13-Year-Old Girl Invents Lollipops That Cure Hiccups

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Hiccups, we all get them from time to time, and the most annoying thing about them is they are so darn hard to get rid of. But 13-year-old Mallory Kievman seems to have finally found a cure to this irritating problem – a hiccup-stopping lollipop called the Hiccupop.

Mallory’s quest to find a real cure for hiccups started during the summer of 2010. She had tried to cure her uncontrollable hiccups by swallowing saltwater, making herself gag, eating a spoonful of sugar, drinking a glass of water upside-down or sipping pickle juice. None of those seemed to work on their own, but the ambitious young girl was determined to find a real cure for the annoying problem man has been facing since the beginning of time. Fast forward two years and almost 100 folk remedies tried, Mallory Kievman has reached her goal and is starting a company to commercialize and promote her magic product – Hiccupops.


Woman Collects Realistic Dolls, Treats Them Like Real Babies

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Marylin Mansfield, a plus-size model from Staten Island, has turned her home into a creepy nursery filled with over 300 dolls, including reborn babies, Barbies and Goth-like Krypt Kiddies.

We’ve posted our share of wacky doll collectors here on Oddity Central, like this lady with a thing for antique dolls, this other one who loves clowns, or the couple who share their home with love dolls, but Marylin actually treats her plastic collectibles like real babies. “I take them anywhere you would bring a real baby. I don’t do it for the shock value. I do it for myself because it makes me happy. I just loved when my kids were babies — and these babies stay babies forever. I buy them clothes. They never grow out of them and they never get dirty”, the tattooed platinum blonde says about her peculiar hobby.


Spanish Family Quit Their Jobs, Sell All Possessions to Travel around the World in a Caravan

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A young married couple, from Mijas, Malaga, have decided to quit their jobs, sell everything they own, and go on an adventure around the world, with their two little children, in a caravan.

Do you ever get so tired of your boring life and tedious job that you feel like leaving it all behind and going on an exciting adventure? I know I do, but I’m just too much of a coward to say goodbye to a comfortable lifestyle and venture into the unknown. Fernando Fernandez and his wife Fleur, both 29, were also a little scared to put everything they knew behind them and go on a trip around the globe, but they managed to lock their fears away and pursue their life-long dream of seeing the world. They realize it’s going to be tough living in a camper with their two small children, Aisha (5) and Noah (1), but they feel it’s a sacrifice worth making in order to truly live their lives.


Woman Hasn’t Shaved Armpits in 18 Months to Challenge Social Taboos

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Emer O’Toole, a 28-year-old Irish journalist has created an Internet buzz after she appeared on a morning show and revealed her hairy armpits and legs. The confident young woman said she hasn’t shaved in 18 months, since she decided to challenge the notion that women must shave their body hair in order to be happy and feel attractive.

It’s true Emer isn’t the only woman in the world who doesn’t shave her armpits and legs, but in modern society, woman bodily hair is one very big social taboo. But the graduate student from Dublin started examining her relationship with her body and her body hair and realized she had first started shaving when she was 14 just because it was expected of her, not because she had to. So she decided to make herself the main protagonist of an experiment that would challenge society’s notions of female beauty. She simply stopped shaving her body hair for the last 18 months.


Photos of Chinese Students Cramming for Exams Hooked to IVs Spark Controversy

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It appears in China the saying “study till you drop” is taken quite literally by some, as photos show students receiving amino acid IV drips as they hit the books during late evening studying session for college exam.

You thought you were studying too hard? Well unless you’ve ever needed intravenous medication to keep you from passing out or collapsing due to excessive studying, you have it pretty good compared to these young students at a high school in Xiaogan, central China’s Hubei province. Photos taken late one evening, and posted on popular Chinese site Sina Weibo, show a brightly lit classroom full of students studying National College Entrance Exam, commonly known as “gao kao”. Students appear buried among piles of books, with dozens of IV bags hanging from lines traversing the classroom.


Man Gave Up Using Money 12 Years Ago, Lives in Caves of Utah Desert

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Daniel Suelo, 51, is a very special person. in 2001, standing on the edge of a highway, he left his life savings, $30, in a phone booth and walked into the desert to start a new life, one that wasn’t based on the rules of modern capitalism. He gave up using money and began living in caves, foraging for wild berries and scavenging for roadkill raccoons and squirrels.

Suelo became an inspiration for thousands of Americans affected by the economic crash and activists like members of the Occupy movement, after his friend, Mark Sundeen, started documenting his way of life. A friend of Daniel, Sundeen admits he though he had gone crazy or suffered a mental break down the first time he heard he had given up money and moved to the desert, in Moab, Utah. They had been out of touch for a few years, but after the economic crash of 2008, he started thinking about his old friend’s ideas. Suelo had once said money was just an illusion, it wasn’t real, and when the money everyone thought they had just started disappearing, Sundeen began to realize Daniel had a point. Because if your house was worth $500,000 today, and just $300,000 the next, what happened to that $200,000, what was that money in the first place? That was when the author got in touch with Suelo and started studying his life.


Inventors Create Spray That Gets You Drunk Instantly without the Nasty Side-Effects

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Scientist David Edwards teamed up with French Designer Philippe Starck to create the WA|HH mouth spray that gets you drunk instantly, but only for a few seconds. And the best part is you won’t have to deal with and splitting headaches when you wake up the following day.

Ever wish you could feel what it’s like to be drunk without actually drinking anything? I have a few girl friends who have never drunk more than a few sips of beer, but have always been curious to know what it’s like to feel intoxicated. Thanks to the innovative WA|HH Quantum Sensations spray presented during a Paris exhibition, now everyone can experience being drunk for just a few seconds, and without any of the nasty side-effects. According to its creators, the spray produces an immediate shock, like a sensorial alarm, but only lasts a few seconds. Each puff equals 0.075 milliliters of alcohol, so it would take about 1,000 to equal a real drink. ‘We asked ourselves whether we might provide the same agreeable sensation as comes with a sip of alcohol without running the risk of drunkenness,’ Starck said about the spray.


Creepy Pillow-Phone Hugs You While You Talk to Loved Ones

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Hugvie, the huggable robotic pillow-phone invented by Professor Hiroshi Ishiguro, of Osaka University, has a heartbeat and internal vibrators meant to make it seem more human-like as you put your arm around it imagining it’s the person hundreds of miles away.

The concept of enhancing long-distance phone conversations between loved ones isn’t new. Kissinger, the long distance kiss messenger, and the kiss transmission device invented by other Japanese researchers have also tried to make long-distance conversations more personal by making the protagonists feel closer to each other. Hugvie is basically a robotic pillow with a human shape that acts as a port for your mobile phone. It’s got its own heartbeat and internal vibrators that react faster and stronger, depending on the tone of the conversation. It sounds like an interesting device, but a lot of people find it just a little bit creepy.


Taiwanese Airline Launches New Hello Kitty Themed Airplane and Check-in

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EVA Air has recently announced the transformation of two of its Airbus A330-300 airplanes into airborne tributes to Japanese icon Hello Kitty. I’m pretty sure this proves there is nowhere to hide from the magic of Hello Kitty.

The adorable kitten created by Sanrio, in 1974, has become a powerhouse brand in Asia, worth several billion dollars. Everybody seems to love Hello Kitty so Taiwanese airline EVA Air decided to associate itself with it in an attempt to boost their struggling sector. Analysts say there is no risk in the move, and that despite having to pay Sanrio a sum of money for licensing , the company has a high chance of reaching its goal. After all, this is their third Hello Kitty plane, so they must have had some success with the previous two.


Poo Wifi – A Machine That Exchanges Dog Poo for Free Wifi

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Stepping in dog poo is said to bring good luck, but for most people it’s one of the worst things that could happen as they walk through the city. Owners not picking up their pets’ droppings is a global problem, but a Mexican Internet portal has come up with an invention that might just inspire people to do the right thing. It’s called Poo Wifi and it’s pure genius.

Walking through the park trying to avoid every dog poo that comes in your way is an almost impossible task, but it wouldn’t be a problem if owners would just clean up after their pets. So Internet portal Terra has teamed up with ad agency DDB to create something that would motivate people to actually pick up their dogs turds. After some brainstorming, they came up with Poo Wifi, a machine that offers a free wifi connection in exchange for dog poo. So after they’ve picked up the droppings, people can drop the bags in a special box on top of the machine, after which the machine offers a number of minutes of free wifi, depending on the weight of the poo. Obviously, large dog owners will get more free wifi, which makes sense since their dogs’ droppings are the messiest.


Student Makes Prom Dress from 5,000 Pop Tabs

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Two years ago, Regan Kerr, a junior at George Washington High School, in Aurora, Colorado, decided to turn her small pop tab collection into a daring project: to create her own prom dress out of thousands of pull tabs.

According to 9news.com, Regan’s ingenious dress started out as a weird collection of pop tabs, which soon turned into a joke, then became a very serious two-year project that culminated on prom night, Saturday night. A couple of years ago, a friend suggested she start collecting pop tabs, and she soon got the idea to make a dress out of them, because she had always thought “a great prom dress should pop”. It was a really intriguing project, but she had never made a dress before, let alone one from thousands of pop tabs. Her friend, Sara Sanford, remembers thinking it was a cool idea, but she also believed “it would kind of peter out and wouldn’t actually happen.” She was wrong!


Head Injury Turns College Dropout into Math Genius with a Beautiful Mind

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Sometimes it takes a good, hard knock in the head to start seeing things right. In the case of Jason Padgett, he started to see more than just right. He began to see complex mathematical formulae everywhere he looked, after a head injury. For now, the 41-year-old works behind the counter of a futon store in Tacoma, Washington, but surely not for long. His genius is bound to lead him elsewhere in life.

Interestingly, for his level of intelligence Jason has no college degree, let alone a PhD. He doesn’t even have a background in math; just 10 years ago he was a very different person. Interested only in working out and partying, Jason had no idea his life was about to change forever as he walked out of a karaoke club in Tacoma. A group of muggers attacked and brutally assaulted him, kicking him several times in the head. “All I saw was a bright flash of light and the next thing I knew I was on my knees on the ground and I thought, ‘I’m going to get killed,’” he says. But he didn’t. Instead, he got the best gift he could ever hope for.


Real-Life Robinson Crusoe Has Been Living on Exotic Island for 40 Years

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Brendon Grimshaw is the world’s real-life Robinson Crusoe, and Rene Lafortune, his man Friday. The only difference is that Grimshaw actually purchased the island instead of being stranded there. The Yorkshireman purchased Moyenne, a half-mile-wide island in the Seychelles for £8,000 ($13,000) in the early 1960s. As a successful newspaper editor in those times, he was restless and seeking adventure, itching to start a new life of his own. Nine years after the purchase, he moved in to the island full-time, making it his permanent home. The 86-year-old is now credited for bringing out and restoring the beauty of the exotic island, encouraging birds and tortoises to make it their home too. He did have a lot of time to do it, as he has been living there for 40 years.

When Grimshaw first arrived at Moyenne, it had been abandoned for 50 years. The scrub was so dense and overgrown that even coconuts couldn’t fall to the ground. It was then that he was joined by an assistant, a Seychellois named Rene Lafortune, and together they worked tirelessly towards restoring the island to its former glory. The duo ended up planting over 16,000 trees by hand. 700 of these are mahogany trees that are about 60-70 ft tall. The other trees include palms, mango and paw-paw. They also built 4.8 km of nature paths. The giant tortoise, which was almost driven to extinction due to excessive hunting, has found a new home at Moyenne, thanks to the work of Grimshaw. He is now the caretaker of 120 giant tortoises. He also managed to attract about 2,000 birds to the island, starting with a meager 10 that he purchased from a neighboring island. At first they promptly flew back, but then they started to stay longer. Lafortune died in 2007, and since then Grimshaw has been the only permanent resident of Moyenne. He lives there in a small one-story wooden house that clings to the hillside and is furnished with African souvenirs. Outside his house is a sign that says, “Please respect the tortoises. They are probably older than you.”

 Photos of L'Habitation Hotel, Cerf Island

Swiss Woman Tries to Survive on Light Alone, Starves to Death

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Growing up in India, I’ve heard several stories of yogis who would eat nothing, surviving on only sunlight. We never really tested out the theory, assuming it was only the stuff of legends. But a Swiss woman apparently did try it, and the results were not good. She ended up starving herself to death. Looks like she found out the hard way that sunlight isn’t really food unless you’re a plant.

The woman’s real name is unknown, but news reports refer to her as Anna Gut. She was in her early fifties when she first heard about the concept of living off sunlight in the documentary film “In the Beginning There was Light”. The two men portrayed in the film – anthroposophist Michael Werner, 62, and Indian yogi Prahlad Jani, 83, claimed they made use of spiritual practices and sunlight for their sustenance, rather than food. Inspired by the concept of ‘breatharianism’, Anna read a book on the same subject written by Australian Ellen Greve. She then began to follow the instructions provided by the book.


Los Santos Malandros – The Thug Saints of Venezuela

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An idol of a man dressed in blue jeans, orange shirt, green baseball cap and a gun stuck in his belt is hardly something you’d expect to see at a place of worship. But it’s pretty common in Venezuela, the country with the highest murder rates in the world. Religious cults worship thugs and criminals who are long dead and gone. Even though the most widespread religion in Venezuela is Christianity, the worship of local thugs is so strong that it cannot be overlooked. The people who participate in such cult worship are more often than not, from the poorest sections of society.

With an average murder rate of about 14,000 a year, Venezuela isn’t exactly the safest place in the world. In such a scenario, I suppose it would be easiest for the people to relate to a God with whom they can connect, as compared to the Christian saints. And that is what makes the Maria Lionza cult so popular. According to this alternate religion, the dead co-exist with the living and they can be accessed through a few people who act as a medium.


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