This is one of the grossest world records I have ever covered, but it’s just so unusual I couldn’t resist sharing it with you guys. A man has kept the around 95,200 pieces of nicotine gum he has chewed over the last six years and put them all together in what is considered the world’s largest gumball.
50-year-old Barry Chappell, from California’s Palos Verdes Estates, has been busy over the last few years, building a 175-pound chewy monstrosity with a diameter of 62 inches, out of the tens of thousands of nicotine gum pieces he’s chewed. Barry is completely aware of the fact that most people who hear about his hobby are more or less disgusted, but that doesn’t make him less proud of his achievement. After all he did stick to the task for six long years, using every one of the approximately 95,200 pieces of nicotine gum he has used to help him stay away from cigarettes. Now his efforts are about to be rewarded, as Ripley’s Believe It or Not decided to acquire his giant gumball and present it as the largest medicated gumball in the world.
Photo by Ripley’s
Barry Chappell decided to quit smoking 15 years ago, shortly before the birth of his son, when he realized it was a filthy habit. So he started chewing nicotine gum, to get his daily fix of the addictive substance without torturing his lungs. In 2006, while on an airport with his 5-year-old daughter, he found himself in a sticky situation, precisely because of the gum. He had chewed quite a lot of Nicorette, but had nowhere to put it, so he made it into a ball, and that’s pretty much how it started. At first it was just a joke between him and his daughter, but over time it turned into somewhat of an obsession.
Photo by Art and Coin
Barry says he has probably chewed more nicotine gum than anyone in the world, around 95,200 pieces, and he has been sticking every oe of them on the giant gumball, in the comfort of his sauna. The steamy environment heats the pieces of gum so he can mold them into strings that he attaches to his giant gumball. As the gum starts to cool, he uses a hair dryer to heat it and continue sculpting it until it becomes a smooth part of his giant creation.