Forget Albert Pujols, Jose Reyes and Prince Fielder.  They’re amateurs. It’s long past time that the nation recognizes the heroic accomplishments of Joey Chestnut, Bob Shoudt, Gravy Brown and Eric Booker.

Forget about the upcoming tip-off of the 2011-12 NBA season, the looming NFL playoffs and the NCAA BCS bowl series.  They’re irrelevant.  We’re ready to enjoy unbridled feats of athleticism at the Isle Casino Racing Pickle Eating World Championship, the Wild Turkey 81 Eating World Championship  and the Jake Melnick Battle of the Bhut XXX Wing Eating Championship.

That’s right, folks.  It’s time for the populous to stand up and announce, in a collective and deafening roar, our growing appetite for the recognition of the sport of competitive eating.

I’m not really sure why the mainstream media hasn’t already realized that the nation stands ready to consume increasing coverage of Major League Eating  Later today, the world’s greatest athletes will compete in the Martorano’s Masters Meatball Eating Championship.  The event, however, is being largely overshadowed by the presentation of the Heisman Trophy.  That’s just not fair.

Look, opinions prove subjective and open to interpretation.  Statistics, however, never lie :

Jose Reyes, Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder and other so-called “athletes” will also never subject themselves to the inherent risks and perils that competitive eaters voluntarily face on a regular basis.  Sure, they may tweak a hamstring, jamb a thumb or suffer from a skinned knee.  At the end of the day, though, they’re essentially playing the same game as children.  Surely we wouldn’t let our kids play around with something that might cause them significant injury or harm.  Lawn darts notwithstanding, of course.

Major League Eating, the world body that oversee competitive eating contests, recognizes the competitive eating is fraught with danger.  actually discourages training.  It believes that children should never play around with the hazards associated with food.  This is no laughing matter, folks.  The organization has gone as so far as to issue thoroughly detailed and painfully meticulous standards about the risks.  A complete account of these intricate standards reads as follows:

Safety is the first consideration in any sport, and MLE insists that all sanctioned competitive eating matches take place in a controlled environment with proper safety measures in place… MLE will not sanction or promote any events that do not adhere to proper safety regulations and the league believes that speed eating is only suitable for those 18 years of age or older and only in a controlled environment with appropriate rules and with an emergency medical technician present… MLE strongly opposes and discourages home training of any kind. MLE also strongly discourages younger individuals from eating for speed or quantity under any circumstances. MLE urges all interested parties to become involved in sanctioned events — do not try speed eating home.

Alright.  I can’t take it anymore.  The time for sarcasm is over.  This really is a serious issue.  I try hard not to be judgmental, because I know that I’m quirky and often hypocritical.  Still, it almost makes me physically sick to think that people have created an organization and dedicated themselves to overeating when we’re well aware of the increasing prevalence of obesity and the significant health risks associated with contemporary eating habits.  It also ignores another pandemic: world hunger.

Disregard the statistics that were previously cited within this entry.  They may be fun and amusing, but they’re really only useful for our entertainment.  Consider the following:

  • An estimated 5 million (11.4%) of senior citizens in the United States experience some form of food insecurity and about a quarter million suffer from hunger due to financial constraints.

Not surprisingly, the World Health Organization recently declared hunger as the most significant threat to the world’s public health.  The unfortunate reality, however, is that the world already produces enough food for everyone.  Poverty, poor economic structures and inadequate distribution are literally starving the victims.

/food for thought

4 responses to “PROFESSIONAL ATHLETES, COMPETITIVE EATING AND WORLD HUNGER: when sarcasm and epidemics collide

  1. Pingback: A HEARTFELT APOLOGY TO COMPETITIVE EATERS… but only if you ignore the sarcasm and cynicism «

  2. Foge December 14, 2011 at 4:00 am

    It’s good to see someone tinhknig it through.

    • Dinara February 23, 2013 at 5:35 pm

      Okay Jim, here it is, your first CHALLENGE! I see from your planned iitrenary that you’ll be swinging by Naples, Florida, quite soon. I have a great old mate who lives in Naples, and it would be great if you would shout him a cold beer, from me. You know I am penniless, but in exchange for a photo of you and my mate Steve sharing a beer, I will send you a copy of my latest book, and another one to him.I will email you his phone number and will wait to see if you accept the challenge.I hope this is just the first of many such challenges that your readers set for you in your travels, and that others will be able to reward you with what you need most; cash!Cheers,Steve

  3. July 24, 2015 at 7:51 pm

    After you give a first look, we have a better image, we will bring you a little closer, and gave us a different perspective. Through the use of blue suede leather aroma, yellow and resembles the Tornado complete horns. Other details include white through the tongue and laces, dark blue bottom, flannel liner and the Tau and Paul Bunyan’s Axe heel print.

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