Could you break these records? Take the quiz

Staff

A man named Roy C. Sullivan survived the most lightning strikes. How many bolts hit him over his lifetime?

Sullivan was struck seven times -- in 1942, 1969, 1970, 1972, 1973, 1976 and 1977. He lost toenails, hair and eyebrows -- but never his life.

American Gary Hatter took the world's longest lawnmower ride from May 31, 2000, to Feb. 14, 2001. How far did Hatter ride?

Hatter drove through the entire Lower 48 on his 260-day, 14,594-mile (23,487-kilometer) ride. Would not have been fun to be stuck behind that guy on the interstate.

Jayasimha Ravirala gave the world's longest lecture from in March 2007. For how long did he speak?

Ravirala expounded on personality development concepts for 120 hours over six days in Hyderabad, India. Our questions are: Did anyone actually listen for more than about three hours? And was he even making sense by the end?

Australian swimmer Susie Maroney completed the longest ocean swim in history. How far did she go?

Maroney swam from Mexico to Cuba -- 122 miles (197 kilometers) in 38 hours, 33 minutes.

In 1997, Sri Lankan man Arulanantham Suresh Joachim set a world record for balancing on one foot. What's the record?

The guy stood on his left foot for 76 hours and 40 minutes. We don't think we could even keep our eyes open for that long of a stretch, standing or not.

What's the record for most cockroaches eaten at a sitting?

Retired British rat-catcher Ken Edwards scarfed down 36 live roaches in one minute in 2001. OK, we don't want to think about that one ever again.

In 1960, Donald Campbell fractured his skull in a car crash during speed trials at the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah. Since then, no one has survived a crash at higher speeds. How fast was Campbell going?

Campbell was going 360 mph (579 kph) when he rolled his car, the "Bluebird."

What's the world record for most books typed backwards?

Again, the larger question is: Why on Earth would anyone want to do such a thing? Is there actually a lot of competition here? But Michele Santelia of Italy is the big winner -- he typed 67 books backwards, using unmarked keyboards and never looking at the computer screen.

What's the longest known time that anyone has survived adrift at sea?

In October 1813, two Japanese sailors survived when their ship hit a storm off the coast of Japan. In March 24, 1815 -- 484 days later -- they were rescued off the coast of California.

What's the world record for holding one's breath?

On Jan. 5, 2006, 10 feet (3.05 meters) underwater, Tom Sietas of Germany held his breath for 14 minutes, 12 seconds.

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Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

We humans can do amazing things -- whether it's out of sheer will to live (see "surviving adrift at sea") or an intense desire to be globally recognized for a bizarre achievement. Can you guess what these record breakers got up to?

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