One of my favorite people of 2007 was a guy that you will probably think you've never heard of, but who is someone who I'll bet you've heard. That guy.....George Shea.
George Shea is the announcer for the Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest at Coney Island that is held every year on the 4th of July. Personally, I wouldn't know where to even begin to announce a hot dog eating contest. What in the hell would I say? Other than, "Ew, gross."? George Shea does not have that problem. He can think of plenty to say. If you've never heard this guy, you've gotta find some audio of it and listen to him. He is hilarious. And full of metaphors, some of which may or may not make sense.
It's pure genius the crap this man throws together as he's yelling at the top of his lungs whilst a bunch of people shove hot dogs down their gullets amidst a screaming crowd of drunken July 4th revelers. And I just love him for it.
What follows is a partial transcript of his eloquent and unique oratory prose (I'm trying to sound like he does and it's just not workin' for me here.). Nice job, George. See ya next 4th!
"We arrive at this moment by the unswerving punctuality of chance!"
"I want my judges to crouch down a little. Judges crouching down. I want my judges down so the people can see. JUDGES GET DOWN! JUDGES GET DOWN!!"
"KOBAYASHI HAS STARTED!! KOBAYASHI HAS STARTED!!! OOOHHHHHHH!!!!"
"And Joey Chestnut has eaten ten hot dogs in fifty seconds. Wheeeerrrreeee DDDOOOEEESSS this man FIIIINNNDD the courage? Where does he find the fortitude?"
"Takiro Kobayashi, who couldn't open his mouth two fingers two days ago has now eaten fifteen hot dogs in under two minutes!"
"But Joey Chestnut is in a zone! I have never seen him eat this way. He has moved past the components of eating! The hand speed! The jaw strength! The stomach capacity! He is eating in an arena of pure emotion! This is about the triumph of the human spirit! It is nothing short of the triumph of the human spirit! As I said."
"For Americans to see the belt go to Japan every year, it's kind of depressing, as well! It's like that song by David Bowie "Major Tom". You're enjoying it and suddenly you realize how sad it is. Major Tom's not coming back. He's out in that tin can! He says to his wife, "I love you very much." She knows! But it's very sad! Major Tom's not coming back! But the BELT may be coming back to Brooklyn!"
"Do I have a cry of love for this man with a heart of a lion, Takiro Kobayashi?! Joey Chestnut and Kobayashi are neck and neck. Cheek and jowel."
"His ancestors started on the shores of time looking up the wide white highway of history at this the culmination of his DNA!"
"One minute to go!! One minute!! A hero arises to lead a broken planet to victory and that hero is Joey Chestnut! He is standing up like William Wallace! Like Donovan McNabb! Like Joan of Arc before him and he is bringing it forth! He is eating with incredible speed!"
"Three! Two! One! Put down your hot dogs! OOoohhhh!! Oooohhhh!!!"
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