Chili season has now begun

Published 8:44 pm Thursday, October 24, 2019

You would have thought I’d have learned my lesson last week at the Wild Game Cook-off, but alas, reader, I did it again.
As I entered the 8th Annual Alabama River Chili Cook-off I told myself I’d behave, but I’m afraid I just can’t control myself around a cook-off.
Chili is one of my favorite foods.
It has been there for me during the best of times and also during the worst of times.
For me the first bowl of chili unofficially begins the autumn season, my favorite season.
Though, as I just stated, chili is one of my favorite foods, I’d rather eat an actual brick from Henry Brick rather than a hearty bowl of their award winning chili in summer or spring.
The cool autumn evening revved up my appetite for savory bowls of beef and bean and I had no choice but to sample each and every concoction within my line of sight.
I started off fine, but around bowl number three I began to feel weighted down.
By bowl number five, I felt as though a hot ball of lead were weighing upon my lower abdomen.
By bowl number seven I’d had quite enough.
When it was all said and done, readers, I regret to admit, you probably could’ve filled an orange bucket from Home Depot with the amount of chili I consumed.
I threw in the metaphorical towel and trudged my way back to the office to ready my report on the cook-off for today’s newspaper.
As I sat there at my desk, regretting the hedonistic amount of chili I subjected myself to, I realized the best thing about the chili cook-off isn’t the chili at all, it’s the sense of unity it brings to the community.
I realized the tear slowly forming in my eye wasn’t from the bucket of chili I’d consumed, it was from my heart strings being plucked by the feeling of unity within the community.
Also, heartburn. Pass the Pepto-Bismol.