People love to better each other, and almost anything can thus be turned into a competition. In South Africa, this truth has resulted in Bokdroel Spoeg, which is a disturbingly popular challenge… for spitting.
Contestants take turns putting a small, round ball in their mouth, then ejecting it as forcefully as possible. Whoever sends the pellet the furthest from the starting line is the champion. It’s often played for fun by visitors and locals alike, but some of the competitions are serious, with audiences and official monitors. It was during one of the latter events that the world record was set, more than 15 meters by Shaun van Rensburg in 2006.
What makes this sport particularly disturbing is not simply the notion of competitive spitting. That’s gross, but other countries have their own examples. Only in South Africa, however, do they spit feces.
The ball in question is the pellet-shaped dung of the kudu (the impressive beast whose photo adorns the top of this piece), although impala leavings may be substituted in a pinch. At the highest levels of competition, the pieces are allowed to harden and then dropped in alcohol beforehand to kill any bacteria… but it’s still poop.
Spitting it fifteen meters away makes a lot of sense, far more than putting it into the mouth in the first place.
Question of the night: What’s your favorite wild animal?