There's nothing more satisfying than cheering on the underdog. Sally Sampson scours this week's headlines for five such characters, from the skinny mum that wins eating contests to the people who invented a patriotic fridge...
Everyone needs a hero; that’s just the way humanity is wired! And I don’t need to provide any proof or scientific data to corroborate that statement, because all we have to do is look at history: Achilles, Hercules, Joan of Arc, John Lennon, Mother Teresa, Helen Keller, Erin Brockovich…the list is endless!
We all need someone to look up to; someone that embodies a particular lifestyle or an ideal that we aspire to and, whether it’s Gandhi or Big Bird, we then make it our life’s mission, either consciously or subconsciously, to emulate them.
Now that’s all very well, but that’s not what this particular article is about. You see, in general, I have quite the penchant for the unsung heroes/weirdos/one minute wonders in life. I am drawn almost magnetically to the little people (though they’re not little at all in my opinion) who make the world a more interesting place just by being themselves, whether through deliberate acts of kindness and generosity or via pure, unabashed, unadulterated fucking stupidity and I am tickled in the innermost core of my being by them.
So, I just want to take a moment to celebrate these fine folk! On account of my day job, I often end up going through endless lists of weird and bizarre news stories throughout the week so I’ve taken it upon myself to compile only some of the many tales and anecdotes that captivated my attention in the past couple of days and bring them right to you. So join me, won’t you as I raise my glass to the following folk:
5) LINDSEY BOFINGER ON KENDALL JONES:
Now this Kendall girl easily deserves the ‘tit of the week’ award, can I just say! She is a 19 year old American cheerleader…with a gun. She’s not out to kill people though (because that would be inhumane)…
Rather, she’s made it her mission to kill beautiful, rare, exotic animals for sport. She made the news this last week when she posted multiple photographs of herself next to dead animals she’d hunted, including an African white rhino, lions, elephants, zebras, leopards, internationally sparking the outrage of people with brain activity and a conscience.
Now, just to clarify, to me Ms. Jones is not an unsung ‘hero’, but by being so callously unashamed of something so barbaric, she has at least highlighted a serious issue and brought it to the attention of many people who perhaps had no concept of the importance of animal conservation…. and who were completely oblivious to the fact that there are some people out there who choose to model themselves after Van Pelt, the hunter looking for Robin Williams’ hide in the film Jumanji.
So where does Lindsey Bofinger factor in? Well, among the many comments I read expressing disdain towards Kendall ‘Steve-Irwin-can-suck-it’ Jones, hers was my favorite. She writes, “If she wants to kill things, why doesn’t she join the military so she can see how it feels to shoot at something that shoots back!”
And so, Lindsey takes the number five spot in my unsung heroes countdown…for simply making sense.
4) NORMA CLARKE
Now I feel for Norma. I really do. Apparently the poor British woman at the age of 56 years old was unable to cancel her television subscription over the phone, not because she couldn’t answer some important security questions or because she owed some money to the company in question…but because the PERSON TALKING TO HER DIDN’T BELIEVE SHE WAS ACTUALLY A WOMAN! Ouch…
Apparently, Ms. Clarke has vocal chords thicker than most men and women, a condition she was born with that has resulted in her sounding like Sean Bean. And while, according to her, that has never slowed her down (she was married once before she met her current husband), I can’t help but take a moment to stop and aww.
Of course, I applaud her for having the boldness to celebrate her uniqueness! After all, having a manly voice isn’t the worst thing in the world (if you don’t believe me, just ask Cher!) and for that reason, she is unsung hero number four.
3) JOEY ‘JAWS’ CHESTNUT
Now this fella has a special place in my heart. In love and newly engaged, good old Joey recently got down on one knee and proposed to his girlfriend (who said ‘yes’ for all of you waiting on the edge of your seats…) at a hot dog eating competition, in which he was also competing. If you think romance is dead, clearly you’ve never been to a hot dog eating competition. You should also know that his girlfriend competes in the same field ‘professionally’…
Shakespeare’s star crossed lovers have fucking nothing on these two!
But truly it was a good day for Mr. Chestnut, because as luck (and a serious appetite) would have it, he also won the top prize after scoffing down 61 hot dogs (with their BUNS) in 10 minutes, maintaining his record of eight consecutive wins.
Now, I always thought I knew what I wanted in a man, but clearly I was wrong. Personally, I still don’t know how to take the whole ‘stuffing your face with 61 wieners after proposing to your girlfriend’ thing, but maybe that’s just me. Interpret that as you will.
And for amusing the shit out of me, Mr. Chestnut wins yet another accolade and makes it to the number three spot on my list.
2) MOLLY SCHUYLER
Now I am a feminist, in every sense of the word. I believe in women’s ability to break out of the oppressive, patriarchal system that has bound us for generations. I believe the time has come for women to take leadership roles in every sphere and domain of life. I believe in women proving naysayers wrong!
But I’m not sure how I feel about this particular domain!
Ms. Schuyler, perhaps a distant friend or second soul-mate to Mr. Joey Chestnut of hot dog eating fame, has become the first woman to ever win a burger eating contest in Washington DC after eating 26 burgers in 10 minutes.
The online news coverage of this from the Telegraph features one of her competitors saying that “She just demolishes. She would eat [the camera being used to film this footage] if it was like 40% edible, she’d probably eat some of that!”
So while I wrestle with my notions on feminism, for basing her life on Taz the Tazmanian Devil, Molly takes the number two spot on my countdown for mentally fucking me over.
1) MOLSON CANADIAN
Now this is not a person. This is actually a brand of beer that hails from Canada. And they take the number one spot in my unsung heroes tribute for using BEER to promote PATRIOTISM!
You may now take 30 seconds to LOL!
I’m not sure if you’ve heard or seen the advert for this, but what they’ve done is set up a beer fridge that will only open if you know all the words to the Canadian National Anthem. And I mean ALL of them! If you get the lyrics wrong, the fridge doesn’t open. So it’s not too unlike the scene in Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring when Gandalf and company are standing outside the Mines of Moria trying to work out the secret code to get in. But because it’s beer, it’s fucking hilarious!
I, for one, think this has enormous crossover potential and could very well be implemented in Egyptian society if for no other reason than comedic value...probably not using beer, but there are millions of options. I’ll leave it to your imagination!