What's the hottest thing you've ever eaten?

For me it was several years ago at Mall of America in Minnesota.  They had a salsa store at the time that has since come and gone.  This place featured  a bazillion varieties of salsa, from slightly spicier than ketchup all the way to 'Raiders of the Lost Ark' melt-off- your-face hot!  They also offered free samples.

They had a chart listing the potency of the different bottles and I chose to try something close, but still a little ways, from the top.  I was advised by the guy working there that once I tried a spoonful of this stuff, it would be pointless to try and put out the fire with anything - no water, no milk, not even an industrial sized bottle of Pepto.  His instructions: after 20 minutes it will go away.  You know what? With precision that would make a Swiss watchmaker green with envy, EXACTLY 20 long and painful minutes later, it was gone and I had learned a lesson:  from now on my salsa choices need to add flavor, not just heat to my meals or I don''t go near them.

The video above doesn't involve salsa, but rather a spicy delicacy from another part of the world - curry.  You are looking at a 55-year-old radiologist, Ian Rothwell, trying to down a dish called "The Widower" at Bindi -- an Indian restaurant in Grantham, England.  It's made with 20 Naga Infinity chilies, which are so spicy that the chefs in the kitchen have to make the dish while wearing goggles and a face mask.

Ian eventually polished off 'The Widower', but it nearly polished him off first.  The video itself looks pretty harmless, but what it doesn't show is our hero reportedly hallucinating during a 10-minute break in the middle of his meal. He is apparently the first of about 300 people who tried the dish and succeeded in finishing it.

Ian told a website the next day:

I can confirm it was a little uncomfortable, but nothing terrible.