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GWRecords178 karma

Records can change hands a hundred times in a day at our GWR Live events, but the record that has been challenged most consistently over the years is Oldest living woman. Women outlive men and are usually holders of the "oldest living" category. But they typically don't hold it for long, of course, so there's a new holder regularly.

In terms of active applications, they come in waves, especially in response to news of a record being broken - the fidget-spinning duration record went crazy when Buzzfeed ran a video of an attempt to spin it on the nose - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_3geNlQ9uo. (Current record to beat is 8 min 49 sec, if you're game!)

GWRecords171 karma

Lame? Uninteresting? No such thing at GWR!!

The most boring record holder could arguably be a piece of artillery that measures 91 cm (36 in) in diameter and belongs to the Mallet mortar, which was designed by Robert Mallet (Ireland) and completed in March 1857 – technically the largest bore. It is currently on display at the Royal Armouries, Fort Nelson, Hampshire, UK.... Or Bertha. In summer 2013, her colossal 17.5-metre-diameter (57.5-ft) cutting head started drilling out the State Route 99 tunnel beneath Seattle. The world's largest boring machine, Bertha consists of a large steel face, into which are mounted no less than 600 small cutting disks that grind away at the rock in its path. The $80-million device, manufactured by Japanese engineering firm Hitachi Zosen, measures 91 metres in length (300 ft) and weighs 6,900 tons.

GWRecords152 karma

Oops, just realised I was using my own account - now on the official GWR account!

GWRecords142 karma

I've dined out for years on the fact that I became chummy with Michael Jackson - I invited him to the London office and he actually turned up! He was such a fascinating character, and we stayed in touch after he left. (He asked me to award him his certificate at the World Music Awards in 2006, which I did with help of my assistant Beyonce Knowles!)

I was also very moved to meet Apa Sherpa, who (at the time) had climbed Everest more than anyone else (20 times). He is a humble, gentle man who's dedicated himself to protecting the fragile Nepalese environment and trying to encourage people to learn about the awful effects of global warming. He lost family in an avalanche of glacial meltwater, and wants to protect his community. I met him in the shadow of Everest, and he was so kind and inspiring that I ended up in tears. It was an overwhelming trip (I was trying to find the shortest man, Mr Dangi, for a TV documentary and grabbed at the chance to meet Apa).

But I've been blessed with the chance to meet SO many awe-inspiring people - it's the best part of the job, as our record holders are literally the most amazing people in the world.

GWRecords129 karma

I haven't really seen anything nefarious but there are rivalries - there are two balloon artists who vie to have the most balloon modelling records, for example. My favourite is the rivalry between Radhakant Bajpai and Anthony Victor (both India), who want to be recognized for the longest ear hair! Anthony currently has the record at 18.1-cm-long (7.12-in) hair at its longest point. They're both under the impression that God has blessed them with a "unique" feature that helps them stand out from the crowd!

The other rivalry comes from individuals striving to have the record for holding the most records, and there's currently at least half a dozen men (they're all men!) battling this out. Ashrita Furman of New York has this record (which we don't officially award as a record now, to avoid being self-referential) but there are also people like Space Cowboy (Australia), Silvio Sabba (Italy), Paddy Doyle (UK), David Rush (US, who's attempted a record every week this year!) Bring it on!!