May 15, 1964: the students of Wakefield College in England attempted to set a record for the most people piled in one bed. They were hoping to make it to 50, but when they got to around 47 things started to go wrong. Frazer Cartwright, who was on the bottom, gasped, "Get off... quick... I'm..." Then blood began gushing from his nose, and he passed out. Luckily the audience intervened before he wound up dead. Cartwright vowed never to repeat that experience again.
14-year-old Emma Welch recently set a world record for the "largest teddy bears’ picnic on a mountain summit." She arranged the transport of 135 tedddy bears to the summit of Mount Snowdon in North Wales. All done for a good cause, to help raise money for brain tumor research.
But the reason she had to narrow her world record attempt down to a specific location is because the world record for largest teddy bears' picnic (anywhere) is pretty competitive. The record seems to have been held since 1995 by the Dublin Zoo, for a picnic with 33,573 bears in attendance. That set the bar pretty high, and people have been trying (and failing) to beat it ever since.
Sugarcreek, Ohio has what they claim is the world's largest cuckoo clock. In fact it had been on display at a couple of different venues for many years. It is quite a lovely and charming tourist attraction.
Apparently there's a Guinness World Record for catching bridal bouquets, and Jamie Jackson of Utah has submitted documentation to back up her claim that she's the new world record holder. She's caught 46 bouquets since 1996. The previous record was 11. She says that this is "her sport," and that to catch a bouquet requires strategy and planning. [6abc.com]
David Gilhooley is known as the Guinness Artist, because he occasionally uses Guinness beer to paint watercolors. But he now has a second reason for the name after winning the Guinness World Record for most pencil portraits drawn in 12 hours. He sketched 200 of them.
By my calculations, that means he had to complete approximately one sketch every three and-a-half minutes. [Huddersfield Examiner]
Telly Savalas always seemed like an unlikely pop star. And yet, as Wikipedia notes, his version of "If" reached number one on the UK Singles Chart for two weeks in March 1975, and retains the record for being "the shortest title of any song to reach number one in the UK."
Runners World reports that Chris Kimbrough, a 44-year old mother of six, has "shattered the women's beer mile world record." She did this by running four laps, and drinking four beers, in 6:28.6, beating the previous record by 13 seconds. In a previous age, I suppose, this might have qualified her as "beer honorable."
I find her achievement quite inspirational. Makes me think I should start exercising more (especially if that involves a beer-exercise combo).
Norris Kellam's great talent in life was floating. For which he earned the name "The Human Cork." In May 1933 he attempted to break the world record for staying afloat by floating in a saltwater pool in Norfolk, Virginia for over 86 hours. Unfortunately he didn't make it. After 71 hours and 19 minutes he was overcome by sharp cramps and sunburn and had to climb out of the pool.
Paul Di Filippo
Paul has been paid to put weird ideas into fictional form for over thirty years, in his career as a noted science fiction writer. He has recently begun blogging on many curious topics with three fellow writers at The Inferior 4+1.
Chuck is the purveyor of News of the Weird, the syndicated column which for decades has set the gold-standard for reporting on oddities and the bizarre.
Our banner was drawn by the legendary underground cartoonist Rick Altergott.