I was vaguely wondering what to do this coming bank holiday weekend when I logged in to my email to find advance media notification of the annual World Testicle Cooking Championship.
This bizarre event starts on Friday in Serbia, when weirdos from around the world will gather to listen to traditional Serbian folk music, drink brandy round a forest campfire – and cook animal testicles for their tea.
The organisers say testicles are a renowned aphrodisiac, but stress there is nothing vulgar about the competition – there is no stripping, no naked bodies and no fighting. Just testicles. Lots and lots of testicles.
They say: “The World Testicle Cooking Championship is an ideal place for you to have fun, make new friendships, listen to good music, eat healthy food, camp in the peaceful, natural and non-polluted environment.” And eat testicles.
“There are no chemicals involved in the preparation of the dishes and everything is made in a natural way, as it was done in the distant past,” says the website.
That’s all right then – don’t you hate it when they add monosodium glutamate to your testicles?
Apparently the winner of last year’s award for Most Original Way of Cooking Testicles was a team who attached testicles to bicycle spokes – as the wheel turned, the testicles were slowly grilled. Ingenious.
Tourism chiefs apparently hope that the event will help put Serbia on the map as a great holiday destination. The festival organiser commented: “The importance of a recognisable brand to sell a region cannot be underestimated – look at how many people go to Scotland because of the whiskey or how many people know Switzerland because of their cheese and chocolate. We are now hoping that the many famous and varied testicle dishes that we have created in the region will become world-famous and attract people who appreciate good food from all over the world.”
Can I have pilau rice and a nan bread with mine?
Then the British Professional Armwrestling Championships takes place in Garstang, Lancashire, on Saturday. I was intrigued not so much by the event itself (after reading about the testicle event anything else seems dull by comparison) as in the fact that armwrestling has an official governing body, The British Armwrestling Federation. I started to suspect that maybe armwrestlers take themselves a bit too seriously. Which is more than can be said of the organisers of Sunday’s annual World Bog Snorkelling Championships, in Llanwrtyd Wells.
Competitors are required to put on a mask or goggles, snorkel, flippers and fancy dress and to snorkel, face down, for 120 yards through a trench dug in a peat bog, without using any conventional swimming strokes. The world champion can expect a prize pot of £50. Yes, that much.
Back in Lancashire on Monday is the World Gravy Wrestling Championship, at which contestants must wrestle for two minutes in a pool full of gravy, while being scored for audience applause and various different moves.