Stunning Moments in Eating History; Kobayashi to be Upset by the Chicago Tough Group

Stunning Moments in Eating History; Kobayashi to be Upset by the Chicago Tough Group

As many of you Chicago Tough fans have heard, world champion eater Kobayashi will be facing off against five ChicagoNow folks in an Italian beef eating contest.

All Kobayashi has to do is eat five Italian the span it takes five people to eat ONE.

The odds makers say that Kobayashi will win easily.  However, history has seen many guarantees go awry.  The following is a list of the greatest sports and competitive eating upsets.


This may seem like an odd goal, but during the summer of 1989 my brothers Adam and Tony dedicated themselves to destroying all soft drink records.  My brother Adam reached a point in the summer where he could take down a Super Big Gulp in 25 seconds.

No ice.

He would get on his bike outside the 7-11 and be done by the time he was barely outside the parking lot.

This is 100% true.  I was there.  Nobody has taken down a soft drink like my brother Adam.  Tony, his twin brother, tried valiantly...but he could never match.  I'm sure it gets to him daily.  Adam in '89 was like watching a healthy Bo Jackson.  It was one summer...for one summer he was the best.  My hats off to him.


My buddies and I played football in high school.  Between all of the lifting and sprinting we were in pretty good shape.  My buddy Jason was 6'7" 290 pounds and on his way to play football at the University of Wisconsin.

As many in the area know, El Famous Burrito burritos are the biggest in Chicagoland.  The only benefit of sitting down and completing one is the knowledge that you'll be on the toilet for two hours.  El Famous' gimmick for getting people to eat two burritos was that they'd give you a free t-shirt.  When you're 18, you'll pretty much do anything for free stuff.  Watching Jay perform that afternoon was akin to watching Greg Maddux attack a strike zone over nine innings.  Jay sat down and pounded the first one.  Then, meticulously, he took his time with the second.  His spaces between bites, his pacing, his timing for drinks...he did it all.  Hats off to him...and I think he still has the shirt.


Ever accomplish something and you don't even realize it?

Warren Moon was having one of the greatest passing performances in NFL history.  The Oilers had taken a 28-3 lead over the Buffalo Bills in Orchard Park.  I had just finished a thin crust frozen pizza.  When Bubba McDowell's interception return put the Oilers up 35-3, my brother put in another pizza.  However, my brother was called in to pizza!

When you're 12, you don't think of things like, 'I'm not gonna eat this, I just ate.'  You just think, 'Hell, yeah!  Free food!'  After grabbing the pizza, I sat down to watch what I thought was going to be the conclusion of the greatest passing performance in post-season history.  Well... didn't go exactly as planned.  The Bills comeback was so fast and so furious that I didn't even realize I was eating another full pizza.  By the time the Bills had pulled within 4 at 35-31, the pizza was done.

Some equate the Bills' comeback with Frank Reich.  I equate it to two frozen pizzas and one hell of an afternoon watching football.

Uncle Fred Takes Down a Whole Turkey

My uncle Fred used to weigh about 400 pounds.  He is a fire chief in the Chicagoland area...and is a great story to any individual struggling with weight.  Fred lost over 150 pounds after reaching his top weight.

Fred's weight issues were founded on some massive eating habits.  Some of these habits he continued post-diet.  On one occasion, Fred sat down to 'have some turkey'.  He wound up eating the whole turkey.  Now, you ask, 'Wow, a whole turkey, really?'  Yup...but not what you think.

He at the whole f'n turkey.  We're talking everything sans 'parts' of bones.  He even took down some of the bone.  This is not a joke.  The ole Fred didn't mess around.  These days, I'm not sure he can turn the trick...but he's the most epic eater I've ever encountered.


Remember when Joe Namath upset the Colts in Super Bowl III?  The 'Miracle on Ice' hockey team of 1980 beating the Soviets?  The Giants beating the undefeated Patriots in the Super Bowl?

Keep those in your memory bank.  You'll remember where you were when five ChicagoNow representatives shut down the greatest eater on earth.  Folks, it happens tomorrow.  11:00 a.m. Central Standard Time.

The Colts never knew how good Nate Snell was running the football.  The Soviets underestimated goalie Jim Craig.  The Patriots didn't have an answer for the Giants pass rush...

...and Kobayashi will not have an answer for my passion.

This is for my brother, Jason, my uncle, and all that have ate before me...we SHALL be victorious!



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  • Since Kobayashi's success with hot dogs (of a brand that would make me sick) is based on his incredible amount of suction, it is necessary to set rules for this contest. For instance, the Italian Beefs (known as "Chicago Beef: in Nathan's territory) will go down much faster if "soggy" than "damp", if the peppers are roasted, and if the bread is more like a big hot dog bun than a crusty Italian bread.

    And, if they put on a lot of hot giardiniera, the sandwiches may go down, but they may not stay down.

    Sort of like saying you ate two frozen pizzas, but leaving it ambiguous whether they were still frozen when you ate them. Again, that would have been a better feat if they were two Lou Malnati's double cheese with sausage pan pizzas.

  • In reply to jack:

    He ate six in the time it took me to eat ONE! And I ate mine in 1:20. Unreal. It was a heavy dip, no giardiniera. Alas, I will be ready for next time, Jack!

  • In reply to Captain Meatball:

    As in any sport, you gotta practice.

    And, as indicated above, I don't think he chews, just inhales.

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