Saturday, 20 December 2014

The wrong sort of pie

That's quite enough of all the intro-spective burblings. So now for something completely different. The wacky world of pie-eating champion-ships and the young lad on work experience who made a fatal blunder.

The Annual World Pie-Eating Championships in Wigan - now in their 22nd year - were reaching another gripping finale as the competitors chomped and chewed their way through the traditional meat and potato pie.

The winner - Barry Rigby, 37, from Wigan, a warehouse supervisor and part-time fitness instructor - was very pleased with himself for scoffing his pie in a lightning speed of 42.6 seconds.

But his moment of glory was short-lived when the contest was declared null and void because the pies were too big. Instead of being the required 12 centimetres across and 3½ centimetres deep, they were found to be twice the size.

The work-experience guy had mixed up his orders and delivered the 24 competition pies to a divorce party instead of the pie-eating contest.

It's not reported how Barry reacted to the devastating news. Did he take it philosophically, shrugging his shoulders and saying it was just one of those things? Or was he apoplectic with rage, smashing the furniture and vowing never to eat another meat and potato pie? We can only guess.

Tony Callaghan, owner of the contest venue Harry's Bar, says "Everyone took it in their stride and demonstrated the professionalism of pie-eating at this level." I suspect that was tongue in cheek - or even savoury pie in cheek.

Don't laugh. The world of competitive pie-eating is very serious. Very serious indeed. Last year pie-lovers from as far as Australia flocked to Wigan in the hope of taking home the coveted crown. Aspiring pie-eating champions spend the whole year whittling down their chewing times to a record-breaking minimum.

If you think you could do better than them - it's just pie in the sky.

23 comments:

Rummuser said...

Why didn't you participate?

Nick said...

Ramana: I'm a vegetarian. Also, my agent thought it would create the wrong image. Pie-guzzling doesn't sit well with the erudite, intellectual persona the public associates with me.

Wisewebwoman said...

Should be a symbol for our unlimited consumerism brought to a very basic level. Next they'll be measuring turds or maybe I missed that particular competition.

XO
WWW

Nick said...

www: Maybe not the eating of a single pie, but those contests where you have to eat as many pies as you can cram down your throat are certainly a graphic symbol of consumerism. I look forward to the first turd-measuring event....

Helen Devries said...

From what I have been told about Australian meat pies no wonder they go to Wigan...less chance of being scalded by the gravy...

Nick said...

Helen: Is that so? Being a vegetarian, I've never tried an Aussie meat pie. Tender slices of succulent kangaroo, yum yum....

Bijoux said...

I'm not sure I could even eat one.

Grannymar said...

I've never been a meat an tatie pie person. All that pastry does nothing for me.

susie said...

That reminds me of a hot dog eating contest. Usually the skinniest guy wins.

Nick said...

Bijoux: I certainly couldn't. And I always wonder what they shovel into meat pies. Mechanically retrieved meat residues probably.

Grannymar: Me as well. I hate it when there's too much pastry and too little filling and you can barely taste the filling.

Nick said...

Susie: Hot dogs are even more suspect than meat pies. They contain meat trimmings and fat and artificial preservatives among other things. How people can eat a whole load of them is beyond me.

kylie said...

i was gonna say i could never scoff a pie that fast unless it was pre-cooled, but i see you have that covered

Nick said...

Kylie: I do? The report doesn't say if they're hot or cold. From the photos it looks as if they're raw - the meat is pale red and the pastry is white. Yuk!

Nick said...

Kylie: The photo on the blog post isn't actually from the contest, so don't go by that!

Keith Smith said...

". . .the erudite, intellectual persona the public associates with me". That is a joke isn't it?

Confucius him say "Self praise is no recommendation".

I am a robot.

Nick said...

Keith: Sorry, you're still being fooled by my dead-pan humour....

The partly-informed, pseudo-intellectual persona is probably more accurate.

I always suspected you were an inter-planetary alien.

Liz Hinds said...

Just catching up - or trying to - with your posts. I have been neglectful of the blogging world of late but like Arnie I'll be back.

In case I don't get by again, have a wonderful Christmas, Nick and Jenny!

Nick said...

Thanks, Liz. I hope you have a fabulous Christmas too. May Santa grant all your requests - however naughty you may have been!

Secret Agent Woman said...

You know, I've always been repulsed by eating contests. There's just something grotesque to me about people shoveling in food like that.

kylie said...

well i was actually referring to Helen Devries' comment about scalding gravy. Pies always need about ten minutes of tentative nibbling before they are edible....though their edibility is completely in question at all times

Nick said...

Agent: Me too. What on earth is enjoyable about cramming down food as if it's a matter of life and death? Food should be eaten slowly and savoured.

Kylie: Ah, I see. But she was referring to Aussie pies, not the Wigan variety. You're right, pies are very variable. They can be delicious or totally disgusting, depending on what's been stuffed into them.

Anonymous said...

I thought it was a number of pies you had to eat. One pie is fine. You can always throw it up afterwards.

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Nick said...

Bikehikebabe: They still have the "all you can eat" contests, but the single-pie contest is a lot kinder on the stomach, I guess. As you say, you can always puke it up again if necessary.