PORTLAND — Comedian Bob Marley has zoomed past the 24-hour mark in Maine as he seeks to break the world record for long-winded standup routine.

Marley launched his bid Wednesday morning and hopes to finish up late today after telling jokes nonstop for 40 hours at the Comedy Connection in Portland.

The current record of 38 hours, 6 minutes, is held by Lindsay Webb of Australia.

The Guinness Book of Records has strict rules: A timekeeper must be present, and there must be at least 10 audience members at all times.

People have to pay to watch Marley’s world record quest. Proceeds are going to the Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital at Maine Medical Center.

12:08 a.m.

PORTLAND — At 10:30 Wednesday night, Bob Marley had been telling jokes for more than 15 hours straight.

The comedian’s audience consisted of about 130 people — the seating capacity at Portland’s Comedy Connection — who roared with laughter as Marley poked fun at marriage, dating and massage.

Marley appeared determined to set a Guinness World Record, for longest stand-up comedy performance by an individual. The record stood at 38 hours and six minutes, set by Lindsey Webb of Australia in October 2009.

Carlos Martinez, the Guinness adjudicator who flew to Maine on Wednesday to monitor Marley’s record-breaking effort, said, “In previous record attempts the comedian would repeat materials, and Bob has not repeated anything yet. I’m very impressed.”

Even more impressive to Martinez was the turnout. To qualify for the record, Marley must have at least 10 people in the audience at all times — and they must be awake.

No problem Wednesday night.

“I heard about this on Facebook,” said Marshall Hockridge of Windham. “I wanted to be here for history in the making.”

Marley looked wide awake, wearing a hooded sweatshirt, sweatpants and a pair of running shoes. He had a microwave and a refrigerator next to the stage. On top of the microwave was a bag of Mrs. Dunster’s donuts and a bottle of Advil.

Marley peered down at a couple with their arms around each other. “You guys aren’t married yet. I can tell because you’re still smiling,” he quipped.

His next jab came as he described a trip to Mexico with his wife. They decided to have a massage.

“One of (the masseuses) looks like Salma Hayek. That’s not the one I got. I got the one who looks like Charles Bronson, with a mustache,” Marley said.

Martinez said Marley must perform until just after 9:30 tonight to break the record. He accrues five minutes of break time for every hour he performs.

Marley has said he wants to perform through 11 p.m., in hopes of setting a record that will be nearly impossible to beat.

All proceeds from the event — the admission fee is $10 an hour — will benefit the Barbara Bush Children’s Hospital at Maine Medical Center.

Staff Writer Dennis Hoey can be contacted at 791-6365 or at:

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