South-Korean Technology Addicts Participate in Bizarre Space-Out Competition

A strange ‘space-out competition’ recently saw 60 South Koreans in the country’s capital of Seoul put aside their smartphones and tablets and simply sit on the ground in a public park, thinking and doing nothing for 90 minutes. The person measured as having the most stable heart rate at the end of that period was judged the winner.

With more than 80% of its 50 million-strong population owning a smartphone, South Korea is considered one of the world’s ‘most wired’ countries. National statistics show that users spend an average of four hours a day tweeting, texting or playing video games on their handhelds, and about 15% show symptoms of addiction. This growing fixation with technology and the internet is seen as a serious problem, so to give people a chance to disconnect, if only for a short time, and promote a life free of information overload, a group of artists came up with the Space Out Competition.

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Amazing Human Being Has Laid Over 550 Unclaimed Bodies to Rest in the Last 60 Years

Mithalal Sindhi, from the Indian city of Ahmedabad, is not a rich man, by any means. He has been living on the streets for the last six decades, earning a modest living by selling Bajra (pearl millet) from his pedal rickshaw. Most of what he makes, Mithalal spends on performing the last rites for unclaimed dead bodies that no one else takes responsibility for. He is without a doubt one of the most kindhearted people we have ever written about.

During the partition of the British Indian Empire, 15-year-old Mithalal moved from Pakistan to Bombay, with his family. He did a number of odd jobs to make ends meet and survive in the big city, but in 1957, he moved to Ahmedabad where he started a small fruit selling business using what little savings he had. It was during this time that he met Nyaldas Sindhi, a vegetable vendor, with whom he became very close friends. They would eat lunch together and even sleep next to each other on the footpath, at night. Their friendship came to an abrupt ending in just two years, after Mithalal tried waking his friend one morning, but he didn’t respond.

Devastated by Nyaldas’ death, the young fruit vendor realized his friend had no close families or relatives to take care of the last rites. Mithalal asked the Mukhya (Leader of Vegetable Market) for help, but he refused, telling him it was not his concern. No one was willing to take responsibility for his friend, so he stepped up and had his body cremated near Callico Mill. It was this experience that made him realize that there were so many people dying every day in Ahmedabad that had no one to perform their last rites. He decided he was going to be the person to do it.

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Aptly Named Rollercoaster Restaurant Delivers Your Food via Tiny Rollercoasters

British theme park Alton Towers is giving fast food a whole new meaning with its-newly opened ‘Rollercoaster Restaurant’ where dishes are delivered to patrons via – you guessed it – tiny rollercoasters. For an attraction famous for its adrenaline pumping rides, this is the perfect eatery.

When you enter the Rollercoaster Restaurant, an employee will seat you at your table and explain how to use a tablet to order food, which will travel to your table via a 26-foot rollercoaster with two gravity-defying loop-the-loops. But here’s the catch – you share a rollercoaster with three other tables, so there’s no way of telling whether the dish on the way is the one you ordered or not.

Once it makes its way down to the bottom, the dish will plant itself on a massive lazy suzan, along with a flag displaying the table number. If it happens to be yours, you can simply rotate the lazy susan towards your table and help yourself. Thankfully, the food arrives in closed containers and drinks arrive in bottles to avoid spillage, while hot beverages like tea and coffee are served the regular way – by hand.

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Car Chased by 20,000 Bees for Two Days After Hive Queen Gets Stuck in Trunk

A woman in the UK was left baffled by a swarm of about 20,000 bees that latched onto the back of her car and refused to budge for over 28 hours. The mystery was eventually solved when she discovered that they were actually following their queen, which had gotten stuck in the trunk of the car!

It all started last Sunday, when Carol Howarth, 65, parked her silver Mitsubishi Outlander in the town center at Haverfordwest, in Pembrokeshire, Wales, during a shopping trip. While she was away, thousands of bees began to gather around the car, much to the amazement of passersby. A rescue squad of three beekeepers and a national park ranger were called in to capture the bees in a special box and by the time Carol returned to the car, the situation was under control.

She was thankful for their help, but her tryst with the bees was far from over. Little did she know that as she drove back home, the rest of the swarm was following her . “The next day I realised that some of the bees had followed me home,” she said. “There were a lot less than the first swarm.” So she called the beekeepers once again and they arrived at her home on Monday evening.

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This Home Appliance Store Lets You Try Every Product Before Deciding to Buy It

California-based retailer Pirch is setting a new standard in shopping for home appliances by allowing customers to test products first hand in its stores – right from turning on a kitchen stove to standing under a fully functional showerhead. What’s more, shoppers are greeted with fresh coffee and complimentary snacks as they look around.

The idea is to get customers to spend a long time in their stores, and it seems to be working. According to Pirch CEO Jeffery Sears, shoppers are now spending an average of two hours and 11 minutes at each of their locations. And of course, they’re buying stuff too. Some of Pirch’s eight stores across the US are reporting sales over $3,000 per square foot, a number surpassed only by Tiffany’s and Apple shops.

“We know that when people walk through the space they’re just stunned and they start to dream,” said Sears, who co-founded Pirch with James Stuart in 2009. “Water runs, the chefs are cooking and people are learning. Pretty soon you just simply say, ‘My house sucks.’”

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Filipino Man Turns His Home into a Public Library to Help Kids Learn to Read

Retired Filipino accountant Hernando Guanlao has found a wonderful way to spend all his free time – he’s set up a public library right outside his home and he regularly hands out books to poor children for free.

Hernando’s little library is very relevant to the society he lives in, where many children drop out of school to support their families. He says that he set up the library to honor his parents and the only inheritance they left him – an insatiable love for learning. “As a Filipino who didn’t have the opportunity to go to other places, I wanted to do something before I turned 70 that would help other Filipinos,” he added.  “And books are my means to do that, so I can bring people joy, and help them not feel left behind. It seems to me that the books are speaking to me. That’s why it multiplies like that. The books are telling me they want to be read… they want to be passed around.”

Readers are allowed to take as many books as they like, and return them whenever they please. According to Hernando, “The only rule is that there are no rules.”

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Antlerman’s Shed – Inside an Awe-Inspiring Building Decorated with Thousands of Deer Antlers

James Phillips, from Three Forks, Montana, has been collecting shed antlers for over half a century now. The 66-year-old takes long hikes in the foothills of the mountains, looking for antlers to take home. Over the last six decades, he has collected over 16,000 individual pieces that now cover virtually every inch of a specially constructed 30 x 64 foot building known as Antlerman’s Shed.

Antlerman recalls that his passion for collecting sheds began in 1958. “I, as a ten year old, took a short walk from my parents’ homemade trailer up a creek into the timber,” he wrote on his website, Antlerman.com. “I stumbled onto an old set of elk antlers and packed them back to camp. A few days later I hiked a little further and brought home a couple old white elk antlers. To this day, when I find a shed I get the same rush as I did then. Antler hunting is in my blood.”

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Meet the Plus-Size Male Dancer Challenging Ballet Stereotypes

American ballet dancer Erik Cavanaugh is proving to the world that plus-size performers can be just as agile and graceful as their slim counterparts. His Instagram is filled with photographs and videos of himself performing ballet and other contemporary dance routines. He hopes to appear in music videos and on the Ellen Show, and his ultimate goal is to “change the mind and shape of dancers”.

Erik, 23, works at a pizza parlor by day and spends all his spare time dancing and choreographing. He learned the basics of dance at the Pittsburgh Creative and Performing Arts School when he was much younger, and was encouraged to post videos of his performances online by his dance coach at his alma mater, Slippery Rock University.

Some of his short video clips feature him pulling off incredibly difficult and impressive moves, like multiple pirouettes, set to contemporary music like Justin Bieber’s Purpose and Jordan Smith’s Settle. The New York Post featured a compilation of Erik’s moves in a Facebook video, which went viral, inspiring millions around the world.

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Picnic with the Dead in an Idyllic Greek Village

The Pontics are a group of ethnic Greeks who prospered on the shores of the Black Sea between the years of 1914 and 1923. Over 350,000 of their population perished at the hands of the Ottomans, Kemalists and neo-Turks during the Greek Genocide, and those who remained were forced to leave their homeland to seek refuge in Greece. But even today, this small community manages to keep its age old traditions alive. One of their most notable customs is the yearly ‘Picnic with the Dead’.

Every year on the Sunday after Easter, also known as St. Thomas Sunday, several Pontic Greek families in the village of Rizana make their way to the local cemetery to picnic on the graves of the deceased. Many of them bring along folding tables and chairs, table cloths, traditional meals, vodka, flowers, and candles to set in the midst of the marble gravestones. No one is allowed to cry as the day is seen not as one of mourning, but of celebration in honor of the departed. Family members are seen smiling and greeting each other, “Christos anesti” (Christ has risen), while children laugh and play amidst the graves.

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Chinese Man Uses Single Bamboo Stick as a Raft to Cross Large River on His Way to Work

Who needs a boat when you’ve got incredible core strength and balance? Two simple bamboo poles will do if you’re anything like this 51-year-old Chinese man who is able to cross a large river standing on one pole and rowing with the other!

A video of Fang Shuyun’s unique commute has recently gone viral on Chinese social media and millions were left baffled by the ease with which the middle-aged man navigates the waters of Fuchun River, sailing smoothly and swiftly on a 23-foot bamboo cane. He was reportedly traveling at a speed of 100 to 164 feet per minute.

Fang, a native of Hangzhou city, first tried out the feat one night in 2014 after he missed the last boat ride home from work. He spotted a bamboo pole floating in the river and decided to use it to get to the other side. He failed in that first attempt, but came away with the feeling that he could complete the ride if he worked on his sense of balance. So Fang spent the past two years practicing, and it appears that he has finally managed to master the skill. “The leg you put forward carries the center of the body weight so you should use it to step on the bamboo pole evenly,” he explained, speaking to local media. “Then you use the big toe of your other leg to stop the stick from rolling in water. As long as you achieve a balance and stop the bamboo from turning, it’s possible to cross a river on a single bamboo pole given you’re fit enough.”

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Winery Claims to Turn water into Wine in 15 Minutes, without Using Grapes

A couple of wine experts from San Francisco are apparently able to perform a miracle otherwise credited to Jesus Christ himself – they claim they can turn water into wine in a mere 15 minutes! The synthetic wine, made without the use of grapes, is produced by combining water and ethanol with flavor-compounds that can mimic the taste of real wine.

Mardonn Chua and Alec Lee, founders of the start-up Ava Winery, said they were inspired to create the grape-free artificial wine after spotting a bottle of award-winning Chardonnay at a winery in California’s Napa Valley last year. They couldn’t afford the bottle of Chateau Montelena, but they got to thinking of ways to make wine that anyone can buy. “I was transfixed by this bottle displayed on the wall,” Chua said. “I could never afford a bottle like this, I could never enjoy it. That got me thinking.”

So they skipped the expensive step of growing and fermenting grapes, and instead started off with ethanol, the major component in most alcoholic beverages. Then they added compounds like ethyl hexanoate for that fruity flavor. Their initial attempts were disastrous, but they kept trying and eventually achieved some decent results, including a very close replica of the sparkling Italian white wine Moscato d’Asti.

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German Artist Spreads Dust on a Sticky Canvas to Create Mind-Blowing Artworks

Tim Bengel, a young artist from Stuttgart, Germany, has returned to the childhood pastime of playing with sand for his latest art series. He uses only black and white sand on a sticky board to create spectacular paintings of people and places. 

Bengel, 24, starts off by covering a blank canvas board with a special type of adhesive that takes a long time to dry. He then sprinkles black and gold sand over the drying glue in the shape of the design he has in mind, and sometimes even adds individual grains of sand using a very fine scalpel. This ‘drawing’ stage can take him weeks to complete.

When the design is completed, he spreads white sand all over the canvas. Then, he shakes off all the excess sand in one sweeping motion to reveal the completed artwork underneath. The dramatic effect of this final step is well worth the hours of effort that he puts into each piece.

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This Bionic Arm Prototype Comes with a Phone Charger, Torch and Even a Drone

Four years ago, when London resident James Young suffered a freak accident that left him with an “ugly- peach-colored and obvious” prosthetic arm and leg, little did he know that he would soon become ‘part cyborg’ in a one-of-a-kind experiment that would give him a prototype bionic arm. His new, futuristic-looking arm feels realistic, and in some ways is even better than a real one. It comes equipped with several cool features like a torch, a USB port, a laser light, and even a drone!

James’s life would never be the same after that fateful day in May 2012, when he was about to board a Docklands Light Railway train in East London. He happened to be walking too close to the platform when he extended his arm to push the button to open the doors, and the momentum of the moving train made him spin and lose balance. He slipped and fell between two carriages. James has no memory of the incident, but he’s been able to piece everything together using CCTV footage.

“My friends looked round and couldn’t see me,” he said. “The train stopped and my friends got on it and pulled the alarm. Two men helped them to look for me. The guy who found me, David Kelly, climbed under the train and talked to me to keep me conscious.” James was then airlifted to the Royal London Hospital where he was kept in an induced coma for 12 days. His left arm was badly damaged, while his left leg was severed below the knee during the accident. Eventually, surgeons were forced to amputate his arm as well, and perform 12 other operations to rebuild his badly damaged face and body.

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Startup Is All Set to Launch Special Ink That Makes Permanent Tattoos Temporary

Temporary tattoos have been around for a long time, but as any inking enthusiast would agree, they’re nothing compared to the real deal. And yet, there are times when tattoos don’t end up like you wanted them to, or you just get bored with them after a while. In such cases, getting a tattoo removed involves laser treatments that are both expensive and painful. But not anymore. It might soon be possible to temporarily get a permanent tattoo, thanks to this new type of tattoo ink developed by a group of engineering students.

The special ink has a huge advantage over regular tattoo ink – it can be removed from your skin through an extraordinarily simple and inexpensive process. You simply visit your tattoo artist and have them trace over the tattoo with a removal solution. Voila! It’s all gone. Or, you can just erase the part of it that you don’t like and turn it into a whole new artwork. The choice is yours.

The product is named ‘Ephemeral’, after the team of Chemical and Biomolecular engineering students who took part in the recent $200,000 Entrepreneurs Challenge held by NYU Stern’s Berkley Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation. The team comprised of five School of Engineering students and a sixth one from Stern won the grand prize of $75,000 for their unique invention.

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Man Who Got Breast Implants to Win Bet Finally Takes Them Out 20 Years Later

While some men work hard at the gym to get rid of their man boobs, this Canadian man actually paid for breast implants in order to win a $100,000 bet. And now, nearly 20 years later, 55-year-old Brian Zembic is finally thinking of having them removed.

It appears that Zembic, a professional gambler and magician, has always had a penchant for making outrageous bets. He’s done all sorts of crazy things in the past, like living in a friend’s bathroom for a month for $7,000, and sleeping under a bridge with $20,000 in cash strapped to his ankle for a week. But nothing tops the bet he made with a group of friends in 1997 that ultimately led him to getting silicone implants in his chest.

“It was about 1997-ish, I was in some restaurant in Europe and I was with two friends and his girlfriend at the time was flaunting her boobs and I said to my friend: ‘If I had boobs like hers I could get just as much attention as she would,’” Zembic said. And after made the bold statement, one of his friends asked him how much money it would take to actually have him go through with it. They finally settled on a $100,000 bet.

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