While always eager to share its culture with new friends from abroad, China minces few words when it comes to deciding who is best at its own culture. That’s true for kung fu, ping pong, and it certainly is that way when it comes to Chinese food — even in a local noodle eating competition.
Last week, a Wuhan auntie showed a roster of 100 international competitors who’s the boss by wolfing down 400 grams of noodles in just 8 seconds. By comparison, the fastest time among the international competitors was 24 seconds.
The 53-year-old woman surnamed Luo apparently wasn’t even part of the regular competition, having been invited on stage at the end of the contest.
Luo was as surprised as anyone else that she won, but still chalked up her victory to one very basic reason. “When it comes to eating (local delicacy) hot dry noodles, Wuhan people are the best,” she told a cheering crowd.
Luo’s lack of humility happened to run against the whole purpose of the eating competition, which was reported to be a cultural exchange intended to help foreign exchange students understand Wuhan.
Meanwhile, the eating competition seems to have offered locals a chance to laugh at their new guests. Chinese reports say the audience snickered at foreign competitors who ate using their hands instead of chopsticks because they were “unfamiliar with their use.”
But such condescension was lost on 21-year-old winner Emmanuel who won 1,000 yuan for coming in first. Hailing from Togo, Emmanuel won the top prize by eating with his hands.
“Hot dry noodles; so delicious!” he told an appreciative crowd in Chinese.
By Charles Liu
[Images via Chutian Metropolis Daily]
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