Bovine Boarding at Pakistan’s Traditional Bull Races

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If you think surfing and snowboarding are extreme sports, then you’ve probably never seen what happens in Pakistan, during traditional bovine races. It involves bulls, a board and dirt.

Tens of thousands of people gather whenever there is a bull race held in Pakistan. They are usually the highlight of festivals organized in rural areas of the Asian country, and attract lots of spectators due to their thrilling nature. Watching a bunch of oxen running alongside each other might not be your idea of a fun time, but add a man on riding a board on a dirty track trying to guide the animals, and things become pretty exciting. The traditional competition  attracts landlords and farmers from all around the province where the race is held, and they all bring their fastest and strongest bulls in hopes of gaining a reputation.


It’s About Time! New York Hosts First World Burping Championship

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Most civilized countries have long considered burping one of the most embarrassing things a person can do in public. Now, the World Burping Federation, in Geneva, is trying to change people’s opinion, and their first attempt was the first edition of the Burping Championship.

Held in New York City, this first annual World Burping Championship had competitors guzzling down gallons of soda in order to produce the longest burp possible. The five contestants chosen to take part in this unusual event weren’t just regular beer-guzzlers who like to let loose a few burps every once in a while. They were all competitive eaters with Major League Eating which meant the whole contest a lot more interesting. Unlike regular burpers, these guys could fill their bellies with gallons of carbonated drinks, making them more qualified to produce a burp worthy of the record books.


Australian City to Host Real-Life Zombie First Person Shooter Game

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If you’ve ever dreamed of starring in your own zombie shooting video game, like Left4Dead or Resident Evil, your wish is about to come true as “Patient 0“, the world’s first “fully immersive live action real life, multiplayer, first person shooter, role-playing game” is about to take place in Melbourne, Australia.

It’s no secret that we’re living in a golden age of zombies. From movies to video games and even real life events, the undead are everywhere these days, so it came as no surprise when entrepreneurs started creating all kinds of events centered around the walking corpses. So far we’ve had a zombie training camp, zombie obstacle race and even a zombie-infested mall challenge, so it’s pretty clear this kind of event is becoming very popular. A group of enterprising young Australians has now decided to take things to a whole new level and announced they are working on a real-life first person shooter game for people who wish they could just get off the couch and play their favorite zombie shooter in real life.


Man Wins BMW after Keeping His Hand “Glued” to It for 87 Hours

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Song Changjiang, a lucky 27-year-old from Chengdu, China, has won the right to drive in a BMW 1 Series after keeping his hand glued to it for 4 days and three nights, in a bizarre contest.

What some people wouldn’t do for the chance to win a brand new BMW. Take the participants in the  ‘Who Can Keep Their Hand on the BMW‘ contest held in China’s Chengdu City. 120 contestants, aged between 18 and 40, signed up for the chance to win a BMW 1 Series. Organizers brought out a few vehicles, placed palm-shaped stickers on them, and all the participants had to do is keep their hands on them for as long as they could. Sounds easy enough, doesn’t it? I thought so too, but judging by the photos taken during the competition, it was a real physical and mental test.


Agni Keli – Unique Indian Tradition Encourages Fighting Fire with Fire

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Agni Keli, also known as the Fire Fight of Kateel Durga Parameswari Temple, in Mangalore, India, is a unique ritual which has hundreds of devotees throwing burning palm fronds at each other, to appease the Hindu goddess Durga.

Each year, the Festival of Kateel Durga Parameswari Temple is celebrated over 8 days, in the month of April. It commences on the night before Mesha Sankramana Day, and features a series of themed performances, the most intriguing of which is Agni Keli. On the second night of the festival, hundreds of devotees gather at the temple of Durga, in Mangalore, to carry out a centuries-old tradition that involves throwing and getting hit with burning palm fronds. The fiery action attracts thousands of spectators, who watch as the torch-wielding men try to set each other ablaze.

Photo: Daijiworld ..

Chinese Billionaire Pays $800,000 to Find ‘Pure Wife’

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They say you can’t put a price on love, but a mysterious Chinese millionaire is trying to prove everyone wrong by spending a matchmaking service 5 million yuan( $788,000) to find him a suitable wife.

On May 20th, the Garden Hotel, in China’s Guangzhou City, hosted a special event entitled “Multi-Millionaire Seeking Spouses in Ten Cities Show”. The ‘show’ was basically a competition between 320 female candidates battling for the heart of a mystery billionaire looking to settle down. According to China Smack, the anonymous businessman contacted a local matchmaking service and offered them 5 million yuan to look for the women of his dreams, in 10 cities nationwide. Just like other important bachelors we’ve featured on OC, he’s probably too busy to look for love himself.


Test Your Middle Finger at the Bavarian Finger Wrestling Championship

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Finger wrestling, or “fingerhakeln”, used to be the way the men of Bavaria settled disputes back in the 17th century, but now it’s just an obscure sport that draws hundreds of strong men to the German region, for the annual Finger Wrestling Championship.

Now, I knew about thumb wrestling and toe wrestling, but I was totally oblivious to finger wrestling. That’s probably because it never caught on outside Bavaria, but the men there take it so seriously they even have a championship to determine which one has the strongest middle finger. The 35th edition of the annual Finger Wrestling Championship was held in Schnaitsee, Chiemgau, right in the heart of Bavaria, and brought together 156 competitors ready to snap their fingers for the title of champion.


The Ancient Sport of Camel Jumping in the Deserts of Yemen

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The men of the Zaraniq tribe, on the west coast of Yemen, have a truly unique tradition – they jump over a row of camels just like modern daredevils jump over cars.

Famous throughout Yemen for their speed, strength and courage, the members of the Zaraniq tribe are the world’s only professional camel jumpers. Taking running starts, jumpers try to sail over as many camels as possible, before tumbling to the ground. During camel jumping events, the one who leaps over the highest number of camels is considered the winner. “This is what we do,” says Bhayder Mohammed Yusef Qubaisi, one of the champions of the the Tihama-al-Yemen, a desert plain, on the coast of the Red Sea.


Unique Animal Art at the Bikaner Camel Festival

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If you thought your hairstylist was amazing, wait until you see what living masterpieces these Indian camel enthusiasts can create with just scissors and a lot of patience.

Every year, the desert city of Bikaner, in India’s state of Rajasthan, hosts one of the most colorful events in the world – the Bikaner Camel Festival. Home to the only camel breeding farm in India, and one of the largest such farms in all of Asia, it’s only natural this city should have a festival dedicated to the useful humped animal. The popular event takes place over two days, in January, and draws in camel breeders from all over Rajasthan, as well as tourists from all around the world. This homage to camels includes various events, from camel races and rides, to camel haircut competitions and even a camel beauty pageant.


Training CampZ – A Zombie Survival Training Camp for All Ages

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It’s wise to be prepared for all kinds of emergencies, perhaps even those that are very unlikely to happen. A zombie apocalypse, for instance. That’s why a two-day Zombie Survival Training Course was conducted recently in Sandy, Oregon. Of course, the camp organizers do realize that zombie’s aren’t real; the course is actually oriented towards learning to survive outdoors and have some geeky fun while doing it.

The adult-only program involves camping out for an entire weekend, and some pretty useful survival skills like how to build a fire without matches or lighters, how to build a shelter for protection and how to hunt and gather food. The premise for being outdoors was basically that if zombies ever invaded Portland, Step 1 would be to take to the wilderness. Of course, once there you would need to know how to survive, and that’s where Training CampZ comes into picture. Tony Deis, founder, says, “You don’t have to be dour and boring. You can be a bunch of geeks.” The zombie element, he says, attracts people who wouldn’t normally be interested in an outdoor class.


Urban Golf – Taking the Game Out of Country Clubs and into the City Streets

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There’s something very satisfying about hitting a ball into a hole with a golf club. And for those who don’t have access to great golf clubs or even mini golf courses in the neighborhood, and also for those who would like to avoid the formal nature of the sport, there’s always Urban Golf. This slightly altered version of golf can be played, well, absolutely anywhere you please.

Urban golf gets its name from the very urban landscape that it has been adapted for. In other words, it’s simply golf played in a city environment – potholed streets and black asphalt, building sites and car parks, with the city’s everyday life creating obstacles. The excitement of the game comes from the fact that each day poses a new obstacle, a new course, and new challenges. Lampposts serve as trees, buildings as wooded areas and drains, bunkers. Interestingly, the concept of urban golf has been around since 1992, when Torsten Schilling began playing golf in areas surrounding his office in Berlin. Today the sport has evolved into a real movement, with many supporters and members around the world.


Man Completes 5,000 Km Trek Dressed as Stormtrooper

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21-year-old Jacob French hates walking, and yet he completed a 5,000 km trek last year dressed in a stormtrooper costume. The 9-month trek was for the benefit of Starlight Children’s Foundation which works for sick children in Australian hospitals. Jacob’s journey was all the way from Perth to Sydney, and in the process he went through 7 pairs of shoes and lost 12kg in body weight. He also managed to raise $100,000.

Jacob was the one who came up with the idea in the first place. He had donned the stormtrooper costume for the first time during a half marathon in Oct 2010. The experience wasn’t very comfortable for him. “The suit was restrictive and got hot while I was running, but the seed was planted for the Troopertrek idea.” Since that marathon, Jacob started training more regularly and also acquired a lighter and much more flexible set of armor. Last summer, he made the announcement about his charitable walk, once again dressed like a stormtrooper in order to get attention to the cause. The arduous trek began in July 2011. Jacob walked over 10 hours a day, Monday to Friday, along with a wooden cart around with him containing all his clothes and carrying equipment. The stormtrooper attracted a lot of attention and even received support from passing motorists. The Trooptrek Facebook page has become very popular, with thousands of likes and comments. People find his initiative inspiring and motivational.


Tough Mudder – Probably the Toughest Event on the Planet

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“The Tough Mudder is not a race, it’s a challenge,” say the organizers. And it most certainly is, given the grueling nature of what is perhaps the toughest event in the world. Consisting of 10 to 12 mile ‘hardcore’ obstacle courses, the event designed by British Special Forces is meant to test stamina, strength, grit, and camaraderie. Tough Mudder is the brainchild of former counter-terrorism agent Will Dean. During his MBA course at Harvard, he was frustrated with the monotony of marathons, triathlons and mud runs. Wanting to participate in an event that truly challenged the core of his personality, he came up with the idea of Tough Mudder.

According to their official website, Tough Mudder is much more than just a race because it gives participants the opportunity to a personal challenge. Simply completing the course is an achievement in itself. The participants are not timed, and there are no winners as this is no contest. In fact, one of the rules of the event is to help your fellow mudders whenever they seem to be struggling with themselves. Men and women are strongly encouraged to participate, but the event is open only to those above 18 years of age. So far, over half a million people have participated worldwide. And 25% of them have been women. The events are currently being held in USA, Canada, Europe, Japan, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand.


Famadihana – Dancing with the Dead in Madagascar

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The people of Madagascar have a unique ritual to celebrate family ties called Famadihana, also known as ‘turning of the bones’. It is a festival celebrated every 7 years or so, during which family crypts are opened up and the remains of dead ancestors are brought out to be wrapped in a new cloth. The Malagasy then dance with the corpses in great joy. Live music is played, animals are sacrificed and the meat is distributed to various guests and members of the family. The elders explain to their children the importance of the dead who are lying before them. Famadihana is viewed as a day to show your family just how much you love them. Extended families get together and celebrate kinship.

According to Malagasy belief, people are not made from mud, but from the bodies of the ancestors. Hence they hold their forefathers in high regard. They also believe that unless the bodies decompose completely, the dead do not leave permanently and are able to communicate with the living. So until they are gone forever, love and affection is showered on them through the Famadihana festival. It is interesting to note that the festival is not an ancient practice of Madagascar. Its origins cannot be traced beyond the seventeenth century.


Woman Marries Herself to Prove She Doesn’t Need a Husband to Be Happy

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36-year-old Nadine Schweigert from Fargo, North Dakota, got married last month. She had a beautiful wedding. Nadine was dressed in a peacock blue satin dress and carried a bouquet of white roses. There was also a lovely white wedding cake covered in peacock blue fondant. So far, there seems to be nothing unusual about this affair; it’s not different from any other run-of-the-mill wedding in the US. But if you paid attention, you probably noticed there was no mention of a groom. It’s not that he didn’t show up, it’s just that there wasn’t a groom to begin with. Nadine just happened to marry herself.

Self-marriage can be a confusing concept to those who don’t know what it’s all about. Nadine isn’t alone, however, many others have done it before. It was even portrayed on the popular TV show Glee, where ‘Sue Sylvester’ ties the knot with herself. These ceremonies are considered secular and purely symbolic. New Age websites such as Encouraging Priestess even share ideas on how to perform self-marriage ceremonies. The idea behind these marriages is to help a person realize that they do not need anybody else to feel complete.


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