News Brief: Competitive Eater Still Haunted by Ghost Pepper Challenge Loss

Ken Taro
1 min readDec 21, 2022
Photo by Rene Böhmer on Unsplash

PHILADELPHIA — At Philadelphia’s annual “Dragon Breath” pepper eating contest, contestant Pat Barese didn’t have the fire in the belly necessary to wolf down all 50 ghost peppers on his plate. He managed to choke down a paltry 17, a far cry from the top three competitors who wiped their plates clean with time to spare.

“There’s just something about ghost peppers that don’t sit right,” lamented Barese, a 38-year-old electrician. “Every time I eat one, I feel some kind of chill that I can’t even explain. I’ve had no issues eating Carolina reapers, even though they are higher on the Scoville scale. I’ve actually been Maced a few times and it almost felt refreshing.”

Barese, who said that he does believe in ghosts, said their might be something paranormal going on.

“Sure, although most peppers make me feel as if I were on fire, there’s just something about ghost peppers that makes my blood run cold. I’ve decided to bring a Catholic exorcist to the next ghost pepper challenge to help expel the demons out of my soul instead of through my mouth and butthole.”

Ken Taro

Writer, satirist, and humorist. You can find my best work on my mom’s refrigerator.