The nightmare of all the metal detectors is her: Elaine Davidson, the most pierced woman in the world. On his body must not have remained even a free corner, given that in his 43 years of age he has accumulated well 5, 920.

All this scrap, which weighs more than 3 kilos, has also given it a place in the Guinness Book of World Records. She is proud of it and is now a celebrity that is divided between fairs, television broadcasts and photo shoots. "I like pain, I love pain, " said the woman, who assures, does not drink and does not use drugs. Except then add candidly that the area of ​​his body that houses the most piercings is the genital area. Where the sun doesn't beat it has 500 earrings.

Find out what the origin of the piercing is . See also a vegetarian pierced .
But there are also those who decorate their bodies in a slightly less painful way: let yourself be deluded by body painting .

An electric discharge, then a roar, a good show but not for everyone. Many people suffer from "ceraunofobia", the fear of thunder and lightning. Actually being struck by lightning like this, which hit New York recently, is a rather unlikely event. It is estimated to happen to one person in 3 thousand and is not always deadly.

Due to lightning there are also those who, in spite of himself, entered the Guinness Book of Records. Roy Sullivan, a lawyer from Virginia, was struck by lightning seven times. And he never died, he died at age 71, committed suicide due to a disappointment in love.

Have you photographed spectacular lightning? Join the iFocus "Temporali, Fulmini e Saette" group . Also discover the anatomy of lightning and witness an almost fatal " love at first sight " .

Does drinking with a straw hurt? The last issue of Focus Questions and Answers on newsstands answered this question. The only risk is to fill the belly with air, which is particularly harmful only for those who already suffer from aerophagia. But even this habit can have an advantage: the aspirated liquid goes directly to the bottom of the oral cavity and does not come into contact with the teeth. In the case of sweet, carbonated or acid drinks, this results in a lower risk of damage to tooth enamel and plaque formation.

Who knows what the Austrian Marco Hort thinks who tried to beat (succeeding) the Guinness Book of World Records by putting 259 straws in his mouth at the same time … The previous record he held was 249.

It will be one of the most important engineering achievements of all time when it is completed: the Three Gorges dam should be inaugurated in 2009 and should keep the great Yangtze river at bay, often the cause of catastrophic floods. However, many doubts about the project have been raised by experts that the hydrogeological balance will be dangerously compromised and many aquatic species put at risk. If the project goes to port anyway the dam will reach two kilometers on the river and will rise for 185: the water basin will instead extend for 600 kilometers. Guinness numbers of the primates …

In the photo, a detail of the works: in the link below the satellite photo of the whole area (© Nasa).

Look at how the port of Montreal, in Canada, was decorated a few weeks ago. This is not the new Canadian national flag, but a 20-kilometer "garland"!

To promote the bizarre initiative was a local radio station, which invited all listeners to contribute to breast cancer research by donating one of their bras. About 67 thousand women responded to the appeal, and with their whites the organizers have woven this very long chain. All not to enter the Guinness Book of World Records, but for good.

A lingerie manufacturer has promised to contribute $ 1 for each item donated.

Look at an edible bra and find out when underwear was invented .

This mime is almost guinness. It is in fact one of the 131 mimes that gathered last November in Slovakia, setting the (unofficial) record of the greatest number of mimes on a single stage at the same time.

The mime was born as an art of expressiveness, because unlike comedy the actors did not wear masks and had to use the gesture, reciting with the body rather than with words. It spread especially during the Roman imperial era as a kind of escape, thanks also to the fact that the actors "mimed" everyday life often without neglecting the hottest details. Moreover, while in the comedy and in the tragedy the female roles were interpreted by men disguised as women, the mime professionals could also be women.


More than ten thousand kilos of meat, grilled for 1252 people on a 1, 500 meter long barbecue. But the real goal of this barbecue that took place in Montevideo (in Uruguay), a few weeks ago, was not just a nice collective lunch but to enter the Guinness Book of World Records. And the cooks succeeded, this is the biggest barbecue in the world.

A legend has it that the first French explorers arrived in the New World saw some Caribbean natives cooking a whole goat on a large wooden shelf. Back in Europe they said they had seen an animal cooked from the beard to the tail, "de la barbe a la queue" from here barbecue.

In reality, however, the origin of the word is still unclear and probably derives from the Spanish "barbacoa".

When the barbecue is bad for your health

Gusts of wind at a speed of 80 kilometers per hour. Just enough to uproot a tree, like the one that blocks this road in Los Angeles, California. Fortunately, however, the powerful gusts failed to break down another illustrious Californian tree: the "General Sherman" the largest giant sequoia in the world, named in honor of the famous General of the Civil War. It seems that this vegetable is the largest living being (in terms of volume) of the Earth. And to look at his measurements it is not difficult to believe it: 84 meters high by 5.445 tons of weight.

Guinness measures? Yes, even if the "General Sherman" is not one of the oldest trees in the world: it has an age between 2, 300 and 2, 700 years. Bazzecole, compared to 4, 789 years of the "Matusalem" pine, the oldest living tree in the world, found in the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest, also in California.

Spend most of the day looking for a way to create a soap bubble so large that it can hold an entire class. This is what Sam Heath has recently done, nicknamed Bubbleman, and he succeeded. Last November at the Museum of Science in London it "packed" 50 children into a bubble, thanks to a special instrument, 12 meters in diameter. Entering the Guinness Book of Records. A company of no small importance from the scientific point of view. Some researchers of the University of California are also dedicated to research into the dynamics of soap bubbles, which involve chemical, geophysical and physical knowledge. A discipline called "bollologia" ("bubbleologist" in English).

Brushes and colors were not used to make this picture, but toothpicks. The Albanian artist Saimir Strati, used as many as one million toothpicks stuck on a polystyrene table of eight square meters. Everything to create what he hopes will enter the Guinness Book of Records, like the largest mosaic ever attempted. A patient job that lasted 40 days. But Strati is accustomed to precision work, in 2006 he entered the Guinness with a copy of Leonardo da Vinci's self-portrait, made with thousands of nails (he says he lost count, probably 400 kilos).

Make the roundest object in the world. It is the challenge faced - and won - by the Australian Commonwealth Scientific Organization, which deals with the most important scientific research in Australia. Expert optical engineers have succeeded in obtaining a sphere (in the photo) practically free of imperfections, using a single crystal of silicon-28, a material similar to silver. However, the new globe will not enter the Guinness Book of Records, but will help scientists define a new international standard for the kilogram. The standard we currently refer to to measure the kilo is calculated on a model conserved in France. But scientists have long been trying to redefine the measure, to make it more precise.

Blue bow at the Center for the Protection of the Panda of Wolong, in China: last February 23, Ji Ni, a female of giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca) gave birth to a record-breaking puppy. The child, barely 13 centimeters high and weighing 90 grams, scored three records in spite of himself. First of all, it is the first panda born in captivity in 2007; Ji Ni, moreover, at the "venerable" age of 13, is the oldest panda mother to have given birth to a firstborn.

Finally, the duration of pregnancy itself is from guinness: as many as 324 days of gestation, almost four times the normal maternity period of these animals (which usually lasts about three months). Let's say the new born took it easy …

Each has its own specialty: if in the world the Italians are famous, for the pizza, in Japan the ritual of tea is famous. So to compete in the Guinness Book of World Records in Treviso they produced a 186.3 meter long pizza, while the Japanese organized the largest tea ceremony ever.

All to celebrate the Guinness day (occurred on November 9th), the ideal date for those who wanted to enter the record book. Like Alastair Galpin, already the holder of the record for the greatest number of socks tucked into a single foot, which now wants to measure up to the highest quantity of garlic swallowed in just one minute. Or like the man in the photo who wants to stand out for the highest number of reptiles … in the mouth.

"I have a circle in my head." "My head bursts." Subtitles are wasted that we could stick to this decidedly bizarre photo. On the other hand it was taken on the occasion of the international clown festival which has been held for 11 years in Denmark.

But these professional pranksters love to get together. Thus in 1991, in the United Kingdom, 850 clowns from 5 continents gathered in the same circus tent, establishing a Guinness record.

It is Japanese the last and extraordinary roller coaster, which has entered the Guinness Book of Records by right: during the race on its iron rails, the passengers of this brand new roller coaster end up upside down 14 times. To find out how much the maximum speed a Russian mountain can reach, click here .
To find out why roller coasters have this bizarre name, read the explanation in our section (to access this content you must be a registered user: if you haven't done it yet, it's easy and free).

It's not what you think. In fact, what you see is not the umpteenth attempt to beat the Guinness book of records of the quantity of bees with which to cover one's body. A Colombian farmer, who recently resisted for almost an hour, covered with over 400 thousand bees, earned him "barely" 120 bites. And this is true, according to some.

In the photo, an Indonesian supporter of bee sting therapy, according to which the poison produced by these insects would have a beneficial effect especially in the treatment of chronic pain, is in fact dressed in bees. In short, not just honey and royal jelly …

In the face of alternative therapies

It must be said that those of the Guinness Book of World Records are gluttonies: among the most compelling gastronomic primates, in fact, a series of really colossal cakes appear.

There is the longest dessert (2, 500 meters), the most abundant (over 58 tons), the most stuffed ice cream cake (5.4 tons), the heaviest marzipan (4.2 tons) and the most mammoth wedding cake (6.8 tons) .

Last January 16 in Beijing, we worked for 20 consecutive days to produce the new delicacy with thousands of calories that "crumbles" every previous record. In the photo, the confectioners involved refine 8.7 tons of goodness.

Some (especially in Eastern Europe) flutes of champagne disintegrate them to wish good luck … and those who stack them to try to enter the Guinness Book of World Records. The record for the tallest tower of glasses, until now, had been held by a certain Luuk Broos, director of the hotel chain Maison Luuk-Chalet Fontane, who had built a 56-storey drinking fountain at a Dutch hotel . To make up there were 30, 856 glasses.

In recent days, in Amsterdam, an attempt was made to beat the previous enterprise with a tower of 35, 990 glasses. The occasion was a fair for the hotel industry.

Here is the sequence of the incredible leap made by Nathan Rennie, the Australian who for the first time in history managed to jump 36.9 meters on a mountain bike, after being towed at a speed of over 90 kilometers per hour on a ramp specially built of 12 meters.

The attempt to enter the Guinness Book of World Records, dethroning the record holder Colin Winkleman (35.3 meters), failed however due to the ruinous landing (but without consequences) of the reckless athlete. Beyond the missed official record, Rennie can be satisfied with having saved the skin: in the last 10 years 8 bikers have died trying to complete this feat.

More curiosities and crazy on two wheels in our photo gallery dedicated to cycling .
Photo: © Mark Watson / Redbull

Traditionally, the Christmas tree is decorated today, the day in which the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary is commemorated. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the largest tree in the world is the one inaugurated with spectacular water games at its feet last November 26 in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil). The tree is 82 meters high and has been decorated with 2.8 million colored lights.

The tallest tree in the world is instead a sequoia (Sequoia sempervirens) of Humboldt Redwoods State Park, in California (USA): in 2004 it measured 112.7 meters.

It took the American Brian Spotts 12 hours to enter the Guinness Book of World Records: the test he underwent, and which took place in Australia, at the Australian Center for Contemporary Art in Melbourne, was to put "on his feet "and in perfect balance 439 eggs.

The previous record was only 420 units, but it is not the only one to have fresh eggs as protagonists. In 1994, in fact, David Donoghue managed to make them fall to earth from an altitude of 213 meters and make them arrive intact. It seems that it took very serious physics studies to succeed.

Wild laundry day in the seaside town of Oostduinkerke, Belgium? None of this: it is in fact the attempt by the entire community to enter the Guinness Book of World Records, with strokes of lingerie … Yes, because the record to beat consists in exceeding the number of hanging and exposed bras in the streets of the city. First the record belonged to Tongerlo, also in Belgium: now the challenge was launched by the 9, 829 Oostduinkerke bras!

This typically feminine garment was officially born in 1889 from the hands of Hermine Cadolle, a Parisian envelope, although since ancient times women had devised different stratagems (such as tightly bound bands) to "hold off" prosperous breasts.

Ladies and gentlemen, here is Ashrita Furman, also called Mister Versatility. In fact, since 1979 it has entered the Guinness Book of World Records 90 times: the tests passed go from the longest distance traveled backwards by bicycle to the greatest number of glasses kept in balance on the chin, from the fastest mile to somersaults to the greatest number of rope jumps done in an hour and … underwater. All these successes have earned him the record of records, that of the man with the highest number of certified records. The last to be recorded put him on April 3 in Cairo: he managed to cover 11.3 kilometers with a golf club balanced on one finger.

The most pierced woman in the world is of Brazilian descent and is called Elaine Davidson. Thanks to her curious passion for earrings and rings, the woman ended up in the Guinness Book of World Records with 1903 counted and tested holes, 192 of which are found on ears, forehead, eyebrows, nose chin and tongue. The most "holey" man is the Cuban Luis Antonio Agüero who has "only" 230 (including 175 on the face).

All about piercing and other forms of body art in the photogallery " Body art, between past and present " …

To decide which is the right wine for every occasion teaches us our new game, combined with the Focus on taste and tasting (see the multimedia "Anatomy of taste) … In this case the lunch should be of the special ones, since the bottle it is indeed the largest bottle in the world, with its 130 liters of Beringer Cabernet Sauvignon special reserve from 2001, produced in Napa Valley, certified by the Guinness Book of World Records, the bottle - which could fill 1200 glasses - is high one meter and a half and circumference of the same size. Named Maximus, the Bordeaux-style bottle will be auctioned at Sotheby's New York auction house for between 25 and 75 thousand dollars (about 19-57 thousand euros ).

In the world it is done in many ways. There are those who marry the partner chosen by the family, as happens with the Swahili society, and those who choose the husband to a kind of beauty contest, as happens in Niger. These and other curiosities about marriage are gathered in the photo gallery " Viva gli sposi ". Over hundreds have been couples who in recent days got married in China, in the Zhejiang province, with an impressive collective ritual.
Ceremony entered in the Guinness Book of World Records was instead the one that took place on Valentine's Day in 2001 in Thailand where 34 couples were married at the same time. Special features of the event: everything took place 10 meters below the sea.

If you are fascinated by the world of the infinitely small, the smallest book in the world will not have gone unnoticed in your eyes.
In Tokyo these days it was presented what is said to be the largest book in the world and will be subjected to the strict controls of the Guinness Book of World Records. The declared measurements are 3.07 meters high and 3.42 meters wide. The occasion to realize it was the desire to present in a completely unusual way the last jewel of the Mazda car manufacturer.

The Napoleon fish (Cheilinus undulatus) is the largest labride and reaches even three meters in length. It feeds on molluscs and crustaceans that it finds moving along the coral reefs of the Indo-Pacific area. But he is not the biggest fish in the world: in the Guinness Book of World Records this whale shark (Rhicodon typus) ranks. In 1949 a specimen was caught off the island of Baba (Pakistan) 12.6 meters long and with a maximum circumference of 7 meters. All for a total of 15-20 tons.

His name is Leonid Stadnik, he lives in Ukraine and is the tallest man in the world with his two meters and 53 centimeters: and it seems that his growth, at 33 years of age, has not stopped yet. But the Tunisian Radhouane Charbib still holds the official record of the Guinness Book of Records, whose height reaches "just" two meters and 35.9 centimeters. The Ukrainian, who is a veterinarian by profession, has not in fact been subjected to visits and measurements by a specialist and a jury, the only way for the primacy to be recognized.

The tallest man known to us is an American, Robert Pershing Wadlow: the last measurement of his height, which took place on June 27, 1940, came to mark two meters and 72 centimeters.

The attempt to prepare Russia's largest cappuccino has succeeded: a team of six people mixed 30 liters of water, 70 of milk and coffee prepared with 7 kilos of beans. The result was a 50-pound cup (and 71.5 cm in diameter) of steaming drink. This, however, was not enough to scratch the record held by two Italian baristas who on January 29th 2002 entered the Guinness Book of World Records with a cup of 1, 500 liters of cappuccino. At that time, 500 liters of coffee were used, and 1, 000 liters of milk were frothed.

The large pan of paella that appeared during a party in Miami, Florida, is nothing compared to that rightfully entered in the great Guinness Book of World Records in 1992. In Valencia, Spain, the true home of this typical dish, it was then prepared a huge pot with a diameter of 20 meters: so rich that it managed to feed 100, 000 people.

The man often performs in the preparation of gigantic dishes, such as the apple pie cooked in Washington in 1997. At that time it was necessary a baking-pan measuring 13.4 meters in length and 7.3 in width. All, as usual, registered in the official club of the craziest record holders in the world .

It was January 28, 1887 and in a town in Montana (USA), Fort Keogh, a ranch owner, Matt Coleman, saw an extraordinary size snowflake fall in front of him: the diameter reached at least 40 centimeters. As reported by Monthly Weather Review, Coleman testified that the snowflake was at least as big as a cup of milk. For this reason, that gentleman and that snowflake entered the great book of the Guinness Book of Records!

Snowflakes are symmetrical ice crystals, whose shape depends on weather conditions, air temperature and humidity: none is therefore equal to another. Generally they have a hexagonal symmetry and rarely (as in the photo) 12 branches are produced, forming a star and giving life to the so-called dendritic flakes.

Two American cities are challenging each other with gourds: they are Portland in Maine and Estacada in Oregon. The bizarre contest is one of those who will be able to light more Jack-o'-Lantern, the traditional Halloween pumpkins emptied and equipped with eyes, nose and mouth to let the light inside them glimpse. The record to beat - even entered into the Guinness Book of Records - is that of 23, 727 pumpkins lit simultaneously near Keene, New Hampshire, three years ago … The harvest and packing of the pumpkins has begun: tonight we will try to tear the bizarre records with thousands and thousands of lanterns lit!

You might also like: What is the longest scale in the world? Guinness Book of Records: How much do you know? The records of the voice The nightmare of all the metal detectors is her: Elaine Davidson, the most pierced woman in the world. On his body must not have remained even a free corner, given that in his 43 years of age he has accumulated well 5, 920.
All this scrap, which weighs more than 3 kilos, has also given it a place in the Guinness Book of World Records. She is proud of it and is now a celebrity that is divided between fairs, television broadcasts and photo shoots. "I like pain, I love pain, " said the woman, who assures, does not drink and does not use drugs. Except then add candidly that the area of ​​his body that houses the most piercings is the genital area. Where the sun doesn't beat it has 500 earrings.
Find out what the origin of the piercing is . See also a vegetarian pierced .
But there are also those who decorate their bodies in a slightly less painful way: let yourself be deluded by body painting .