On Thursday Joel Waul will look on as his 6-foot 7-inch-tall rubber band ball is rolled away by a crew from Ripley’s Believe It Or Not. Actually, Ripley’s will probably need the crane and the flatbed truck they’ll be bringing to his home in Lauderhill, Florida, as the massive ball of rubber bands weighs close to 10,000 pounds.
Already in the Guinness Book of World Records as the world’s largest rubber band ball, it will soon be on display at a yet-to-be-determined museum. Conceivably it could be placed alongside the world’s largest string and barbed wire balls, which are also possessed by Orlando, Florida-based Ripley’s.
Waul, 28, started creating the giant ball in 2004 after he watched a Ripley’s TV special that showed the then-largest rubber band ball being dropped from an airplane. He started with small rubber bands, but as it grew he moved on to larger and larger ones, eventually utilizing the giant rubber bands that are used for physical therapy, which manufacturers agreed to send him for free.
At first Waul kept the ball in his house, but it soon got too big—and stinky—so he rolled it into his driveway.
Ripley’s won’t reveal how much it paid Waul for the ball, but it’s probably safe to say that Joel won’t be leaving his job at the Gap anytime soon.