Don Gorske became a minor celebrity when he briefly appeared in the documentary Super Size Me, in which comedian Morgan Spurlock ate three McDonald's meals a day for an entire month. While this lifestyle didn't do any favors with regards to Spurlock's health, Gorske has had a far more intense experience with the fast food chain.
The 64-year-old, from Wisconsin, has a special fondness for Big Macs, which he's turned into a world record achievement. Almost every day since May 17 1972 he has eaten two of the burgers, and kept the receipts to prove it. After only missing out on eight days over 44 years, he made the Guinness World Records in 2016, after eating his 28,788th burger - and he's kept eating in the years since.
According to him, when he tried a Big Mac for the first time he immediately purchased two more - then returned twice the same day to have another six. "I bit into that Big Mac and it was: 'Boy, I would love to eat these everyday' and that's what I ended up doing," he said.
Last week, he ate his 30,000th burger, and talked about the special occasion with The New York Post a few days later. “I love the patties, I love the sauce, I can’t get enough of it,” he explained. “I’m trying to get to 40,000, and that’ll take me another 14 years.” So, if he's intending to still be eating two Big Macs a day for the next 14 years, that would be 60 years of non-stop fast food.
Possibly the strangest thing about this story is that even after going through all this, Gorske is still pretty healthy.
“I’m healthy as a horse. I weigh 190 pounds, and my cholesterol is 165,” he said. “I’m better than normal.” With the burgers making up around 90 percent of his diet, you would think he would need to balance it out with plenty of exercise and other foods, but he explains all he needs is some long walks and at least one McDonald's Fruit N' Yogurt parfait each day - which he started once his wife insisted he eat more fruit.
Don purchases six Big Macs on Monday, eats two on the spot and puts the rest in the refrigerator. He then microwaves them throughout the week, up until Thursday, when he buys eight and repeats the process. The only times he has missed his daily dosage came when he had to do double shifts at his former job at Waupon Prison. “You can’t take Big Macs in front of the inmates,” he said. Despite this commitment, he pays the same as any other customer. He receives no discount or gifts from McDonald's, remarking that "I don’t feel they owe me anything”.
A lot of people have suggested that he may suffer from a form of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, but Don isn't having any of it. "It's not a disorder at all," he said. “Eating Big Macs doesn’t affect me as far as my health goes. Eating Big Macs is what I love.” But how long can he keep it up? Sixty years is an ambitious number to hit, after all.
"There's a joke I tell people," he told The Sun earlier this year, "if my wife has to put them in a blender then it's over." Seeing as this is a man who places candles on a Big Mac instead of a cake for his birthday, I'm inclined to believe him.