Lookit here: Yo, Adrian!

I had decided that I needed to make myself a Winner. Not only for my own ego, which has gotten a little more dented than I’d prefer to have it, but for the publicity. People who win things become celebrities, even if only at the local level.

[mantra-pullquote align=”left|center|right” textalign=”left|center|right” width=”33%”]If you win something quirky enough, you can probably spin it into a YouTube bit that, if not clinically viral might at least be moderately contageous.[/mantra-pullquote]

When I was in high school, I probably would have been cocky enough to try for America’s Got Talent , but my first couple of years pounding the pavements as an actor taught me some hard truths about my singing chops.

I was never any kind of athlete, so sports were out of the question. But these days “sport” has a broader connotation then when I was tripping over dodge-balls. One thing I can do is eat. The Coney Island Hot Dog eating contest would surely be convenient. But a little research convinced me I couldn’t even qualify, no less pose a serious challenge to Sonya “the Black Widow” Thomas. And with the heat we had on the East Coast Fourth of July weekend, it was almost impossible to think of eating anything that didn’t have the words “ice” and “cream” in it.

Anyway, it seemed wise to try something outside NYC for a change.

I have never been great with hot weather. Even clinging to the AC, I was wiped out by the prolonged East Coast heat wave (which explains the lag time since the last post) . When I could get my brain to function, I started researching some options on line.

From thoughts of eating, it was a natural segue to cooking. I loved the idea of getting into a bbq competition (the community is enormous and full of fascinating people), but try working on superior ‘cue in an urban neighborhood where you can’t legally cook over an open flame and you’re sniffing distance from the local firehouse. I tried instead to come up with a unique secret ingredient for a brilliant bowl of red, but everything I thought of was either overused or too disgusting to contemplate. And it turns out that it ain’t such a cakewalk to get on the list for Cupcake Wars.

Nice Melons t-shirt

Nice Melons (t-shirt design by Troy Lewis, Tarboro NC)

I was cleaning the house in my “Nice Melons” t-shirt from the 2007 Eastern Carolina Cantaloupe Festival (in Tarboro, NC), when inspiration struck. Maybe instead of skill, I should stick to my natural attributes! (Especially when they align so nicely with my book.) So I started trolling the web for melon festivals. Sadly, I’d already missed the annual Virginia Cantaloupe Festival. There wasn’t anything else. The other US melon festivals seem to be all about watermelons, and my attributes aren’t quite that, uh, attribute-y.

This “winner” thing has me feeling a little thwarted for now, but I refuse to lose heart.

Maybe I should move in with my friend M____ in Cleveland, establish residency and run for Governor of Ohio. Now THAT’s a contest I should be able to win!

About Lori Berhon

Lori Berhon is a New-York based novelist and playwright. Her work is distinguished for its intelligence and for the vivid humanity of even her most impossible characters. She is actually taller, slimmer and far more elegant than she appears to be.
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