A Chinese Farmer’s Epic Rickshaw Journey to the London Olympic Games

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Chen Guanming, a 57-year-old farmer from China, spent over two years travelling about 60,000 kilometers, through 16 countries, enduring floods, war zones and extreme temperatures,  to reach London in time for the games and “spread Olympic spirit”.

The 2012 London Olympic Games may have ended, but remarkable stories related to the monumental event are still popping up. One such story is that of Chen Guanming, a simple farmer from a village in China’s Jiangsu province, who traveled all the way to London the only way he could afford to, by rickshaw. The daring traveler said he was inspired to go on this epic journey when he watched the English Prime-Minister accept the Olympic flag, in 2008, and the media invited those watching the live broadcast to the next edition of the games. Chen took that invitation quite seriously, and in 2009, he started putting all his papers in order and preparing for an unforgettable adventure. His long rickshaw ride began on May 23, 2010, in the village where he grows rice and other crops, and took him through 16 different countries, including Vietnam, Thailand, Pakistan or Italy.

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“Who’s Your Daddy?” Van Offers DNA Tests on the Go

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Believe it or not, there’s actually a van dubbed “Who’d Your Daddy?” driving through New York offering men the chance to find out if they are really the fathers of their babies. As you might expect, business is going well.

You could say this unique RV parked randomly on the streets of New York sells on-the-spot piece of mind to fathers who want to know if the children they’re raising are really theirs, but Jared Rosenthal, the driver of “Who’s Your Daddy?” describes it as “heartbreak hotel”. He charges $299 to $575 per test and gives clients the choice of having the results delivered in person or by mail. The unique van has shocked quite a few New-Yorkers since it first started operating in the Big Apple, but for fathers looking for an answer to their burning question it’s been a welcomed solution. “Something about the RV makes it more intimate and people open up. It makes it easier for them,” Rosenthal said.

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New York Panini Shop Serves Alcoholic Sandwiches

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I bet you never thought you’d ever be able to get drunk on sandwiches, yet here we are. The Salumé panini shop in New York City has created the world’s first line of alcoholic sandwiches, infused with different kinds of liquors, like scotch or gin.

I’ve covered a few really weird ways to get wasted, like vodka eye-balling or drinking hand-sanitizer, but I never thought I’d be writing about alcoholic sandwiches actually sold by a sandwich shop. At New York’s Salumé panini shop, customers can fill their bellies and get wasted at the same time, and I don’t mean by washing down the food with some beer. This innovative establishment is serving the alcohol inside the sandwich, so you’re sort of eating and drinking at the same time. Their unique menu includes items like prosciutto & gin sandwiches, Surryano ham & rye whiskey or prosciutto & beetroot with scotch, and prices range from $11 for a scotchwich to $18 for the Bulleit bourbon and ham.

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Vegetarian Designer Opens Special Butcher Shop with Fluffy Meats

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It’s called “Aufschnitt” (German for “cold cuts”) and it’s a unique butcher shop created by designer Silvia Wald, who is actually a vegetarian. What’s even more bizarre is that she makes all the “meats” herself, by hand, out of fabric…

Every item on display at Silvia Wald’s Aufschnitt shop looks good enough to eat, only nothing is really edible. The young designer creates all her products from textile material and sells them as pillows, cushions or cool decorations. An engineer for clothing technology, Wald started making her delicious fluffy meats in 2009, as a small project, but after seeing how popular her few sausages were, she started making all kinds of other textile foods, from salami to large pieces of ham, from materials like cotton stretch velvet, lycra, wool or micro fibre. Then she opened her own little butcher shop in Berlin, where she sells her creations to both meat lovers and vegetarians. The designer says her favorite clients are the kids who always like to take a bite of her forever-fresh products,  just to see if they’re edible.

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Farmer Who Lost Both Arms in Accident Spent Eight Years Building New Ones from Scrap Metal

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Sun Jifa, a Chinese farmer who lost both his arms after a homemade bomb exploded prematurely, built his own functional prosthetic limbs after he couldn’t afford to buy the one offerd by the hospital.

A few years back, 51-year-old Sun Jifa, from Guanmashan, Jilin province, northern China, was working on explosives designed for blast fishing when a bomb blew up prematurely leaving him without both his arms. He was taken to the hospital and treated, but when doctors proposed he wear a pair of prosthetics designed to make his everyday life easier, Sun realized he just couldn’t afford them. At the same time he knew he needed both his arms in order to work on the farm and provide for  his family. That’s when he decided to built his own artificial arms out of scrap metal. After eight years of planning and several prototypes, He finally has a pair of functional arms.

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Successful Businessman Selling His Whole Life on eBay

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After working hard to build a business and achieve millionaire status, a Florida entrepreneur is selling it all on eBay. This includes his successful video game stores, two beachside condos, several expensive cars and three kayaks. All for the small price of $3.5 million.

Some people work their whole life and don’t even get close to amassing a fortune as large as 29-year-old’s Shane Butcher. The Tampa Bay gamer owns a thriving video game business as well as several houses and cars and lives a life most of us only dream of, and yet he is ready to sell it all and start over. “My name’s Shane, and I’m putting my American dream up for sale,” the young businessman says in his eBay ad. Butcher got the idea to pass on his success to somebody else after he heard about other people who made similar sales on eBay. He and his family are in search of a new challenge, and want to visit the world, so they decided to sell everything they’ve built so far. “If you build a castle, it’s awesome to sell it and then start building another one, hopefully bigger and better,” Shane said.

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Japanese Chilly Chair Makes Horror Movies Even Scarier

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Are horror films not scary enough for you? Than you might want to try watching them from the Chilly Chair, an offbeat invention that literally raises the hair on your forearms and back to enhance emotion.

You could say Shogo Fukushima’s invention is really hair-raising. The doctoral student who attends the University of Electro-Communications in Tokyo wanted to create a device that would induce body hair to stand up, thus potentially intensifying people’s reaction to movies and video games. He came-up with a thing called the Chilly Chair, with weird forearm-rests that use electricity to reproduce the sensation usually activated by feelings of fear and surprise. The square arches of the innovative chair are made up of three layers; from the inside to the outside it contains an insulating dielectric plate, an electrode and a rubber plate. Electricity goes through the electrode polarizing the dielectric plate and attracts the user’s arm hairs making them experience a sensation similar to when picking up clothes charged with static energy. After testing the Chilly Chair on six subjects, Fukushima found they showed stronger reactions to video and audio stimuli.

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Swearing Hotline Lets Germans Blow Off Some Steam, for a Fee

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Boss giving a hard time at work? Wife can’t seem to stop nagging you when you get home? Do you feel like lashing out at people all the time, but are afraid of social consequences? Fear no more, as an innovative new hotline allows frustrated people to use their most fowl language as a way to blow off steam.

It’s called “Schimpf-los” (German for “swear away”) and it’s an innovative new hotline that has operators standing by 24/7 ready to take serious verbal abuse from people who feel like blowing off steam by swearing. “We don’t judge people who are angry,” said Ralf Schulte, one of the creators of this offbeat service. “It happens. It’s natural. With us you can blow off steam no strings attached.” The 41-year-old entrepreneur set up Schimpf-los along with partner Alexander Brandenburger, after drawing inspiration from their own stressful daily routine. They realized their idea would help people avoid altercations at the workplace or at home, by providing an alternative place to release all tension. “If you’re stressed out at work, you go home and your partner gets an earful,” Schulte comments. “Even though it’s not her fault.” With Schimpf-los, angry folks need not worry about this kind of scenarios anymore.

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Robin Hood Mayor Robs Supermarkets and Gives to the Poor

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The story of Robin Hood and his merry men is centuries old, but even in this modern age their example is as popular as ever. In the Andalucia region of Spain the roles of outlaws are nowadays played by a village mayor and a group of Socialist extremists, who instead of rich royalty rob local supermarkets and give the loot to the poor.

Andalucia was hit particularly hard by the international economic crisis and the collapse of the construction industry. The whole of Spain is struggling, but in this region the unemployment rate has reached 34% and some people have difficulties even putting food on the table. The dire situation inspired a group of members from the Andalucia Workers Union, led by Juan Manuel Sanchez Gordillo, a member of the regional parliament for the United Left party in Andalucia and mayor of the village of Marinaleda in southern Spain, to stage Robin Hood-style attacks on local supermarkets to get food for the needy. Although authorities see this kind of acts as crimes, Sanchez Gordillo and his modern merry men are heroes to the Spanish poor, who welcome the food products with open arms.

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World’s Deadliest Card Player Slices Fruits an Vegetables with Plastic Playing Cards

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Ye Tongxin, a 48-year old man from Nanjing, China, has a very unique talent. He can slice various fruits and vegetables by throwing plastic cards at them from meters away. I guess you can say he’s a real life fruit ninja.

You probably thought Oddjob was cool for slicing stuff with his hat, but Ye Tongxin’s skill is much more impressive – he’s able to slice fruit and veggies with common plastic playing cards. We’ve all tried doing at some point, but it’s a much harder trick to pull off than most people think. Mr. Ye has been practicing his ability for the last ten years, and although he spends two hours every day throwing cards at hanging plastic bags shaped as cucumbers, he says training to become the world’s best fruit slicer is much more complex. Apart from just throwing cards, he also runs between 8 and 10 laps up high ground, in order to improve his strength, because unlike other card throwing ninjas he needs to cut through tougher fruits like watermelons and apples, instead of just soft cucumbers.

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Innovative Wine Maker Turns Tomatoes into Wine

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Who says you need good grapes to make a fine wine? Pascal Miche, a wine maker from Quebec, Canada, uses tomatoes to create an unusual yet increasingly popular vintage. His secret lies in a four-generations-old Belgian family recipe .

A former pork butcher, Pascal Miche moved from Belgium to Canada’s Quebec province, seven years ago and decided to go through with his idea of commercializing his grandfather’s  precious wine, made according to an old recipe. He finally kickstarted his business in 2009, planted his “vinyard” and began making tomato wine. If you search online, you’ll find quite a few enthusiasts who have experimented with making wine from tomatoes, but Mich hopes his will be the first successfully commercialized. Considering sales of his “Omerto“wine have reached 34,000 bottles annually, I’d say his plan is right on track.

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Chinese IKEA Customers Make Themselves a Little Too Much at Home

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If you’ve ever walked through an IKEA store thinking about how cool it would be if you could just lay down on one of them soft beds, cover yourself with a fluffy blankets and nap, then you need to move to China, because that’s what IKEA visitors do over there.

The Chinese simply love IKEA! Millions visit the company’s mainland stores every year, but only a few of them actually end up buying something, as many just come to enjoy the air-conditioning on a hot summer day and take a nap on the comfy furniture on display. “Some of them even come in once the store opens in the morning, and won’t leave until the store closes in the evening,” a security staff from the IKEA store in Shanghai told Morning Star, but although this sometimes bothers employees, the company hasn’t taken any measures against people making themselves a little too much at home, because it sees it as a future investment. They believe when these people have more consumption power they’ll come back and buy something, but until then they’re free to loiter around.

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World’s Smelliest Man Hasn’t Bathed in 38 Years

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A lot of people can’t imagine going through a day without taking at least one shower, but 66-year-old  Kailash Singh, from India, hasn’t taken a bath in over 38 years, and says he’s happier than a lot of people who wash their bodies every day.

But what can possibly make a man give up the daily ritual of bathing? Kailash says he told the decision in 1974, shortly after he got married, hoping this would help him have a son. He claims it was priest who guaranteed him a prized son if he followed his advice not to wash or cut his hair. Now, over 38 years later, Kailash Singh is probably the world’s smelliest man, has 6-foot-long dirty dreadlocks and is father to seven daughters and not a single son. despite having been failed by his religious guidance, the old man still doesn’t want to wash his body, and says only a son could change his mind. Although stranger things have happened, fathering a son at 66, with a 60-year-old wife is very unlikely.

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World’s Most Generous Vegetable Seller Dedicates Life to Helping the Needy

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You’ve probably never heard of her, but Taiwanese vegetable seller Chen Shu-chu has done more for the needy than many of the world’s rich and famous. Earning a modest living selling vegetables at the market, the Asian hero has so far managed to donate over $322,000 to various charities.

“Money serves its purpose only when it is used for those who need it,” Chen Shu-chu once told a newspaper, and throughout the years, the dedicated philanthropist made sure her hard earned cash was indeed used for the right causes. Inspired by her own difficult and impoverished childhood, Chen decided to dedicate her life to helping those less fortunate than her. Even though she earned a modest income selling vegetables in Taitung County’s central market, in eastern Taiwan, the 61-year-old led a frugal life and donated almost all of her money to charities. You’d think there wouldn’t be much to give away, but Chen Shu-chu has so far made substantial donations, including  $32,000 for a children’s fund, $144,000 to build a library at a school she attended and $32,000 to a local orphanage where she also offers financial support to three children. In total, the world’s most generous vegatable seller has so far donated over $300,000, and she’s not planning on stopping.

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Geeky Fan Builds Real-Life Wall-E Robot

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Mike Senna, a computer programmer from Orange County, California, has spent the last two and a half years building a real-life Wall-E robot, from scratch. It moves around, rolls and talks, but he doesn’t collect trash.

In 2009, shortly after the movie Wall-E was launched, we featured some photos of cool Wall-E computer case mod, but that feat simply pales in comparison to Mike Senna’s awesome achievement. The robot aficionado spend between 3,200 and 3,800 man hours building his very own version of the adorable Pixar trash-collecting hero. His computer programming skills definitely came in handy, but seeing as there were no Wall-E parts available anywhere on this planet, he had to construct the whole thing from scratch. He worked on it about 25 hours a week, after his day job, but all the hard work certainly paid off.

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