coney Island began, I said that I doubted whether Joey Chestnut could win his 9th consecutive hot dog title at Coney Island. I’d watched many of his previous wins. I was a reluctant fan at first, when my favorite, Kobayashi, was banned from the storied contest. But Joey earned my respect with his unbridled enthusiasm and his disciplined training regimen year after year. How did I know that this time, sad to say, his streak wouldn’t hold? 

First, he looked more pasty than usual.  

Also, his head many not have been in the right place. Last year, he proposed to his girlfriend and then went on to win his 8th Championship on a high note. This year, they are no longer together.

The last reason I doubted Joey was that Matt Stonie had a hungry look. And, after all, Joey only beat him last year by 5 hot dogs. 

The final results:


You can see it better here. Joey started to come back, but Matt beat him by 2 dogs.

Joey showed the heart of a champion after his loss this Independence Day. He took responsibility for the results saying, “I just had trouble. I was slow and, uh, he was eatin’ fast. I couldn’t catch him.” 

There’s always next time. There’s also always the World Bacon Eating Completion. (Stonie is its current champion, downing 182 strips in 5 minutes.) Oh, and there are a few other crowns to be won. Here are just SOME of the other foods waiting to be devoured in athletic eating competitions:

Pork Rolls
Chicken Spiedies (No clue what they are…)
Tacos, slugburgers(!), bratwurst, tamales, ribs, oysters, burritos, gyros, boysenberry pies, chili, shrimp cocktails, Twinkies and fish tacos
AND there are hardboiled egg contests to aspire to. Joey won the Hardboiled Egg Championship in 2013, swallowing (and keeping down) the world record amount of 141 hardboiled eggs in 8 minutes.

Joey says he’ll be back next year. I hope the competition is intense and the contest is a close one. Happy 4th to all the competitors who took on the monumental challenge of stuffing themselves with more hot dogs at one time than humans were meant to consume.  

By the way, although I do love this annual patriotic ritual, I have to be honest. I can’t watch the actual eating. I put my arm over my eyes to block the shoving of the hot dogs into their mouths. It’s so gaggable that I feel as if I’m competing myself.  

Happy 4th of July! I hope you had as many hot dogs as you could comfortably eat. For me, competitive hot dog eating is a pure spectator sport that I don’t have to participate in or even fully see to enjoy.

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