I’m not sure whether this was just a British tradition or not, but it seems like every Christmas in my childhood was not complete without getting the latest Guinness Book of World Records in my stocking.
I used to find the book fascinating: you could find out the longest transatlantic flight ever right alongside the freak who could squirt milk out of their eyeballs the farthest. For a kid it was basically a dream come true, a smorgasbord of delight and disgust, an orgy or fascination and freakery.
They released the 2012 edition recently, and some of the weirdest records still stood – and some were broken. Here’s the pick of the crop.
Longest Tongue: Chanel Tapper (3.8 inches)
Longest Fingernails: Chris Walton (19ft 9in)
Most Popular TV Program: House (81.8 million, 66 countries)
Most Dogs Skipping on a Rope: 13
World’s Largest Afro (Natural): Aevin Dugas (4ft 4in)
Longest Ears on a Living Dog: Harbor (12.25in (left), 13.5in (right))
Most Needles Inserted Into Head: 2,009
Most steps walked down by a dog facing forwards balancing a glass of water: 10
Largest Screwdriver: Thomas Blackthorne (39.7in long)
Longest Cucumber: 47in long