Beautiful “Skeleton Flower” Turns Transparent When It Rains

The Diphylleia grayi is a beautiful white flower that turns transparent upon contact with water. When it rains, the clusters of lovely blooms magically transform into glistening, crystal-like blossoms. Because of this amazing phenomenon, the Diphylleia grayi is commonly known as the ‘skeleton flower’.

The plant generally grows on moist, wooded mountainsides in the colder regions of Japan and China. It is recognizable by its large, umbrella-shaped leaves that are topped with small clusters of pearly white flowers. While the plant is perennial, and can grow up to a height of 0.4 meters, the flowers bloom from mid-spring to early-summer in shady conditions. As the petals of these flowers are soaked in water, they slowly begin to lose their white pigmentation, turning completely transparent over time. When dry, they return to their original white version.

Skeleton-flower Read More »

Meet the Incredible Eggman – The World’s Fastest Omelette Maker

72-year-old Howard Helmer can produce a delicious gourmet omelette faster than anyone else in the world. Over the years, he’s managed to hang on to two Guinness World Records – one for the fastest omelette (in 39 seconds) and the other for turning out a whopping 427 omelettes in 30 minutes.

In every demonstrative video he makes, Helmer shares his secret – he mixes two eggs with two tablespoons of water, and fries them in a 10-inch omelette pan. His routine goes something like this: “Butter in the pan – two eggs and two tablespoons of water – bring the cooked egg to the center of the pan and tilt the pan so that the raw egg finds some base to cook on until there’s no more runny egg but the egg is still very moist on top. In goes some cheese, some spinach, fold the omelette in half, and then the whole thing goes upside down on your plate.”

Helmer’s association with eggs actually began 42 years ago, when he took up a job at the American Egg Board, writing copy about the wonders of chicken eggs. Since then, he has promoted eggs at country fairs, restaurant conventions, culinary schools, and on national television. Over the years, he’s also worked with famous chefs and taught movie stars to make omelettes.

Howard-Helmer-omelet-man Read More »

Ghana’s Hilariously Awful Hand-Drawn Movie Posters

The West African nation of Ghana is home to a subculture of artists who create outlandish versions of popular Hollywood movie posters. The art form was at its peak in the nation during the 1980s and 1990s, commonly referred to as the ‘Golden Age of Movie Posters’. During this time, artists would let their imagination run wild in order to create posters that would never fail to draw audiences to Africa’s dilapidated cinema halls. So they used their artistic license to add weapons, scenes and characters that didn’t even exist in the original movie!

The art form began to lose momentum in the 2000s, when Ghanaians purchased their own TVs and VCRs, causing several movie houses to close down. But over time, the lurid hand-painted posters have only increased in value. In fact, several Western art collectors are willing to pay thousands of dollars for them. Some of the artists who have been out of work for several years are now finding a new lease of life in reproducing posters of more recent movies for art aficionados.

Ghana-movie-posters Read More »

Surgical Precision – Detailed Cityscapes Built with Scalpel Blades and Needles

Who knew that steely cold surgical tools could be used to produce exquisite, intricate architectural models? Renowned British artist Damien Hirst did just that – he used a vast number of surgical instruments and metal objects such as scalpels, stitching needles, razor blades, hooks, iron filings and safety-pins to create wonderfully detailed collages called ‘Black Scalpel Cityscapes’.

For his recent exhibition at White Cube Gallery in Brazil, he selected 17 cities that are either recent sites of conflict, cities relating to his own life, or centers of political or religious significance – including Rome and the Vatican City, Leeds, Beijing, Moscow, London and New York.

To create a collage, Hirst gathers as many surgical tools and scrap metal as possible and then begins the arduous process of delicately arranging them to replicate the aerial view of a city. He then adds some local flavor to each collage. For instance, the view of Paris is contains a few French francs and tourist souvenirs, while Vatican City has silver religious medallions. Moscow’s miniature roads sparkle with shards of mirror.

damien-hirst-cityscapes Read More »

Welcome to Ifrane, Africa’s Little Switzerland

Ifrane is a small town and ski resort in Morocco, famous for its European style and its similarity to the tourist haven of Switzerland. Developed by the French in the 1930s, Ifrane is so reminiscent of the Swiss Alps that it is fondly referred to as ‘Africa’s Little Switzerland’.

The town is located at an altitude of 5,460 feet above sea level in the Middle Atlas region. Its neat red-roofed houses, blooming flower beds, lake-studded parks, and snowbound winters present a huge contrast to Morocco’s narrow, maze like streets and old, earth-colored buildings. It is truly a wonder that such lush greenery, cedar and oak forests, and pasturelands can even exist in the midst of the hot and dry climate of the region.

Ifrane-Little Switzerland7 Read More »

For More Than a Year, This Heartbroken Dog Has Been Waiting in the Same Spot for the Owner Who Will Never Return

Every day, heartbroken Masha, a brown dachshund, waits in vain at a Siberian hospital for her owner who died a year ago. Her sad tale mirrors that of the famously loyal Japanese dog Hachiko who waited for his master at a train station for 10 years. Owing to the similarities between the two dogs, Masha has earned the nickname ‘Russia’s own Hachiko’.

The sweet little dog has been visiting the Novosibirsk District Hospital Number One for the past two years, ever since her owner – a pensioner from the village of Dvurechie – was admitted. Masha was his only visitor – she would go away at night to guard their house and return to the hospital in the morning to keep the man company.

loyal-dog Read More »

French Man Develops Pills That Make Flatulence Smell Like Flowers or Chocolate

Believe it or not, someone has actually invented a pill that makes your farts smell like roses or chocolate. It sounds like a joke, but according to their inventor, they work wonderfully.

The pill is the brainchild of 65-year-old French inventor Christian Poincheval.  Christian says that he began developing the pills six years ago, after a rather copious dinner with some friends. “We had just come back from Switzerland and we were eating a lot with our friends and the smell from the flatulence was really terrible,” he revealed.

“When we were vegetarian, we noticed that our gas smelled like vegetables, like the odor from a cow pat, but when we started eating meat the smell of the flatulence became much disagreeable,” he added. “We couldn’t breathe so me and my friends decided something had to be done. We needed to invent something that made them smell nicer.”


Chinese Martial Artist Can Breathe While Hanging by His Neck from a Tree

Chinese martial arts expert Li Liangbin probably has the strongest neck muscles in the world. They are so strong that he can actually support himself and even breathe while hanging from a noose!

The 49-year-old from Lizhuang village, China’s Shandong province, said that he’s been practicing kung fu since he was a young boy. “Although I am now a kung fu master, I’m always looking for new challenges and new ways to discipline my body,” he revealed.

“Kung fu is my life and it’s important to have a challenge. Everyone knows about kung fu masters that can chop up concrete blocks or leap off tall buildings, but surviving a hanging is something new.” So he decided to toughen his neck muscles to such an extent that he would be able to survive even after being hung from a tree.

Li-Liangbing-hanging Read More »

Massive Sinkhole Might Swallow Up Russian Mining Town

On November 18, giant sinkhole measuring 100 ft across was discovered about two miles away from a mine in Russia’s Perm region. The gaping chasm is believed to have already swallowed up several homes and locals in Solikamsk now fear that the same could happen to their whole town.

The hole is believed to have appeared after the nearby Solikamsk-2 mine was flooded. Luckily, workers were evacuated and operations were halted before the appearance of the chasm, because of the inflow of saline water. Thousands of miners have now been asked to stay away as geologists assess the situation.

Uralkali, the company that owns the Solikamsk-2, is assuring people that there will be no catastrophic effects for the company or for the locals. Regional authorities agree that the hole could get bigger, but it would still be of no danger to the people. But that hasn’t stopped the crazy rumors – locals claim to have spotted missiles and even falling angels near the sinkhole.

Solikamsk-sinkhole Read More »

Insanely Talented Artist Can Manipulate Virtually Any Material or Matter into Photo-Like Images

Artist and photographer Bill Fink is the creator of ‘Time and Matter Photography’, an amazing art form that involves producing photograph-like images out of virtually any material or matter. So instead of conventional materials like silver halide or inkjet, the 60-year-old artist uses hair, human ashes, soil and anything else you can think of to painstakingly create photo-like images.

Some of Bill’s most notable works include a portrait called ‘My Eye’ – made entirely from his own hair, ‘Flowers’ – made entirely from the pollen of those flowers, ‘Quaker Oats’ – a picture made with Quaker Oats, and the image of a man named Bob, made using his ashes. These pictures look just like vintage photographs; nothing betrays the unique technique used to produce them.

Bill-Fink-art Read More »

Jet-Powered School Bus Guarantees You’ll Never Be Late to Classes Again

Rocket-powered buses are undoubtedly among the most fun ways to get to school. I mean, if that doesn’t get kids excited about school, I don’t know what will. So an Indiana man actually invented such a jet powered school bus that can travel as fast as 367mph!

The bus, dubbed ‘School Time’ is the brainchild of petrol-head and engineer Paul Stender and his build team Indy Boys. Paul actually custom built the entire bus himself, because “there’s no way the original bus could have withstood the speeds” he takes it to. “A lot of it is hand-crafted and the types of metals used would be more at home on an aircraft,” he explained.


Read More »

Portuguese Man Buys Tiny Island, Successfully Establishes His Own Kingdom

While this American searched the entire African continent for a piece of land to call his Kingdom, Renato Barros managed to establish his own country much closer to home. The 56-year-old Portuguese citizen purchased a small island on Funchal harbor, in Maderia, Portugal. He named it the Principality of the Pontinha, and anointed himself Prince Renato II.

Pontinha is actually just the size of a one-bedroom house, and has only four citizens – Barros, his wife, and his son and daughter. In addition to his Portuguese passport, Barros holds a passport for Pontinha with the number 0001. An art teacher by profession, he’s also taken on the roles of policeman, gardener, caretaker, and member of the royal family of his very own country.

“I am whatever I want to be – that’s the dream, isn’t it,” he said. “If I decide I want to have a national song, I can choose it, and I can change it any time. The same with my flag – it could be blue today, red tomorrow. Of course, my power is only absolute here, where I am the true sovereign.”

Barros got a chance to buy the island fourteen years ago, when it was owned by a wealthy British family who wanted to sell it for 25,000 Euros ($31,000), because it was of no use to them. Nobody wanted to buy it, but when Barros heard of the opportunity at a party, he decided that it was just the thing for him. There was only one snag – he didn’t have the money.

Renato-Barros-Pontinha Read More »

Sticky Art – A Giant Human Head Covered in Thousands of Pieces of Used Chewing Gum

Canadian novelist and artist Douglas Coupland organised a colorful, albeit sticky, art project in May this year – he invited people to stick chewed up wads of gum on a seven-foot fiberglass statue of his own head.

Located on Howe Street outside Vancouver Art Gallery, the aptly named ‘Gumhead’ statue was a part of Coupland’s ‘everywhere is anywhere and anything is everything’ exhibition. By the time it was taken down on September 1, the statue was covered in gum to the last inch. And it had all melted thanks to the summer heat, resulting in a sweet sticky mess that attracted wasps and bees.

Coupland called it a total success, describing Gumhead as ‘ugly-beautiful’. “At first the added gum looked like jewels against the black,” he said. “And then the Excel chewing gum van parked beside it during the Jazz Festival and took the whole head to the next level. And then we had a heat wave and the gum started to weep. And now it has a 24-hours cloud of bees and wasps around it. It’s a dream.”


Read More »

Real-Life Truman Show: Finnish Man Broadcasts Every Minute of His Life via Webcam

48-year-old Ari Kivikangas is into life-casting, which basically means he’s constantly broadcasting his day-to-day life webcam. But unlike other vloggers who try to come up with entertaining things to do and say on camera, Ari makes no effort to seem interesting. Surprisingly, that’s what draws more people to his UStream channel, because it makes him look authentic.

Ari, or ‘Cyberman’, as he has come to be known online, claims to be online 24/7, except for a few rare breaks when he’s out picking up his epilepsy medicine or spending time with a female friend. Apart from that, he films pretty much everything he does – like a self-enforced Truman Show of sorts. His viewers apparently find all of this fascinating, especially because he doesn’t seem to care what other people think of him.

“I started about four years ago,” Ari explained. “I was stuck at home for three months and had a lot of time on my hands but nothing to do, so I started doing this. I’m epileptic and I don’t work any more, so I’m always home. I’m online 24/7.”


Read More »

8-Year-Old ‘Human Calendar’ Can Accurately Calculate Any Day-Date Configuration until 2068

At first glance, Aryan Parab looks like a regular eight-year-old kid; he likes going to school and playing football with his mates. But ask him a few questions about future dates and you’ll realize that he’s actually a mathematical genius with superhuman computational skills. The boy can work out the day on which any date falls, up to the year 2068, within seconds – faster than his friends can open their iPhone calendars!

Aryan lives in Mumbai, India, with his parents who work as software engineers. He discovered his unique skill earlier this year when he was talking about birthdays and found that he could accurately predict the days of his friends’ birthdays several years into the future. His unique talent has now made him popular as a child prodigy and he regularly entertains audiences with his precise predictions.

His third-grade teachers say that Aryan is also brilliant with numbers. According to his grandfather Suryakant Bhosle, “He loves numbers, and is constantly playing around with dates in his head and coming up with statistics. He is gaining more insight over time, and locks himself up in his room during summer vacation to draw calendars.”

Aryan-Parab-calendar-boy Read More »

Page 52 of 389« First...102030...5051525354...607080...Last »