Dan Pashman of WNYC’s The Sporkful has been trying to drag me into a fight over my ruling in the New York Times Magazine that a hot dog is not a sandwich, but a unique thing unto itself.
My proof of this negative is that hot dogs, while sharing many similar traits with sandwiches, do not share the crucial traits: all sandwiches may routinely be cut in half; no one would cut a hot dog in half unless under some weird duress or compulsion.
Just consider cutting a hot dog in half. Yes it can be done, but it feels weird, correct? CORRECT.
This is the same reason a hamburger is not a sandwich, but a separate genre of food.
That said, I will respond to Pashman only to say:
-You cannot be a strict constructionist re: folklore, which is what the Earl of Sandwich story is.
-Pashman establishes a definition involving two slices of bread, then breaks it quasi-literally in half to fit hot dogs into his own sandwich cosmology.
-You cannot use the fact that some things are “sandwiched” between bread to prove what is a sandwich, as the term follows the foodstuff. It is a logical fallacy-if not a proper tautology, then at least circular reasoning.
-I have cut a hot dog in half; of course it is possible. But it is a violation of the unity of the hot dog in a way cutting a meatball sub in half is not: sandwiches are by almost all history and practice designed to be cut in half and shared.
-Furthermore, a hot dog does not require a bun to be a hot dog.
-I will accept that I could be wrong about “open faced sandwiches”
-I was wrong about hot dogs too, ONCE, but now I am correct.
I would like to believe that this kid found the Tropical Islands of Germany via the Judge John Hodgman episode about the Berlin man who was afraid a devil lives in air conditioners, but I have to acknowledge that, when your water park is houses in a behemoth former zeppelin dome, people are going to find it on their own eventually.
Here is Jesse Thorn talking to the very nice and talented NAT FAXON on BULLSEYE.
Nat stars with Judy Greer and Jenny Slate and Brett Gelman in MARRIED, which premieres on FX TONIGHT at 10PM eastern.
(I am also in the show, as is PAUL REISER. It is great and you should watch it, and not just because I got to dance with Paul Reiser in a backyard dance party scene.)
Nat is not only a good actor and nice person, dude dropped “HM” for like 40 points the first time I played him in Scrabble. Dude went voweless within three moves. I have yet to beat him.
And if you’re not listening to BULLSEYE always, you are really missing out. Everything good in culture I’ve discovered over the past 8 years has more or less come from Jesse Thorn’s expert interviewing and curation.
Judge John Hodgman Verdict No. 168-“QUEASY RIDER”-is now POSTED for public review.
This is the Disneyland one where we talk about my terror of robots underwater and Dallas’s fear of the Tower of Terror (which isn’t really in Disneyland).
It features Expert Witness Mark Gagliardi of THRILLING ADVENTURE fame who served for a year as the ACTUAL MAYOR of Disneyland and currently plays THE GENIE at California adventure and also reveals some things he probably shouldn’t.
Thanks to everyone whose sent in their own weird/amazing/uncanny Disneyland experiences since this one first hit the internet air. I’m going there in a couple of weeks and I honestly get queasy with equal parts thrill and dread every time I contemplate it.
In the FORUM, “RadZombie” suggested a good idea for a tee shirt pertaining to this episode. I really want to do more tee-shirts everyone!
You can always debate my rulings, subscribe, download, etc. by going HERE.
If you have a dispute you’d like me to resolve, go HERE.
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