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Muslim Walks 6,000 Kilometers from Bosnia to Mecca

Senad Hadzic, a 47-year-old Muslim from northern Bosnia, has recently completed an epic 5,700 km journey, from his hometown to the to the Saudi city of Mecca, by foot.

Making the pilgrimage to Mecca, the holiest city in the religion of Islam, at least once in their lifetime is obligatory for all able Muslims. Each year, millions travel to the birthplace of Muhammad, but not many of them walk thousands of miles to get there. That’s what makes Senad Hadzic’s experience so impressive. The Bosnian departed from his town of Banovici, in December 2011 and has walked for 314 days through Serbia, Bulgaria, Turkey, Syria and Jordan to reach the Muslim holy city in south-western Saudi Arabia. Despite experiencing severe weather conditions, like temperatures ranging from minus 35 Celsius in Bulgaria to plus 44 Celsius in Jordan, Senad managed to walk at a rate of between 20 to 30 kilometers per day, to reach Mecca after an unbelievable 5,700 km journey.

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World’s Strongest Beer Called Armageddon Is Stronger Than Whiskey

Appropriately named Armageddon, the new beer from Scotland’s Brewmeister Brewery will probably end your days if you drink too much of it. The potent concoction has an alcohol content of 65% by volume. That’s stronger than vodka or whiskey.

Although the Guinness Book of Records has yet to certify Armageddon as the world’s strongest beer, that hasn’t stopped Brewmeister from slapping the unofficial title on the label. And who can blame them, after all, that’s what makes their drink so special. Company co-founder, Lewis Shand says Armageddon “is closer to a liquor than a beer, but it is classified as a beer and we are pleased with it.” He added that “it delivers a supersonic-charged explosion and delivers the drinker to Drunksville”. That’s probably why Brewmeister’s brewers have cautioned that the beer should be sipped and served in small doses.

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New York Giants Fan Creates Breathtaking Replica of Football Team’s Old Stadium

Don Martini, a 75-year-old fan of the New York Giants has taken his devotion for his favorite football team to a whole new level. The Blairstown-native spent the last two years and $20,000 building an astonishing replica of the Giant’s old stadium in his garage.

The crazy idea came to Don in the middle of the night. The next morning, he got up and told his wife “I’m going to build Giants Stadium”, but all he got out of her was “You’re crazy!” But not even she thought he would be crazy enough to actually go through with it. The truth is, Don Martini was in search of a new project. After turning his backyard into a miniature village complete with an elevated rail for model trains, a working windmill and a lighthouse, the man was looking for a new challenge, something bigger than everything he had created in the past. He decided to combine his love for the New York Giants with his passion for building stuff, so he actually started work on this astonishing model of the football team’s stadium.

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World’s Most Expensive Coffee Is Made from Elephant Dung

You probably didn’t know this, but the world’s most expensive coffee is pretty crappy, literally. Black Ivory coffee is made from beans eaten and digested by Thai elephants, and is priced at $1,100 per kilogram. Enjoy!

I knew elephants in Thailand were good at painting, but I didn’t know they also make great coffee. The rare Black Ivory blend is served at only four resorts around the world, three in the Maldives and one in Thailand. The people behind the exclusive Anantara Resorts came up with the unusual idea of making coffee from elephant-digested beans. As weird and disgusting as it sounds, their idea actually makes sense, in theory. According to research, enzymes in the elephant’s stomach break down the proteins in the coffee beans, and since proteins is one of the main factors of its bitterness, less protein means less of a bitter taste. The drink resulted from the elephant-refined beans is said to be floral and chocolaty, with the taste containing notes of ‘milk chocolate, nutty, earthy with hints of spice and red berries.’ 

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Vietnamese Man Shows Off Car Made Almost Entirely Out of Wood

It’s not the world’s first wooden car, but it is the first of its kind in Vietnam. Featuring a body made exclusively from high-quality wood and decorated with intricate carvings, the Achilles has been turning heads on the streets of Ho Chi Minh City.

The one-of-a-kind vehicle was created by Le Nguyen Khang, owner of Binh Duong-based wood processing firm Le Lumber. He told reporters the idea of building a wooden car started off as a joke, while he was talking to an English friend who works in the travel business. One day, he jokingly asked Khang, “Working in the wood processing industry, can you make me a wooden car?”. Little did he know the silly question would plant a seed in Le Nguyen’s brain, who started thinking seriously about making a car from wood. After all, he had all the materials he needed, and could count on the help of several professional woodworkers from his company. The sketch for his unusual automobile was completed in April of 2011, and with the help of 11 of his best employees, he worked on it for 16 months. The Achilles was finally completed last month, and as soon as he started driving it around the city, people assaulted him with all kinds of questions and requests to have their pictures taken with it.

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The Awe-Inspiring Matchstick Architecture of Patrick Acton

Patrick Acton is known as the world’s best matchstick artist for a reason. His extensive collection features scale wooden models of iconic film locations like Lord of the Rings’ Minas Tirith and Harry Potter’s Hogwarts School of Wizardry, made from hundreds of thousands of matchsticks.

Acton was one of the first artist I wrote about, when I started Oddity Central, almost five years ago. He was working on one of his masterpieces, a detailed model of the famous fortress city Minas Tirith, as seen in the Lord of the Rings 3: The Return of the King, from 420,000 matchsticks. Since then, he’s built lots of other astonishing matchstick sculptures and he doesn’t plan on stopping anytime soon. The 59-year-old American artist, who works as a career counselor in Gladbrook, Iowa, started his career as a matchstick modeler back in 1977, when he pieced together a small-scale replica of a local church from 500 matches. He did it all with only Ohio Blue Tip matches purchased at the grocery store, a bottle of school glue, a utility knife, and a piece of sandpaper. He had always enjoyed working with wood and tinkering with things around his parent’s home, and after graduating from college, matchstick modelling became an enjoyable hobby. Although he has achieved worldwide notoriety for his mind-blowing creations, Patrick Acton continued to work as a counselor and dedicated only a few hours a night working on his fragile models. He recently accepted Ripley’s offer to build models for their Odditoriums, full time.

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This Photo Is Actually a Pencil Perfect Drawing

At just 22 years old, Italian artist Diego Fazo has developed the skill to create photo-realistic drawings using a simple charcoal pencil. His latest creation, pictured below, has drawn hundreds of positive comments on his Deviant Art profile.

Don’t tell me you can tell the image below is a drawing and not a high-definition photograph, because I don’t buy it. In fact people were so skeptical this incredible piece of art was drawn by hand that young Diego Fazo had to put up some photos of the work in progress just to lay doubts to rest. And looking at his-mind-blowing masterpiece, can you really blame people for  questioning it’s hand-drawn?

Like other talented artists who started their careers on Deviant Art, Diego is a self-taught pencil master whose technique matured with the passing of the years. He started out as a tattoo artist, and developed a passion for creating photo-realistic drawings. Inspired by the works of Japanese artists from the Edo period, like Katsushika Hokusai, he managed to capture people’s imaginations with his precise lines and oriental drawing techniques.

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Cheesy Presidential Portraits Made from Cheetos

Cheetos commissioned artist Jason Baalman to create portraits of presidential candidates Barack Obama and Mitt Romney out of their puffy orange snacks. Unveiled on October 3, the edible artworks measured 3 feet by 4 feet and numbered over 2,000 individual Cheetos.

Jason Baalman, who’s known for his portraits of celebrities created in alternative materials (ketchup, barbecue sauce, etc.), is no stranger to Cheetos. In the past he has used the popular snack to make detailed portraits of pop icons like Conan O’Brien, CeeLo Green and Rachel Ray. This time, the PepsiCo-owned company asked him to do two portraits of the presidential candidates, based on two recent Facebook profile photos. Not one to say no to a challenge, Baalman started work on the the two “big cheeses” in his Colorado Springs, Colo., studio. Painstakingly sorting over 2,000 Cheetos for each portrait, and gluing them in just the right position on a black canvas, the young artist spent around 100 hours on the project. Just like his previous cheesy portraits, the ones of Obama and Romney look good enough to eat.

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Brooklyn’s Superhero Supply Shop, No Villains Allowed

Think you have what it takes to become a superhero, but lack all the necessary accessories and superpowers? Don’t worry, in the real world, antimatter and immortality can be bought by the gallon. Well, at least at the Brooklyn Superhero Supply Shop they can.

Sure, most comic book superheroes made their own costumes, but these are busy times, and it’s more convenient to buy them That’s where the Superhero Supply Shop, in Brooklyn, New York comes is. If you have a few buck to spare, you can conceal your true identity behind a cool mask in no time at all. But capes and costumes are just a few of the awesome things you can find in this amazing place. Just because we haven’t all been blessed with incredible strength, mind control powers or lightning speed, doesn’t mean we can’t be superheroes, right? It just means we have to buy our superpowers, and there’s no shortage of those at the Brooklyn Superhero Supplu Shop. You can find x-ray glasses, grappling hooks, cans of gravity, cloning fluid, and even an invisible jet that costs $42 million. Whatever you need to make crime-fighting easier, these guys have it.

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Beautiful “Paintings” Hide a Mind-Blowing Secret

You’ve probably seen hundreds of nature-inspired paintings like the ones created by Russian artist Alexander Yurkov. But, although you can’t tell at first glance, his works are truly unique. In fact, they’re not even real paintings…

It’s a real shame awe-inspiring artworks like the ones created by Alexander Yurkov remain unknown to most of the western world, while other less impressive works get loads of attention on art and design sites and in famous galleries. This Russian master spent decades perfecting a technique he developed himself that involves creating painting-like mosaics exclusively out of dried leaves, grass and flowers. That’s right, there isn’t a single stroke of paint or pencil in the masterpieces below, only cleverly selected and positioned tree leaves, pieces of dried grass and withered flowers. How he manages to get the color tones and shades so perfect that it makes people stick their nose to the artworks trying to spot the actual leaves and making sure there’s no oil paint involved, is beyond me, but it’s this mystery that makes Yurkov’s art so intriguing.

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El Bosc de les Fades – Barcelona’s Fairy Tale Cafe

If you’re looking for an other-worldly experience in the Catalonian city of Barcelona, look no further than El Bosc de les Fades (The Fairies’ Forest), a unique cafe decorated as an esoteric land of fairies.

Tucked away off Las Ramblas, on Pasatje Banca next to the Wax Museum, El Bosc de les Fades is one of the most unusual attractions of Barcelona. As the name suggests, this offbeat venue was inspired by a fairy forest, complete with an artificial woodland of snaking branches, trickling waterfalls, will-o-the-wisp lights, weird demons lurking in mirrors, various optical illusions  and, of course, fairies. It’s kitschy, yet original, and most people enjoy the novelty of it. The main room of the cafe offers plenty of seats under the lush artificial vegetation, or at the bar that’s also been decorated to fit the fairy tale theme, but for visitors who want the full-immersion effect of this place, there’s the private grotto where they can get lost in the very depths of the mysterious forest. And if you’re looking for a creepier fantasy setting, El Bosc de les Fades also features a “haunted house” room complete with eerie mannequins and a magic mirror in which apparitions suddenly appear and then vanish again.

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Human Motorcycles Made from Body-Painted Yoga Gurus

To promote the upcoming Progressive International Motorcycle Show, advertising and branding studio i.d.e.a. created a series of human motorcycles from the contorted bodies of yoga experts and circus performers.

We’ve seen impressive body-painting and displays of yoga skills before, but these human motorcycles are in a category of their own. “We sought to combine the art of the motorcycle with true art, thereby elevating the ads to something people would want to look at, enjoy, and share,” i.d.e.a. said about their unique project, and they’ve certainly achieved their goal. Photos and posters of their creations have gone viral on the Internet, and for good reason – they are simply spectacular. They employed the talents of professional body painted Trina Mery to turn a team of yoga experts, circus performers and flexible dancers into a speed bike, cruiser, and dirt bike to be ridden by the Progressive International Motorcycle Show’s host, Erin Bates. They did such a good job that in some photos you can’t even tell she’s just riding a bunch of people, not a real motorcycle.

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Awesome Starry Night Mural Made from over 1,000 Doorknobs

David Goldberg, the owner of a hardware store in Bethesda, Maryland, decided to repurpose his extensive collection of doorknobs and other door accessories by using them to recreate Vincent van Gogh’s Starry Night.

It’s crazy how many people choose this specific artwork to unleash their artistic talents. So far, we’ve featured all kinds of Starry Night recreations, from a quilled version, to one made with spices and food colorings, and even an edible replica made from delicious bacon. This time we have another original version created from over 1,250 collected doorknobs. As a hardware store owner, David Goldberg put together an impressive collection of American and imported doorknobs and other door accessories, and instead of throwing them away, selling them for scrap or melting them he, decided to recycle them in a very artistic fashion and create a unique advertisement for his business at the same time. It took him four months, but he managed to build an amazing large-scale mural depicting Van Gogh’ famous Starry Night. Now people passing by his store in Bethesda, stop and stare at the glistening work of art, in awe of his original repurposing idea.

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Woman with Toilet Phobia Is Terrified She Will Be Swallowed Up When She Flushes

Can you imagine having to ask someone else to flush the toilet for you because you’re too terrified it will swallow you up? That’s exactly what 20-year-old Ney Decino, from Church Village, Wales, has to go through every day.

“The sound of the water sends shivers down my spine. It’s awful. I swear it will swallow me up. Once I’ve flushed, the sound of it and the look of the water going down, it freaks me out,” Ney says. She has had an irrational fear of toilets ever since watching a scene in the 1990 film Look Who’s Talking Too, starring John Travolta and Kirsty Alley. It showed an imaginary big-eyed, sharp-toothed character called Mr. Toilet Man, who screams it wants the child’s pee. I actually remember that scene, it freaked me out a bit as well, but I got over it pretty quickly. Ney, on the other hand, hasn’t, and she has had to deal with her phobia for most of her life. The young mother says she only goes to the toilet in public if it’s an absolute emergency, and always tries to find work close to home, so she can use the only toilet she feels safe on. And even there, she has problems flushing if she’s by herself. She will use a friend’s toilet if she has to, but only if they or a family member flush for her. Now, she’s trying to face her fear by setting up a Facebook group and getting in touch with other phobia-sufferers.

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Illustrator Creates Incredibly Detailed Drawings Inside Matchbooks

Jason D’Aquino is an expert miniaturist who unleashes his talent on all kinds of recycled objects, from ledgers, leaflets, vintage calendars to small pieces of paper and even tiny matchbooks. And to make sure everyone understands just how skilled he is, the man doesn’t do some simple doodles, he recreates the Mona Lisa, vintage movie portraits and even portraits of icons like Marilyn Monroe.

Drawing the kind of stuff Jason D’Aquino does is hard enough on a large canvas, but he manages to do it on the inside of matchbooks. Using high-magnification goggles, like those used by jewelers, the artist sketches incredible artworks only a few inches in size, sometimes even under an inch. The self-declared miniaturist seems to love small surfaces and has always enjoyed the challenge of seeing how small he can draw. As a child, he was always fascinated with his mother’s artworks, and says he had a pencil in his hand since before he could walk. Although he remained faithful to the graphite pencil, his art got smaller and smaller as he grew older. At first it was just a matter of convenience, but soon shrinking his art became a challenge. At the rate he’s going, he probably going to need a microscope pretty soon.

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