In terms of rare collections, this one gets top marks. An Australian man has made a habit of collecting his navel lint, earning him a place in the Guinness Book of World Records.
The Australian librarian started “harvesting” his fluff in 1984, at a youth hostel in Brisbane. After 26 years, the complete collection now weighs 22.1 grams, or .77 ounces.
“I became curious about how much navel fluff one person could generate (enough to stuff a cushion, maybe?), and the only way to find for sure was to collect it and see,” he wrote on his blog feargod.net. “Millions of people collect stamps and coins, but as far as I know nobody else collects navel fluff. That makes my collection unique!”
Each day, the 45-year-old plucks the lint from his navel before he gets into the shower, and stores it in a clay pot. At the end of the year, he adds the harvest to his main collection, which is housed by color in glass jars and then labeled by date.
“Over the last 20-plus years my navel has accumulated an average of 3.03 milligrams of fluff each day,” Barker wrote. “I doubt that many people have done this, so it’s not known whether the volume of fluff generated by my navel is any indication of what is normal.”
Barker sold three of his jars to a museum for an undisclosed sum and is a quarter of the way to filling a fourth, Britain’s Daily Mail newspaper reported. Despite his place in the record books, Barker plans to continue collecting his navel lint, and hopes to fill another five jars.
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Barker seems to have made a sport of collecting the odd and somewhat gross. In addition to his belly button lint collection, he also collects his beard clippings — labeled and stored in plastic bags, along with bakery bags and bogus names that he has used in the past.
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