Loving Husband Buys His Wife 55,000 Dresses in 56 Years

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If love was measured in dresses, Paul Brockman would probably be the most loving husband in the world. Over the past 56 years, the German-born contractor from Lomita, California, has gifted his wife Margot with 55,000 dresses, all of which he picked out himself.

The first 10 dresses in Paul Brockman’s impressive collection were free. He got them while working at a seaport in Bremen, Germany, where workers could pick out anything they wanted when the merchandise bales were opened. He gave them all to his then-girlfriend, Margot. After going steady for a while, Paul asked the girl’s parents for her hand in marriage, and they agreed, on one condition – that they leave struggling Germany and move to America. They left for the Land of Opportunity during the 50′s and Paul was disowned by his own family for going against their wishes. The two arrived in Ohio and moved to Arizona before finally settling in California. Brockman started working in construction. No stranger to hard labor, he was soon able to build a construction company and pretty soon the money started coming in. He and Margot shared a passion for dance and went ballroom dancing every week, but Paul wanted her to have a different dress every time, so he kept buying her new ones. By the time they arrived in Los Angeles, in 1988, Margot Brockman already had between 25,000 and 26,000 dresses.

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World’s Biggest Winnie the Pooh Fan Collects 9,000 Different Bear-Themed Items

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48-year-old Deb Hoffman is probably the world’s biggest Winnie the Pooh fan. Her collection of over 8,900 Winnie-themed items has won her a place in the Guinness Book of Records and even though it takes up four rooms of her house, this dedicated fan doesn’t plan to stop adding to her collection anytime soon.

Deb, a computer software designer, from Waukesha, Wisconsin, says her obsession with the lovable Winnie started when she was just 2 years old. Her father came home late one night, and as always, she used the old “I have to go to the bathroom” excuse just so she could go see him. Only this time he had brought something home with him in a box. Her mother put it in the bathroom where she could reach it, and the moment she put her hand inside and pulled out an adorable orange bear dressed in a bright red t-shirt with the letters P-O-O-H on the front, little Deb fell in love with it. Over the years, the cuddly teddy bear remained her favorite toy, and by age 20 she had around 40-50 Winnie-themed items. Not exactly unusual, considering other kids collect hundreds of their favorite dolls or action figures. But at 22, Deb Hoffman married Gary, a careful and patient husband, and got a full-time job which provided her with some disposable income. That’s when her obsession with Winnie the Pooh really kicked into high gear.

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Meet Asako Kanda, the World’s Biggest Hello Kitty Fan

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Hello Kitty has millions of fans around the world, but none are more in love with Sanrio’s iconic character than Asako Kanda. The 39-year-old receptionist from Japan has amassed a fantastic collection of over 4,500 Hello Kitty items.

Like many other girls of her generation, Asako’s fascination with Hello Kitty began during her elementary school days. At first, she just bought little things like pencils and erasers featuring the popular kitty, but by the time she turned 11 she was so obsessed with Sanrio’s creation that she made a Hello Kitty mug in her pottery class, and an embroided Hello Kitty apron for her home economics course. But she can’t be the only girl in the world who did this kind of stuff while growing up. But that’s the thing, while most other girls move on to idolizing boy bands or movie actors, Asako Kanda remained faithful to her childhood friend. “Kitty has always been with me, almost subconsciously,” she said in an interview a few years back. Some people call her infantile, other laugh at her bad taste, but none of this has ever affected her long-term love affair with Hello Kitty. She now holds the Guinness World Record for most Hello Kitty items, 4,519, as of August 2011.

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Woman Collects Realistic Dolls, Treats Them Like Real Babies

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Marylin Mansfield, a plus-size model from Staten Island, has turned her home into a creepy nursery filled with over 300 dolls, including reborn babies, Barbies and Goth-like Krypt Kiddies.

We’ve posted our share of wacky doll collectors here on Oddity Central, like this lady with a thing for antique dolls, this other one who loves clowns, or the couple who share their home with love dolls, but Marylin actually treats her plastic collectibles like real babies. ”I take them anywhere you would bring a real baby. I don’t do it for the shock value. I do it for myself because it makes me happy. I just loved when my kids were babies — and these babies stay babies forever. I buy them clothes. They never grow out of them and they never get dirty”, the tattooed platinum blonde says about her peculiar hobby.

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Baseball Fan Has Caught over 5,800 Home Run and Foul Balls

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Zack Hample, from New York, is a baseball fan and bawl hawk – he’s great at catching and stealing balls. But Zack isn’t an ordinary ball hawk, because no one else boasts a collection as impressive as his: more than 5,800 balls, both home runs and fouled balls. The way he goes after balls at matches can be characterized as almost professional.

A typical game for Zack Hample goes kind of like this – running around the Major League ballpark, searching for foul balls or home runs, and sometimes even convincing coaches and players to toss balls into the stands. As you can imagine, being a ball hawk is no walk in the park. It involves a lot of athleticism, a bit of science and loads of luck too. All three of which Hample has plenty of. His collection of baseballs is the largest in the world. “Yes, I’m obsessed,” he admits.

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Obsessed Man Collects over 20,000 Bird Ornaments

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It all started when Lawrence Cobbold was 9 years old, after he purchased a picture of a bird . Today, at age 38, his home is so filled to the brim with bird ornaments. His place is so full of bird memorabilia that he has to wash up, do his laundry and have his meals at his parents’ house. In the past 25 years or so, Lawrence has managed to collect over 20,000 ornaments related to birds. His treasures could all be worth about £40,000 ($63,000) according to his own estimation.

Lawrence’s amazing bird collection consists of 15,000 ornaments, 4,800 thimbles, 1,000 fridge magnets and 300 plates. Apart from these, he has about 300 pictures, 150 mugs and 100 jigsaw puzzles that are in some way, related to birds. Each and every room in his house, every cupboard, loft and shelf is completely covered with bird-related items. Each room, in fact, has a theme of its own. The three-bedroom property belongs to his father Tony. Lawrence moved there after his previous residence, a two-bedroom house, was no longer sufficient for his ever-growing collection. Four hours of Lawrence’s day are spent rearranging and cleaning his collection– two hours before work and two hours after. When he’s not busy with his collectibles, he works full time as a warehouse attendant at the Co-op Retail Distribution Center in Plympton, England. He usually buys the ornaments at Plympton, Plymstock, Mutley Plain and Elburton, where he is constantly on the prowl for new items to add to the collection.

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Hang on to Your Panties: Thai Man Collects 11,000 Pairs of Women’s Underwear in 30 Years

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Some hobbies are downright disgusting. Like this guy from Thailand who collected 10,000 pairs of women’s underwear. No that’s not the gross part. What’s truly disturbing is that he smelled them all the time, even while he was driving. Ewww, right?

Apparently, his obsession was not just for underwear, but also for the stealthy way he obtained them. The police were tipped off about the thief after he broke into a building in Chinatown, Bangkok along with an accomplice. When they raided his home, to their surprise, they found not cash or jewels, but a whopping 10,000 pairs of underwear. And an additional 1,000 were in his vehicle. He then admitted that he had been breaking in and stealing female panties since the age of 18. He is now 48, so there was actually was literally 30-years-worth of underwear in there! Unfortunately, they could only arrest him on grounds of breaking and entering, since no one had actually reported any missing underwear. And I don’t suppose anyone would be interested in getting their missing garments back, either.

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If Your Name Is Smith, This Man Wants to Hear from You

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“I look for Smiths.” That’s how Bob Ziegler, from Minot, North Dakota, describes his hobby of 30 years. While most people are content with collecting stamps and bottle caps, Ziegler’s hobby is a little more complicated. He looks for people with the last name Smith and writes to them with a simple request: to send him their business cards. In the last 30 years, he has managed to track down thousands of Smiths, and sent them handwritten letters. Included with the letter is a stamped, self-addressed envelope that can be used to send him back the business cards.

Since 1982, Ziegler has sent over 2,500 letters, and collected 1,014 cards. The Smiths in his collection are spread in all 50 states of the US, and also seven other countries. Some of the responses he has received are a lot more interesting than the cards themselves. For instance, the chief deputy at Escambia County Sherriff’s Office, Larry E. Smith wrote, “It is an honor to serve the public whether it is providing assistance in times of need or providing a business card for someone’s collection because my last name is Smith.” The late president of American Pop Corn Co., Wrede H. Smith, sent not just his own card, but those of his son and nephew. He even threw in coupons for free JOLLY TIME popcorn. Of course, not everyone has been so enthusiastic to participate in Ziegler’s weird hobby. “What – are you nuts?” wrote back one Smith, with no card in the envelope. A few Smiths have been honest enough to admit that they did not have business cards.

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World’s Largest Collection of Clowns Is Kind of Creepy

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Ortrud Kastaun, a 61-year-old woman from Germany, has set a new Guinness record for the world’s largest collection of clown related items.

Orty, as her friends know her, has been collecting clowns for the last 15 years, and has so far amassed 2,053 different clown-related items. She’s had to move to a bigger house that would accommodate all her creepy smiling buddies, and has even opened a small clown museum close to her home, in Essen. But Kastaun hasn’t always been obsessed with clowns; it all started in 1995, when she was a recovering alcoholic going through therapy. ”I remember being in therapy one day putting a jigsaw together. The image was of a clown in a jack-in-the-box. Something just clicked. From that I day on I began collecting clowns,” Orty remembers. It was a tough time for her but she credits clown for helping her get passed it.

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Chinese Man Builds 600,000-Cigarette-Pack Fort

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Wang Guanyi, a 46-year-old cigarette pack collector from Longnan, China, has recently built a fort model using 600,000 empty cigarette packs.

Wang is a famous person in his home city because he usually greets everyone with “hello, do you smoke? do you have cigarette packs?” He says he has been fascinated with cigarette packs ever since he was a little boy, and collected his first one off the street, when he was just seven years old. He was first attracted by the bright colors and nice images on the packs, and kept collecting them until he reached an impressive 600,000. As you can imagine, every corner of his house was filled with them, but just when he was running out of space, he saw a TV show about a man who had built a house out of wine bottles, and was inspired to do the same thing with his cigarette pack collection.

It took him about a month to finish his 30-foot fort-like building made with 600,000 colorful cigarette packs. It was 6.06m long, 4.68m wide and 1.68m wide, and won Wang Guanyi a certificate from the China Record Office for the world’s largest cigarette pack structure. Unfortunately, he had built his unique fort on rented space, and since the costs were apparently too high for him to handle, he was forced to tear it down as soon as his record was acknowledged.

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Guy Collects All 1,850 PlayStation 2 Games, Leaves Them Sealed

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Ahans 76, member of the Playstation Collecting Community, probably deserves the title of King of PS2 Collectors, after he managed to acquire a brand new, sealed copy of every game ever released for the PlayStation 2.

We’ve featured some pretty impressive collections on Oddity Central, bust as a fellow gamer, I find this one particularly awesome. What I can’t understand is how someone can just collect these games and not be tempted to open one of them and just pop into the console, to check it out. But that’s just the kind of self control and ambition that describes a video-game completionist (a person who goes after every title ever released for a console) and that’s why we don’t see that many of them. The PS2 game library is particularly large, with 1,850 original titles released, and many would have said trying to collect a copy of each is impossible, but not anymore.

Ahans 76 says his passion for collecting video-game related items can be traced back to when he was 16 years old. He saw a Sega Game Gear handheld, in the window of a Game Crazy shop, and since he had always wanted yo own one as a kid, but never got the chance, he bought it on the spot. This awakened his collector’s spirit and made him consider collecting more video games and consoles. As far as his unique PS 2 game collection is concerned, he didn’t go for the full library from the start, he more like fell into it. He was buying a lot more games than he could play, and at one stage he had about 300 to 400 sealed games, so he looked on the Internet to see how many other games here were and landed on a website where it said the PS 2 had 800 games. Seeing he was already half through, he decided to go for the whole collection.

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Meet the World’s Biggest Harry Potter Fan

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Harry Potter fans around have crowned their king and his name is Steve Petrick. The 22-year-old, from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, has won the title of World’s Biggest Harry Potter Fan after entering an online contest, last year, and posting a video of why he should get first place.

J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter is the most successful film series in history, grossing billions of dollars at the box office and influencing the lives of millions of children around the world. But Steve Petrick was a die-hard fan of the fantasy world way before it was cool, and even though it pains him the movie series is coming to an end, he’ll be a fan even after its popularity wears off. A freshman fine arts major at Kent State, Petrick has been striving to become Harry Potter’s biggest fan since he first discovered Rowling’s books, and even though it took him 12 years to get the recognition he deserves, it’s never too late.

Steve Petrick got hooked on Harry Potter when he was just 11 years old. He had failed English class and his parents banned him from playing outside, so he found refuge in the wonderful world of Harry Potter. He has learned from the Harry Potter books than anything or anyone else in his life, and says “they might not mean something to everyone else, but they mean something to me.”

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Doll Addict Collects $2 Million-Worth of Antique Dolls

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Kathy Libraty, an antique doll collector from Brooklyn, New York, has spent the last 25 years searching for antique dolls, and now has an impressive collection of over 1,000 items that’s worth around $2 million.

Believe it or not, Kathy’s fascination with dolls didn’t start when she was a little girl. In fact she remembers she was more of a tomboy and had no real interest in dolls or any girly stuff. Born in France, she and her parents immigrated to the US when she was only 4. After graduating from Brooklyn College with a BA in Art, her passion for photography took her to Europe and the Middle East, where she took a real interest in history and old art. When she and her husband, Frank, bought an old Victorian house, Kathy decided to pursue her love for antiques and started attending country auctions. She was intrigued that people sometimes paid large amounts of money for wigless doll heads, broken limbs and crooked-eye dolls, but not enough to start spending money on them, herself.

It wasn’t until one day, 25 years ago, that Kathy Libraty really became addicted to collecting antique dolls. She and Frank were driving around the neighborhood when they saw a man emptying boxes of antiques into a dumpster. She saw a doll’s leg sticking out and told Frank to stop the car. They went up to the man and asked him if he was going to throw all those things away, and he just replied “Yeah, it’s all dirty old junk”, so they offered to take it off his hands.  When they got home and looked through the “junk” they found a rare 24″ George Borgfeldt doll, several composition mama dolls, and a broken bisque Cuno and Otto Dressel Shoulder head doll. She often wondered what other treasures that man had thrown away in the dumpster that day, but the wonders she managed to get her hands on inspired her to go out into the world and discover her own priceless treasures.

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15-Year-Old Has a Strange Passion for Vacuum Cleaners

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Kyle Krichbaum, a 15-year-old boy from Adrian, Michigan, has been fascinated by vacuum cleaners since before he could talk. His passion stuck with him through adolescence, and he’s now known as the world’s youngest vacuum cleaner collector, with a collection of around 200 vintage devices.

Most teenagers don’t have that strong of a relationship with vacuum cleaners, or any other cleaning gadgets, for that matter, but Kyle Krichbaum doesn’t like anything more than using, fixing and collecting all kinds of vacuum cleaners. His mother, MaryLynn, remembers that when Kyle was only a baby in his little baby seat and she would start vacuuming the house, he would be mesmerized by it and follow her everywhere around the house. “Vacuum Boy” got his first vacuum cleaner at age 1, and when he was 2-years-old he dressed up hot Halloween as a Dirt Devil…

One of his former teachers remembers Kyle Krichbaum was vacuuming around school, during recess, when he was just 6 years old. It’s not that he didn’t like recess as much as the other kids, vacuuming was just his favorite pass-time. He would vacuum one side of a classroom one day, and finish the other side the next, and has even vacuumed the principal’s office.

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Wacky Couple Share Their Home with 240 Love Dolls

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60-year-old Bob Gibbins, and his wife Lizzie, 55, have a rather unusual collection of 240 different kinds of love dolls that they like dressing up and taking on shopping trips.

Bob says he has always been interested in dolls, but his passion really started to develop when he used to buy rag dolls and other toys for his two kids. He then moved on to buying shop mannequins for a few years and amassing a pretty impressive collection, but it wasn’t until he found an online forum about silicone dolls that he realized that’s what he really wanted to collect. With the help of his wife, Gibbins acquired his first silicone doll, Beverly, in 2007, for around $4,000. But that was only the beginning, as the couple continued to buy different kinds of love dolls, from cheap blow-up dolls costing $639 at most, to realistic silicone dolls like Jessica, who put a serious $11,202 dent in the family budget. All in all, Bob and Lizzie Gibbins estimate they’ve spent around $160,000 since they started collecting love dolls.

You’re probably wondering what someone does with 240 dolls and mannequins, especially when they live in a not so spacious bungalow. Well, according to the wacky couple, they love dressing up the dolls, washing them and fixing them up so they look their best, and since they’re both very picky about their dolls’ appearance, this takes up a lot of their time. Silicone dolls are apparently very needy; they sweat and need to be washed regularly, which can be a problem considering they’re pretty heavy, but Bob and his wife spare no effort tending to their precious collection.

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