A-Bomb and ...

Eating contests and Eating challenges around Kona & Denver

Cause It's Time

So this guy at work wants to go back to school to get his mba. He is always busy and has 2 kids. He wanted to go to a traditional school, but how would he find time? He’s finally realized that and has been looking into online schools. He’s checked out a couple most notably University of Phoenix. I told him to check out Capella University. They are accredited and offer a bunch of different programs. Right now they have students from all over the US and from all over the globe – like 60+ countries. Anyway, we’ll see how it goes.

Up and Away

UPDATE 11/29/06 7:45am - Indeed. It snowed a bit, traffic sucked, but the light rail whipped at 55mph all the way! Cars, ha!

I had been on vacation for the past week so I had not gone to the office. Before today I had been riding the bus to work, thanks to the wonderful people at RTD. A huge highway project - like $880 million, was completed a few weeks ago (early and under budget), and a glorious part of it directly affected my commute.

Light rail! No more buses for me! No more transfers! No more waiting! My pre-light rail commute involved 2 or 3 buses, one or two transfers, and time wasted waiting for the bus. On-to-off time about an hour. Now it's one train and 20 minutes! Very sweet!

Here is the driver's box. See that joystick knob thing on the left? I guess that's all the driver needs - pull back to BRAKE, press forward to GO.

Art was commissioned for the new light rail stations. All of the stations have these benches with stained glass backs.

It's snowing now, so it's easy to say the morning commute will suck for cars and buses. Before snow meant an hour-and-a-half commute. With the light rail, I bet it will be 20 non-affected minutes!


Is Dave in need of an intervention?

Grey Street

The Challenge at Cheeburger Cheeburger happened Saturday. The turnout was more than I expected! But it turned out well for everyone - getting to be a part of two records being set and enjoying some good friends and greasy food!

As you remember, when I ate the two Pounders a couple of weeks ago the CC manager there mentioned the Colorado record for Pounders eaten in one sitting was 4. So we had set the challenge boundary that way: eat 4 plus a bit more to set a new record. Later I found out from the franchise owner that the Colorado record was not 4 but in fact 2:

-----Original Message-----
From: Rob Miller [mailto:xxxxxxxx@cheeburger.com]
Sent: Thursday, November 09, 2006 1:46 PM
To: Lane, Garrison A
Subject: Re: Pounder

I dont see a problem Andrew, BUT I do not know where you got the idea that 4 is the record? I know for a fact that the best I know of is 2. Let us know when you are coming.

Rob Miller
Cheeburger Cheeburger
Parker Colorado

But I was going for 4 no matter what.

Cut to the eating. Thankfully we get to sit on the patio. It's a nice enough day, our party is 16 people, and it's easier because the Parker location is pretty small, dim, and it smells like greasy hamburgers, fries and onion rings.

We order. 7 people get Pounders. They would all finish so we get one record there - the Cheeburger Cheeburger in Sanibel Island, Florida had the national franchise record of simultaneous people to be eating Pounders at the same time - 6. It's now Parker, Colorado with 7. The 6 guys who ordered Pounders got toppings on theirs. Some a couple toppings, and one guy went all out and got a good setup:

Over 2 pounds. Very nice! I've gotta go some time and get lots of toppings -- it looks quite good!

The two guys who put me up to this also enjoyed Pounders themselves:

So I begin:

The 1st is quite OK. Nice medium rare, hot, actually not too too greasy and tastes good. Right on cue the waitress brings out the 2nd. It's OK too but not as good as the 1st. More well done, greasy but hot. Kind of like the chef made it along with #1 and just put it back on the grill to warm it back up. #3 is the same as #2. Toward the end of #3 is when I start thinking too much.

I have had T weigh each Pounder as it came out. Burgers 1, 2, and 3 total 4.13 pounds.

Half-way through #3 I think "Hey, poundage-wise I'm there. Yes, the challenge was eat 4 Pounders. So another way to look at it is eat 4 pounds of Cheeburger Cheeburger hamburgers". I guess I was looking for a way to end this because #4 could have gone down but it would have taken a while. If I had to make an excuse I guess the timing was not the best - Thanksgiving a couple days before, and me filling up on very delicious Cure 81 ham the night before. But there is no excuse.

Thankfully, Kirk and Cale are OK with this interpretation. I think Cale grudgingly OK'd the revision, but since there were no contractual defined terms for the challenge there was room to maneuver.

Be sure to view the Flickr slideshow to see the entire set of photos. And one guy there took some shots too so I will put those up when I get them.

Thanks again to everyone who came out! You're part of two records - 7 people simultaneously eating Pounders, and 3 Pounders in one sitting by one person. Good times!

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Hot Schwag

Here are some photos of the stuff the eaters got at the posole competition in Acoma, NM. Definitely this is the coolest stuff I've gotten at a IFOCE event. I mean other than the Goldenpalace.com/Goldenpalace.net jerseys! Those are sweet!!

Front of the shirt.

Back of the shirt. Great design!

The design on the apron. And the credential.

Here I am sportin' the apron.

Close-up of the credential.

Drive In, Drive Out

The plan for this trip was to do make it a 24 hour trip. One long day. November 18, 2006. Denver to Santa Fe to Acoma and back. Here is the chronological recap:

0200 - The alarm sounds after a few hours of sleep. I roll out of bed, wake T up, and hop in the shower to help me wake up and get going.

0242 - Me, T, Honey & Max are loaded in the Aveo. Rented it. I'd rather punish a rental than the E or T.

So until we get to the New Mexico line there's a bunch of this:

0615 - we are just outside Raton, NM. The dawn breaks:

Just awesome. But more of this:

0900 - we roll into Santa Fe. We find T some Starbucks, walk around a bit and hang out on the plaza so Honey and Max can get some fresh air. Nice day.

1200 - we hit the road for Acoma. We're about an hour outside of Albuquerque and it's another hour to Acoma. The scenery on the way to Acoma is just amazing. Easily this is the most scenic competition location to get to so far.

1430 - we get to the Sky City Casino & Hotel. Hang out with Honey & Max.

1500 - we go in the hotel and find the banquet room where the event is being held. I thought it might be outside, but no. The event is the World Posole Cooking and Eating Championships so there is more going on than just the eating. Mike Castellano is there to emcee.

I've said it before and I'll say it again. I think he is the best of the IFOCE emcee bunch. I have been in competitions with all of the current emcees. They all have their own style, they're all good, and you kind of know what to expect. With Mike you get a very smoothly-run event: no table confusion - you here, then you here, then here. He always huddles up, thoroughly explains the rules to the eaters, and makes sure everyone understands what's up.

Here is a look at the 1 pound bowls of posole that are being weighed and lined up. Later it is said that there is 35 gallons prepared.

Here is Michael going over things before we take the stage. The Mad Stork is at the left and Helen Haggerty is next to him.

Before the contest Kate had sent an email detailing a couple rules - part of the bowl had to touch the table at all times and the utensil had to be used. Mike reviewed the change - you could pick up the bowl but your lips or mouth could not touch the bowl and the utensil had to be used.

Helen gets set to take the stage. She leaned over to tie her shoes right as I snapped the picture:

The lighting in the room made for some crappy videos. And I also had our camera in the "good" mode instead of "best" so the photos did not come out too well. But here's one that did:

Anyone who has been keeping up knows how big a fan I am or Carlene. There is no way I can describe how great it was to get this picture!! Thank you, Carlene, you are the best!

Michael begins the introductions. There is a problem: the normal music that plays as the eaters are called up cannot be turned up enough - I guess there's no 11 - so Michael gets the mariachi band to play! For the introductions and for the duration of the competition! That's really cool! I wonder if it's a first? This again shows how smooth Mike is.

We are called up in this order:

Richard "Crosstown" Traffic (he is 65 years old!)
Frank Roblano (he is 72 years old!!)
Bob Crah
Julian Chavez
Freddie Gomez
Aurelio Gonzalez (3rd in 2004 posole contest)
Todd "The Butler" Yeates
Lee Diguello
Mad Stork
Helen Haggerty
Wild Bill Myers
Erik Denmark

The competition was 12 minutes long. The posole was good, not too spicy, the hominy was not too hard and it had big chunks of tasty pork. With the mouth rule I don't think anyone shovelled the posole in their mouth. I think everyone had a cereal technique. Albeit much faster than a casual breakfast.

In the end, it was Pat. He absolutely crushed by downing 9 pounds 2.25 ounces. But close behind him was newcomer Helen Haggerty with 8 pounds 10.75 ounces. WOW! Rich LeFevre placed third with 8 pounds 8 ounces. Erik pulled 4th and Mongo was 5th. Bill and Aurelio downed about 6 I believe. But the story was Helen. She is a recent Bryn Mawr college graduate. Helen wore her lucky field hockey skirt and a red beret.

1730 - With the festivities over, T and I go back to see Da Honey & Max. By 6pm we are on the road toward Santa Fe. Dinner. Maybe some soft serve too.

We get to the Flying Tortilla. I get a Frito Pie:

But I cannot finish it. And soft server? Not tonight.

2030 - hit the highway back to Denver.

0302 - we are back! 24:20!! I wanted to do it in 24 hours, so being 20 minutes over is disappointing. We could DEFINITELY have come in under 24. Next time. I was going to take a picture of my eyes, but I had to get sleep.

As soon as I can I will post videos of the introductions and the actual competition. There is video of the winners being announced, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jRltfZyn1EQ, but it does suffer some technical difficulties for about 30 seconds.

And check out the Flickr slideshow to see all the photos. There are more in the slideshow than here in the story.



Me almost 4 pounds of posole. Just short of my goal of 4. Posole went in fine but just not down.

1 Pat - 9+ pounds
2 Helen. A really cute but shy girl. She has her sights set on Sonya
3 Rich
4 Erik
5 Mongo

Very fun and More later

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So Glad

I just realized that I've never explained the 'dogsarefunyes' in the page URL. There's no story I guess, dogs rule! We people should be more like dogs. I don't mean we should poop in a neighbor's yard, but we should get along with anybody. The way dogs do. They could care less if you're Democrat or Republican or Muslim or Christian or Agnostic or Black or White or Red. Dogs rule.

Here are ours -

On the right is Honey. Shiba Inu/Austrailian cattle dog. We adopted her from the Denver Dumb Friends League in 1999. She's now 12 or so. She can't hear to well now and has some nasty cataracts developing, but it's Da Honey. On the left is Maxine. We adopted her from the Denver Dumb Friends League in 2003. She is 5 or 6 or so. We like her beard.

Honey in their chair.

Max waiting to go outside.

Honey sleeping. Full name is Honey D Dog. Also known as Larry.

Max in their chair. Her full name is Maxine Lou Lane.

There they are. Honey & Max. Pet A and Pet B. They are making the drive with us to Acoma.

Fool to Think

The Cheeburger Cheeburger logos are black and white versions. Keep reading and you'll know why.

These two guys at work heard and read about my Pounder experience at Cheeburger Cheeburger. We got to talking about it, the Denver area Cheeburger Cheeburger record and the national Cheeburger Cheeburger record.

This is one of the guys.

The other guy is very mysterious and I guess does not allow photos of him to be taken.

Though the Denver area Cheeburger Cheeburger record still needs to be clarified, I think it is 4 Pounders. After some more talk they kind of challenge me to match that record. No, they up the challenge: set the record -- do 4+. One dude will buy one of the Pounders and the other dude will pony up for two of them. Enablers! Giddy up!

The big event will go down, as of now, on November 25th at 1PM at the Parker location of Cheeburger Cheeburger. There are already some people who will be there to lend their support. If there are enough people there who want to participate, there will be two side events so people do not get bored watching a guy eat.

1. The Cheeburger Cheeburger in Sanibel Island, Florida has the national franchise record of simultaneous people to be eating Pounders at the same time - 6. That would not be too hard to beat if enough people show up. Imagine the glory!
2. There will be a friendly competition to eat the Pounder the fastest. Cheeburger Cheeburger has not kept this information so there is no official record right now. The winner will get their picture on the wall, a Cheeburger Cheeburger t-shirt, bragging rights and set a national record for eating a Pounder the fastest. Woo hoo!

Anyone who wants to show up to take part in the festivities can come to the Cheeburger Cheeburger located at 11290 South Twenty Mile Road in Parker, Colorado on November 25th at 1PM.

Further details are still being worked out. Check back here for additional information as it becomes available.

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An' Another Thing

After reading what's out there about the Skim Supreme, I wanted to provide some visuals and do a test. That way you can make up your own mind. We're not buying this nasty sh*t again, but if you want to you can do whatever you want.

Here are three shots of it on cereal this morning:

In this before-pouring shot see the cap? In the picture you can barely see how it leaves a whitish film on the right side of the cap. And look at how thick and creamy the milk in the jug looks.

And here you see the Krispies in the middle of the shot. Compare their color to the surrounding Krispies. It's the white film again.

And same thing here

These two pictures below show an evaporative test I did by pouring a little of the "milk" on the bottom of a mug. If you look closely you can make out a couple of bright white areas of some kind of solid.

Below are photos of the stain that is left after the liquid has evaporated. Again look closely and the two bright white areas are still there.

The whole splotch from where the liquid evaporated is hard, it's kind of like the shell of an M&M. It's really quite disturbing. I wonder if there is a coating of this stuff all the way down my throat?

Skim Supreme: never again.