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Indonesian Mayor Shuts Down Luxury Cinema Because Bed Seats Promoted Adultery

Indonesian cinema chain CGV has been forced to shut down their Velvet Class venue in the city of Palembang because the ultra-comfortable seats made local authorities uncomfortable.

CGV Velvet Class cinemas are awesome! Instead of regular seats, or even reclining ones, they feature leather beds complete with pillows and blankets, for a ridiculously comfortable movie experience. They have been operating in Jakarta and around Indonesia for years now, with no problems, but recently a deputy mayor South Sumatran capital of Palembang decided that switching regular movie theater seats with comfortable beds was a very a bad idea.

Deputy mayor Fitrianti Agustinda visited the CGV Velvet Class cinema in Palembang, last week, after reportedly receiving complaints about it from the public. The local official was apparently scandalized upon seeing the beds, arguing that they could promote adultery and sexual misconduct.

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145-Year-Old Man May Be the Oldest Living Human in Recorded History

Mbah Gotho, an Indonesian man from the island of Java, has official documentation that attests that he was born on December 31st, 1870. If confirmed, this would make him 23 years older than the than the official world record holder for world’s oldest human, French woman JeanneCalment who died at 122.

Authorities in Gotho’s hometown of Sragen told local media that they have verified their records and an ID card with his date of birth posted online, and that his claim appears legit. However, until his documents are independently verified, he cannot officially be named the oldest human being in history. Not that the title matters to much to Gotho, who in a recent interview told reporters that he has only one wish left – to die. While it may sound eerie, it’s an understandable desire, considering his current situation.

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Indonesian Man Returns Home One Year after Being Confirmed Dead by His Family

An Indonesian family got the shock of their life after their husband and father, 62-year-old Waluyo, just showed up at their doorstep one year after they had buried him. He was pronounced dead on May 15, 2015, after supposedly being involved in a car accident.

This bizarre story started last year, when Waluyo, from Suryoputran Panembahan village in Jogyakarta, left his home to work as a street cleaner in the city of Semarang, in order to support his family. It wasn’t long after his departure that his wife, Alim Eskatinah, got a call from the police who told her that Waluyo had been the victim of a serious car accident and was in critical condition at the emergency room. The whole family and even some of their neighbors rushed to the hospital to be by his side, but the injured man died after a few days. “In the hospital he was in a coma. Relatives and neighbors all visited him. He then died on May 7, 2015. Many came to his funeral, all the neighbors came,” Waluyo’s daughter, Anti Ristanti told Indonesian newspaper Detik.

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Woman Arrested for Posing as a Man to Marry Another Woman

An Indonesian woman who went to great lengths to impersonate a man and even married another woman was recently detained by police after “his” wife alerted authorities about the deception.

40-year-old Surwati, who like most Indonesian goes by a single name, admitted to falsifying her identity and impersonating a man. She had taken the name Muhamad Efendi Saputra and told people “he” was a police officer. Her male impersonating skills were apparently stellar because she managed to full everybody and even convinced a woman into marriage. After a whirlwind romance lasting a couple of months, Muhamad married 25-year-old Heniyati in a ceremony on Java island. To avoid raising any suspicions, Surwati reportedly hired a number of people to pose as relatives of her male alter ego at the wedding.

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Indonesian Singer Performs for 45 Minutes after King Cobra Bite, Dies on Stage

In a bizarre turn of events, Indonesian singer Irma Bule was bitten by a king cobra while performing on stage last Sunday. She chose to go on with the show, ignoring the enormous risk she was exposing herself to, and ultimately died within the hour.

Bule, 29, was a performer of Dangdut – a traditional folk music genre in Indonesia, very popular for its melodious vocals and instrumentation. It is precisely because of this popularity that the Dangdut scene is oversaturated and highly competitive in the island nation, forcing artists to employ all sorts of gimmicks to stand out and attract crowds. Bule was well known for performing with snakes on stage, and on this occasion, she was performing in the company of a king cobra – still venomous and not even defanged.

Video footage of her past performances indicate that Bule was very comfortable in the company of snakes, but something went terribly wrong on Sunday. According to eyewitnesses, she accidentally stepped on the snake’s tail early on during the concert, and it turned and bit her in the thigh. But instead of cancelling the performance, as most people bitten by a king cobra surely would have, the dedicated artist chose to continue with the show, and even refused an antidote that the snake handler offered her. Read More »

Indonesian “Iron Man’ Allegedly Builds Brainwave-Controlled Robotic Arm from Scrap

Wayan Sutawan is being hailed as Indonesia’s very own Iron Man after building a robotic device that he claims can read signals from his brain allowing him to control his paralyzed left arm.

This literally unbelievable story started six months ago, when Sutawan suffered a stroke that left him with a paralyzed arm. Having studied a bit of mechanical engineering in high school, the father-of-three spent the next couple of months working on a robotic arm using spare parts that were just lying around in his garage. He finally created a strap-on mechanism for his paralyzed limb connected to a headband that he claims reads his brainwaves and transmits commands.

In a video report by Indonesia’s Kompas TV, Sutawan is seen strapping the device on to his left arm and covering his left hand with a thick rubber glove. He then puts on the headband, and after a moment’s concentration, the arm miraculously jerks to life. He is then able to use the paralyzed hand to perform delicate tasks. He’s also able to lift up to 10 kilograms of weight with the device on his left arm.

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Eccentric Man Builds Giant “Chicken Church” in the Middle of Indonesian Jungle

Buried deep inside the Indonesian jungle is a very odd structure, shaped like a giant chicken. The long abandoned construction, locally known as Gereja Ayam (Chicken Church), is a popular tourist attraction in the hills of Magelang, Central Java.

Word on the internet is this strange construction was designed to be a church, but according to its creator, the building is neither a chicken nor a church. Daniel Alamsjah, 67, revealed that he was working in Jakarta when he suddenly received a divine message from God to build a prayer room in the form of a dove. “Perhaps because of my Christian faith, people thought I was building a church,” he said. “But it’s not a church. I was building a prayer house, a place for people who believe in God.”

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Indonesian Woman Puts House on the Market, Offers to Marry the Buyer

Indonesian homeowner Wina Lia has come up with an innovative strategy to find matrimonial bliss – she’s put up her house for sale and has offered to marry the buyer! 40-year-old Lia owns a two-bedroom home in Sleman, a sleepy little district near the Javanese city of Yogyakarta. The lovely house comes with a small fish pond, a spacious backyard, and of course, the chance to gain Lia’s hand in marriage.

The online ad featuring Lia’s home listed the asking price at $76,500 but also mentioned a unique bonus: “Buyers who don’t negotiate the price can ask the owner to marry (terms and conditions apply).” The ad promptly went viral, with local news agencies tracking Lia down to check if the claim was genuine. Turns out that it was.

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Trick or Truth – Thai Monk Meditates in Pot of Boiling Oil over an Open Flame

A YouTube video of a monk praying calmly in a vat of boiling oil has recently has been doing the rounds online, leaving viewers wondering how the monk can keep from screaming in agony.  Social media users were enthralled by the possibility of this Thai monk’s ability to defy physics with his ‘magic’. Unfortunately, skeptical scientists soon pointed out a few facts that pretty much ruined the illusion.

The monk, from Thailand’s Nong Bua Lamphu province, looks at ease despite sitting in a vessel of oil with a fire raging underneath. He is also seen sharing his magical powers with others by touching objects that they pass to him. His followers believe that his touch can make their amulets or pieces of fabric powerful. These objects are apparently sold to the locals and other places of worship.

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Indonesian Workshop Creates Mind-Blowing Life-Size Replicas of Popular Sports Cars Exclusively Out of Wood

This group of highly skilled Indonesian woodworkers caters exclusively to people who love collecting sports cars – both real and wooden. They carve impressive life-size replicas of popular sports car models, and their creations are routinely exported to buyers in the US, England, Germany, and other European countries. 

Their latest handiwork is a model of the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport, made entirely out of teak – it doesn’t work of course, but it’s a stunning copy of the real thing. And let’s not forget – cheaper by several thousands of dollars.

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Doctors Baffled by Indonesian Woman Who Claims to Have Given Birth to Gecko Lizard

Debi Nubatonis, a woman from Oenunto village, Indonesia, has baffled doctors and scientists with her claim – she says that she went through a full-term pregnancy, only to give birth to a bouncing, healthy baby gecko lizard! We’ve heard enough of such stories to know that it’s probably a hoax, but it looks like Indonesian authorities are investigating to check if it might just be true.

Last month, at the request of the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) of the nearby Kupang City, a special team was dispatched to Oenunto village, where the new mother lives. “Basically, there’s something not right here,” said CMO Messe Ataupa. “We are looking into whether this was intentional or not. Clearly the womb must have been empty and this is what’s known as pseudocyesis. So the gecko coming out is probably some kind of hoax. Childbirth of another species has never been reported in science.”

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Indonesian Volcano Spews Hauntingly Beautiful Blue Lava

There are plenty of natural treasures hidden away in the most unsuspecting places on Earth. One of them is an Indonesian sulfur mine, Kawah Ijen, that produces stunning, spectral blue lava. The images of this mine are so breathtaking, I could just stare at them for hours.

Kawah Ijen is a part of the Ijen volcano complex – a group of stratovolcanoes in East Java, Indonesia – with an active crater that’s 200 meters deep. The complex is also home to the world’s largest turquoise-colored acidic lake, full of sulfuric acid. The lake is a sulfur mining site; miners carry sulfur-laden baskets by hand from the crater floor.

The miners work at night to double their meagre income, but they don’t have to worry about the dark. Kawah Ijen, an ordinary rocky crater by day, transforms into a stunning display of electric blue light at night.

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Bambu Gila – The Crazy Bamboo Dance of Maluku

Bambu Gila is a mystical ritual performed in Indonesia’s Maluku Islands, where a group of strong men struggle to control a piece of bamboo from moving around like crazy as if it were possessed by an unseen power.

The origins of Bambu Gila, or Crazy Bamboo, are unknown, but it is believed the ancient ritual was once used to induce a fearless fighting mentality before going to war. Today, the once warring tribes of Maluku live in piece and this unique tradition has been reduced to a popular tourist attraction. Preparations for Bambu Gila start with a special ceremony in which the local shamans ask permission from the spirits that still dwell in the nearby bamboo forests to cut down a log for the famous dance. Crazy bamboos are  brought from Mount Gamalama, the volcanic mountain in Ternate, Northern Maluku, where the spirits are believed to be the strongest, cut to a specific size, cleaned and rubbed with coconut oil. During the actual ritual, seven of the strongest villagers are selected to handle the bamboo which supposedly starts to move by itself and becomes increasingly heavier and more difficult to control, after a ginger-chewing shaman recites strange mantras and blows incense into it. Although it’s hard to believe there are supernatural forces at work, the performers put on quite a show that attracts thousands of visitors from all over Indonesia and beyond.

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Indonesian Villagers Beat Each Other with Rattan Brooms in the Name of Brotherhood and Friendship

Every year, a week after the end of Ramadan, the Indonesian villages of Morella and Mamala hold Pukul Sapu, a unique ritual that has men from the two villages beating each other across their bare backs with rattan broomsticks.

There’s nothing like a good beating to strengthen the bond between members of a community, at according to the people of Morella and Mamala, two villages in the Maluku province of Indonesia. Seven days after the end of Ramadan, the local young men take part in Pukul Sapu, an ancient ritual that translates as “Beating Brooms”. A fitting name, considering it involves participants hitting each other with strips of rattan across their backs until they are all covered in bloody scars. Before the actual beating begins, the men gather to receive the prayers of the village elders which are supposed to provide protection from serious injury during the proceedings. Wearing only short pants and headbands, the brave men enter the arena and split into two groups, facing each other. They then take turns in hitting each other across the back and chest with hard rattan brooms, with the one taking the beating lifting his arms into the air to proudly display his bloody wounds. This is not a mock battle, and the traces left by each lash is more than enough proof, yet the participants take the beating without so much as a flinch or cry of pain.

Pukul-Sapu

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The Amazing Stone Jumpers of Nias Island

Hombo Batu or Stone Jumping is an ancient ritual of Nias Island, North Sumatra, with young men leaping over stone walls over two-meters tall. The tradition was born out of inter-tribal conflicts and was once potentially deadly as the walls were covered with spikes and sharpened bamboo sticks.

Centuries ago, Nias Island was divided into several regions ruled by landlords or warlords. It was not a hereditary position, nor was it gained by force, but rather through entertainment of the masses. Whoever threw more parties known as “owasa” gained the favor of local communities and became their leader. But organizing these festive events didn’t come cheap, and the island’s landlords would constantly fight each other and use the spoils of war as funding. To start a war, they needed able brave men who had to prove their worth at drafting challenges. Becoming a soldier was a big honor for the young men of Nias and earned them a higher social status in the community, but physical attributes and weapon mastery were not enough to convince their leaders. They also had to jump over a 2.3-meter-tall stone wall without touching it. To make things even harder for candidates, the top of the obstacle was covered with spikes and sharp bamboo sticks, and the jumps often resulted in serious injuries and even deaths. According to some sources, Hombo Batu was also a way of training soldiers to jump over walls during a siege and light the enemy’s camp ablaze with torches.

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