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Californians Are Painting Their Lawns Green to Save Water During Record Drought

California residents have come up with an innovative solution to brighten up their dry lawns, in the midst of their fourth year of drought: they’re painting their lawns green! The extreme measure became popular after statewide water restrictions were announced for the first time in history, in order to combat one of the region’s most devastating droughts.

The restriction leave average Californians with virtually no water for their lawns, but that hasn’t stopped them from wanting to keep their front and back yards looking green. Lots of them are now turning to lawn painting, which is a whole lot cheaper than artificial turf, at 25 cents per square foot. The service was once limited to athletic fields and golf courses, but is now being sought out homeowners, hoteliers, and wedding planners, among others.

The green dye is apparently plant based and completely harmless to humans and animals. It’s also water resistant, although no one would mind if a little rain were to wash it away. The effect lasts for about three months, after which the lawn has to be spray painted again.

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You Can Now Pay Someone to Break Up with Your Partner for You

When 37-year-old Kristy Mazins realised how much people hate confrontation, she developed an entire business plan around it. The former nurse from Melbourne started a service called ‘Sorry It’s Over’ that helps people avoid the uncomfortable task of breaking up with someone. For a fee of AUS $5.50 (US $4.44) or more, Mazins will do the dirty work via text, email, handwritten letter, or even a phone call.

Mazins only needs her customers to provide her with a brief outline of what they want to say, and she will convert it into a heartfelt message designed to ease the pain. Additional services like sending flowers, a box of tissues, a sympathy basket, or a message delivered in person are also available.

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This Canned Air from “Yeti’s Cave” Will Apparently Make You an Animal in Bed

If the claims of a group of Siberian entrepreneurs are to be believed, their new product might just give Viagra a run for its money. They aren’t selling another expensive pill, just a can of fresh air!

According to Vladimir Makuta, head of the local Tashtagol district, air from Azasskaya Cave and its surrounding area, which is where the fabled Yeti (a.k.a Bigfoot) was supposedly sighted on more than one occasion, is crystal-clear, full of goodness, and has a healing effect. It can apparently help strengthen immunity and positively impact mental state. But most importantly, it is said to works wonders for people who want to perform better in bed.

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Atheist Making over $100,000 a Year Selling Bibles Says He Feels Bad about It but Money Is Too Good to Stop

Lots of people sell products they don’t believe in, but in Trevor McKendrick’s case, you just can’t ignore the irony. That’s because Trevor is an atheist who sells Bibles for a living – and something just doesn’t feel right about that, even to him!

Interestingly, Trevor did not consciously choose his profession – it sort of fell into his lap by accident. He happened to be out at a dinner with his family in February 2012, when he found out that a relative was making $8,000 to $10,000 a month just by selling iPhone apps.

Trevor found the prospects too good to ignore, so he decided to step into the app business himself. All he wanted to do was to make about $600 a month, which would have been enough to cover his rent. So he went on to the Apple store to find an app that was making a lot of money, but “sucked”.

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Boston Entrepreneur is Trying to Make Money by Shipping Snow to Warmer Places in the US

In true entrepreneurial spirit, Boston-based Kyle Waring is trying to make the best of a difficult situation. Boston has experienced one of the worst winters this year, receiving a record-breaking 8.3 feet of snow. Instead of complaining about it like most people, Kyle is actually attempting to make a profit by selling the excess snow.

The Massachusetts native created a start-up called ‘Ship Snow’, through which he’s delivering chunks of snow to people living in warmer areas of the US where snow rarely falls. “This snow is wicked,” the official website reads. “This is historic snow. Boston Snow. This is your chance to not only own a piece of history, but also help save Boston from #Snowmageddon 2015! Every order counts!” The packaging options include a 16.9 oz snow bottle for $19.99, a 6 lbs. box of packed snow for $89, and a 10-pound package for $119. The website promises to deliver snow to any destination in the U.S. in 20 hours flat. But there’s an exception: “We will not ship snow to any states in the northeast! We’re in the business of expunging snow!”

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15-Year-Old Girl Hires CEO to Run Her Successful Nanny Agency While She Attends High-School

15-year-old New Yorker Noa Mintz is one of the youngest people in the world to own a successful start-up. The teen entrepreneur is the founder of ‘Nannies by Noa’, a popular baby sitting agency that she started after a number of bad personal experiences with babysitters, but because she is still in school she needed someone to handle business for her. So she just hired a CEO.

Although Mintz agency was doing well, she simply couldn’t find time to handle the ‘excruciating hours’ and ‘hundreds of emails’ along with homework. So she decided to delegate the responsibility of running the business, and her decision has paid off. The agency now serves almost 200 clients in the tri-state area, providing them with baby sitters as well as full-time nannies.

It all started three years ago, when Mintz, a sixth-grader, spent the first half of her summer vacation interning at a nonprofit. Subsequently, she spent the second half brainstorming for her nanny agency. It stemmed from the fact that Mintz, the eldest of four, always found flaws with her own babysitters. She realized that there must be a better way of pairing families with the right caregivers. “For what you’re paying, your kids should be more stimulated,” she explained. “At seven, I would tell my mom, ‘You need to get more bang for your buck.’ It would drive me insane.” So Mintz accepted a challenge from her mother to find a better babysitter for their family, and succeeded. Soon, she started helping out her mother’s friends too.

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Guy Makes a Living Storing Students’ Mobile Phones in His Van while They Attend School

When New Yorker Jhonn de La Puente realized that many high school students aren’t allowed to bring their personal cell phones to school, he hit upon a simple yet brilliant business model – a cell phone storage van.

The 42-year-old now runs a company called ‘Safe ‘n’ Secure Cellutions LLC’ – it consists of a modified Ford E250 parked outside Brooklyn’s Prospect Heights High School complex, which houses four different public high schools. Right before they enter school, students queue up outside the van to deposit their phones through a small mail-slot on the side. They are handed colored tickets that they can use to retrieve the phones as they leave school at the end of the day. The service costs them anywhere between $3 and $5 per week.

Puente, a Crown Heights resident, has put a lot of thought and effort into creating the van – he said that he designed and customised it himself, adding security cameras, storage racks and a cash lock box. “I even did research on the average height of high school students to get a median height to put this window at,” he revealed. “It was really important to me that it was the right level so they could see my face and so that I could interact with the customers.”

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Woman Opens Professional Cuddling Shop, Struggles to Keep Up with Demand

This Oregon woman is paying her bills by cuddling with people all day. It might not sound like much of a career choice, but believe it or not, Samantha Hess is making a decent living out of hugging. Within a week of opening her store – ‘Cuddle Up To Me’ – she has already gotten requests from a whopping 10,000 customers!

Samantha charges her clients (who must be above 18 years of age) $1 per minute of cuddling in one of four themed rooms at her store. She also provides remote services by travelling to locations of her clients’ choice. She calls it a method of self-taught therapy through which she helps people feel loved and get comfortable with the physical touch. The snuggles are strictly platonic, of course, and she signs an agreement with her customers to be clean, courteous and to keep their clothes on at all times.

“There are no upgrades, no additional services,” the 30-year-old insisted. “I’m not interested in that. It’s about making people feel worthy of who they are today. I love knowing that people know that they are accepted, and they aren’t going to be alone anymore.”

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Porsche-Owning Rich Teen Sells Scarves on Side of the Road for Gas Money

A young tuhao (Chinese nouveau riche) from Shaoxing city, China, is making the news for his uncharacteristic behavior. A few nights ago, he was spotted getting out of his swanky new Porsche, only to set up a makeshift roadside stall on the pavement to sell scarves to passers-by. He was accompanied by a lady friend, who assisted him with sales.

Onlookers were so bewildered by this that they couldn’t help asking him what on earth he was doing. That’s when he explained: “I sell scarves here just to earn money to buy gas for my car.” He told reporters that while his parents had gifted him an expensive car, he didn’t think it was right to ask for gas money as well. The girl added that they were also interested in gaining experience in entrepreneurship and business, along with making some pocket money.

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New Company Called ‘ManServants’ Aims to Make Men Your Personal Servants

When advertising professionals Josephine Wai Lin and Dala Khajak decided to start a business of their own, they knew it had to be something quirky and original. Their new startup is called ‘ManServants’, and no, it’s not a gimmick. The business is basically a man rental service, giving any woman that can afford it the chance to have a good-looking man attend to her every need.

“A Man, But Better,” declares the tagline for the startup, and this pretty much sums up what ManServants is all about. “We believe personal assistants and pool boys are luxuries every woman, or gay guy, deserves – even if it’s just for a day,” the founders write on the official ManServants website.

Their promo video is really something; it claims that for decades women have had to put up with male strippers that they secretly hated. “Ladies, if you hate your friend, and yourself, get her a stripper,” the video advises. “But if you love your friend, get her a ManServant.” You can’t help wondering if the whole thing is a spoof, but the founders insist that it’s a real service. “It’s not a stripper who gets naked and rubs his greasy body all over you,” the website declares. “It’s a ManServant: a gentleman who treats you like a queen.”

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Only Girls – A French All-Female Garage for Women Tired of Getting Ripped Off

‘Only Girls’ is a new garage designed to make women feel comfortable, especially those who are tired of being shortchanged by deceitful mechanics. It recently opened in the Saint-Ouen-l’Aumone suburb of northwestern Paris.

The garage opened just a month ago and it has already had around 40 customers, two-thirds of which were women. The concept of an all-female garage stands to be a big hit because Only Girls aims to offer women motorists exactly what they need – respect. Many women claim to have a tough time getting their cars fixed at regular garages, because mechanics do not take women seriously and quote higher prices than they would for male customers.

“When you’re a woman, it’s like you’ve got ‘sucker’ tattooed on your forehead,” said Sandrine Hautenne, 42. “One time, I went round to three different garages, and got three different estimates. Since then, I’ve sent my uncle to get estimates and guess what? The prices have dropped!”

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Business Brilliance – Chinese Sell Miniature Snowmen as Cartop Decorations

When snow is free of cost, who’s going to pay for snowmen, right? Wrong! Apparently, people will buy anything if you sell it right. These two Chinese men have hit the marketing jackpot – making the most of heavy snowfall, they’re selling snowmen by the dozen.

The two men (we don’t know their names or who they are), make snowmen for cars in the suburb of Chengdu, in Southwest China’s Sichuan province. A photograph taken on 10 February shows them placing snowmen with orange eyes, noses and buttons, on top of a customer’s car.

According to some reports, they had sold over 100 snowmen before noon that day. Other pictures show several cars lined up in a street, all sporting snowmen on the roof. It certainly made for a festive display. It was as though the frozen figures were cheering on the traffic.

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Chinese Restaurant Allows Patrons to Pay What They Want, Is Obviously Losing Money

A small, self-service restaurant in China’s Fujian province runs on a unique concept – no bills! The owner expects diners to pay whatever they think is the true price of the meal. Predictably, many people don’t pay anything at all.

The restaurant, called Five Loaves and Two Fish, opened this August in downtown Fuzhou. It is named after the story of Jesus feeding 5,000 people by multiplying fish and bread. Patrons are required to wash their own plates and bowls after eating, and place money in a drop-box before leaving.

50-year-old interior designer Liu Pengfei, the majority investor, said he got the idea for the restaurant after heard about the ‘suspended meals’ projects in some countries. These projects allow people to pay in advance for a beverage or meal, for someone who really needs it. “Hearing about it, I was deeply moved,” Liu said. “I felt a heartwarming sense of trust because of it.” And that’s the concept Five Loaves is based on – trust.

While the concept sounds really amazing, things aren’t exactly going as expected for Liu and his team. According to Peng Yong, chef and co-investor, around 20 percent of diners walk out without paying anything. The restaurant has been running losses – 250,000 yuan ($41,170) – even though it is packed every day. Just maintaining the place, which is located in a central location, costs 60,000 yuan a month.

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Is Your Child Using Drugs? Rent a Trained Sniffer Dog to Find Out

German entrepreneur Reitner Reuther has made headlines in the national media for offering a very unique service. He gives parents who suspect their children of using illegal substances the chance to find out for sure by hiring a trained sniffer dog.

Statistics show drug abuse among youth is an increasing problem all around the world, but parents in Germany now have a new way of dealing with it without involving the authorities. Reitner Reuther believes his sniffer dog Thor is able to find even the most secret stashes of narcotics that can often be “too sophisticated” for parents to discover, so he set up a website where he offers to conduct discreet searches at the clients’ homes, at a rate of €95 ($125) per case. Thor completed his training to become a police dog in Texas, USA and specializes in sniffing out cannabis, heroin, speed and ecstasy. Parents get in touch with Reitner and they set up an appointment. When their child is away at school, he brings the dog by to search the house. According to his owner, no matter how well the drugs are hidden, nothing gets by Thor.

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Every Minute Counts at Germany’s Slow Time Cafe

Slow Time, a newly opened cafe in Wiesbaden, Germany, is charging clients on how much time they spend there, rather than on what they order. Coffee and biscuit snacks are free, and customers can even bring their own food, but on departure, they have to pay for every minute spent inside.

The “time cafe” concept comes from Moscow, where it has proven a big hit. Locals and tourists there find refuge from the hectic city streets inside one of these peaceful cafes without worrying about high drink prices. The amount of time they spend inside is the only thing that counts on the bill. 24-year-old Daria Volkova, who immigrated from Russia in 2008, recently opened the first time cafe in Germany, called Slow Time. Customers are charged €2 ($2.50) on arrival, which covers the first 30 minutes, after which they have to pay €0.05 per minute, or €3 per hour. The coffee, which is supposed to be delicious, tea and water are offered free of charge, and there are also free biscuits to snack on, but clients are invited to bring their own food and drinks if they want, or maybe have a pizza delivered there. What’s important is the time, although the owners says the several clocks purposely showing different times are meant to make people forget about time and focus on relaxation and the people around them. To pass the time, visitors can use the free Wi-Fi connection to browse on the internet, play social games like Carcassone, Scrabble or Activity with friends, or enjoy a good book from the cafe’s selection.

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