Having now fully recovered from my harrowing run-in with that woman at the NC State Fairgrounds I caught up on some news from the holiday weekend which included the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest. The champion eater in what can be described as the most grotesque display of gluttony known to modern man is a Japanese guy named Takeru Kobayashi who ate 53 3/4 hot dogs in 12 minues beating out American Joey Chesnut who I am sure needed a complete replacement of his entire GI tract when he was finished. Deadspin pointed out that apparently Kobayashi regurgitated some of his hot dog at one point but the judges offered a quick ruling with this priceless quote:
The effluvia never touched the table. When the hot dog came up, and some of it came out his nose, Kobayashi sucked it back down. To me, that’s the testament of a champion and great athlete.
First of all, to anyone who finds it strange that an Asian man can woof down that much food I would point out my first hand experience with my adopted two year old Korean son who has been known to put away two plates at the Golden Corral buffet and not make a sound doing while at the same time maintaining 2% body fat. The boy can put some serious food down and still had 12 month shorts which are too big on his waist.
Secondly, in order for any competition to be televised on ESPN as a sport it must have its own analysts and jargon which can be used in the on air conversation. The term "effluvia" as well as the fact they have some sort of rule pertaining to the regurgitation of food obviously gives eating contests a legitimate place in the pantheon of American sports. It also should be noted that, sadly enough, all it takes for such legitimacy is some sort of competition complimented with jargon and televisable commentary. I supposed the next step is team eating which leads to college and professional teams, tournaments, and a draft. Can you imagine what kind of comprehensive draft coverage we would get from ESPN? They would undoubtedly dredge up some Mel Kiper, Jr-type to discuss how some guy has the tremendous space between his gums and cheeks or has an incredible chew and swallow technique. I supposed they would adopt some kind of instant replay system to asceratin whether or not the "effluvia" actually touched the table or not. There is little doubt that some controversey would explode over someone deftly catching the "effluvia" on the back of his hand and sneaking it back in his mouth. Then as the money flows in so would the agents, the endorsment deals from Oscar Meyer, and that's right performancing enhancing drugs and/or some kind surgery to add more stomach space like NASCAR crew chiefs adding extra fuel cells to the car.
I also think that Stephen A. Smith would be a natural at this, especially given the way he was downing Cheez Doodles during the NBA Draft two weeks ago as seen here. I also think that marketing the Spelling Bee would be far easier than this digusting ritual.