Since the advent of the ever so popular Guinness Book, people have seemingly made it their mission to set new records. Today, records come and go like the seasons and tides. But there will forever be a handful that stand the test of time. Some of these feats are so incomprehensibly outlandish, that I don’t think anyone in their right mind would even want to attempt to break them. Especially the last one. From the sporting world to the private lives of weirdos, these are thirteen records that will absolutely, unequivocally remain in the books.
13. Ted St. Martin Makes 5,221 Free Throws in a Row
A man who didn’t play college basketball or shine particularly bright as a high school player set multiple records for his shooting prowess. Ted St. Martin, native of Jacksonville, started off by blasting to smithereens Harold “Bunny” Levitt’s record of 499 in 1975. He beat it by 739. But then he kept upping the ante, until he was 75 years old, eclipsing any possible contender with a grand total of 5,221. For comparison, the NBA record for most consecutive free throws is 78, set by Houston’s Calvin Murphy in 1981.
12. Fernando Tatis Hits Two Grand Slams—In One Inning
April 23, 1999 was a bad day for pitcher Chan Ho Park. He loaded the bases twice in the third inning, and both times one single solitary batter knocked them out of the park. That man was Fernando Tatis, a player who had only 23 career home runs heading into the game. That day he also set the record for eight runs batted in during an inning. For an idea of just how rare this is, Derek Jeter needed 6,542 tries to hit his first grand slam. Tatis’ Cardinals won the game, unsurprisingly, 12-5. And Park left the field with an unfortunate record of his own.
11. Lightning Strikes the Same Man Seven Times
Roy Sullivan was an ordinary park ranger at Shenandoah National Park. But what remains in the Guinness Books isn’t ordinary at all—ridiculously far from it, actually. Between 1942 and 1977, Sullivan was struck by lightning seven times. The strikes were verified by doctors and documented by park superintendent R. Taylor Hoskins. For reference, the odds of being struck by lightning over a period of 80 years is 1 in 10,000. Being struck seven times in one lifetime is equal to being bitten by the same Great White Shark, well, seven times. Sullivan also mentioned that even as a child he was a Human Lightning Rod; a bolt struck his scythe while he was cutting wheat in a field with his father. He died in 1983 from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
10. Charles Osborne Hiccups for 68 Years Straight
Charles Osborne lived a normal life until the age of 28. There he was, lifting a pig up to have it slaughtered, when something terrible happened: “I was hanging a 350 pound hog for butchering. I picked it up and then I fell down,” he told People in 1982. “I felt nothing, but the doctor said later that I busted a blood vessel the size of a pin in my brain.”
The result? Hiccuping some 24,000 times a day up until the end of his life. In the beginning they happened 40 times per minute, but slowed down to 20 per minute as he aged. In 1990, one year before his death, the hiccups mysteriously stopped. Imagine for an instant the thrill of it finally being over, only to die of natural causes a few months later. Over the course of his life it’s estimated he hiccuped 595 million times. But that didn’t stop Osbourne from living a fulfilling life. He remained productive on his Iowa farm, married twice, and even fathered eight children (and he was only 5’4). See kids, miracles do happen.
9. Australian Man Collects 22.1 Grams of Navel Fluff Over 26 Years
In 2010, Perth native Graham Barker set a record that had never before seen in the record books. One day in 1984 he curiously peered over a piece of navel lint that he plucked from his belly button. He decided, for some reason, to begin a new hobby. That hobby lasted for 26 years, filling nearly three sweet jars. No one will ever beat that—or attempt to, let’s hope.
Telling Metro, “A few, usually women, recoil in mock horror, thinking that lint from a navel is really gross. And some think I have too much time on my hands, which always strikes me as an illogical thing to say about a habit which only occupies ten seconds per day. A small minority with no sense of humor just don’t get it and express their opinion with rude words.”
8. Michael Jackson’s Thriller Goes Platinum 30 Times
In December of last year, the Recording Industry Association of America gave a posthumous honor to the King of Pop for hitting the milestone of 30. Thriller, Jackson’s most famous album which included hits to this day “Beat It,” Billie Jean” and “Thriller,” hit 100 million sales. After its released in 1982, it stayed on the Billboard album chart at No. 1 for 37 weeks.
Led Zeppelin came in close second with 23 for Led Zeppelin IV, but it’s apparent no one buys albums anymore. In 2014, for instance, not one album saw Platinum status. Seems the King of Pop will remain the King until the end of time.
7. Most Lopsided College Football Game: 222-0
In 1916, Cumberland College came to play at Georgia Tech. The previous year, Cumberland discontinued its football program, but no one told Georgia Tech. So they had to play or else they’d have to pay a fee of $3,000. The result of the game stays in the record books to this day.
Georgia Tech led 126-0 at halftime. As the Atlanta Journal wrote, “As a general rule, the only thing necessary for a touchdown was to give a Tech back the ball and holler, ‘Here he comes’ and ‘There he goes.’” Popular sportswriter at the time Grantland Rice said, “Cumberland’s greatest individual play of the game occurred when fullback Allen circled right end for a 6-yard loss.”
The coach of Georgia Tech knew that the game would be a blowout, but he remembered a nasty little blowout the Georgia Tech baseball team had against Cumberland earlier that year, losing 22-0. He smelled blood in the water. Since World War II, only a few college football teams have eclipsed 100 points in a single game.
6. Andre the Giant Drinks 119 Beers in a Single Sitting
Andre Rene Rousimoff was a freak of nature, a successful wrestler, and a legendary booze hound. He was deemed The Eighth World of the World—make that nine if you count his ability to squash literal kegs of beer.
Friends of his say he drank 7,000 calories of booze a day. That’s booze, not food. Fellow wrestler Mike Graham swears by the fact that he saw Andre once drink 156 cans of beer at a party. Actor Carl Elwes put it this way in one of his bestselling books: “According to some estimates his average daily consumption of alcohol was a case of beer, three bottles of wine, and a couple of bottles of brandy.” Standing at 7’5” and weighing 500 pounds, it’s still unbelievable. Andre told David Letterman on Late Night that he once pounded 119 beers over the course of six hours (four 30 packs). Considering his witnesses and numerous testimonies, it’s impossible not to give these tales a bit of credit.
5. 28 People Fit into a Mini Cooper
It’s an unbeatable record, unless you’re recruiting Pygmies out of Zambia to do your bidding. In November of 2012, 28 ladies squeezed themselves into a BMW Mini. It SHATTERED the previous year’s record of 27. The gymnasts out of Sussex, England took 10 minutes to fit in, lasting for five seconds. Considering the Mini Cooper was a passing fad of silly ingenuity, no one will ever attempt this feat again. Nor should they. Unless it’s me in the middle of 28 flexible gymnasts.
4. Johnny Vander Meer Pitches Back-to-Back No-Hitters
In 1938, Johnny Vander Meer told the AP Wire, “All the publicity, the attention, the interviews, the photographs, were too much for me.” He was talking about what happened moments before, when he sealed what the Cincinnati Post called “the greatest feat in the game’s history.” He pitched consecutive no-hitters.
The 23-year-old rookie hit the mound on June 11 versus the Boston Bees. He struck out four, walked three, and allowed no hits. It was the Reds’ first no-hitter in 18 years. Four days later in Brooklyn, he walked eight and struck out seven against the Dodgers. Also, a no hitter. To this day, sportswriters still marvel at the rarity of such a spectacle, admitting that it’s impossible for three consecutive no-hitters to happen.
3. Wayne Gretzky—Just Wayne Gretzky
Here are a few records that Gretzky holds in the NHL: Most career points at 2,857; most career goals at 894; most career assists at 1,963; most goals in a season at 92; most points in a season at 215; most assists in a season at 163; most 100-point seasons at 15; most career games with three or more goals at 50. You get the point. After a career that will undoubtedly remain the most celebrated in all of history, he holds the crown with 61 National Hockey League records.
2. Robert Wadlow’s Height of 8’11”
Thanks to modern medicine, hyperplasia of the pituitary gland can be treated. So no one will shoot to the height of nearly 9 feet tall without some serious doctoral intervention. Robert Wadlow was known as the Alton Giant. Coincidentally, he was born in Alton, Illinois. By the time he graduated high school, he was already 8’4”. He became famous by traveling the United States with the Ringling Brothers Circus. He died at the age of 22 when one of his leg braces caused a blister which became infected. He passed away in his sleep.
1. Most People Twerking Simultaneously: 358 People Shaking Their Booties
Twerking is about to become uncool in 3…2…1.
Seriously though, this happened. Rapper Big Freedia organized the world’s biggest twerkfest in New York’s Herald Square in September 2013. When asked what the record meant to her, she told Fuse: “It would open a lot of doors and set history for bounce music and let the world know that we’ve been twerking for a long time.” Congratulations, Big Freedia. Your legacy is sealed.