Friday 16 May 2008

Even communist Cuba has the set-a-world-record fever. Communist country knows how to use World Record to gain media traction in the Free World

World's Biggest Cigar, story released by Reuters

With music, dancing and rum, Cubans celebrated on Friday the likely return of a record they consider rightfully theirs -- the world's longest cigar.
At just over 148 feet 9 inches, the thick stogie stretched like a long brown snake through a room and out its front and back windows at El Morro, the old Spanish fort overlooking Havana Bay.
British diplomat Chris Stimpson made the official measurement, which he said would be sent to the Guinness World Records in London for confirmation.
"The best in the world, no?" said the cigar's smiling, ash-stained roller, Jose Castelar Cairo, better known as Cueto.
His six-day-long project, completed with several assistants, eclipsed the previous record of 135 feet (41 meters), held by Patricio Pena of Puerto Rico.
Breaking the record was a point of pride for Cubans, whose cigars are considered among the world's best.

More World's Underwater Records
… no matter how silly

[As reported by Stephen Weir for
Recording the records for readers]

As spring rolls into the Northern Hemisphere, divers likewise will be rolling into the water to set yet more underwater records, accomplish first-ever events and invent new things to do under the surface of the water.

Recent underwater firsts noted by include:

ß has written about the sport of underwater ironing in past postings. It is fun sport invented for people who just leave their housework at home. Here is how it works, a diver takes an ironing board, an iron and a wrinkled article of clothing and goes underwater as deep as possible and irons. World records have been set for the deepest recorded ironing and the largest number of ironers underwater at one time.

Last month in Australia 72 scuba divers have underwater-ironed their way into the Guinness World Record. According to the Geelong Advertiser, the divers belonged to a local club and wanted to establish a new record for the largest mass-ironing underwater. They beat the old record of 70, set by the same club a number of years ago.

ß Mark it down. Spring 2008 is when divers began to find out about the world’s newest underwater sport. Due to popular demand, the Swiss Underwater Sports Union began in late March to teach men and women how to play the brand new full contact game of Underwater Rugby. Playing on the bottom of a swimming pool, two teams of six, compete to see who can put a 6-kilo ball (filled with salt water) through the opposing squad’s basket. Players wear only bathing suits, flippers and goggles. Apparently underwater rugby was first developed in Germany as a training exercise for new divers. Now it is the new hit sport on the European continent this spring.

ß A UK based swimmer plans to train all spring in preparation for her May 11th attempt to break her own British record for distance swum underwater without breathing. Liv Phillips broke the underwater swimming record last August having swum 104 metres -- four lengths of an indoor pool -- without breathing.

The 32-year old will also attempt to break the National Static Record, where she is required to hold her breath underwater for as long as possible. She already holds Britain’s National Static Record after holding her breath for five minutes 32 seconds, which she did underwater in Slovenia last year.

You have read about underwater records, now watch them!

If web counters are to be believed, there is growing worldwide interest in stories about dubious and quirky underwater records. You Tube has many videos posted “showing” people as they set new records – the problem is trying to find these videos (many of them aren’t in English) in You Tube’s massive, and growing inventory of postings. There is a new website that has taken the search out of locating You Tube underwater record setting videos.

The Scuba Channel posts underwater videos made for the most part by European divers. As well, Scuba Channel has linked with You Tube to show underwater video’s posted on that popular site. The Scuba channel [] has a growing list of underwater record videos including:

ß Nordic Night Dives on camera. A group of Nordic divers set what they call a new world record in simultaneous night diving. A total of 1,859 divers in six Nordic countries all went underwater at the same time at a total of 138 sites. The Nordic Night Dive of 2007 took place December 6, 2007 and involved divers in Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. Organizers said they would have had more people in the water if rough sea conditions in the Faroe Islands hadn’t force participants to abort their group night dive. The Nordic Night Divers are going to try and break their own record this December 4, 2008 and invite divers from around the world to join in.

ß According to a video posted on the site, Nuno Gomes – the diver not the soccer player - is the current (2008) deepest dive world record holder. He set a mark of 318.35 metres in 2005 and that dive is documented on the video.

ß There is a You Tube posting that shows snippets of a diver setting the record for the longest time spent under the water in the open ocean (24-hours and three minutes). This record was set on 20 July 2005 by Will Goodman off the coast of Gili Trawangan, Lombok Indonesia.