The man who holds more Guinness World Records than anyone, Ashrita Furman, proved once again he is a cut above his nearest competition, setting a new record Tuesday for slicing the most watermelons in half on his own stomach in one minute.
With a team of helpers surrounding him and handing him the melons, Furman sliced through 26 of the gourds in one minute, six more than Guinness organizers said he needed to establish a new record.
“It went really well,” said Furman. “My first reaction is I’m relieved that I didn’t kill myself, and the second is I’m exhilarated because it not only is a skillful record, but also it’s something that I invented and now it’s out there and other people can challenge it.”
Furman, who previously set a Guinness World Record slicing watermelons on a friend’s stomach, proposed the new attempt to Guinness officials who got back to him with the go-ahead, albeit with certain provisions.
Acknowledging the obvious element of danger involved in swinging a very sharp sword in the direction of one’s own stomach, Furman said controlling the danger involved a combination of proper aim and just the right level of strength.
There were also a couple points where I didn’t go all the way through the watermelon,” said Furman. “So I had to start using a little more strength to cut through.”
Furman credits his success in the record books to the lessons of concentration and determination learned from his former meditation teacher, Sri Chinmoy.
Furman has set more Guinness World Records than anyone ever. According to Furman, in the 35 years he has been setting records, he has gone into the record books at least 750 times. He says 225 of these records currently still stand.
Some of his successful record attempts in the past include the fastest mile run with a milk bottle balanced on his head, the fastest pogo stick hop to the top of Mount Fuji in Japan, and the longest distance walked with a running lawnmower balanced on this chin.
But what becomes of the watermelon sliced through by Furman on Tuesday?
He said the fallen pieces are being donated to a local restaurant that said they will use it to make watermelon juice drinks.