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Is This the World’s Worst Tattoo Artist?

If you’ve ever wanted to sport one of those sloppy jail tattoos, but didn’t really want to go through the whole jail experience, we’ve got just the guy for you – he goes by “Synyster Ink” and he’s probably the world’s worst tattoo artist.

I’m still not sure if this guy is a genius or someone who’s hands should be tied behind his back so he doesn’t scar anymore gullible people. There are people who actually consider his work to be genuine art, but not too many. The majority of those who’ve seen Synyster Ink’s tattoos on Facebook thinks they’re absolute crap, and recommend he find a job at McDonald’s or Walmart, instead of tattooing. He’s a pretty resilient guy, though, as thousands of negative comments haven’t stopped him from “following his”dream and creating “original” permanent tattoos. There’s not a lot to say about a tattoo artist who apparently can’t even draw a straight line, except that he’s based in Green Bay, Wisconsin, and that he found plenty of people naive enough to let him work his magic on their bodies. How this guy didn’t get hit with a lawsuit is beyond me.

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Woman Travels the World to Meet All Her 325 Facebook Friends

ArLynn Presser is a 51-year-old woman who lives in Winnetka, Illinois. It’s normal for ArLynn to stay indoors all the time. In fact, for most of her adult life, she hardly ever left the confines of her home, and most certainly did not venture out of her home town. Her career as a writer ensured that she could spend her life indoors and still get things done. If this sounds strange to you, you must know that ArLynn suffers from agoraphobia – the fear of crowded places or enclosed public spaces.

Like most introverts, ArLynn interacts with people online and she has 325 friends she chats with on Facebook. Last year, she went and did something that no one could have ever expected. On 31st of Dec, 2010, she made a resolution to meet all 325 of her Facebook friends in person, the following year. She wrote a blog post about it and then set about achieving her goal. She called her project “Face to Facebook”. For a person who was terrified of flying and could never get on a plane before, this was certainly a daunting task. In the end, she did a great job, traveling over 13 countries and taking over 39 flights. By the end of 2011, she had met 292 friends, about 90% of what she had intended to. ArLynn had been to Taiwan, Korea, Philippines, Dubai, Italy, Malaysia, Ireland, England, Germany and four other countries.

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Singaporean Woman Lives on Toilet for 932 Days

A 58-year-old Singaporean woman lived on the toilet for over two years, before she was forced to undergo treatment. She felt that someone was holding her down and preventing her from leaving the toilet.

Quite understandably, she had been suffering from depression for a long time. According to her 64-year-old husband, Ong Kean On, the woman hadn’t left the toilet since the 25th of May, 2009. She ate, drank and slept on the toilet since then. Her complaint was that there was someone throwing stones at her, and water was dripping on her from somewhere. A few days ago, Ong was successfully able to get his wife out of the toilet with the help of ambulance staff and the police. She was then sent to the Institute of Mental Health to receive treatment, after which she has returned home. Her condition is now reported to be stable and she hasn’t returned to the toilet ever since she came back.

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Calligrapher Works Five Years Making 500 Kg Qur’an

The world’s largest copy of the Qur’an was recently unveiled in Kabul, Afghanistan. It was created painstakingly by calligrapher Mohammed Sabir Khedri and his 9 assistants, over five long years. The massive project was undertaken by Khedri in an attempt to prove that the rich traditions and heritage of the nation have certainly not been destroyed by war.

The giant Qur’an is made with beautiful gold scripting that also combines millions of tiny colorful dots to create symbolic decorations around the pages. Khedri said he wanted to use as many tasteful colors as possible to make the holy book look beautiful. Interestingly, he had actually completed the project in 2009, and kept it a secret for two whole years. This was because the binding and the room to house the book weren’t ready yet. Khedri’s masterpiece is now stored in a cultural center in Kabul that was founded in the 1980s. The final copy consists of 218 pages and measures 2.28 x 1.55 m. It weighs a whopping 500kg and the skin of 21 goats was used to create the cover. It’s estimated cost is around £300,000 ($465,000).

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Woven Newspaper Portraits by Gugger Petter

Most people look at old newspapers as trash, but for artist Gugger Petter it’s a challenging medium for which she has the utmost respect. Using  a special weaving technique, she’s able to take fragile newspapers and turned them into beautiful portraits.

Although she considers the informative purpose of the newspaper important, Petter has been fascinated with this unusual art medium because it presents her with a black/white/and limited color palette, which she has always preferred. In 1986, when she first arrived in California, she laid eyes on a stack of discarded newspapers yellowed by the sun, and found it very intriguing. From that day forth she started thinking about ways she could use this material in her art. She started by rolling newspapers into tubes and creating wall and floor sculptures, but after a couple of years she developed her weaving technique.

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French Women Live in Cave to Escape Electro-Magnetic Rays

I’ve read a lot of reports stating that the electro-magnetic radiation from mobile phones and other Wi-Fi devices are harmful to humans. But I never really believed it until I actually heard the story of these two French women who are living in a cave to escape these evil rays.

Anne Cautain and Bernadette Touloumond suffer from hypersensitive reactions to electro-magnetic radiations. The symptoms include unbearable burning and terrible headaches, so bad that they couldn’t stand to live in the outside world anymore. After trying several other options, a cave has become their ultimate refuge. Anne and Bernadette’s cave is located outside the town of Beaumugne, on the edge of the Vercors plateau range, in France. To gain access to the area, a small ladder needs to be scaled while clinging to a rope. A sign reading “Mobile Phones Prohibited” is displayed on the hillside. 52-year-old Anne says, “I can’t take any sort of electro-magnetic waves, whatever they may be: Wi-Fi, mobile phones or high-tension wires.” She was the first to settle down in the cave, and is now spending her third winter there.

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Gympact App Makes You Pay for Skipping Workouts

Money is one of the best motivators for most people. And when money is tied to something like fitness? Well, you’re bound to get fit. Here’s a system that pays you when you workout and takes away your money when you don’t.

GymPact is an iPhone application started by a couple of young Harvard graduates – Yifan Zhang and Geoff Oberhofer. The entire concept is based on the idea that people do not like to lose money. Zhang, an economics major, says, “Behavioral economics show that if you tie cash incentives to things that are concrete and easy to achieve like getting to the gym, it’s very effective. People don’t like losing money and it’s one of the strongest motivators, much more than winning money.” The app is free to use and has a database that covers over 40,000 gyms. That’s more than 70% of the gyms in the U.S. If your gym isn’t listed, you can add it to the app. You pay money when you don’t work out and the amount that’s pooled up from the non-exercisers is divided up between those who do workout. A cut from that amount is taken by the company as profits. So let’s take a quick look at how the system works.

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36-Year-Old Virgin Man Fathers 14 Children

This is the story of a man who has fathered 14 children without ever being intimate with a woman. How, you ask? Why sperm donation, of course.

“Donorsexual” is what 36-year-old Trent Arsenault from Freemont, California, calls himself. Since 2006, the computer security specialist has been giving away his sperm free of cost, through a one-man sperm bank he runs from home. His service is mainly for couples who are unable to conceive naturally, so they pick up sperm samples from him and use them for artificial insemination. This sure does sound weird not to mention, highly unhygienic. I doubted if this is even permitted legally. Turns out it isn’t. Sperm banks in the U.S. are regulated by the FDA, and they’ve issued Arsenault with a cease-and-desist order. The order is based on the fact that the he did not take the necessary legal precautions to prevent the spread of communicable diseases. He could face up to a year in prison and a $100,000 fine.

 

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The Orchestra of Recycled Instruments

This group not only plays music, but builds the instruments from scrap. That’s right, they make their ‘recycled’ instruments out of things like kitchen spatulas and cookie cutters. Their music, nonetheless, is wonderful to listen to.

The Orchestra of Recycled Instruments is from Paraguay, a majority of them so poor that they had to resort to creating their own instruments. However, their love for music was never hindered by their economic condition. The members of the orchestra are students at the “Sonidos De La Tierra,” which is an organization dedicated to running music workshops and schools in the lesser privileged areas of Paraguay. This is where these talented musicians learned the skill of recycled-instrument-music making. Some of them were so passionate about the art that they even quit their jobs as recyclers at a major dump site, in order to pursue their music full time.

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Random Acts of Kindness at Pay It Forward Coffee Shop

Imagine you go into a coffee shop, have a cup, and when it comes to paying your bill they tell you it’s already been paid for. Wouldn’t that be wonderful? Well, that’s exactly what’s happening at the Corner Perk Cafe in Bluffton, South Carolina. It all started in 2010 with a random act of kindness.

The Corner Perk was just a regular coffee place until one day, when a customer left a $100 bill with the owner, Josh Cooke. Apparently she wanted the money to be used to pay for the drinks of all the people who came in after, until it runs out. According to Cooke it was “just to let them know, you know, that somebody was wanting them to have a great day and just to let them know to pay it forward.” Needless to say, customers who came in all afternoon were puzzled when they found they didn’t have to pay for their coffee.

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Private Wojtek – The Soldier Bear Who Fought Nazis in WW2

History, cinema, and books are replete with stories of animals displaying exemplary courage and loyalty. The tale of Private Wojtek, the soldier bear, is no different. In fact, it is nothing short of awe-inspiring, more so because it’s a true story.

The legend of Wojtek begins in 1942, when he was found in Iran by a local boy and traded for a few tins of food to soldiers of the Polish Army stationed nearby. The soldiers cared for the Syrian brown bear cub and fed him milk from empty vodka bottles, fruits, honey and marmalade. Over time though, he began imitating his caretakers, consuming beer and cigarettes. Of course, he ended up mostly chewing the cigarettes instead of smoking them. Soon, the endearing bear became an unofficial mascot of all the Polish units stationed in the area. He moved with the company to various countries.

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Growing Obesity Makes Oversized Caskets a BIG Hit

Goliath Caskets is a company in Indiana that makes specialized caskets – for the obese. With dangerously rising obesity levels among Americans, who could say they didn’t see this coming?

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta says that one-third of U.S. adults are obese. Among the children and teens, the rate of obesity is at 17%. It’s no surprise then that several businesses have started to cater to the overweight – clothing, footwear, cars, airlines and now, as a generation of obese people begins to die, the need for extra large caskets has also become reality. Goliath Caskets was set up in 1990, specializing in large-sized caskets. However, over the years even the ‘normal’ sized casket manufactured by them has gotten larger. Owner Keith Davis says that when they first started, 36 inches was the widest one they made. But now they’re up to 52 inches wide and the casket can hold a person who weighs as much as 1,000 pounds. About half-a-dozen to a dozen of their biggest caskets are sold each year, as well as more than 200 slightly smaller ones. Read More »

Artist Makes Bullet Portraits of People Killed by Bullets

Whether in hunting or warfare, bullets are usually used for killing, but artist David Palmer has found a way to use these instruments of destruction to create beautiful celebrity portraits.

John Lennon, Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy were all great men, with one tragic thing in common – they were all killed by a bullet. Now, artist David Palmer has chosen to create portraits of these icons using probably the most unusual medium – bullet shells. After collecting enough bullet casings, the artist puts them together to create a metal canvas, and using a small hand torch darkens the ends of the bullet casings, creating incredibly detailed portraits. Using such a seemingly inappropriate art medium like bullets to depict their victims, Palmer hopes viewers  will “see the miracles that can arise from choosing to create rather than destroy.”

If you find bullet art interesting, you might want to check out the awe-inspiring miniature holy places made by Al Farrow, entirely out of bullets.

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Heartbreaking: Thai Man Marries Dead Girlfriend

In this tragic love story from Thailand, a man decided to  go ahead with the wedding he and his girlfriend had planned, even though she sadly died in a car crash, just day before the big event.

29-year old Sarinya Kamsook and her 28-year-old boyfriend, Chadil Deffy, were to be married this year. A wedding is considered the most special event of a woman’s life and it was no different for Sarinya. She was eagerly counting the days to the moment when she would finally say ‘I do’, along with the love of her life, but fate had other plans for the young couple. Merely days before the wedding, Sarinya was involved in a car crash, leaving her severely injured. She still could have been saved with timely medical attention. However, the doctors made her wait for 6 hours due to an overcrowded ICU instead of transferring her to another hospital. During this time, she succumbed to her injuries and passed away. Read More »

New Zealand Woman Wants Your Tattoo on Her Backside

The things people would do for money. Would you believe it if I told you a woman is willing to have anything you like tattooed on her bottom? Unlikely story, but it’s true.

Through her profile on trademe.co.nz, Tina Beznec is auctioning off a 9×9 cm space on her buttock to be tattooed according to the winner’s choice. In her own precise words, “You might think I am crazy for doing this! But yes, the winner of the auction gets ANYTHING they like tattooed on my bum!” Tina’s innovative plan to raise money has garnered quite a bit of attention in Lower Hutt, New Zealand, where she lives. If you’re still finding it hard to believe that a person would do something like this, let me tell you that she’s pretty hard pressed for cash right now. She has been made redundant twice in the past one year and has been unemployed for four months. Tina promises to donate 20% of the highest bid to a charity of the winner’s choice, but she would be keeping the rest because she ‘deserves it’. She plans to use the money to pay all her bills and visit her mother in Australia.

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