It's no secret that people in Wisconsin like to eat. But I think that few people outside of Wisconsin truly realize how much Wisconsinites like to eat. For instance, those cheeseheads that fans wear to Packers games: did you know they're made out of real cheese? If you keep an eye on the stands during a telecast of a Packers game, you may notice some people chewing on their cheeseheads. You may also notice that there's far fewer cheeseheads to be seen by the time the 4th quarter rolls around.
And there's no time of the year when people like to eat more than around the holidays. I'm not an especially social guy here, but I've already been to 3-4 holiday parties with a couple more on the way. They're usually potlucks. Let me tell you about one of them. So, I had the choice of bringing a salad-type thing or a dessert, and opted for salad (since I've been to too many potlucks where there were about 50 desserts and 2 salads!). I made my special purple cabbage cole slaw, which if you've ever had, you know it's gooood. But then I get to the potluck: sweet jesus. There's food everywhere, and it all looks amazing. The cole slaw was delicately placed by the host at the far corner of the table, where it remained for the rest of the evening, forlorn and neglected. Meanwhile, I ate like a pig.
There's a real danger of overdoing it at one of these holiday affairs. Native Wisconsinites are built to accommodate the massive food boluses and also know how to pace themselves, but me? I can't even hold up a pair of spandex bike shorts. Luckily, there's a plan for that.
We're all familiar with the drunk tanks for people who get inebriated at football games, right? I mean ... I've heard there are these holding tanks for inebriated fans at football games. Anyhow, they have something similar to that at many holiday parties in Wisconsin. If you eat too much, they pop a nasogastric tube in you and pump out some of your stomach contents. Kind of like the ancient Romans, with their binge/purge feasts. But the beautiful thing about these nasogastric tubes is that when you start to get hungry again, they can just pump some of the buffet back in. Voila!
Did you know that smorgasbord literally means "sandwich table" in Swedish? Kind of interesting, huh?