July 4, 2007

"Kobayashi bowed and was... humble in defeat. But he also pointed straight at Mr. Chestnut and yelled, "I will definitely beat him next year."

So the American Joey Chestnut has brought the hot-dog eating crown back to the U.S.A.

I don't have the video of this (yet), but to tide you over, here's video of Kobayashi versus a bear.


Gahrie said...

We're #1!!! We're #1!!!

Eli Blake said...


This is what it made me think of:

A contest that celebrates how much food we can waste (notice that neither of these guys is fat, most competitive eaters take laxatives after the contest so it doesn't even stay in them very long,) when there are people in the world who starve to death every day and would give what little they have just to have one of those hot dogs.

OK. I know. Bleeding heart liberal and all that. But nonetheless, I will say it, because it's true.

Ann Althouse said...

"there are people in the world who starve to death every day and would give what little they have just to have one of those hot dogs."

Are you willing to aim that critcism at everyone who overconsumes food?

Unknown said...

"...the judges spent several minutes in a somewhat bizarre recount. To determine a winner, the judges counted the scraps left on the plates."

I'm glad the champion is not considering a lawsuit...that I know of. We can all rest easy.

Eli Blake said...

are you willing to aim that criticism at everyone who overconsumes food?

Perhaps to a degree (and then plead occasionally guilty), but not so much that, as overconsumes it wastefully.

I don't think eating four hot dogs when the RDA would indicate two is nearly as much of a transgression as eating 66 and then taking laxatives in order to crap it all out right away.

Further, if you read my post carefully, you will notice that I am not criticizing the participants, I am criticizing the contest itself. A contest that celebrates waste.

I'm not arguing that the organizers have the right to hold such a contest, but I am arguing that it is in very poor taste and blind to the needs of millions of people who could desperately use some of the food that we waste.

Unknown said...

but I am arguing that it is in very poor taste and blind to the needs of millions of people who could desperately use some of the food that we waste.

the problems with starvation in the world have very little to do with a food shortage and a lot to do with distribution (or lack thereof), corrupt or non-exitant governments, and lousy infrastructure.

unles you are volunteering to personally deliver those 120 hotdogs to some poor people in darfur, i don't know why you criticize the contest. and if you are willing, to personally go to darfur and feed 120 or so starving people, i will buy you those 120 hotdogs myself.

and if you counter with something about starving americans, well seriously, do you really think that 'wasting' those hotdogs has any contribution on that problem at all?

Ann Althouse said...

Eli, I know, but I'm testing how far the idea goes. I criticized Gore the other day for contributing to global warming by being very fat. He consumes twice as much food as he needs to maintain a normal weight.

The guys in the eating contest are normal weight. They occasionally overconsume, but on the whole, they eat less, I think, than a fat person. So if the concern is with people taking more than their share, you should be critical of all the fat people. So you should say it's in "poor taste" to be fat.

Synova said...

I think that I'd agree that waste is offensive.


I'm not that offended with eating contests, I just am not even a little bit interested in them.

When it comes to food and wasting it by *not* eating it... I realized one day that if I eat it when I don't need it, it's every bit as wasted as if I left it on the plate. The answer to that is smaller portions, but that's not always an option.

And on the larger "sinful to waste" scale my opinion is formed by a discussion between bible students when I was 19-ish about when did having "things" become sinful. Was the lady with all the expensive jewelry not a good Christian? And couldn't the argument be reasonably made that three good pairs of jeans is excessive materialism?

As for fat people... fat people don't necessarily eat more than thin people, and even thin people could probably get by on a whole lot less food (or different types) than they do.

The bigger issue is that we don't work hard enough and we don't face constant food-insecurity and periodic famine the way our bodies were designed to do.

Gahrie said...

Eli, brother...you have got to pull that stick out of your ass.

But to address your point...

The U.S. provides far more aid by any measure than any nation in the world. Be it government aid, corporate charity or private charity, no one else in the world comes close.

I think we have earned the right to have a hot dog eating contest or two.

As has been stated earlier, the hunger and starvation that exists today is not due to a lack of food.

In Somilia, the tribal gangs extort and steal much of the food aid sent to the country. Their infighting disrupts farming.

In Zimbabwe, Mugabe has turned a prosperous, food exporter nation with a high life expectancy (in the 60's) to a famine plagued, economic basket case with the lowest life expectancy in the world.

These two examples are not the exceptions, they are the rule.

Doug said...

If we want to talk about real waste, the conservative in me is shocked that a poverty advocate would spend $1250 on a hair cut. I pay $16, so if John Edwards used my barber, he would spend the remaining $1,234 on hot dogs for the poor.

My problem with this is that some call these guys athletes. I am impressed by what they do, it is amazing, but they seem more like contortionists than athletes. However, had I known it was on ESPN, I would have watched it. Unfortunately, I figured out it was televised after it was over.

vet66 said...


Better to count scraps than to wait for the 'inevitable passage' of time.

Reminds me of the Star Trek episode Wrath of Khan and the Kobayashi Maru scenario. Maybe Kobayashi's Revenge, or The Wrath of The Wurst!

Wade Garrett said...

If fat people contribute to global warning, then the state of Wisconsin's got some explaining to do. When I lived in Madison, every time I travelled to Chicago or D.C. or New York, I was amazed at how many fewer overweight people I saw on the streets. The students in Madison are typically healthy and fit, but its surprisingly how relatively few fit or thing people above, say, age 35 you see.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the bear link, Ann!

Near the end, it looked like the bear was eying Koyayashi's hot dog pile (are you going to finsh those?)