I try to never tire my readers by repeating topics in my newspaper column. I have a real knack for boring the public each week with totally fresh material. But this week I have egg on my face, in a special sauce. I recently reported to you about a city in California that had squeezed into the Guinness Book of Records for consuming the most Big Macs per capita.
Now just three weeks later, we learn that a man named Dan Gorske has consumed his 25,000th Big Mac, an eating binge that stretched over 39 years, most of that stretching being done by his pants. I briefly mentioned Dan in this column about 10 years ago, but at that time he had only scarfed down 15,000 and he didn't have much of a national profile, although about 4 p.m. each day he was casting quite the shadow.
When I first wrote about Dan, a tornado had recently passed through his hometown, tearing up everything, and giving him a miserable feeling inside -- a sensation he had become quite familiar with. Sadly, many of the Big Mac cartons and receipts that he had saved were destroyed, leaving no evidence of his eating obsession. He was concerned that the Guinness people wouldn't accept his 860 triglyceride count as proof.
In all fairness, Gorske claims he has no known health issues. Which means that he probably has plenty of health issues, but they're all unknown to medical science -- undiscovered syndromes and bodily malfunctions just looking for catchy names so they can finally worm their way into the newest copy of The Journal of Digestive Diseases. I used the word "worm" on purpose.
Nevertheless, Dan asserts he is healthy due to good genetics, and because he doesn't order a lot of extras, such as fries and sugary sodas. Is there anything more annoying than a self-righteous health nut? Dan claims he went to one doctor who assured him he was in tip-top shape. I'm glad your doctor is healthy, Dan. But what about you?
Dan has never been sick, he says, except to his stomach. So the bottom line is that the Big Macs have not ruined his health, but they did stain half of his bowling shirts. His wife, by the way, is a registered nurse, so why didn't it register that her husband would have been better off breaking the veggie sub record over at Quiznos?
Dan eats two or three Big Macs between 10 in the morning and midnight. If he wakes up in the middle of the night with a craving, he always has one in the freezer. In the past 39 years, he has only missed a few days -- something about a snow storm and a pesky colonoscopy. There was also the day Dan had a root canal. Thank goodness for blenders.
Dan is the author of a book called 22,477 Big Macs, a lie the minute it was published. I downloaded it on my Kindle and now I know really cool stuff like the average number of bites it takes Dan to eat a Big Mac (16) and the fact that he has enjoyed one at every NASCAR track, even though he usually has to hide it in his pants in order to smuggle it in. Can this story get any creepier?
Dan says he can reach 50,000 Big Macs by the time he's 90 years old as long as he stays healthy. He hopes to do a commercial for McDonald's where he can brag about the nutritional benefits of this iconic three-decker sandwich. Would this be a little lie? Yes, but at least it's not a whopper.