“Take me out to the barf game, take me out to the puke!”
~Your obnoxious seven-year-old nephew who, you have to admit, probably has a bright parody career ahead of him
America invented most of the world’s best sports. Football? That was us. Basketball? Sure, it was by a Canadian, but only because he was being paid by the Springfield, Massachusetts YMCA when he came up with it, because Canadian dollars were still printed on tree bark at the time, and we were responsible for all the changes that make it recognizable as a sport today. Soccer? Nice try, not a real sport, next question.
But of all the excuses for young men (and women!) to vent out the aggression of youth in a competitive and potentially humiliating environment that has been birthed within these borders, only one sport is iconic enough to be known as our national pastime. No, not Mixed Martial Arts, that’s a terrible guess, are you high right now? We’re talking about baseball of course.
You might view baseball as a relic of a simpler age, when men were men, owners were horrific bigots, and amphetamines were just, everywhere, all the time, which would explain why the sport struggles in some markets to maintain its relevancy. It’s a slow-moving game trying to make its way in a fast-paced world, and say what you will about heart palpitations but taking the majority of the workforce off of Speed in the 80’s didn’t really do much for the pace of the game. Major League Baseball teams try to combat the issues implicit with asking some 40,000 Americans to sit very still for three or four hours by making a day at the ball game a full entertainment and gastronomical experience. This involves a gallons of watered down beer and, more recently, absurd, amazing American culinary disasterpieces for us to shove in our faces and slink into our chairs to ride out our food coma contently watching yet another 1-2-3 inning.
Sure, we could go on about crazy nachos served in miniature baseball hats, or giant cups of frozen sugar (okay, so maybe malt cups aren’t exactly a new development) but let’s be real here. This is America’s sport, we’re going to need to talk about America’s food. America’s best, most absurdly adaptable, most occasionally unnecessarily expensive food. Let’s get to it.
The Craziest Hot Dogs in Professional Baseball (Major League Edition)