As I get closer and closer to the big 3-0, I’m trying to check more things off my “Things to do before I leave my twenties behind” list. I still haven’t traveled to a lot of exotic locales, haven’t gotten my crazy tattoo (yet), or ran a marathon (I’ll get to the treadmill…tomorrow). But one thing I knew I could check off on my birthday was a fun challenge, win a food-eating challenge.
Mojoe’s Burger Joint offers up the Hall of Fame Burger, a 1 lb burger, cooked the way you want it and with your choice of toppings. I’ve been eyeing this thing since Tony and I first moved to Raleigh, but could never summon the guts to order it. In terms of a challenge, it’s not going to beat the 4th of July Hot Dog eating challenge, and it probably wouldn’t make Adam Richman break a sweat, but it’s still a lot of food. The best part was we headed to Mojoe’s after my annual physical. Heart rate: perfect. Weight: Average for my height. All vitals good. Now it was time to mess them up with a pound of ground beef!
Taking on a challenge like this takes strategy. I knew I needed to load up on toppings so my palate wouldn’t be bored; pickles, bacon, bleu cheese, ketchup, and mustard. I limited the amount of sweet tea I drank so I wouldn’t fill up. I kept repeating to myself, “Eye of the Tiger, Eye of the tiger…” Yeah, I was ready.
It took forever for the burger to be cooked and when it showed up at the table, I was ravenous. Tony and I took a moment to marvel at the size of the burger, it was literally the biggest burger I have ever seen in person. I started doubting whether or not I could do this. Either I was going to bust the button off of my jeans or end up making a big, embarrassing mess when my stomach couldn’t take any more. But hey, you’re only young once and there will come a time when eating this much food would be unthinkable. I was ready to chow down.
I was surprised, the first half of my burger was gone in a couple of minutes. The burger was cooked perfectly and was juicy and all of the toppings I chose added a nice touch of tanginess. The best trick of all was that I didn’t stop eating. Not to talk, not to drink, it felt like I stopped breathing for a second even. I knew the minute I stopped eating or even slowed down my chewing, it would finally hit my brain that I was full.
The second half was hard, but I powered through. The only time I felt like I would need to stop was when I got a bite overwhelming filled with bacon. As it turns out, too much bacon can be a bad thing, as the smokiness overtook my palatte for a second. I got my bearings back and was amazed when I popped the last bite in my mouth, SUCCESS!
So, Mojoe’s took my pic and if you look hard, you might find me with the other Hall of Fame winners. No, it wasn’t healthy, and I don’t know if I’d take on another food challenge (well, maybe I’d do a hot wing challenge). But, it was fun and a great way to spend a birthday. It reminded no matter how old I get, I can’t forget to take risks, no matter how silly they may be.