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 http://www.ifoce.com/index.php. 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