Thus, before the serious noshing began, we know we were in the presence of:
> A hush puppy eating champion (mmmm, hush puppies, a speed-eating favorite of mine when I vacationed in Myrtle Beach, South Caylina, as a chile; many’s the time I groaned through the night in misery from the stomach aches caused by eating too many hush puppies. And then woke up in the morning begging my mom for a breakfast of hush puppies.)
> An ice cream eating champion. Did you know that expert ice cream eaters drink hot coffee during their competitions? It helps “keep their core from getting too cold.” Sheesh, that starts to make competitive eating sound kind of science-y, which kinda barfs all the fun out of it, at least for me.
Then there were the nicknames:
• The Velvet Teddy Bear;
• King Voodoo;
• The Houdini of Cuisini;
• and the Deep Fried Diva.
The last of these nicknames belongs to a rather cute little 26-year-old blonde named Meredith Boxberger. The key word in that sentence is not “cute,” which I’m actually going to ask Republican Editor Aaron Kirchoff to strike from this article, lest my wife get ticked off. No, the key word is little. The emcee told us she weighs only 50 kilos! Which is metric for “not very much.”
If you Google Ms. Boxberger, you find that she’s an MBA candidate at Michigan State University, and once owned a Little Caesar’s pizza store. The annual revenues at her location exceeded $450,000. Mostly from food she ate herself, practicing for her competitive eating career, which is going pretty well – her “Deep Fried Diva” website says she’s ranked the 31st best competitive eater in the world. And she came in 4th at the 2013 Nathan’s Famous competition in Coney Island.