Spitting as a Sport
Spitting is considered very rude in most civilized countries, but that didnâ€™t prevent it from becoming a popular sport. Here are five spitting competitions practiced around the world:
Cherry Pit Spitting Championship
Recognized by Guinness Book of Records as an official competition, the International Cherry Pit Spitting Championship began in 1974, when Herb Teichman, a cherry farmer from Michigan was looking for â€œsomething to doâ€. He started the competition and now people from all over the world gather in Michigan each July to claim the title of Cherry Spitting Champion of the World.
Brian Krause is the reigning champion after winning his seventh title this year. His spit cherry pit flew for an impressive 56 feet and 7 and a half inches. The Krause family is dominating the sport, with Brianâ€™s father, Rick, also a multiple champion. The all-time record of the Cherry Pit Spitting Championship is 100 feet and 4 inches.
Watermelon Seed Spitting Championship
The town Lulling, Texas has been hosting the Watermelon Thump every June since 1954. They love watermelons here and during the Thump festival they enter all kinds of watermelon-related activities, including eating and carving.
The most popular challenge of the Watermelon Thump is the seed spitting contest, in which people try to break the record of 68 feet and 9 inches and take home the $1,000 price. It may sound like a wacky contest but the contestants and organizers both mean serious business. There are serious rules and all those using non-sanctioned seeds are disqualified.
Over 35,000 people and international television crews head over to Lulling every summer for the watermelon spitting contest.
Olive Stone Spitting Competition
The 14th edition of the Olive Stone Spitting Competition was held this year in Cieza, Spain. The 285 competitors drew a crowd of over 25,000 curious people to see how far an olive pit can fly. The champion managed to launch his â€œprojectileâ€ an impressive 18.76 meters, but still nowhere near the competition record of 21.32 meters held by a Cieza local.
Important politicians, sportsmen and journalists came to Murcia to witness an event. After all you canâ€™t say you see this sort of thing every day.
Cricket Spitting Championship
One of the strangest spitting contests in the world takes place every April, at Purdue University, in Lafayette, Indiana, during the Bug Bowl. The Cricket Spitting Championship brings together thousands of competitors in a spit-off to see who can launch a dead cricket the farthest, using only their mouths.
The unusual sport is sanctioned by the Guinness Book of Records and covered every year by important channels like CNN and ESPN. After a series of qualifying rounds and a final spit-off the cricket spitting champion is revealed. The current record stands at 32 feet and one-half inch.
Dung Spitting Championship
Believe it or not, there are people out there that put dung pellets in their mouths for the sake of competition. Dung spitting is indeed a real sport that originated in Africa where local tribes compete in spitting Kudu antelope dung. The rules are simple, the person who spits the dung pellet farthest, wins. The distance is measured according to where the pellet stopped and not where it first hit the ground, like it happens in most spitting contests.
Dung Spitting formally became a sport in 1994 and the current record dates from 2006, when Shaun van Rensburg spat a piece of dung a distance of 15.56 meters.