June 22, 2003

The Cowgirl and the Four Pound Steak

Cowgirl Ready for Red Meat Olympics

We've stopped at the Big Texan Steak House in Amarillo. We have eaten their steaks and tipped their waitresses. We have seen the shrine at the front in which, daily, a new example of "The Monster" 72-Ounce steak reigns on a bed of ice. it is a stunning thing to behold and an even more awe inspiring to imagine eating one. It simply doesn't look possible to fit the steak on the ice into your body. We don't care what size body you come with. Big men have tried and failed. Hungry men have tried and failed -- but they were not hungry for days after.

No, it is no small thing to attempt to eat four pounds of beef in an hour. That's why we were stopped cold by the item in Saturday's Washington Post that chronicled a woman's quest to conquer the Big Beef. Described in excruciating

detail by Lee Hockstader, it's clear that Angela Daniel is set to enter the Beefeaters Hall of Fame:

"If you've never seen a young woman in a staring contest with a 41/2-pound slab of red meat, it's a thing to behold.

Her nostrils flare. Her eyebrows twitch. She blinks. She exhales lightly though pursed lips. Then she picks up her serrated knife to begin sawing at her butterflied top sirloin, all 5,200-odd calories of it, cooked medium and sprawled on her dish like a catcher's mitt on home plate....

Women are different. Not many women try to eat the big steak, maybe one every couple of months. But those who do try are deadly serious. About half succeed. And Angela Daniel intends to succeed.

Twenty-six years old, blonde and fine-featured, she is a normally proportioned 135 pounds, perhaps 5-foot-6. When she says she has gained 20 pounds since she got married two years ago, you think: She must have been too skinny. She wears slightly tinted granny glasses and a gauzy white blouse with wine-red embroidery and denim shorts and hiking boots.

Angela, who lives in Tulsa, does have a history you might call impulsive. She dropped out of high school and left home when she was 15. For a while she had blue hair. The name "Ned" is tattooed beneath her right knee. She married her husband Dennis, a co-worker in sales at the phone company, after dating him for two weeks.

And for four years, from ages 12 to 16, she was a vegetarian.
She got over that. Not long ago she polished off a 48-ounce steak without great difficulty -- a T-bone, but still. .....

Well, does she or doesn't she? It's worth reading the whole article to know for sure.

Thanks to the distinguished Arts and Letters Daily for the pointer.
Photograph by Gerard Van der Leun

Posted by jackreno at June 22, 2003 10:44 PM
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If you follow the link, you'll see that one of the successful steak eaters was Frank Pastore, a reliever for the Cincinnati Reds in the early and mid-80s. He polished off the steak and all the sides in 9 1/2 minutes. Nice to see that Pastore can eat a steak the size of a catcher's mitt, because he certainly could hit the mitt during hisplaying days.

Posted by: Jon at June 24, 2003 12:21 AM