Buns and a Prayer

⊆ 2:20 PM by Adam Liebendorfer | , , , . | ˜ 1 comments »

I've been looking for a way to revitalize my blog, and I think I may have just found it.

It was a day shy of 11 months ago that I gained fame.

It was the Fourth of July. I had the day off from work, I remember. I never thought I would have preferred the halls of my old high school to the scorching summer heat, but it truly was a scorcher.

Not knowing what to do with myself, I rode my bike around aimlessly for much of the day, until I heard about the eating contest, I'd say around 1 p.m. The entry money was due at 2, so I rushed back, got the $5 to be in it, and rushed to the local hot dog shack to begin my path to greatness.

When time came compete, my parents came with me, still intrigued that I, then a 6-foot-2, 165-pound cross country runner, was competing in an eating contest. Not only that, but I sat during the car ride with my head held high.

We get there, I see a girl I went to school with but hadn't seen for a few years. We exchanged friendly words, but then I learned that she was in the contest too. I wasn't worried; I politely dismissed her a competitor, and she did the same to me. By the time they brought the dogs out I was hungry.

They blew the whistle and it was very quickly a two-man battle between me and an employee of the hot dog shop. We tied at 7 a piece. He puked. I won. $35 all for me.

Since then I didn't think much of my hot dog eating exploits (I had two hot dogs after that; I was restricted by the time limit). But now, as the weather has gotten truly summery and I'm waiting for next the dining hall opens, I can't help but wonder if I'm squandering a talent, for in the words of the famous Steve Prefontaine:

"To give any less than your best is to sacrifice a gift."

Anybody can be an expert on anything these days with a simple Google search. And that's exactly what I'm becoming. I'm learning the in's and out's of competitive eating. There are certain techniques eaters use to hold more volume, like water training where somebody drinks a gallon of water in 30 seconds. The blog I read about that one suggested not to do that though: It can tear stomach lining or induce water poisoning.

Spartan acts like that beckon young men. Go big or go home.