Written by Cassidy Krygger
From back scratchers to hotel key cards, humans like to collect weird and quirky stuff.
And some of us are so good at it that it can garner you a mention in the Guinness World Records. According to the Neurologist and collector of Chinese Porcelain, Dr Shirley M. Mueller, humans collect objects for one simple reason; it makes us happy.
But let’s not confuse the habit of collecting with hoarding – The Great Toilet Paper Hoard of 2020 ringing a traumatic bell?
Collectors generally feel a sense of pride in their possessions and keep them well looked after and organised. A hoarder commonly suffers the difficulty of parting with any item, regardless of its value with serious side effects for the health both physically and mentally for the Hoarder in question.
We had a riot researching some of the weirdest and wackiest collections from around the world and here are our top 10 quirky finds.
Celebrity Hair Collection
Guinness World Record holder John Reznikoff has a collection of celebrity hair from the likes of Abraham Lincoln, John F Kennedy and Marilyn Monroe. He doesn’t sell his collection nor collect the hair of living people.
photo credit @JohnReznikoff
Antonia Kozakova has collected over 80,000 napkins since beginning the collection over 20 years ago. The oldest dating back to 1940, Kozakova has napkins from all over the world. And she has no intent on stopping with her next goal to get to 100,000 napkins.
Not only does David Morgan hold the World Record for the collection of the most traffic cones, but he also claims (disputed) to have invented them. He must really love traffic cones.
Dr Val Kolapov is a dentist who takes his love of teeth to the next level. He has collected over 3,000 tubes of toothpaste from all over the world, a habit he calls “much, much more exciting” than the pulled teeth he used to collect which is lucky because he displays his collected tubes in his office.
Manfred S. Rothstein will never have an itchy back again with the 675 back scratchers he has collected from over 70 countries. Beginning his collection in the 1970s, dermatologist Rothstein keeps his back scratchers displayed in his clinic.
After inheriting over 2,000 Joker Cards in 1999, Italian man Tony De Santis has since amassed over 8,000 Joker Cards. According to the Guinness World Records, De Santis likes to memorise each and every one of his Joker Cards and spends time looking at them individually every week.
Hotel Key Card Collection
Another card collection but this time something a bit different, it belongs to a 10-year-old boy. Elias Brooks from South Carolina is now a Guinness World Record holder with a collection of 540 Hotel Key Cards. Brooks began his collection at just 5 years old when he kept his hotel key card from a family holiday. And he plans on continuing to grow his impressive collection.
Petra Engels from Germany need never make a mistake on paper again. With an impressive 19,571 non-duplicate erasers. Beginning her collection in 1981 at the age of 9, she has amassed her erasers from over 100 countries.
With the oldest sugar packet in his collection dating back to 1950, Ralf Schroder has collected over 14,500 sugar packets since starting his collection in 1987. That’s one heck of a sweet tooth.
Have you heard of a magical garden in England that is home to over 2,000 Garden Gnomes? Belonging to Ann Atkins, the garden, now called ‘The Gnome Reserve’ is now a tourist attraction that is visited by over 25,000 people per year. Atkins asks all humans to don a pointy hat before entering the garden so as ‘not to embarrass the gnomes.’ I know where I am going as soon as the International travel ban is lifted!
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