Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Big Texan

We're catching our breath after our vacation to Colorado and are ready to begin blogging all the events that made us stop and say, "we're blogging this." We've compiled a list of ideas and plan to begin sharing them as time permits. The first offering begins on the road en route from Oklahoma to Amarillo......

Anyone who's traveled I-95 north to south on the East Coast knows that you can't miss the signs telling you how close to South of the Border you are. Pedro and his signs can not be missed. They are gaudy and accomplish their purpose. They lure you in to the tourist trap that is South of the Border. Adventurous souls stop at South of the Border at least once. Well Texas is not to be outdone. As South of the Border is to the East Coast, The Big Texan is to Amarillo.

The Big Texan signs lured us in to check out the "free 72 oz steak." I was hungry enough and feeling adventurous enough to give it a go and attempt to eat the "free" steak. Charlotte had a friend from college who actually worked at the Big Texan so we knew that to get the "free" steak is no small feat. You have to eat not only the 72 oz steak but all the sides (baked potato, salad, roll and cole slaw I think) all within 60 minutes. When the Big Texan was 200 miles away I thought I might be able to give it a shot. When it was 100 miles away I was hungry enough to belly up to the table. The family was hungry enough to egg me on and Charlotte even brought up how a feat like this could go down in family history.... the grandkids will talk about the time you ate the 72 oz steak at the Big Texan. As the miles clicked by my confidence grew and grew. I can do it. I can eat four and a half pounds of red meat in 60 minutes. As we pulled in to the parking lot it was packed. And Charlotte and I laughed and made comparisons to Pedro's and South of the Border. The Big Texan is a tourist trap. Their advertising worked, we pulled our motorized covered wagon up to the hitchin' post and moseyed on in for some grub.

I felt like a cowboy lookin' for trouble. The kids were brimming with excitement. Would Dad pull off the impossible? Could he do it? Emma was sweet, she was firmly in the corner that I should not make the attempt. As I write all this you have to wonder what the catch is; the catch is it's only free if you eat it all in an hour. If not, you're out about $80. As you've learned from our blog, we're planners and we don't just jump in to problems without thought. The plan was we'll check it out and make our decision.

As we walked up to check out the challenge we surveyed the actual size of a 72 oz steak. There's a display in the lobby of the entire meal. Andrew looked at the steak and said, "it's as big as my head." He wasn't kidding, it was probably bigger than his head, and the boy has a head like his Dad's so you know it's a big steak. We entered into negotiations right there in front of the challenge that lay before us. The excitement left us like air from a deflating balloon. Reality set in and there was no way I would shell out $80 to feel miserable 60 minutes later.

In the end we loaded back into our Expedition (no longer a motorized covered wagon, now just your run of the mill SUV) and drove a little further down the road to eat at Johnny Carino's. We left full but not 72 oz full.

The funny thing is, even though we didn't take the 72 oz challenge, we still had fun thinking and talking about it. The anticipation was better than the actual event. Maybe next time....but I doubt it.


Rich & Mel said...


You show them who's boss next time.

I know I would not have been able to eat that much, but I would like to try sometime.


I was laughing the whole time reading this one! You have a knack for writing humorously. Alec was hoping to see your name in Guiness.


Smith, Smith, Smith & Smith said...

I thought about trying to eat that steak one time. I lost my appetite, however, when Jen reminded me that 72 oz. is the size of a newborn baby!!! Never really wanted to again.

JulieMonte said...

that is a lot of meat! It makes me sick thinking about it. How can anyone eat it let alone all the sides!

Margot said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kate said...

Ooops - I did it again. I was signed in under my SIL's blog. I am heling her set one up...

I was saying... I felt sick just reading about it!

Jennifer said...

Great story. Better to be wise and leave the honor of a distended stomach to someone else! Love the pic of the kiddos!

Lundie said...

char and adam- this was just too funny.. We've stopped there on most all cross country excursions..In the build up of your plan- my little brain is saying "no way Adam!".. What fun and what a great lesson to the kids that just because you thought it was a good idea, doesn't mean you can't reconsider!..
Loved the baby announcement.. Glad you're making time for a fun aspect to the move.. Fondly- the Lundies