Am I the only one who thinks world record titles should be reserved for people that actually have a skill? I’m not impressed by the fastest tomato ketchup drinker (Dustin Phillips) or the largest group hug (6,623 participants). And I really don’t care who the most overrated celebrity is (Paris Hilton — big surprise).

What does interest me are athletes that excel at their sport to such a degree that if they weren’t videotaped, we wouldn’t believe it. Athletes like Aaron Peirsol.

Aaron defeated American teammate Michael Phelps by 2.37 seconds for a world record in the 200-meter backstroke at the Pan Pacific Championships on Saturday night, in what he called “the best swim of my life.” Aaron completed the race in 1 minute 54.44 seconds — about the time it takes you and me to make a sandwich.

You’re probably thinking, “that’s all well and good — but what business does this accomplishment have being on a ‘leafy green’ blog?” The answer is that Aaron isn’t just a three-time Olympic gold medal winner; he’s also an ocean advocate. And when he isn’t racing for the gold, he’s racing for the oceans.

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Plus, I figure if David Roberts can give a shout-out to his favorite pizza joint, I can give a shout-out to my favorite swimmer. Congrats Aaron!