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Mysterious Sinkhole Causes Ecuador’s Largest Waterfall to Disappear Overnight

The San Rafael Waterfall, one of Ecuador’s most popular tourist attraction has all but disappeared after a mysterious sinkhole diverted the gushing Coca River into three small streams.

As part of the Cayambe Coca National Park, in the Ecuadorian Amazon rainforest, the San Rafael Waterfall reportedly attracted tens of thousands of tourists every year. That’s all in the past, though, as the impressive 150-meter-high waterfall all but stopped flowing on February 2nd, after a mysterious sinkhole formed on the river fueling it, diverting the water into three small streams. All tourism to the site has been closed and the waterfall doesn’t even show up on Ecuador’s official travel website anymore.

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Online Shopper Pays $6 Million for His Own Commercial Rocket Launch

They say you can buy just about anything on China’s leading online shopping platform, Taobao. Well, you can now add “commercial rocket launch” to that list as well.

In what was originally deemed an April 1st joke, Chinese media recently reported that an anonymous online shopper paid 40 million yuan ($5.6 million) for his very own rocket launch. The unique online auction was hosted by Chinese celebrity sales anchor Wei Ya and over two million people tuned in to watch the sale live on Taobao. Bidder swere told that winning the auction would allow them to paint the body of the commercial rocket and the launch platform, as well as the chance to visit the launch site and control the launch.

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Controversial “Class of Life” Has Primary School Children Eating Fish They Helped Raise

Japan’s “Class of Life” is a controversial school project that aims to teach students about valuing their food and the environment by having them raise and then eat animals like fish and chicken.

We first featured the Class of Life a couple of years ago, when a video showcasing its implementation at an agricultural high-school in Japan’s Shimano Prefecture went viral on Chinese social media, leaving most viewers in a state of shock. The footage showed students preparing chicken eggs for hatching, raising the chicks for several months, and finally killing, cooking and eating the chickens. The Class of Life has been a part of Japanese curriculum at certain schools for over six decades, so most Japanese people are familiar with it, but even they were stunned recently when they saw elementary school children taking part in the class.

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Dad Creates Custom Baby Safety Pod to Protect His Child from Coronavirus Infection

A young Chinese dad spent a month converting a cat carrier backpack into a safety pod for his baby. His invention allegedly protects the child from infection and pumps purified air into the pod with an electronic fan system.

30-year-old Cao Junjie, a tech-savvy father from Shanghai, China, wanted something that would allow him and his wife, Fang, to take their two-month old son on walks without worrying that he might get infected with the novel coronavirus. Even though babies and young people in general usually experience mild symptoms, they didn’t want to take a chance, so Junjie came up with a solution inspired by Hideo Kojima’s latest video game (Death Stranding), a carrier pod completely isolated form the outside.

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Social Distancing Has People So Bored They Are Littering Counting Seeds in Pieces of Fruit

Having to spend days on end indoors has so people so incredibly bored that they are coming up with all kinds of bizarre ways of passing the time.

Case in point one Vietnamese math student who recently spent a day meticulously extracting every single seed from a piece of dragon fruit and presenting her finding online. “So far, I found out that in a piece of dragon fruit weighing 13,867g (height: 46mm, length: 32mm) has up to 245 seeds and that, on average, a seed weighs 0.0045322449g ,” the student wrote on Facebook.

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Man Plays Dead to Circumvent Coronavirus Lockdown

You’ve probably seen people hiding in the bushes and wearing all kinds of silly disguises in order to go outside without being stopped by police, but now you can add faking death to the list of things people have resorted to in order to circumvent the coronavirus lockdown.

Just like Italy, India imposed nationwide lockdown from last Wednesday to fight the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, which left many citizens stranded hundreds of kilometers away from home, with no way to return. That was the case of Hakim Din, a 70-year-old villager from Poonch, in India’s disputed Kashmir region. He was being treated for a minor head injury at a hospital in Jammu, a few hundred kilometers away from home, when the lockdown was enforced, and he started looking for ways to get back. When an ambulance driver suggested that he play dead in order to get past the checkpoints, he jumped at the opportunity.

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Self-Described “Water Hater” Would Rather Dehydrate Than Drink Water

A New York woman who claims she hates drinking plain water has ended up in the ER several times with severe dehydration because she simply refused to put water in her mouth.

Lori Cheek is what is known as a “water hater”, a person who hates both the taste of water and the “slimy” sensation of it going down her throat. She is fully aware of the risks of not drinking enough water, as she has experienced severe dehydration more than once, but she would still rather not drink anything at all than have a sip of water. In her day to day life, Cheek relies on hydration tablets, Crystal Light and other flavored drinks to stay hydrated, but she won’t touch water.

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Japanese Artist Paints Simple Stones as Charming Figurines

Akie Nakata describes herself as a “stone artist”, but there is more to her craft than simply painting river stones into familiar animal shapes. Every one of her pieces goes through a complex process that begins with choosing the right stone and continues with bringing out the life in it.

The Japanese artist, who goes by Akie on social media, has a very special way of looking at looking at stones. While most of us choose to ignore them, she considers them similar to living organisms, in that there is a rich history behind them and they all have a story to tell. She is just someone enabling that story to come out with her paintbrush. She believes that every stone she chooses in turn chooses her, giving her the ok to paint what she sees on it. Akie feels that her art is a collaborative effort of hers and the stones’, and she always shows her respect by never altering or processing a stone to better suit her design.

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The World’s Toughest Cheese Is Hard as a Rock, Turns into Chewing Gum

I understand that the title reads a bit strange, but then again this is no ordinary cheese we’re talking about. It’s the hardest cheese in the world, and yes, it can be chewed like gum for up to two hours.

Chhurpi or Durkha is a traditional Nepalese cheese that has been a means of survival or many remote communities for centuries. Made out of the milk of yaks, or chauri (the cross of a yak and a cow), chhurpi comes in two varieties – soft and hard. The soft stuff is usually consumed as a side dish with rice, as filling for traditional dumplings, or ever as a soup. But it’s the hard variety that makes chhurpi famous all over the world. You may think you’ve tried hard cheeses before, but trust me when I say that this Nepalese staple puts them all to shame. It’s as hard as a rock, so you can’t even bite into it for at least an hour or so.

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The Incredible Ballpoint Pen Drawings of Samuel Silva

We originally featured the amazing ballpoint pen drawings of Portuguese artist Samuel Silva back in 2021, but he has been buys over the last eight years, and I though we’d take a look at what he’s been up to.

Looking at some of Silva’s incredibly realistic artworks, it’s clear why many consider him the no. 1 ballpoint pen artist in the world. The photo-like level of detail in his masterpieces is simply uncanny, making it hard to believe that he is a self-taught artist who never went to art school. He started drawing when he was 2-years-old, and developed his own style and technique by creating “simple classroom sketches in the back of exercise books”. A lawyer by by training, Samuel Silva doesn’t create new works as often as other artists, but when he does, you better believe it’s something special.

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Father Gives Son Embarrassing Haircut to Make Sure He Doesn’t Sneak Out

A Filipino father came up with an ingenious way of keeping his young boy in the house during the recently issued lockdown due to the rapidly spreading Covid-19 pandemic.

The novel coronavirus continues to spread around the world, and the Philippines is no exception. As in most other places, the Government has enforced a social distancing program that requires citizens to isolate themselves in their own homes and go out as little as possible. However, enforcing this type of lockdown isn’t as simple as you might think, especially when dealing with young children used to spending most if their time playing outside with their friends. But, to their credit, some parents are coming up with some creative solutions…

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Woman Leaves Real-Life Husband to Pursue Video-Game Romance

This is the story of a middle-aged woman from the UK who decided to end her unhappy marriage to pursue a fairy-tale romance in an online video game which ultimately resulted in a real-life wedding.

Kelly Sexton was 37 when she first started playing Second Life, an online simulation game where players customize their avatars and live out their fantasies. She was suffering from fibromyalgia, ME and non-epileptic attack disorder (NEAD), and Second Life proved a welcome escape from the troubles of daily life. She was married at the time and had four children, so she never really considered the idea of falling in love with a stranger and starting a new life, albeit an online one. But that’s exactly what happened.

On New Years Eve 2016, Kelly’s avatar, Selena, was approached by a tall, dark-haired, buff male avatar who started pole dancing in front of her. She found it very funny, so she started flirting with him.

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“String Art Guy” Creates Incredible Portraits with Just Strings and Nails

London-based Ben Koracevic is a young, self-taught string artist determined to push the boundaries of the art form. Looking at the insanely detailed portraits he is able to create using only black string and expertly placed nails, I’d say he has already succeeded.

Using thousands of nails carefully positioned on a blank white canvas, and pieces of string with a collective length of over one kilometer, Ben Koracevic spends dozens of hours painstakingly recreating iconic portraits of celebrities, movie characters and even animals. The level of detail in his works is simply uncanny considering the materials he works with.

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Self-Described “Crazy Snail Lady” Cares for 150 Pet Snails

40-year-old Pepper Apollo has been fascinated with snails ever since she saw some outside her workplace, 10 years ago. Today she is a self-described “crazy snail lady” with 150 shelled gastropods in her care.

When I first saw a short video documentary on Pepper Apollo and her pet snails, I though it was just a gimmick to promote her online presence. Yes, that kind of thing happens quite a lot these days, and it usually involves wannabe Instagram influencers looking to grow their following, but it’s definitely not Pepper’s case. The UK-based woman is genuinely fascinated with snails and that becomes obvious when browsing her social media profiles. Her Facebook profile picture is a doctored version of the Mona Lisa where the protagonist’s head was replaced with that of a snail, her handle is always some variation of “crazy snail lady”, and she seems to only post about snails.

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World’s Smallest Bird Lays Its Eggs in a Nest the Size of a Quarter

Only slightly larger that the insect it’s named after, the Bee Hummingbird weighs no more than two grams and lays eggs roughly the size of coffee beans. It is officially the world’s tiniest bird.

Found only in Cuba, the Bee Hummingbird is extremely small even for a hummingbird, so much so that people often mistake it for an actual bee when they see it hovering over flowers. But this tiny flier not only looks like an insect, it also competes against them for resources. It is the result of a phenomenon scientists call “island dwarfism”, where certain species have problems competing against larger species for resources, so they get smaller and smaller over evolutionary time to avoid running out of food and start competing against other categories of organisms.

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