Man dies after eating roaches and worms

Edward Archbold, 32 had just competed in a roach and worm-eating contest at a south Florida reptile store when he keeled over and died. (The video above shows the contest in progress.) Archbold was hoping to win a python. Not surprisingly, Ben Siegel Reptiles has retained lawyers who are waving waivers. From CNN:

Archbold swallowed roach after roach, worm after worm. While the store didn't say exactly how many Archbold consumed, the owner told CNN affiliate WPLG that he was "the life of the party."

"He really made our night more fun," (store owner) Ben Siegel told the station…

Luke Lirot, who says he is legally representing the store, said in a post on the store's Facebook page that all participants "signed thorough waivers accepting responsibility for their participation in this unique and unorthodox contest."

"The consumption of insects is widely accepted throughout the world, and the insects presented as part of the contest were taken from an inventory of insects that are safely and domestically raised in a controlled environment as food for reptiles," Lirot said.

"Florida man dies after winning roach-eating contest"


    1. The medical examiner is going to have fun with this one.  I’m reminded of “Silence of the Lambs” with the moth pupa found during autopsy.

  1. The way he was packing them into his mouth, he probably suffocated.  Wow – I’m not sure which is more disgusting – the contest itself or the way he was eating… :-p

    1. This. Arthropods ane arthropods. Although, strangely enough, a lot of people with shrimp allergies can have crawfish? The offending protein must be missing there…

      I DO know that when the giant cicada broods emerge, there’s always a handful of yahoos who post sauteed cicada nymph recipes. And there’s always a couple of people who go into anaphylaxis .

    2. Yeah probably this or just run of the mill sudden cardiac arrest. Something like 400,000 people died from SCA each year in the US with little to no warning.

      1.  I would tend to qualify that as “usually appear” within the 2 hours.  In the case where you’re stuffing yourself with the material in a contest/race like this, I’d think it would present much more quickly and severely.  Never mind that the actual contact can also cause the reaction much quicker than normally found via ingestion.

        1. There’s that. As a rule of thumb, don’t stuff yourself with stuff you’ve never eaten all at once. At least if you’ve taken some nibbles and then took a bit of time, there’s some time to back out before going on a hardcore anaphylaptic trip.

          I announce a new candidate for a darwin award 2012. Discipline posthumous. Category food and drink.

  2.  but let’s speculate anyway.  (this is the internet after all).   no way it was an infection from “dirty” cockroaches as the article implied.  that kills you a week or two later, not outside the store.  not suffocation, that would have happened during the contest.  i’m going for… he didn’t chew properly, worm burrows through his esophogus into his heart.  maybe a preexisting heart condition, for good measure.   or maybe 15 pound of worms and roaches had nothing to do with it, and it was just his time to go.

    1. I like the last one, the store’s lawyers should jump on that – the timing of his death was pure coincidence.  

  3. I haven’t read anything that provides any real insight into the cause of death.  For all we know, the bug-eating might just be a big coincidence.  Or, maybe not.  But right now, it’s all speculative.

  4. Thus sprach Internet:  there is a corollary to Nietzsche’s rule:  That which does not make you stronger kills you. 

  5. This man is now my hero. I will be able to point at this story whenever the switch from meat to insects hype comes to the fore again.

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