Meet Byron Schlenker. Last November, he officially became the person on the vast, wide planet we all call home, with the widest tongue of our species. I don’t suppose it is necessarily something that one might work towards. I mean, even if you wanted to, would it be at all possible to widen your tongue. Actually, don’t answer that – I don’t want to know. Either way, Byron said he grabbed the title after seeing the a previous edition of Guinness Book of Records and its entry for world’s widest tongue, before wondering if he had the licker to beat it.
As it turns out, he did. And not only that, but it appears that tongue traits run in the family with his daughter now recognised as having the world’s widest tongue for a female. The forty-seven year old man told Barcroft TV about his wide tongue – giving us a reference for its girth. He said that "it's roughly more than two centimetres wider than the new iPhone 6”. Man! That is a wide tongue.
According to the Guinness Book of Records, the previous record for tongue width was 3.1 inches however, Schlenker has stepped in to smash that record with a tongue width of a whopping 3.37 inches.
Mr Shlenker says that it has changed his life and he has been experiencing far more attention since his record was recognised late last year. "I get stopped by people at the grocery store or when I'm out in town to take a picture," he said, according to the Telegraph. "I have had people come to my house to sign their record book. I even had one lady who asked me to lick her Guinness Book, which I politely declined.”
“Most people are just surprised I can talk normally,” he said.
The man’s wife, Vicki, said that it has also led to some comments from people who can’t seem to keep their smaller tongues in their mouths. She says that some of her friends "make jokes about Byron's tongue and our love life," however, she prefers to keep her lips zipped.
"We try to keep it clean,” she insisted, according to the Daily Mail. “We are a wholesome family with three young ladies in the house so we just kind of laugh it off”.
Schlenker reckons he was always aware that he had an abnormally big tongue but never realised just how abnormal until his daughter began a school project. Helping his daughter with the project, he was looking through the Guinness Book of Records where he found the one for widest tongue and discovered that an Australian man had the mantle. He thought that maybe he could be a challenger and so decided to find out. He got his daughter to measure his tongue before deciding to get in touch with the record-keepers who eventually verified that he did indeed have the world’s widest tongue. And of course, they measured his daughter’s tongue to find that she had the world’s widest for a female.