Welcome to Healthy Living Week at OnMilwaukee.com! The resolutions are made, now the real work begins. But we're here to help get you â€“ and keep you â€“ on track with stories about medicine, diet, exercise, spiritual and emotional health, and more. Healthy Living Week is brought to you by Pairdd: easy gluten-free cooking at your fingertips.
This week, we will tell you all about healthy choices, and this is a good thing. Iâ€™m chiming in later this week with an article about going gluten-free and how well it worked for me.
But for the good choices Iâ€™ve made â€“ running a half marathon in 2012, hiking up a small mountain or two or going gluten-free â€“ Iâ€™ve made many, many more unhealthy choices.
For example, it only took me a minute to come up with the six worst dining decisions in my life:
Competitive eating contest (cheeseburgers): It seemed like a good idea -- or at least, not a horrible idea -- when our friends at Potawatomi invited us to try their new promotion, the "Home Run Challenge" at the Fire Pit Sports Bar & Grill in 2010. The challenge was to eat four cheeseburgers, each with four Â¼-pound patties, topped with American cheese, pickles and a side of fries, in one hour. If you "win," your meal is free, you get a commemorative shirt and a photo of your bloated mug on the restaurant's wall. That didnâ€™t happen. I ate all my pickles, most of my fries and finished almost two giant burgers before surrendering in 45 minutes. I went back to work and fell asleep on my office futon.
Competitive eating contest (cream puffs): It was the 2010 State Fair, and I didnâ€™t want to participate in this contest. I didn't know what to expect, really, when I sat down at a long table with 17 of my competitors, mostly TV and radio people, as well the Wisconsin Honey Queen, Alice in Dairyland and the Fairest of the Fairs. It was smoking hot by the time the 11:45 a.m. contest began, and looking out at the stands of people, I did get a little nervous. Honestly, it wasn't just the humidity that had me drenched in sweat. As the minutes passed by, I methodically gobbled off the three tops, lapped up and sucked out the creamy middles, and popped my head up occasionally for air. I didnâ€™t win. I didnâ€™t care.
Competitive eating contest (baked potato contest): I didn't head into the 2011 baked potato eating contest at the Wisconsin State Fair thinking I'd win. My main goal, really, was to avoid choking or throwing up. With eight other contestants, including my speedy eating co-worker, Bobby Tanzilo, at the table, I had low expectations. So when they said "go," I just dug in and started eating. I wasn't timing myself, but the first half of the potato, smothered in cheddar cheese, slid down easily. Then, I slowed a bit to swallow, and finished the rest, with just a few pieces of refuse falling outside my Styrofoam container, and oddly enough, not all over my shirt. So, I stood up, chugged my glass of water, and said, as ordered, "I love Wisconsin potatoes." I won.
Kool-Aid and Twinkies dinner: I ate horribly in college â€“ who didnâ€™t? But only a few atrocious dining decisions stick out, like the time as a junior, I didnâ€™t have any groceries at all. I settled for a dinner of Kool-Aid and a box of Twinkies. Iâ€™m surprised I lived to tell this story.
Banana split breakfast: One other meal I remember. Near the end of college, after taking a final exam, I ordered a huge banana split for breakfast at the campus mall. Which is still probably healthier than the awesome Napoleon Dynamite at Cafe Centraal.
Wonder Bread lunch: Back in high school, right after I learned to drive, I took my little sister to the grocery store. There I bought a loaf of Wonder Bread and ate the entire thing on the ride home, much to her horror. In retrospect, I think I did this for the shock value. Because thatâ€™s the kind of sense of humor I had when I was 16.
1 comment about this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Andy Tarnoff
Published April 28, 2017
VW built 21 million Beetles up until 2003. Thousands of those iconic Bugs are still on the road, and one Milwaukee company exists solely to build and rebuild their air-cooled engines. Mofoco, started by Randy Henning, is now owned by his son, Roy, and quietly services VW customers around the world.
Published April 25, 2017
While planning next week's trip Up North, I started wondering just how much of Wisconsin I've seen over these last 37 years. So, I downloaded a map and started drawing on it, including the route I have planned for next week.
Published April 14, 2017
Milwaukeeans love our 414, the area code covering the city, the county and parts of Muskego and Brookfield. It's been since 1947, when Bell Telephone established it, along with 715, in Wisconsin. But why did they pick 414?
Published April 12, 2017
Maybe it was all the hard living back then. Maybe it was all the mustaches. But how old was this motley Brewers Crew back in '82?
Published April 3, 2017
The Brewers lost 89 games in 2016, finishing 30.5 behind the Cubs. Then they got rid of Chris Carter, Martin Maldonado and Tyler Thornburg. Is there anywhere to go but up?
Published March 14, 2017
In a market with plenty of big box stores, how does owning a neighborhood Ace Hardware store in this era make sense? Easy, says owners Bob and Kristin Nell. It's about customer service.
Published March 8, 2017
You may be surprised to read this from OnMilwaukee Publisher Andy Tarnoff, but claiming newspapers are dead is at best myopic, and at worst, just wrong. They simply occupy a different place in society now.
Published Feb. 6, 2017
Perhaps you're in the mood for eating some midnight sushi or buying a Rolex. Or maybe you want to gamble on the sinking of the Titanic. Las Vegas is your place for weirdness. Here's just a sampling.
Published Jan. 17, 2017
I don't entirely know what we're watching here, but I know it's funny and extremely inappropriate.
Published Jan. 12, 2017
I'm very concerned about the problem of "fake news" and what it means for journalists, politicians and the media-consuming public. But, really, this isn't a new concern of mine. For many years, I've battled with the concept that the internet is always right.