Records Worth Setting and Breaking

Twenty sixteen was quite an eventful year. More so, thanks to the Rio Olympics. Records were set and some were broken. Kings and queens were crowned while others were dethroned. All in all, it was a pretty good year.  This got me thinking, what is the purpose of records? Why do people come from all over to try to set or break them? The answer, progress. The whole purpose of setting a record is to provide inspiration to future generations. To give them an ideal to strive towards. When they do achieve, or surpass it, that proves we as a species are indeed moving forward and getting better.

Records have been set in numerous fields both academic and co-curricular. There have been records for the world’s fastest car, fastest computer, fastest mathematician, fastest runner and many more. Each one gave us the much-needed motivation to do better. In the case of cars, believe it or not, there was once a time when 50Km/H was considered breakneck speed. People would probably call you a “speed demon” or an adrenaline junkie if you drove at that speed. Today, if you dare hit the road with that speed you will be booed, abused and probably beaten up for driving at a “snail’s pace”. What was once fast for early generations, is slow to us. One day we may get to see someone faster than Usain Bolt in the 100m dash and at the time, future generations may deem Bolt slow in comparison.

The problem now comes in when you look at today’s generations. Sometimes I get the feeling that the word record may have lost its meaning and weight over the years. Nowadays, you will see people try to set some of the most preposterous, impractical, naïve and downright imbecilic records ever. For instance, the Guinness book of world records has a record listed for the most bras unhooked in the shortest time possible… Let that sink in. A man actually set a record for unhooking bras. So basically, a group of topless women were lined up, then he stood at one end and they brought in an official to judge, they had a stopwatch to count down and even an audience gathered to watch. At first glance you would think he was about to do something worth watching but seriously, those are 10 minutes of my life wasted. How does that skill help you? Unless you are planning to be polygamous where are you even going to get to use it. His parents must be so proud. They were probably on the phone calling their friends and relatives. I can just picture the conversation, “…yes he’s on TV right now!!! Look at him unhook those bras. Hahaha!!! That’s my boy. A chip off the old block.”

Sadly, the case above is just one of many. Another man set a record for the longest fart.  He came in, there was a judge, an audience and a stopwatch in place. He then proceeded to unleash the mother of all farts and someone actually timed it. Where did we go wrong? Farting sets records now? And as if that’s not enough, they interviewed him and you should have seen it. He sounded like an athlete who had successfully run a marathon talking about how proud he was and how he would keep trying to get better. Get better at farting? Right. R.I.P human race.

The internet has not made things any better, you see all manner of challenges these days that are frankly not even worth looking over. Now, don’t get me wrong. Some of them are actually quite good and have benefitted me in some ways. Case in point, the 22 day push-ups challenge. It had its origins in the U.S. but I just did it to keep fit. It helped keep me focused and accountable health-wise. I completed it and actually came out better having set a personal record of 484 push-ups in 22 days. But there are others like the duck face challenge. To whoever came up with this challenge I say shame on you. You are the people curtailing our evolutionary progress. If you don’t know what a duck face is just open Instagram and look at some selfies. All the girls are doing it these days. What’s even worse is that some guys do it too. Now, allow me to make a sweeping declaration to my fellow men. If we ever take a picture and you unleash a duck face anywhere in that frame, I shall relieve you of your man card and smack you across the head. Say no to duck face. No one has ever set a record for doing the duck face but with today’s society, it’s probably just a matter of time.

Twerking is another arena that has just recently popped on to the scene. After Miley Cyrus stunned the word with her bold gyrations of bony posterior, it became a trend with many girls coming up to displace her and take the crown. You will actually hear a girl show off that she can shake her “money maker” up to 30 times in a minute, maybe even more. Pretty soon we should expect a unit of measurement to be introduced like T/m (Twerks per minute). Then you can walk up to a girl and ask how fast they are and they will respond with 30T/m, 50T/m or even 100T/m. It would certainly help to establish the winner in all the twerking competitions that seem to be held at every dance event these days. Now while the motions may be captivating and even fun to watch (Shindwe!!!), we have to take a moment and snap back to our right minds. This does not propel us forward in any way. It simply holds us back. No great achievement has been made by twerking.

I genuinely feel like we have lost our way. We are capable of so much but we squander our potential on unnecessary distractions. You think we are going to dethrone Usain Bolt and set a new record by duck facing (If that is even a thing), farting, twerking and unhooking multiple bras? We need to get back on track here. The future of our race is at stake. As you head out for the weekend remember to drink or party with moderation. No trophies have ever been issued for the most avid partier or drinker.

Do share your thoughts in the comments down below. Happy belated new year and thank you for reading.

È bello essere di nuovo
Till next time. Arrivederci