Disco dancer finds breaking records a lonely pastime
'There were times I was ... crying my eyes out'July 3, 1998
Web posted at: 10:05 p.m. EDT (0205 GMT)
CAPE TOWN, South Africa (CNN) -- The loneliness of marathon disco dancing is getting to Andre van Zijl.
The 38-year-old South African reached and then passed his previous record for marathon disco dancing when his nonstop shuffle logged its 338th hour Friday. And, like the Energizer Bunny, van Zijl kept right on dancing.
He says doesn't plan to stop until he reaches 400 hours, which will happen Monday.
Van Zijl is not doing this just for the bunions. He's raising money for AIDS patients -- but it hasn't been easy.
An exhausted van Zijl, who set the world record of 338 hours of continuous disco dancing in 1980, says he has only slept twice during the past 14 days, having decided it was better to keep going.
He is allowed to stop for five minutes every hour, but can accumulate rest time to sleep if he dances continuously. DJs have been taking turns playing music for him as he dances in the video section of a Cape Town store.
So tightly are his movements regulated that when he goes to the bathroom, van Zijl is accompanied by an adjudicator to make sure he keeps moving.
"The loneliness gets to you, especially at around two and three in the morning -- the graveyard shift," he says. "There were times I was in a corner crying my eyes out."
Local Mayor Heather Maneveld presented van Zijl with a garland of flowers when he passed the 338-hour mark Friday. Gloria Gaynor's "I Will Survive" blared from the stereo system.
Van Zijl intends to use some of the money he raises in Cape Town to fly to the United States, where he hopes to raise further funds by roller-skating 15,000 kilometers (9,300 miles).
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