This Woman Has Been Crying White “Crystals” for 20 Years and Nobody Can Explain Why

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Laura Ponce, a nursery school teacher in Lins, Brazil, suffers from a strange condition that causes her to cry ‘crystal’ tears. The white plaques start off as soft blobs inside her eyes, but they harden when she blinks in an attempt to expel them, finally emerging as solid white crystals.

This happens to her for weeks at a time, with a new plaque forming as soon as she expels another. It gets so bad at times that she has to take time off work, to remove as many as 30 plaque membranes from her eye in a day. “A clot starts to swell then I have to open my eye to take out the membrane,” she explained. “When it dries it hardens, it gets really hard, it hurts a lot.”

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Indian “Road Doctor” Has Been Using His Own Pension Money to Fix Potholes

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Meet Gangadhara Tilak Katnam, the man who single-handedly fixed over 1,000 potholes in his hometown of Hyderabad, India. The 66-year-old pensioner has made it his mission to fix the city’s roads, earning himself the nickname ‘road doctor’.

Since 2011, the former railway engineer has been driving around the city every single day, looking for abandoned tar and gravel on roadsides. He collects the unclaimed material and uses it to fill potholes, at times spending his own pension money to do it. Tilak, who calls his work ‘Shramadaan’ (offering physical help), doesn’t confine himself to his neighborhood – he patches up every pothole he can find in the city.

“After working for the South Central Railway for 35 years, I retired in October 2008 and spent some time off in 2009, also traveling to the US to meet my son,” Tilak told the local media. “In January 2010, I came back and settled down in Hydershakote, in Hyderabad and took up a job as a consultant in a software agency.” It was during the course of commuting to this job that Tilak found his calling.

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Legendary Oakland Biker Gang Regularly Holds Fight Club-Style Events

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The East Bay Rats, a legendary motorcycle club in Oakland offers an innovative solution to barroom brawls – Fight Parties. Since 1996, the club has organised Friday Fight Nights – putting potential troublemakers (and anyone else who volunteers) in a boxing ring at the clubhouse and giving them a chance to work the violence out of their system.

According to East Bay Rats founder Trevor Latham, everybody has a violent streak in them and Fight Nights give people a safe space to test the limit of their courage. “Why not?” he asked. “The worst that can happen is you get a bloody nose.”

Over the years, Friday Fight Nights have become insanely popular, with the courtyard around the ring jam packed with spectators. Everyone who wants to fight gets a chance – it’s usually guys vs. guys and women vs. women, but you don’t have to be a professional fighter to get into the ring.  Participants range from bartenders and photographers, to bodybuilders, college students, lab technicians or musicians. That’s what this tradition is all about – real fights between real people.

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No Humans Allowed – Wacky Japanese Cafe Caters Exclusively to Stuffed Toys

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Joining the ranks of Tokyo’s eccentric pet cafés and restaurants is Yawarakan’s, a place that exclusively caters to stuffed animals. It sounds like a hoax – who would spend money on serving real food to a bunch of toys, right? Well, you’re wrong. This is actually a thing in Japan, and apparently business is going great.

According to the restaurant’s owners, 85 percent of Japan’s adult female population owns at least one stuffed animal. 60 percent of these women actually decorate their beds with the cuddly toys. So they decided to find a way to tap into this market. They figured, if people are treating stuffed animals like real humans, then why not send the soft toys on vacation? So they created a café along the lines of a bed-and-breakfast, where the customers are all toys.

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Swedish Airport Installs Climate Simulator of Cities Around the World

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Stockholm’s Arlanda Airport offers a weather service quite unlike any other. Instead of doling out boring reports, it actually lets people feel what the weather is like in various cities around the world before actually flying there.

Yvonne Boe, communication manager at Swedavia – the company that manages Sweden’s airports – describes the unique Climate Portal as an “experience for all your senses which replicates the weather live from all over the planet, a direct link to the whole world. It’s also a preview of where you’re going, so you know if you need that warm sweater or an extra pair of sunglasses before boarding.”

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Desperate Suspect Tries to Chew Off His Fingerprints to Avoid Being Identified

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The Lee County Sheriff’s Office in Florida recently released one of the strangest, most disturbing video we’ve ever seen – it shows a young suspect trying to chew off his fingertips in a bid to avoid being identified by the police.

According to the video’s description, it all started on Friday, when a traffic cop on State Road 82 stopped a 2015 Mercedes that had been reported stolen. The man behind the wheel, later identified as 20-year-old Kenzo Roberts, tried using a fraudulent ID with a fake name. But the officer soon discovered a hidden firearm and took the man into custody.

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Healthy Retired Nurse Ends Her Life in Swiss Suicide Clinic Because Old Age ‘Is Awful’

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A 75-year-old Englishwoman shocked the world by opting for euthanasia over natural death from old age. In spite of being in good health, the retired nurse decided to end her life because she could not bear the thought of growing old and frail. Before her death, Gill Pharaoh stated that she did not want to burden her children with the responsibility of caring for her.

Pharaoh specialised in nursing the elderly – she apparently developed a distaste for the life of the elderly, having witnessed it in close quarters. Towards the end of her life, she had checked into a Swiss suicide clinic, and in her last interview, she revealed how she had lost interest in life. She no longer enjoyed gardening, dinner parties, and was suffering from tinnitus.

“I do not think old age is fun,” she had said. “I have just gone over the hill now. It is not going to start getting better. I have looked after people who are old, on and off, all my life. I have always said, ‘I am not getting old. I do not think old age is fun.’”

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Chinese Man Builds ‘World’s Longest Seesaw’ to Play with Son Living 730 Miles Away

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30-year-old Liu Haibin is being hailed as the world’s coolest dad after he built an innovative seesaw that allows him to play with his toddler son who lives with his mother over 700 miles away.

While Chinese media is referring to Liu’s invention as the ‘world’s longest seesaw’, in reality, it consists of two identical seesaws equipped with motion sensors. One is placed in Tengzhou City, where Liu’s wife and eight-month-old son live. The other is with Liu, who lives in Xiamen City, 730 miles away. Through wireless internet signals and remote synchronization sensor data, the seesaws are perfectly synchronized. HD monitors on both seesaws enable father and son to see and interact with each other as they play.

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Snowden 2.0: Japanese Journalist Has Been Living in Moscow Airport for Two Months

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Japanese journalist Tetsuya Abo is pulling a Snowden – he’s been living in the transit section of Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport for over two months now. The 36-year-old said in an interview that his stay is politically motivated – he does not want to go back home, and is requesting Russian citizenship instead.

“It has become impossible to tell the truth in Japan,” he told the media. “There is no such thing as truth in journalism, because you cannot write the truth because of a law of secrecy. The Japanese think that they live the right way and therefore do not see any problems, but you need to pay very close attention to see that something is wrong.”

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Japanese Hospital Uses Miniature Sushi and Origami to Test Surgery Interns

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Instead of testing potential interns’ surgery skills on real patients, a Japanese hospital devised an innovative examination process that involves miniature origami and sushi!

The Kurashiki Central Hospital, in southern Japan offers one of the best surgical internship programs in the country, but medical students who want to secure a position here have to prove their skills in a series of bizarre hand-on challenges. First, they have to use surgical instruments to fold a piece of paper into an origami crane. That sounds easy enough for someone with a bit of experience in creating origami, but did I mention the piece of paper measures only 1.5 square centimeters?

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Artist Creates Tree Able to Grow 40 Different Kinds of Fruit at Once

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In a bid to reintroduce Americans to long-forgotten native fruit, a New York sculptor has created an incredible tree that can produce 40 varieties of stone fruit at once.

Sam Van Aken, who is also an art professor at Syracuse University, grew up on a farm in Pennsylvania where grafting was a common practice. However, to him, it always seemed magical. “When I’d seen it done as a child it was Dr. Seuss and Frankenstein and just about everything fantastic,” he said during a Tedx talk last year.

Van Aken has been growing multi-fruit trees since 2008, through a technique called ‘chip grafting’. He starts by taking a slice of a fruit tree that includes buds, and inserts it into a matching incision in a host tree that is at least three years old. He uses electrical tape to hold the pieces together. Soon enough, the “veins” of different trees flow into each other, sharing the same life energy.

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Doctor Claims Rare Condition Allows Him to Feel Patient’s’ Physical Pain

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People often use the phrase “I feel you pain” when trying to comfort somebody, but usually it has a figurative meaning. That’s not the case with Joel Salinas, a doctor suffering from a rare condition called mirror-touch synesthesia which actually allows him to feel the physical pain of his patients.

Salinas, a neurologist at Massachusetts General Hospital, says that he has had the condition since childhood. Whenever he would observe other people hugging, for instance, he would feel hugged as well. And when he saw people get hit, he felt the discomfort too. “When I see people, I have the sensation of whatever touches their body on my own body, and it’s kind of reflected as a mirror,” he explained.

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Belgian Man Shuns Civilization to Live as a Hunter-Gatherer in Slovenia

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Angelo Valkenborg had it all – a good job, a marriage, and a nice home, but at one point in his life, he realised that none of that made him truly happy. So the 31-year-old Belgian left his old life behind and moved to a forest in Slovenia to live like a hunter-gatherer.

Angelo had always been fascinated by the great outdoors and started getting into survival techniques in the wild. But his work and family life didn’t exactly go hand in hand with his favorite pastime. It was after returning from a three week expedition in the wilderness of Northern Sweden that he learned his marriage had failed. His “intense passion for the outdoors” was apparently too much for his wife to handle. “Who can blame her?” he wrote on his blog. “I went fr’om a salesperson who cared a lot about going out and having a good time to a always dressed in outdoor gear geek.

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It’s Late Summer but This Everlasting Pile of Snow in Buffalo Still Hasn’t Melted

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The residents of Buffalo, New York, are baffled by a 12-ft pile of snow that hasn’t melted in eight months. The giant pile, located near Central Terminal on the Queen City’s east side, has been around since the ‘Snowvember’ storm last year, and seems unaffected by the summer heat.

According to New York state climatologist Mark Wysocki, the “original problem started back in November.” After the storm, city workers had no place to put all the excess snow so they decided to dump it in a vacant lot. Then they used bulldozers to flatten and compact the pile. By doing that, they created insulation, effectively producing a very slowly melting snow pile.

“It’s not unprecedented, but it’s weird when you think about it,” said Storm Team 2 meteorologist Patrick Hammer. “That pile of snow is like a glacier. It’s very dense and it’s covered in dirt and garbage, which acts to insulate the snow from the sun’s rays. That’s what melts the snow, not just the heat but the sun’s rays, and it’s protected.”

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Staffless Pay-What-You-Will Bookstore in China Actually Works

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A peculiar outdoor bookstore recently opened in Nanjing, China. There is no cashier desk and no working staff to keep an eye on the books. Instead, visitors are invited to peruse the reading material on offer and pay whatever they want for books by dropping the money in a lock-box.

Organizers say the aptly named Honesty Bookstore is a social experiment meant to raise awareness of honesty and integrity. Believe it or not, so far, people have been doing the right thing. With no staff around, there is absolutely nothing stopping people from just taking the books they like and leaving without paying anything for them. Well, nothing but their conscience, that is. According to several news reports from China, people have actually been dropping money inside the box of their own free will, and Honesty Bookstore organizers claim that the raised money is enough to cover costs.

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