Meet Amanda Narem and Alec Norem, two sophomores at the Iowa State University. The Iowa State Daily tells us these two go-getters met as fifth graders, went to the same tiny high school, and ended up together at Iowa State. Amanda's studying kinesiology and health, while Alec spends his days studying advertising.
In many ways, they are just a couple of ordinary college kids. But for 31 hours last weekend, they chose to be extraordinary.
See, Amanda and Alec wanted to do something special, and it was the middle of summer in Iowa, and they were bored. One day, Alec was casually jumping rope—no big deal, just a little jump rope—and had a funny thought: he wanted to beat the record for jump roping. What does that mean? Doesn't matter, because Amanda and Alec started researching other world records, and came across an even more compelling world record: the world's longest hug.
Wow, that sounds like a romantic project for two young lovers! Alec and Amanda are not young lovers, though. Just best friends! Rude of you to assume.
Seriously, guys, they're only friends.
"These two have been platonic best friends since the 5th grade," the Des Moines Register reports.
"We're just that close of friends," Amanda told them.
"Best friends," ABC News calls them.
OK, so: just friends. That's fine.
The Iowa State Daily reports the two started their hug Friday evening at 6 p.m. local time and went for a full 31 hours. By the Guinness World Records' instructions, they were allowed to take five-minute bathroom breaks every hour, but otherwise, the two stood in locked position, like so:
And, lo, by 1 a.m. CST Sunday morning, they'd been there for 31 hours, unofficially breaking the world record. Good stuff.
The Des Moines Register asked the question you were hoping someone would ask:
Skeptical question No. 2: Wasn't it the least bit sexually awkward to press their bodies together for so long?
People online even speculated that the hug was prelude to a marriage proposal.
Again, no. Alec, not currently in a relationship, is good friends with Amanda's boyfriend.
They're just friends!
Michael Rosen is a reporter for Fusion based out of Oakland.