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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

World's shortest man meets leggiest woman

World's shortest man, leggiest woman meet


LONDON - Trafalgar Square routinely serves as a stage for mimes, jugglers and other acts, but the tourist attraction drew an exceptionally curious crowd Tuesday when the shortest man who can walk met the woman with the longest legs.

He Pingping from Inner Mongolia, China's autonomous region, the world's smallest man sits underneath Svetlana Pankratova from Russia, the Queen of Longest Legs, as they pose at Trafalgar Square in  London, Tuesday, Sept. 16, 2008. Pingping, born with primordial dwarfism, holds the Guinness World Record for the smallest man at 74.61 cms (2 feet and 5.37 inches) and Pankratova holds the Guinness World Record for the longest leg of any woman at 132 cms (4 feet 4 inches) in length. (AP Photo/Sang Tan)
AP Photo: He Pingping from Inner Mongolia, China's autonomous region, the world's smallest man sits underneath Svetlana...

He Pingping, of China, was born with a type of dwarfism. He, 20, stands precisely 2 feet 5.37 inches tall.

The pair met to publicize the release of "Guinness World Records 2009." This year's version of the popular book is due out Wednesday.

He called Svetlana Pankratova's legs "very beautiful."

Pankratova, 36, who is Russian but lives in Spain, has legs that are nearly 52 inches long, or more than 4 feet long. Her upper body has nearly typical proportions, giving her a giraffe-like appearance.

Dressed in a bright-blue mini-dress and low-heeled pumps, Pankratova, 36, said she liked her legs, though they can complicate things. "It's hard to find clothes, especially pants," she said.

At just over 6-foot-4, Pankratova isn't the tallest woman on record. Sandy Allen, of Shelbyville, Indiana, who died recently, held that title at 7 feet, 7 inches, according to the book. The book said He is the shortest man who can walk.

The latest edition of the book lists pop star Britney Spears as the most-searched person on the Internet and the television show "Lost" as the most-downloaded show of all time.

The book has been around for half a century. About 3.5 million copies are sold each year, according to editor-in-chief Craig Glenday.


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