Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Pumpkin Leaves Man Without Recourse

Editor's Note: This article started out at 100 words, then it got crazy. Stay with it, and you'll see why.

Check out this article. Or, I'll just give you a quick synopsis...

This is our man JD. He lives for this.
(AP Photo/Peninsula Clarion/Greg Skinner)
There's a dude in Alaska that grows super-huge pumpkins like nobody's business. JD Megchelsen already holds the record for biggest Alaskan pumpkin at something over 1,200 lbs, and this year JD thought he had an even bigger one. But because it has a hole in it, some Alaskan-pumpkin-rule says you can't count it. (Bureaucracies, right?)

Anyway, the reason I'm adding this piece to this space is because of a quote that I just couldn't get enough of. Here's JD's sister-in-law on the situation.
"It's just killing him," said Pam Elkins, Megchelsen's sister-in-law. "He eats, sleeps, and dreams pumpkins. All he does is pumpkins."
Eats, sleeps, and dreams pumpkins, huh?

I would suggest a new hobby, and I was about to, until I got to this line...
The hole likely opened the first week of August when the fruit hit its peak growth spurt of 41 pounds in 24 hours. That happened two days in a row, he said.
Holy crap! 41 pounds in a day! Then it did it again?

Audrey II would want no part of this pumpkin.
That's Little Shop of Horrors-esque.

I'm no gardener (I haven't lived at a place with a yard since 2006, I think), so perhaps I shouldn't be amazed at the growth rate of a pumpkin. But I still find that crazy. It says he was giving it up to 300 gallons of water a day.

But what isn't covered in the article (Shame on you, Peninsula Clarion!!), is what he's going to do with the pumpkin now. What do you do with 1,500 lbs of vegetable? I mean, you can't eat that thing, right? This is a show pumpkin, not an eating pumpkin.

And I bet that 300 gallons of water wasn't cheap, either. Is JD financially ruined because of this? How terrible would that Christmas party conversation be?

Hey Pam, good to see you, too! Oh - is that JD? I read about that pumpkin thing. Just awful. Did he come out alright after all that? He didn't? Oh, that's too bad. What's that? He was evicted? That's terrible. His parents' basement, you say? All because of that hole in the pumpkin? Well, just goes to show you... Where did you get that shrimp cocktail, anyway?

What do you win if you have the biggest pumpkin, anyway? Well, according to a fairly extensive Google search (like 3 or 4 pages worth)... well, nothing that I can find.

And then there is the conspiracy theory that I'm making up here and now. Could someone have gotten a hold of Megchelson's prize pumpkin and put that hole there to crush his dreams of a new record? Surely not, right? Who on Earth would do such a thing?


That Google search I did put me on something pretty interesting. Back in 2011, Dale Marshall of Anchorage toted a reportedly 1,723 lb pumpkin to the Alaska State Fair. It was to be the largest pumpkin in Alaska state history, even coming close to the all-time record of 1,810 lbs by some other loser from New Jersey.

Problem was... the judges discovered a hole!! And since the Alaska-pumpkin-rules have been around since the dawn of time, Marshall's pumpkin ("Lucy Lu" - seriously) was given the DQ.

The twist? Since Marshall's pumpkin was disqualified, the pumpkin to win the 2011 Alaska State Fair pumpkin-off was none other than... JD Megchelson's 1,287 lb pumpkin, which in turn became Alaska's largest official pumpkin of all time.


Not only did Megchelson claim victory in 2011 and fame(?) with the all-time heaviest pumpkin, he also regained his heaviest pumpkin in state history title that was taken from him the previous year by... Dale Marshall!!

See how complicated this is getting? There's some bad blood going on here.

The quick history: In 2004, Megchelson gets his first title with a 700 lb pumpkin. Then he tops his own record in '06 with a pumpkin over 1,000 lbs. He holds this record for four years before it is topped by Marshall in '10. And in '11 Megchelson reclaims his title with his 1,287 lb pumpkin after Marshall's 1,723 lb effort is disqualified because of a hole.

This has got to be one of the greatest rivalries of all time!

The Celtics tried to murder Kurt Rambis.
What's to say these guys couldn't drill a hole in a pumpkin?
Seriously, up in the hallways with Dusty Rhodes and Ric Flair. Lenin and Trotsky. Lakers and Celtics. Kerrigan and Harding. The Mighty Ducks and The Hawks.

And they will stop at nothing - NOTHING - to get their way.

(Ridiculous, right?)

But we've seen crazier - after all, an Alabama fan poisoned Auburn's oaks. So it's not out of the realm.

And these guys do eat, sleep, and dream pumpkins.

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