My fellow Americans! While we’ve been distracted, there’s been a growing…uh, invasion…yes! Invasion of a USA-Grade tradition – the Independence Day food-eating contest!  Hot dogs! Onion rings! Good ol’ apple pie! They’re all in jeopardy! We must resolve to take them back. And as Independence Day is just around the corner again, it’s time you were made aware. Just look at this…er, totally verified evidence:

Saint Olaf, Minnesota, 2016 – That year’s annual hot dog eating contest’s Grand Stuffinface Trophy was awarded to Gunther Fjordbigenmouther of Norway. The newcomer beat out three-time winner and lifelong St. Olaf resident Charlie Weakwilledendorf by half a dog. Witnesses to this much-revered tradition were shocked and dismayed. St. Olaf’s city council has passed legislation.

Oh, it gets worse…

Springfield… in some state or other, 2017 – The 4th of July was forever changed in this quaint yet colorful town when the 10-time onion ring-eating champion was bested by Rainer Wolfcastle, an (Austrian?) national on an extended vacation. Some onlookers admitted his official onion ring eating prowess was most impressive. However, after the final count was announced, residents turned their attention to their once reigning champion, a Mr. H. Simpson. Upon regaining consciousness, the loser commented, “D’oh!”

And this one’s just intolerable…

Mayberry, North Carolina, 2019 – This All-American, “everybody knows everybody” sleepy town was delivered a devastating blow at their 4th of Joo-ly Apple Pie Eating Contest. Each pie that enters the contest must meet strict requirements: baked in a “Made in the USA” oven and cooled on somebody’s mom’s kitchen windowsill. But as prepared as almost everyone involved was, no one could foresee the stunning defeat of Mayberry’s own deputy sheriff, and the loss of the championship. Somehow, a German man who would later claim, “I know nu-thing!” about the event, was able to gain entry. The “last, best hope for Mayberry” explained his loss: “I was nervous! Look, I was having nightmares about apple pies all week! Do you know how many apples go into just one pie!? It’s ridiculous! And another thing – hey, where are you going—”

As you can see, we’re in trouble here, folks! If we are to preserve this time-honored American tradition, we need to remember why we have these contests in the first place, not who wins them. So, break out the grills! Warm up those ovens! But most importantly – remember that it’s not about the contests, the food, or the pie cooling on your mom’s windowsill – it’s about the freedom we have to enjoy all of them.

Happy 4th,Everyone!

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