When it comes to food-related bets, the gold standard is probably Paul Newman’s from Cool Hand Luke: “I can eat fifty eggs.” (You’ll remember that after establishing the rules of the wager—fifty hard-boiled eggs in one hour—Luke goes on to fail spectacularly.) But that was more than forty years ago, and just as time marches on, so do eating challenges among groups of hyper-competitive men.
Which bring us to Thor Bjornsson, the Icelandic strongman known for playing “The Mountain” on Game of Thrones. The 6’9” Bjornsson usually hovers around 400 pounds and can deadlift more than a half-ton—you’d expect he’s a guy who can eat. In a new video, he sets out to prove just how much he can eat. He decides to use cheeseburgers instead of eggs, ordering 200 of them from a fast food restaurant with a quote from Miss Piggy on the wall: “Never eat more than you can lift.”
Bjornsson and a half-dozen friends pile the burgers on a table and reiterate the rules: 30 minutes to eat as many burgers as you can, save the wrappers for easy score keeping, and the whole burger has to be swallowed before the buzzer for it to count. Whoever wins gets $500.
Then they’re off. There’s a tense moment when one of the contestants seems ready to barf, but things go off without a hitch. The men all look physically pained by gorging themselves. In the end, Bjornsson downs 13 burgers in 30 minutes. But his friend, the one who looked ready to puke, notches 18 burgers, winning the $500 and the title of “eating monster.” The still-substantial pile of 100-plus leftover burgers, if you were worried, got donated to a local shelter.
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