It is safe to say Joey Chestnut and Takeru Kobayashi are to competitive eating what Lewis & Clark were to 19th century exploration — odds are, these are the only two names you know.
Together, Chestnut and Kobayashi could raise the profile of their sport (competitive eating) to unknown heights, probably even eclipsing hockey in the hearts of Americans.
And yet: They have beef.
It’s all-beef with a natural casing, but still. Kobayashi has, at some point, blocked Chestnut on Twitter. This would not normally make much of a difference to anybody, except that Kobayashi is banned from the Super Bowl of competitive eating, the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest, and there’s a petition going around to let him in.
As pretty much the only other competitive eater anybody has ever heard of, Chestnut’s name could, perhaps, help get Kobayashi back in. And he’d like Kobayashi to be back in.
On one condition.
B/R: Have you ever had any contact with Joey Chestnut since then?
Kobayashi: No, because I don’t have his phone number or e-mail address. About four years ago, I was working with a hot dog company, and the CEO [said] something to Joey Chestnut and Joey Chestnut got angry and he said something back about me on Twitter, so I blocked him. [Laughs].
It’s hard to say which Tweet it was that angered Kobayashi, though this one fits the approximate timeline, and could certainly have done the trick:
In any case, it’s clear Chestnut has for some time been eager to eat against Kobayashi again.
Here’s hoping these two can work it out.