Sports

Send help, I’m obsessed with ‘The Deion Sanders Hot Dog Express’

Deion Sanders is trying to make his mark as Colorado’s head coach, but perhaps he didn’t need a big, threatening speech telling players to jump in the transfer portal. Maybe you can catch more flies with honey than vinegar, or in this case win over football players with the unrivaled power of THE DEION SANDERS HOT DOG EXPRESS.

I am absolutely obsessed with dumb stuff like this. The only thing I love more than a stupid made-for-tv product is an unnecessary athlete tie-in, and this one really hits the sweet spot. It’s not just Deion trying to sell a hot dog cooker, in what’s clearly an attempted George Foreman-esque cash in, it’s the die-hard hot dog fans selling their love of the machine — especially the man who willingly said this on national TV:

“When I took that first initial bite there was a great big pop, and then a burst of juices rushed into my mouth and it was delicious.”

It’s quickly followed by a man talking with his mouth full, slurring his speech either out of drunkenness or meat overload, bragging about how Deion Sanders knows how to make a good hot dog.

Since seeing the informercial I have invested a staggering amount of time into learning everything I can about ‘The Deion Sanders Hot Dog Express.’ Launching in 2004, the original Hot Dog Express didn’t carry any of the Sanders branding on it. That didn’t happen until 2005, when it was altered to carry Prime’s name. The product is totally unchanged though, and up until recently you could still buy it on Amazon.

There’s no wizardry behind the heated roller hot dog cooking method. Gas stations have been using it for decades, and I have a lot of personal experience of using one from my movie theater days. However, the Hot Dog Express took the convenience and brought it home, and for the most part people loved it. 55 percent of buyers gave it five stars, and reviewer “Burly Nerd” made it a staple of his summer in 2005.

The only minefield about looking at the Amazon reviews is when you need an answer to a specific question and Sue Sipe comes along.

SHEESH SUE, YOU COULD HAVE JUST IGNORED THE QUESTION. WHAT ARE YOU EVEN DOING HOVERING AROUND THE DEION SANDERS HOT DOG EXPRESS PAGE IN 2019 WAITING TO ANSWER SAUSAGE-BASED QUESTIONS FOR A PRODUCT YOU DON’T EVEN OWN? WHAT’S YOUR DEAL, SUE? SERIOUSLY. I WANT TO KNOW. IS THIS LIKE A COMMON THING FOR YOU? TREATING THE AMAZON ANSWERS SECTION LIKE YOUR OWN LITTLE CHAT ROOM. YOU’RE PLAYING WITH LIVES SUE! PEOPLE NEED TO KNOW IF THE DEION SANDERS HOT DOG EXPRESS CAN EFFECTIVELY COOK AN ITALIAN SAUSAGE, WHICH IS REALLY IMPORTANT BECAUSE UNLIKE A HOT DOG AN ITALIAN SAUSAGE IS UNCOOKED. SOMEONE COULD HAVE EFFECTIVELY ANSWERED THIS BUT NOOOOOOO YOU’VE GOTTA JUMP IN DROPPING SUE KNOWLEDGE LIKE “I DON’T OWN THIS PRODUCT.” NOW SOMEONE HAS BOUGHT THE DEION SANDERS HOT DOG EXPRESS AND WARMED AN ITALIAN SAUSAGE TO BE RIGHT IN THE DANGER ZONE AND THEY DIED. THEY DIED SUE… AND THAT’S ON YOUR HANDS.

So, the other thing about the Deion Sanders Hot Dog Express is the boastful claim that you can make hamburgers and pancakes on this too. Nobody really knows how. It’s a great mystery of the internet. Owners of this hot dog cooker are trying to find out how they can jury-rig this thing to become a weird electric flat top grill. I decided to channel my inner Sue and offer some helpful advice on this topic.

Oh, and while we’re back on the topic of Sue… SUE, I LOOKED AT YOUR AMAZON REVIEW HISTORY TO SEE IF OFFERING UNHELPFUL ANSWERS ON PRODUCTS YOU DON’T OWN IS A KINK OF YOURS AND IT TURNS OUT IT’S NOT — SO I APOLOGIZE. YOU ONLY HAVE FOUR REVIEWS IN AMAZON HISTORY AND THEY’RE ALL ON THE JACK REACHER NOVELS. INCLUDING THIS ONE, WITH THE TITLE “TEACHER NEVER DIDAPPOINTS” BUT I ASSUME THAT WAS JUST A TYPO. SO I’M SORRY FOR PUTTING YOU ON BLAST LIKE THIS IS IN A PUBLIC FORUM.

In a quest to find more about what it was like to purchase a Deion Sanders Hot Dog Express in 2005, like God intended, I needed to go to the seedy underbelly of the internet. Buried in the “off topic” section of an Apple message board I found some people discussing the Deion Sanders Hot Dog Express when it was first launched. Now, I gotta warn you before clicking though that some of the commenters are garbage. There are some Braves fans, some hot dog fans, and some random racists who want to make jokes about Deion’s kids, like they’re trying to earn prejudice points. However, this comment from ohara, who has since been banned from the Apple message board really got me thinking.

I sincerely hope that ohara has gone to therapy in the 17 years since seeing hot dogs on TV and being dominated by fear of castration. If you’re reading this and still struggling with sausage-related anxiety, please know this is not a normal concern. Nobody is going to cut your genitals off. Who has the time any more with the wide variety of streaming services out there? Please, ohara, I hope you found a licensed therapist to work through these issues so you can enjoy a hot dog, Polish sausage, or perhaps even a lil’ smokie without worry moving forward.

I really wanted to buy The Deion Sanders Hot Dog Express, an actual branded one with Prime on the box — but eBay didn’t have anything. I’m unable to find one with the Sanders branding on it at all. Still, I get the general gist. This made-for-TV hot dog roller has a whole subculture of its own, from humble folks looking to brighten their days with processed meat magic, to Sue, reading Jack Reacher, who never disappoints, to ohara, sweet, pure ohara, who is worried that seeing a hot dog will cut his penis off.

None of this is possible without Deion Sanders. The Hot Dog Express would have been lost to time, buried among the nine million other hot dog rollers on the market — but Deion made it stand out. For that I will be grateful, and hope one day I can own my own and get Prime to sign it.



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