July 30th, 2003



It took a lot of persuading, and ultimately several death threats, but my girlfriend finally talked me into going to Costco with her last night.

It’s not that I don’t like going to Costco, it’s that I absolutely hate it. It has virtually everything I can’t stand about shopping: the hectic crowds, the long lines, and the whole idea of you thinking you’re saving money by buying stuff there when in fact you’ll only be able to finish about a third of it and end up throwing the rest of that crap away thereby negating the supposed savings you thought you were getting by buying it there.

There are some redeeming factors though. The large bottles of Goose for $47. The fact that you can buy a cheesecake, a suede jacket, and a 36” TV under a roof that's just slightly smaller than Iowa. And the Costco hot dog stand.

I fricking love hot dogs. With the right set of condiments, they can taste so damn good, it's as if God himself came down and processed the meats. And after a hard session of shopping at Costco, I was famished enough to eat five of those babies. Or so I thought. My weak ass got full after only two-and-a-half of the quarter-pound polish dogs.

Afterward, I couldn’t help but think of that Hello Kitty-sized Japanese guy who wolfed down fifty-and-a-half hot dogs in 12 minutes. So when I got home, I went and checked out the site for the International Federation of Competitive Eating and found many other eating records. Some of them might make you want to purge yourself just by reading it, but I honestly think I came close to the shrimp-eating record seven years ago at the Mirage Casino buffet.

A sample listing …

Beef Tongue
3 pound 3 ounces pickled beef tongue whole
12 minutes
Dominic Cardo

7 quarter-pound sticks, salted butter
5 minutes
Don Lerman

Cow Brains
57 (17.7 pounds)
15 minutes
Takeru Kobayashi

49 glazed
8 minutes
Eric Booker

11 1/4 Quarter-pound Burgers
10 minutes
Donald Lerman

Ice Cream
1 gallon, 9 ounces of vanilla ice cream
12 minutes
Edward "Cookie" Jarvis

4 32-ounce bowls mayonnaise
8 minutes
Oleg Zhornitskiy

168 Acme Oysters
10 Minutes
Crazy Legs Conti

3 1/2 pounds pancakes & bacon
12 minutes
Crazy Legs Conti

4 pounds 9 ounces spot shrimp
12 minutes
Charles Hardy

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