|The Feast on the First|
Thursday, May 1, 2008
Posted by jaygross
I woke up today in an especially good mood. I was feeling so good that I got out of bed 6:00 (which is usually impossible due to impressive skill of hitting the snooze button so often). Maybe it was because:
- I got to see the Red Sox win in the bottom of the ninth (while the Yankees lost) for the second straight day.
- The Celtics shellacked the Hawks 110-85 to go up 3-2 in their playoff series.
- I got 6 autograph successes on old school cards in the past 2 days.
- I am going to a card show this weekend to get Juan Marichal to finish my 1967 Leaders card..
- Today is May 1st and there is something else I have been looking forward to.
Many of you know I am a big fan of Mike and Mike on ESPN and watch them most mornings before getting ready to go to work. Every year Mike Golic and Mike Greenberg (Greeny) have a bet over their NCAA tourney brackets where the loser has to do something awful. In past years we saw Golic have to get his eyebrows waxed, Greeny have to dress up as a leprechaun in the studio, and Greeny have to dress up as a leprechaun and tour around the Notre Dame campus. Many of you may remember how metrosexual Greeny almost passed out when he was forced to milk a cow in studio last year.
I have to give it to them, as they raised the bar. The stakes were high this year, with Greeny having to die his hair different colors for five days vs. Golic having to enter a competitive eating contest.
In a Buster Douglas-Mike Tyson level upset, Greeny broke his 3 year losing streak and smoked Golic so bad that he had won before the Final Four. So that meant we get to see some serious eating!
For several weeks they have been promoting that Golic was to go up against competitors from the Major League Eating circuit. Buffalo Wild Wings sponsored the event and they all were to eat as many boneless buffalo wings in 3 minutes. And wouldn’t you know it, it was all set to go down at 8:05 AM EST this morning.
One of the interesting scheduling notes is that Golic needs to fly to Louisville on a plane 4 hours after contest for the Kentucky Derby. I can only imagine how awful sitting within 50 feet of him for multiple hours with no ventilation will be.
Greeny relates a story about another eating contest between football players and a professional eater. Redskins 300 pounders John Jansen and Renaldo Wynn went up against Sonia “The Black Widow” Thomas in a contest to see who could eat 16 wings in 1 minute. Thomas may only weigh 100 pounds, but this little lady can certainly pack it away.
Jansen spent the whole time cracking up and only had 2 wings. Wynn got through 4 wings and gave up. Sonia Thomas ate all 16 with no problem. So being able to pancake block people doesn’t mean much in this world.
Golic is a big guy. He was a defensive tackle on some very good Eagles defenses in the 90s under Buddy Ryan. But this is the same Mike Golic who pimped himself out of the NutriSystem commercials saying “I lost 51 pounds”. So maybe the lighter and more aerodynamic version will be better set for such a contest.
During the entire telecast, Greeny is in a baby blue HazMat suit. This is one of suits with the built in hood worn to clean up toxic disasters. He is so paranoid they will eat too much and puke all over, that he needs to be protected. I am wondering if the HazMat suit will soon become stylish.
One of their guests this morning was “ESPN, the nurse”, Nancy Melo. She let Golic know that she would be ready to perform the Heimlich Manuever if necessary. He surprisingly sounded relieved. She showed up to the contest equipped with a little pink bucket.
So I have been fascinated with Major League Eating, while being grossed out at the same time. I saw the Nathan’shot dog eating contest last year at Coney Island, and it’s just amazing. Joey Chesnut and Kobayashi are just unbelievable.
So the event is all set, Golic is to go up against 3 pros. Major League Eating President Richard Shea joins in for introductions and play by play. He and Greeny introduce the competitors:
First up is the #25 ranked eater, Pretty Boy Pete Devickos. He is 28, has an unkwnown weight, and was recently dumped by a girl named Tiffany. So far I am not impressed. And he’s just not that pretty.
Then comes the #4 ranked eater, Tim Janus – aka Eater-X. Now this is my type of eater. He may only weigh 165lbs, but what a show man. He comes out with a skull cap and his face painted like pro wrestler Road Warrior Hawk. The best part about this guy is that he left a trash talking message on the answering machine at the Golic household. I love the fact Janus threatened to eat in front of Golic’s family (which seems to have put the fear of God in Goic).
They go on to say Eater-X has records in eating Cannolis (26 large cannolis in 6mins), Ramen (10 lbs), Tamalis, and tiramisu (4 lbs in 6 minutes).
Then comes out Jason “Crazy Legs” Conti. This dude is off the wall but awesome, with the orange braids and all. Out of all of the guys I have seen, I think he's my favorite. He weighs in at 215lbs. and is more of marathon endurance eater, so this will be tough for him. He holds records for Buffet food (5.5 in 12 mins), pancakes, sweet corn, and green beans (2.71 lbs in 6 mins). And Shea says he once ate himself out of 8 cubic feet of popcorn.
Lastly Golic comes out with his arms raised, belly swaying, and screaming. He chest bumps one of the producers with his now 265 lbs, and nearly knocks the poor guy to the ground. Golic puts on his game face and then a “I dined with Mike Greenberg” bib.
Greeny remarks how unhappy he is that Golic is enjoying this too much.
Shea has a classic line, that Golic looks he’s ready to do damage like David Hasselhoff attacks mini bar. Shea is actually a funny and colorful character. He and his brother did PR for the Nathan’s contest, and decided to create Major League Eating. He describes himself as a social eater and predicted Golic would lose and badly.
The show’s 3 producers are standing behind each contestant, holding up numbers for how many wings have been eaten. Now this is a national big time show on the World Leader for sports, I am completely disappointed there were no the ring girls. Not even the girls who model at car shows… Come on now, the Rock, Scissors, Paper tournament got Leann Tweeden.
At about 2 minutes in, Golic looks like he is in trouble. He’s just not chewing fast enough as he crushes the wings in his hands and shovels in his face.
Shea comments that they’ll soon experience the Tina Fay effect – as it goes on, the wings get hot and hotter. Greeny comments how Fay is sneaky pretty from when he saw her on Letterman.
Golic lets out a big time belch and then throws food at Greenberg just before the contest ends. In the last 5 seconds, Golic shoves 4 wings in his mouth…. And he made sure not to spit out and chewed. Every person on that flight to Lousiville will pay for this move. They go to commercial as the producers tally up the score.
Crazy Legs-23 – and he continues to eat for the next 10+ minutes.
Eater X- 31
Pretty Boy - 22
Golic gets 4th place trophy, smaller than his head. Trophy has girl on the top.
They mention that each wing is roughly one once, so Eater-X ate about 2lbs in 3 minutes. He wound up winning a very nice sized trophy… I loved that it has a pig on the bottom.
Eater X proclaims that Golic pushed himself harder than any member of media ever has. He is waiting for an invitation to the Golic household, but Golic is scared his kids will get new hero.
Even though Pretty Boy got smoked, he had a great line when asked how he was feeling:
“I’m doing great and I’m ready to eat. The only time I stop eating is when I run out of money, time, or food”.
Overall the event was a little bit too hyped and the Cow Milking was better, but it still made for quality TV. It certainly would have been better had Golic actually puked, but I’ll take whatever entertainment I can get.
I always wondered what it would be like to be a part of an eating challenge. My wife always yells at me that I eat way way way too fast and too much. Although I am no Kobayashi, I’d figure I could hold my own.Ok, maybe not.
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