Professional Gluttony

“Seeing these guys go at a 20-pound turkey is like poetry.” ~George Shea, Chairman of the International Federation of Competitive Eating, on the eve of a nationally televised turkey-eating competition.

I will NEVER consider watching someone shoving cooked poultry through their teeth as poetry. George Shea is a sick, sick man.

My comprehension of food eating contests is low. Simply put, I don’t get it. Who cares if there is money involved? The whole concept to me is absolutely nauseating. That being said, I was astounded to discover there is actually an International Federation of Competitive Eating ( that hosts competitions and encourages such asinine behavior.

“The glutton is much more than an animal and much less than a man.” ~Honore de Balzac

Apparently, the “Turkey Bowl” aired Thanksgiving night on television. I have not looked close enough to see what channel, but why the hell would anyone in their right mind actually want to watch such a thing? Why is American culture so caught up in ‘real life’ that we are willing to watch some poor empty soul overdose on tryptophan on national television? That is just sick. For the record … I aim this at every Memorial Day hot dog eating contest and every Independence Day pie contest and every other “let me stuff my body so full of random food” contest that is held on this planet at any given moment.

Check out the website I listed above. There is a “records” section long enough to make me vomit while scanning over it. Let me share a few with you:

Vienna Sausages – Sonya Thomas – 8.31 lbs. in 10 minutes
Beef Tongue – Dominic Cardo – 3 lbs. 3 oz. in 12 minutes
Butter – Don Lerman – 7 quarter-pound sticks in 5 minutes
Chili – Richard LeFebre – 1 ½ gallons in 10 minutes
Crawfish – Chris Hendrix – 331 crawfish in 12 minutes
Ice Cream – Cookie Jarvis – 1 gallon, 9 oz in 12 minutes

I’m done. I thought I would list more and make a point on how the 103 hamburgers ingested by Joey Chestnut this past October could have been put to better use in feeding the hungry and homeless that are living on the American streets. Then again, who wants to eat beef tongue or butter? Not only is it astounding the amount of food that is wasted in these events … and it is wasted … it is even more amazing the types of cuisine that are selected for competition.

“I have come to the conclusion that mankind consume twice too much food.” ~Sydney Smith

Think about it. This Joey person ate 103 hamburgers. That does not count the number of hamburgers that were ingested by his competitors, or the amount of food that was consumed as each one of these competitors practiced for said event. It is truly disgusting.

American gluttony at it’s finest, that is what this entire scenario represents. It sickens me.

“You’re beginning to believe that the tube is the reality and your own lives are unreal. You do whatever the tube tells you. You dress like the tube, you eat like the tube, you raise your children like the tube, you even think like the tube. This is mass madness. You people are the real thing, we are the illusion.” ~Network, Film (1976)


  1. Well yes, I agree with you Beth, but having just read this as the first post in your blog, I am not understanding why you are fascinated by this repulsive topic enough to speak of it.

  2. Indeed! Why? Our screwed up media has found the topic important enough to report on all news channels. Surely, there is more important news than who ate more turkey than anyone else yesterday. It doesn't take much to throw me into a tangent ... obviously.

  3. I agree with you. And I like your blog!


"Stranger, if you passing meet me and desire to speak to me, why should you not speak to me? And why should I not speak to you?" ~Walt Whitman


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