Sunday, February 19, 2012
Yesterday's chicken nugget eating contest wrapped up in under two hours. I won the contest for the fourth time with a record total of 212 nuggets, exactly double the 106-total my predecessor posted in the very first Chick Fil A (La Habra) contest.
The new women's division crowned a brand new champion in Cheyenne. She ate 50 nuggets and outlasted several talented opponents. After the contest, Cheyenne told me she decided to enter the contest after reading one of my old blog post's about Chick Fil A. Well, those were certainly very kind words. There was something cool about getting someone new into competitive eating.
Now, onto the interesting details of the contest. My main competition in the event was Johnnie Excel. At the start, he dominated the proceedings by eating 50 nuggets at a very brisk pace. I was behind Excel for quite awhile. He pushed me to eat aggressively. Johnnie slowed down around 100 nuggets, mostly because they were incredibly hot. I also believe that the sodium overload was setting in.
When Johnnie was almost at 120 nuggets, I was nearly at 130. This was 30 minutes into the event. I hadn't expected to take the lead that soon, knowing how quickly Excel can eat from past experiences. He decided not to drag out the two hour contest and stopped eating after 120 nuggets. This would actually be good enough for second place. In all honesty, the nuggets were viciously salty and greasy. It's not the type of food you want to eat for the long haul. One day, we will have a true capacity battle with a more palatable food.
This contest reflects a major accomplishment for me. It's my first-ever contest victory over Excel, though I would characterize it as a forfeit win. Johnnie was not maxed out when he stopped. Salted out maybe, maxed out no. I'm going to have to work very hard if I want to best Excel in another competition, short game or long.
Third place went to John Rivera, who ate 110 nuggets in his first-ever eating contest. He represented the High Desert well. There were people there cheering for him and he had a great time. I'm looking for him to do more damage in future competitions. His speed with hot dogs isn't bad at all. Fourth place went to The Spicialist, who ate 100 nuggets in a very non-serious effort. In fact, he ate 20 nuggets hands-free and doused several of his nuggets in ghost pepper flakes.
Though I broke my own previous record by 6 nuggets, I was not full at 212. The Spicialist told me not to go further, mostly because of the vast sodium intake I was dealing with. That, and to leave more ground to cover in future contests. There were still 20 minutes to go and I have no doubts that 230 was within my ability. Next time!
Special thanks go to Frank Paulin, who put up a personal best of 90 nuggets in his third appearance at a Chick Fil A contest. He weighed samples of nuggets and determined that I ate nearly 8 lbs. His share was 3.3 lbs.
John Kim participated as well. He ate 40 nuggets but didn't push himself to any limits. I'm looking forward to participating with him again next month at RA Sushi. Mary Bowers was on her way to winning the women's title but suffered an unfortunate reversal of fortune after consuming 50+ nuggets early on.
A little salt on an open wound perhaps, but she was a good sport about it. She finished the day smiling, which is more than I could say for myself.