German Village Hosts Weird Tobacco Sniffing Championship

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Around 220 man and women gathered in the small Bavarian village of Kucha to fill their nostrils with tobacco, last weekend, during the German Tobacco Sniffing Championship.

The origins of this offbeat competition are unclear, but one thing is for sure: Bavarians take it very seriously. For competitors outside the region it’s mostly just a fun way to spend a summer weekend, but locals actually train for it, and come with all kinds of techniques to help them sniff as much tobacco as possible. During the German Tobacco Sniffing Championship, competitors are given a small box with five grams of tobacco called Smalzer, and they have to get as much of it in their nose.

Sounds easy enough, especially if you have a big nose, but seasoned veterans claim it’s all about skill and technique. Competitors are allowed to blow their noses, sniff and push the tobacco up their nose, but whoever sneezes is disqualified.  Tobacco sniffing is a big deal in Bavaria, and 90 % of tobacco-sniffing clubs are established in this region, so it’s no surprise Bavarians always win the competition.

This year, the contest was won by 43-year-old Christian Knauer, who managed to stick 4.993 grams of tobacco in his nose, and score a maximum score of 20, for cleanliness. Knauer, who also won last year’s competition, says his secret lies in the special plastic nails he uses to pick up the tobacco from the small wooden box. Picking as much Smalzer in only one minute can be tough, because the box has corners and angles, so he uses these custom nails.

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Matchmaking Event Held Only for China’s Rich Bachelors

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Chinese bachelors (with enough cash in their bank accounts) who wanted to find a nice hot girlfriend, had a chance to pick from 60 beautiful women parading in swimsuits, during a rich-only matchmaking event, in Wuhan.

Beautiful girls dressed in sexy swimsuits parading on a small stage set up on a beach – that sounds a lot like a beauty pageant or a fashion show, except for the audience made-up almost exclusively of men who couldn’t take their eyes off the beautiful contestants. It was actually a special matchmaking event addressed to China’s rich bachelors. The 60 girls who paraded in front of their potential boyfriends had qualified from a previous round, and tried their best to prove they made suitable arm-candy.

In order to gain admittance to the event, the men had to pay a 99,999 ($15,425) fee and provide proof they owned assets of over 30 million yuan ($4,627,000) or had an annual income of at least 1 million yuan ($154,237). So the next time you’re in China and you see a hot  chick, check your pockets before making your move, you may have to qualify for a date.

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Students Stage Most Romantic Break-up Ceremony Ever

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Break-ups are almost never pretty, but two Chinese students have managed to melt the hearts of millions around the world, with their romantic break-up ceremony.

Xu Minyu and Xiao Ying, two students from Wuhan’s University of Science and Technology, had formed a couple for the last four years, and even though everything was great between them, they decided to break up upon graduating college. It wasn’t an easy decision for either of them, but they both agreed their careers were more important at this point in their lives, and a long distance relationship just wasn’t going to work. Xu Minyu will join the civil service in Hangzhou, while his girlfriend, Ying, has already signed a contract with a Beijing-based company. This puts 1,200 km between them and makes a normal relationship impossible.

But, unlike most couple who usually just decide to simply put an end to their relationship, or worse, have a terrible break-up fight, the two students decided to commemorate their love with a memorable with a memorable ceremony. It all went down last Thursday night, when, surrounded by burning candles and a crowd of fellow students, Minyu went up to his beloved girlfriend, carrying a bouquet of 99 roses, got down on one knee and asked for a break-up. Just like during a wedding proposal, the crowd shouted “Say yes, say yes”, and after a two-minute silence, Xiao Ying accepted the flowers and the proposal.

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Owner Has His Porsche 911 Executed by Firing Squad

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Fed-up with his dream car’s reoccurring engine problems,  a Porsche 911 owner decided to donate it to a local gun club, to be shot with 10,000 bullets.

What do you do when having to repeatedly fix an expensive car gets too frustrating? Well,we’ve seen a Lamborghini owner who had it destroyed with jackhammers,  a man who had his Range Rover pulled to the dealership by donkeys, and now a man who preferred to donate his beautiful Porsche 911 for target practice, rather than pay over $20,000 in repairs.

When the members of Comm2A, an organisation dedicated to protecting US gun rights, from Massachusetts, first heard they would get the chance of emptying their magazines in the expensive German sports car, they probably thought it was a joke, but after he took the first shot himself, they knew he was serious. 140 gun-wielding men, women and children shot more than 10,000 bullets at the poor Porsche putting its sturdy body to the ultimate test. Although it was ultimately reduced to a pierced pile of junk, members of Comm2A were surprised about how well it held up against the rain of led. There was little damage done to the passenger side of the Porsche, where bullets seemed unable to penetrate the gas tank. Only the larger, high-velocity rounds managed to pierce both sides of the car.

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Cake Boss Star Creates Mind-Blowing Bumblebee Cake

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It was definitely not a piece of cake, but Cake Boss star, Buddy Valastro, managed to create an incredibly realistic cake shaped like the Chevrolet Camaro-shifting Autobot, Bumblebee.

With Transformers 3: Dark Side of the Moon scheduled for a July 1st release, the people at General Motors though this was a good pretext to gain some exposure for their gorgeous Chevrolet Camaro, so they asked Buddy Valastro to create a detailed cake shaped both as a yellow Camaro and as Transformers star, Bumblebee. Many asked if he could deliver something impressive enough, but when the rolled in at the 2011 New York Auto Show, no one had any more doubts.

The event was featured on TLC’s Cake Boss, in an episode that aired June 20, and viewers got to see one of the biggest, most incredible-cakes ever made. The Camaro-Bumblebee cake weighed 1,500 pounds, and was made of yellow sponge cake, Rice Crispy Treats, buttercream frosting, and yellow and black frosting for the Transformers figure. The unique cake had moving wings, lights and pyrotechnics.

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Would You Pay $100,000 for a Simple Razor?

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Ok, so maybe the Zafiro Iridium limited-edition razor isn’t what you’d call simple, after all its handle is made of 99.9% pure iridium, but it’s still just a razor. Only it costs $100,000.

Gillette may hold the record for world’s biggest shave, but they don’t even come close to Zafiro in terms of razor prices. Using experience gained in fields such as rocket engine manufacturing, nanotechnology and particle physics, Zafiro makes razors…I’m thinking all that precious experience could have been put to better use, but I guess some people just take shaving more seriously than I do. Anyway, their latest achievement is the Zafiro Iridium, a special razor that will be produced in a limited series of just 99, each engraved with a serial number and monogrammed to your specifications at no extra charge. No extra charge to the $100,000 you’ll have to pay for the razor.

But what on Earth makes any razor worth $100,000? Its two blades are made from white sapphire grown at a former Soviet Union lab in Ukraine. They are only 80 atoms thick on their cutting edge (about 1/10.000th the width of a hair) and are a lot sharper than any of the common blades on the market today. Zafiro claims the sapphire blades will stay sharp for about a year, and offers complimentary cleaning and resharpening for an entire decade.

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Man Makes a Living Scraping the Sidewalk for Gold and Diamonds

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Believe it or not, the streets of New York really are paved with gold, but you have to get down and dirty to get your hands on it. For urban prospector Raffi Stephanian this isn’t an issue, just a great way to pay the bills.

Using only a Styrofoam cup, a butter knife and tweezers, 43-year-old Raffi scours the streets of New York’s Diamond District searching for gold, diamonds and other precious jewels. You’ve probably walked on 47th Street countless times and didn’t realize the riches that were right there in front of you, but don’t beat yourself up about it, Raffi was probably the only one who ever thought there was something valuable on the sidewalk. And that only because he worked as a stone setter, years ago, when he found gold scraps on the floor of a diamond exchange. He realized if he could find gold inside, then people must have carried it outside, as well.

The gold and precious stones industry is a hectic one, and you can see people running from one shop to the other, from a diamond supplier to a diamond dealer, and so on, and in the process, they drop tiny valuables without even realizing it. Most of the fragments found by Raffi Stephanian were carried into the streets by diamond merchants who accidentally picked them up on their clothes or on the soles of their shoes. He also finds platinum chips, loops from broken necklaces, watches or bracelets, all of which were dropped by mistake.

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Designer Creates Furniture from Thousands of Puzzle Pieces

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Devon-based artist Rupert McKelvie has used thousands of discarded puzzle pieces to create a stylish table complete with a lamp.

If you’re wondering what inspired the 27-year-old artist to create pieces of furniture from a weird medium like broken puzzles, it was the frustration of spending hours of patient labor assembling a puzzle, only to see them wasted because of a missing piece. Apparently, charity shops get a lot of puzzles handed in these days, only most of them are missing at least one piece, so he decided to use these incomplete artworks to create something new and complete.

McKelvie has put in hundreds of hours painstakingly assembling around 4,800 puzzle pieces into what looks like a functional and stable table, from popular jigsaw puzzles featuring the Taj Mahal, the Arc de Triomphe and Winnie the Pooh. It must have been a pretty tedious process, but it beats searching everywhere for that one missing puzzle, only to find it under the couch, years later.

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Metropolis II – The World’s Coolest Miniature Car Circuit

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Every little boy who has ever owned a Hot Wheels miniature car remembers how fun those things were to play with, whether you owned a circuit track or not. Artist Chris Burden has spent the last four years working on Metropolis II, an awe-inspiring miniature car circuit that will spark the interest of even the most mature grownup.

It’s called Metropolis II because Chris built another cool Hot Wheels circuit back in 2004, but compared to his first one, this latest project is superior in every way. It really lives up to its name, measuring an impressive 10-feet-tall by 28-feet-long and featuring 13 toy tracks and a gigantic car circuit with 18 lanes, winding around in a loop, around 30-40 skyscrapers. There are a total of 1,100 modified cars moving around Metropolis II, at any given time. Chris and his team inserted a small magnet on the underside of each car, so when they reach one of the circuit’s three conveyor belts, which also have magnets placed underneath, they get picked up and transported to a high point from where they are released and flow away.

According to Chris Burden, Metropolis II is ten times bigger than the original Metropolis and was conceived as a miniature representation of Los Angeles. Just recently completed, Metropolis II has already been sold for millions of dollars, but Burden says is also cost millions to complete and refine. Over the next few months it will be taken apart and properly packed in steel cages, where the parts shouldn’t move more than a 32nd of an inch, in order to keep everything running smoothly.

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Dog Believed to Be Reincarnation of Lawyer Sentenced to Death by Stoning

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A rabbinical court in Jerusalem recently sentenced a wandering dog to death by stoning, after they decided he was the reincarnation of a lawyer who offended the judges 20 years ago.

A few weeks ago, a large dog entered the Monetary Affairs Court, near the ultra orthodox neighborhood of Mea Shearim, scaring away visitors and refusing to leave, even after people tried to drive him away. One of the court’s judges remembered something that occurred 20 years ago – a secular lawyer who had offended the judges was cursed by them to reincarnate in the body of a dog (considered an impure animal by Halacha).

The lawyer in question passed away years ago, but one of the still-offended judges sentenced the poor dog to death by stoning, and ordered the task be carried out by the neighborhood’s children. Either the dog sensed the imminent danger and fled, or it was rescued by an animal lover, what’s important is he managed to escape before the sentence could be carried out.

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Man Builds World’s Tallest Sand Castle, Again

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Ed Jarrett first built the world’s tallest sand castle in 2003, then broke his own record in 2007, and now his back with his third consecutive record, a 37-foot, 10-inch sand marvel.

As you can probably imagine by looking at the photos below, Ed used more than just a sand bucket and shovel to complete his masterpiece, In fact, he needed the help of 1,500 volunteers, who worked a total of 2,500 hours turning 1.6 million pounds of sand into a record-breaking castle.

Work on the castle began on April 1st, and the completed structure was ready for official measurement seven weeks later, on May 20. According to Laura Ward, public relations official for Jarrett’s Castle, the work was initially supposed to be even taller, at 38 feet and 75 inches, but after a blue bird decided to scrape the top of the castle and meteorologists announced hostile weather conditions, the team hurried to get the sand castle certified before it got even shorter. Still, at 37 feet, 10 inches, Jarrett’s Castle is still easily the tallest sand castle in the world.

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Designer Creates Couture Fashion from the Remains of Dead Animals

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I know what you’re thinking, so do those fashion companies making real fur coats, but Jess Eaton only uses the remains of animals that died of natural causes, have been hit by cars, or that have been killed for food.

Jess’ Roadkil Couture collection features weird items and accessories, like a necklace made from with the skulls of 12 dead pheasants, a bolero jacked made from the furs of 50 white rats eaten by her friend’s reptile, or a hat made from four magpie wings, but the designer claims she’s not out to shock the world. Sure, some of her pieces look like something only Lady Gaga would dare wear, but Jess Eaton says her creations are only meant to be beautiful, not outrageous.

While other women would probably flinch at the sight of a dead animal, Jess is more than happy to pick it up, skin it herself and use its various body parts in her unique fashion item. She recently received a dead horse’s head, which she carved and used in various pieces, proving she’d definitely not squeamish when it comes to working with her material of choice. Her seven-year-old son, Norton, however is sick of the smell of flesh-eating bugs in their Brighton house, and can’t wait until Jess finally opens her own studio, away from home. If there is an advantage to working with dead animals, is that the “fabrics” for her works are always free.

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Artist Creates Black Eyed Peas Portrait of Black Eyes Peas Member

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To tell you the truth I often wondered why no one bothered to create a portrait of the Black Eyed Peas using black eyed peas, before. We’ve seen all kinds of weird portraits, like those made of toast, broken vinyl or bottle caps, so a black eyed peas portrait of the Black Eyed Peas seemed almost logical.

English artist Lee Mericks finally rose up to the challenge and created an 85 cm by 60 cm portrait of BEP singer will.i.am using nothing but thousands of black eyed peas. The artwork was commissioned by Alton Towers, to celebrate the Black Eyed Peas’ forthcoming concert at the Staffordshire resort, and took 24 hours, over a four-day period, to complete.

According to Lee Merricks, the black eyed peas portrait of will.i.am contains approximately 5 kilograms of black eyed peace, each of which were painstakingly placed by hand. If you’re curious to know the exact number of peas used, feel free to count them yourself.

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Entire Village Painted Blue for Smurfs Movie Launch

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The small village of Juzcar, in Spain’s Malaga region, has recently been painted blue as part of a global promotion for the Sony Pictures film “The Smurfs 3D”.

Juzcar is a peaceful, traditional “pueblo blanco” village, located in the Genel Valley region of Andalucia. It boasts a population of just 250, and yet Sony has selected it as the perfect location for the world premiere of its new film “The Smurfs 3D”. Locals were delighted, especially since the news meant their small village would become a temporary tourist attraction, but their fame and fortune came at a price: Sony requested that the entire settlement, including its historic church be painted blue, to resemble the smurfs’ fantasy village.

In preparation for the big premiere on June 16, 12 unemployed locals armed with various painting tools used 4,200 liters of paint to turn Juzcar into a real life Smurf village. There have been no complaints regarding the sudden transformation, and considering tourists have already begun arriving, the locals are more than happy with the change. Although Sony has agreed to turn the village to its former white glory, locals are now considering leaving the town as it is now, hoping Juzcar could become a permanent tourist spot. It sounds like Chefchaouen might have some serious competition.

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90 Teams Take Part in the Annual Bed Race of Knaresborough

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The Great Knaresborough Bed Race of 2011 attracted a crowd of about 25,000 people eager to see one of the wackiest races in the world.

When the popular bed race was first organized, in 1965, it was considered so difficult that only members of the Army, Navy and American Marines were allowed to take part, but nowadays everyone is allowed to compete, as long as they pay an entrance fee and have a bed decorated according to the annual theme. This year, 90 teams from as far as Germany and the USA came to Knaresborough to compete in one of the strangest, most fun races on Earth.

Teams participating in the Great Knaresborough Bed Race are made up of six runners, a decorated bed and one member brave enough to sit on the bed. The runners have to carry the bed through the 3-km-long countryside course, while the seventh member tries to hold on for dear life. The race starts easily enough, along the banks of the River Nidd, but turns into a nightmare halfway through, as teams face five difficult hill climbs to Castle Fort. Going downhill is no picnic either, especially for the guy sitting on the bed, but if they manage to reach the bottom, they’re faced with the final hurdle, crossing the river.

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