When I was a boy, mom used to warn me against putting things in my mouth because Horrible Things Could Happen. I remember this one time when my friend Buster came over and we went out into the yard and I kicked a soccer ball into a hedge of bushes that was filled with bees. I put my hand in to get the ball out and since I wasn't stung I thought these were Nice Bees so Buster and I decided to see which of us could put more bees in his mouth. I got up to fifteen before I passed out from the pain...Buster says he got to twenty bees but I wasn't conscious to see it and every time we see each other now, years later, there's still a bit of fisticuffs because of the bee incident. I guess I never should have tried to swallow the bees.
A year ago, Anca and I found ourselves sitting in Golden Gate Park when we were approached by a young lad; he looked like a cross between a Byzantine Cherub and Sam the Eagle from the Muppet Show so he had "Trust" written all over him.
"Care to take the Saltine Challenge?" he inquired.
The Saltine Challenge, the result of an advertising experiment gone horribly awry in the 70's, proposed that no person could eat six Saltine snack crackers in a minute without consuming anything else, including a refreshing beverage. The problem was this: on October 19th, 1978, just after the first Challenge commercial aired during an episode of Eight is Enough, millions flocked to their cupboards to prove Nabisco wrong. The result: Dry mouth + drained water supplies + humiliated Eight is Enough fans == looting, pillaging, and the beating of Eight is Enough star Dick Van Patten.
Anca and I sat down on a bench with this young lad as he produced a box of Saltines...and no beverage. The stakes? If we won, he'd sign over the spoils of his Showcase Showdown from his appearance on the Young Turks edition of the Price Is Right. If we lost...well, Anca and I would have to adopt false personalities of toast addicts with a June 10th birthday and throw an annual "co-birthday" party celebrating lounge music, glassware, and fire.
To this day, no one has bested the Saltine Challenge. As the boy left, taking with him the promise of that Showcase Showdown, a twinkle in his eye, he proclaimed, "I'll see you both..." as he laughed maniacally, "...at DNA26." So remember: Be careful what you put in your mouth, you never know where it will take you.
Watch the madcap antics first hand by coming to this shindig!
Where: Various locations around SF and Berkeley
When: June 18,19, and 20th.
Who: you and whoever you wish to bring.
What: DNAV, or DNA26, or whatever.
Why: We want to celebrate out oncoming old age and possible decrepitude with as many antics as possible in 3 action-packed days.
We're planning once again on having two one-day parties and a beach bonfire on Sunday the 20th.
There will be another issue of the Ectoplasmic Connector. Check it out at http://www.topped-with-meat.com/connector after May 18th.