The Man With More Than 10,000 Baseballs
There are few things in sports more obnoxious than ballhawks, the people you see on the news wrestling home run balls away from children. And none among their ranks has earned as much public ire as professional collector Zack Hample.
Zack Hample, via Wikimedia CommonsNot too late to turn those all into a Chuck-E-Cheese-style ball pit for kids and prove us all wrong, Zack.
Hample, by his own count, has collected over 10,000 baseballs from 55 stadiums. He's often the first to show up to batting practice so he can run around snagging balls the entire time, to the annoyance of fellow fans. He's written books on the subject, offers tips on his YouTube channel, has made all sorts of TV appearances, will personally help you catch a ball at a game (if you have $1,000 to spare), and has even assembled a goofy contraption to pull practice balls off the field, which is arguably leaving the realm of collecting and entering the world of petty theft.
He's also had spats with players, been criticized for muscling kids out of his way, and been banned from three stadiums due to his aggressive antics. But he's probably most infamous for snatching Alex Rodriguez's 3,000th hit. He initially refused to give the milestone ball back, planning to make it the centerpiece of his private collection before maybe auctioning it off. But after a social media hate storm, he agreed to surrender it to the Yankees in exchange for a $150,000 donation to a youth baseball charity.
In Hample's defense, he has done a lot of charitable work. But he also once weaseled his way into a game at Fort Bragg reserved for members of the armed forces and their families. Hample claimed he got the ticket from a friend, while other, non-Hample sources said that he bought the ticket on Tinder for $1,000. After issuing a standard "I'm sorry you were offended" apology, Hample donated $100 for every ball he caught at the game to a veteran's charity.
One Man Has Visited Nearly 15,000 Starbucks
As a primary source of nutrition for the terminally basic, Starbucks has built an empire of over 27,000 locations. And a man known only as "Winter" has made it his mission to visit each and every last provider of overpriced sugary monstrosities.
Winter, a computer programmer, made his vow in 1997, when the existence of only 1,500 stores made it a difficult but feasible quest. But time waits for no man, and now Winter surely has no hope of visiting every possible- oh dear god, he's already hit 14,964 of them across dozens of countries? And he's provided obsessive photographic documentation? And he's spent around 168,000 goddamn dollars in the process?