The Chili Cook-Off

	Recently I was honored to be selected as an Outstanding 
	Famous Celebrity in my Community to be a judge at a chili 
	cook-off because no one else wanted to do it.

	Also the original person called in sick at the last moment 
	and I happened to be standing there at the judge's table 
	asking directions to the beer wagon when the call came.

	I was assured by the other two judges that the chili 
	wouldn't be all that spicy, and besides they told me I 
	could have free beer during the tasting, so I accepted this 
	as being one of those burdens you endure when you're an 
	internet writer and therefore known and adored by all.

	Here are the scorecards from the event:

	Chili # 1: Mike's Maniac Mobster Monster Chili
	JUDGE ONE: A little too heavy on tomato.  Amusing kick.

	JUDGE TWO: Nice, smooth tomato flavor  Very mild.
	KENNEDY:   Holy smokes, what is this stuff?  You could 
	remove dried paint from your driveway with it. Took me two 
	beers to put the flames out. Hope that's the worst one.     
	These people are crazy.

	Chili # 2:  Arthur's Afterburner Chili

	JUDGE ONE: Smoky (barbecue?)  with a hint of pork.  
	Slight Jalapeno tang.

	JUDGE TWO: Exciting BBQ flavor, needs more peppers to be 
	taken seriously.

	KENNEDY:   Keep this out of reach of children!  I'm not 
	sure what I am supposed to taste besides pain.  I had to 
	wave off two people who wanted to give me the Heimlich 
	maneuver. Shoved my way to the front of the beer line.  The 
	barmaid, looks like a professional wrestler after a bad 
	night.  She was so irritated over my gagging that the snake 
	tattoo under her eye started to twitch.  She has arms like 
	Popeye and a face like Winston Churchill. I will NOT pick a 
	fight with her.

	Chili # 3: Fred's Famous Burn Down the Barn Chili
	JUDGE ONE: Excellent firehouse chili!  Great kick.  Needs 
	more beans.
	JUDGE TWO: A beanless chili, a bit salty, good 
	use of red peppers.  

	KENNEDY:   This has got to be a joke.  Call 
	the EPA, I've located a uranium spill.  My nose feels like 
	I have been sneezing Drano. Everyone knows the routine by 
	now and got out of my way so I could make it to the beer 
	wagon. Barmaid pounded me on the back; now my backbone is 
	in the front part of my chest.  She said her friends call 
	her "Sally." Probably behind her back they call her 

	Chili # 4: Bubba's Black Magic
	JUDGE ONE: Black bean chili with almost no spice.  
	JUDGE TWO: A hint of lime in the black 
	beans.  Good side dish for fish or other mild foods, not 
	much of a chili. 
	KENNEDY:   I felt something scraping 
	across my tongue but was unable to taste it. Sally was 
	standing behind me with fresh refills so I wouldn't have to 
	dash over to see her.  When she winked at me her snake sort 
	of coiled and uncoiled-it's kinda cute.

	Chili # 5:  Linda's Legal Lip Remover

	JUDGE ONE: Meaty, strong chili.  Cayenne peppers freshly 
	ground adding considerable kick.  Very impressive.
	JUDGE TWO: Chili using shredded beef; could use more tomato. 
	Must admit the cayenne peppers make a strong statement.   

	KENNEDY:   My ears are ringing and I can no 
	longer focus my eyes. Belched and four people in front of 
	me needed paramedics.  The contestant seemed hurt when I 
	told her that her chili had given me brain damage.  Sally 
	saved my tongue by pouring beer directly on it from a 
	pitcher.  Sort of irritates me that one of the other judges 
	asked me to stop screaming.

	Chili # 6: Vera's Very Vegetarian Variety
	JUDGE ONE: Thin yet bold vegetarian variety chili.  Good 
	balance of spice and peppers.
	JUDGE TWO: The best yet.  
	Aggressive use of peppers, onions, and garlic. Superb.
	KENNEDY:   My intestines are now a straight pipe filled 
	with gaseous flames. No one seems inclined to stand behind 
	me except Sally. I asked if she wants to go dancing later.

	Chili # 7: Susan's Screaming Sensation Chili
	JUDGE ONE: A mediocre chili with too much reliance on 
	canned Peppers. 

	JUDGE TWO: Ho Hum, tastes as if the chef 
	threw in canned chili peppers at the last moment.  I should 
	note that I am worried about Judge Number 3, he appears to 
	be in a bit of distress.  

	KENNEDY:   You could put a hand grenade in my mouth and 
	pull the pin and I wouldn't feel it.  I've lost the sight 
	in one eye and the world sounds like it is made of rushing 
	water.  My clothes are covered with chili which slid 
	unnoticed out of my mouth at some point. Good, at autopsy 
	they'll know what killed me. Go Sally, save yourself before 
	it's too late.  Tell our children I'm sorry I was not there 
	to conceive them. I've decided to stop breathing, it's too 
	painful and I'm not getting any oxygen anyway.  If I need 
	air I'll just let it in through the hole in my stomach. 
	Call the X-Files people and tell them I've found a super 
	nova on my tongue.

	Chili # 8: Helen's Mount Saint Chili
	JUDGE ONE: This final entry is a good, balanced chili, 
	neither  mild nor hot.  Sorry to see that most of it was 
	lost when Judge Number 3 fell and pulled the chili pot on 
	top of himself. 
	JUDGE TWO: A perfect ending, this is a 
	nice blend chili, safe for all, not too bold but spicy 
	enough to declare its existence.  
	KENNEDY: Mommy?

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