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Real-Life Legolas Uses Ancient Techniques to Shoot Arrows Even Faster than Tolkien’s Elven Archer

The bow was once a feared weapon used with deadly accuracy by master marksmen, but after the invention of gun powder and firearms, most ancient archery techniques were forgotten, and the lethal art became nothing more than a sport. Few people know this, but despite technological advancements, all of today’s archers are actually slower and less accurate than those of old  All except one – Lars Andersen, a Danish artist who, thanks to his intense study of ancient archery and unique skills, could challenge even the mighty Elven archer Legolas to a test of speed and accuracy and probably best him. This guy is so incredibly good with the bow and arrow he doesn’t even compete in archery tournaments. They’re just not challenging enough for him.

Lars can shoot 10 arrows in just 4.9 seconds, which makes him the fastest archer in the world today, but that’s probably the least impressive feat he’s capable of. The man has studied countless books on ancient archery and learned that the Saracens who fought against the Crusaders in the Middle Ages were tested to see if they could shoot 3 arrows in 1.5 seconds. Today’s experts were convinced such a thing was simply impossible, but Lars believed that if the books were indeed correct, then there must be something wrong with modern archery techniques. After 3 years of training, he was able to master the ancient techniques described in the books and proved that firing 3 arrows in less than 1.5 seconds was very much possible. As the legend himself explains, “I discovered historical texts that [described] Saracens who fought with the Crusaders had a series of tests which had been preserved. For example, one test required, at a 60-bow distance, to shoot three arrows so quickly that the last shall be in the air before the first has hit. That is three arrows in one-and-a-half seconds. That motivated me to accomplish it”.

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Nothing Says “I Love You” Like Cold Hard Cash – Chinese Man Offers Baskets Full of Money as Engagement Gift

A wealthy Chinese suitor has attracted accusations that he is buying a wife rather than marrying one, after he gave his future bride 18 baskets full of money, as an engagement present. According to Chinese media, the baskets were stacked with 8.88 million Chinese yuan ($1.45 million) and weighed over 102 kilograms.

When it comes to romance, nothing says “I love you” like stacks of beautifully-decorated money. At least that’s what Meng Huang, the son of a rich construction magnate in China, seems to think. The 27-year-old filled 18 traditional gift baskets with cash and employed 18 people to deliver them to his bride-to-be’s home, as a token of his love for her. “This is how we do things here,” Huang said. “She is worth the whole world to me and I wanted to prove that with a world gift of cash”. The eccentric gift arrived at its destination in a fleet of luxury vehicles lead by a Maserati sports car, where it was gladly accepted by the bride’s family. The stacks of red 100 yuan bills depicting Communist founding father, Mao Zedong, were decorated with red ribbons and neatly arranged in the gift baskets for everyone to see. The sum, 8.88 million yuan was obviously not accidental, but carefully chosen, as the word for “eight” is linked with the meaning “wealth” in Chinese.

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Mystery Surrounding Death of Man Who Opened Pandora’s Box

The death of 37-year-old Jason Airey is wrapped in mystery, as the man fell unconscious after allegedly opening a box with “Pandora’s Box” written on it. In Greek mythology, Pandora’s Box was actually a jar that contained all the evil in the world, and hope.

According to the parents of the deceased, nothing seemed out of the ordinary on the day of the tragedy, May 2nd 2013. Their son came back to their house in Carlisle, Cumbria, after he had gone shopping. As Jason Airey’s father, Dennis, recalls, “he was just his normal self. I think he had enjoyed himself in town. He had been shopping and said he was going upstairs to get changed”. As Jason never returned downstairs, his mother, Anne, went to his room to see if everything was alright and found him lying unconscious. Dennis remembers that his wife ” went upstairs and came back down saying something was wrong. She couldn’t wake him”. He rushed to his son’s room and every parent’s worst nightmare materialized before his eyes. “I got hold of him and his shirt was clammy. His face was blue. I could feel a faint pulse on his neck”. The grieving parents, both in their 60s, did everything they could to save their son’s life. Dennis performed CPR and the paramedics spent an hour doing everything to keep Jason alive before taking him to the hospital. Unfortunately, he died 2 days later at the Cumberland Infirmary.

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Meet Martin Strel, the Extraordinary Man Who Swims the Entire Length of Rivers

“Daredevil”, “human fish”, “the hero in a speedo” or “the craziest man in the world” – however you’d like to call him, he is the greatest endurance swimmer in the world! Meet the man who swims entire rivers, Martin Strel.

The now 58-year-old Slovenian Martin Strel has broken the Guinness World Record for long distance swimming multiple times. The first was in 2000, when he swam the length of the Danube river, 3004 kilometers (1867 miles), in 58 days. A year later, in 2001, he broke another record by swimming 504 kilometers (313 miles) non-stop, in 84 hours, also on the Danube. In 2002, Strel changed continents and went to North America, where he became the first person to swim the entire length of the Mississippi river (3797 kilometers/ 2360 miles) in 68 days, thus breaking another Guinness World Record. In 2003, he swam the length of the Parana River (1930 kilometers/1200 miles) in South America, in just 24 days. In 2004, Strel became the first person to swim the length of the Yangtze river (4003 kilometers/ 2488 miles), in 51 days. It took him almost 3 years to prepare for the longest and most dangerous river in the world, but in 2007 he succeeded in breaking the record again: he swam the 5268 kilometers (3274 miles) of the Amazon river, in South America, in 66 days. Strel dedicated his most important and most difficult swim to finding a cure for Alzheimer’s and to the preservation of the rainforest.

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Ordinary Miracle – Russia’s Fairy-Tale School

The Secondary School no.5, in Yoshkar-Ola, Russia, may be called “Ordinary Miracle”, but there is certainly nothing ordinary about the way it looks. Unlike most bland communist era schools around the country, this particular learning institution looks like something out of a children’s fairy-tale. And that’s exactly what makes it so popular.

Ordinary Miracle was built 12 years ago, by Sergey Mamaev, one of Russia’s most successful businessmen, who wanted to fulfill his wife Tatiana’s dream of teaching in a school where children actually wanted to go. She just didn’t find all the official-looking buildings used as schools throughout Russia suitable for molding young minds, so she came up with a more appealing design inspired by fairy-tale castles. Construction began in 1998, and in just three years time, the entire complex was completed and opened for business. Parents have to pay a tuition of 2,000 rubles ($61) per month, to have their children educated in this unique setting featuring a state of the art kindergarten, elementary and middle schools, cafeteria, swimming pool, gym and more. Mamaev’s investment in Ordinary Miracle is being praised on Russian sites as an example for other wealthy businessmen.

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Pensioner Has Been Drinking Nothing but Coca Cola for Over 40 Years

A promise made to his mother determined 75-year-old Pero Ajtman to drink only Coca Cola for the last four decades. The Croatian gave his word not to drink alcohol ever again, so he replaced wine and spirits with the popular fizzy drink.

“My mum didn’t like me drinking when I was a young man as she was very religious. She made me promise never to drink again and Coca-Cola was the only thing that tasted as good as wine so I started drinking that”, Pero Ajtman explains. The pensioner from Croatia’s Karanac village told reporters that drinking several glasses of the sugary soft drink every day has kept him from going back to his boozy ways. “Now I have a glass in the morning, before and after lunch, with my dinner and then before I go to bed. I never drink anything else,” the man swears. Doctors generally advise against drinking large quantities of carbonated sugary drinks on a regular basis, as it can have a devastating effect on our health, but 75-year-old Pero says he has yet to experience any serious problems. He does admit to being hooked to it now, saying “Coke is my drug now, and I’ll drink it till I die”.

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Real-Life Magneto Claims to Use Telepathic Powers to Manipulate Metal

Superpower or just super-sticky skin? Miroslaw Magola, from Germany, claims he can manipulate metal objects with his telepathic powers. The 55-year-old says that he began to master the ability of manipulating objects with his mind after he studied the phenomenon of psychic energy. “I found out I could train myself to manipulate lifeless objects as I studied for my degree in the early ’90s,” Magola says. “I have since spent years perfecting the technique and exploring further into human magnetism.”

Magola doesn’t want to stop at simply making objects stick to his body as if they were glued onto it, because he believes he can use his powers for the benefit of humankind. “I am determined to develop my unique powers further in the future and I’m currently working with telepathy and healing to see how psychokinetic energy can be put to a use that will benefit mankind.” This real-life Magneto doesn’t claim he is one of a kind. On the contrary, he says there are many others who can control this kind of power. “Magnetic people prove with mind power they are capable of lifting objects of different materials off the floor without aid. This can be done with the head or palms of the hands to hold objects vertically, horizontally or in circular movements. Some magnetic people are also capable of lifting objects from the floor with the palm of a gloved hand or even with talcum powder on the skin.” As expected, people are either plain skeptical or too inquisitive when it comes to Magola’s powers, but his answer to either of them is that what draws the line between a person with real magnetic powers and a fake one is the ability to defy the laws of gravity.

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Alina Kovaleskaya – Ukraine’s Newest Real-Life Doll

It’s official, Ukraine is the land of real-life Barbie dolls. After the now-famous Valeria Lukyanova and Anastasiya Shpagina, it’s now time for another Ukrainian real-life doll to take center stage – meet 20-year-old Alina Kovaleskaya.

Hailing from Odessa, the same city as the above mentioned internet stars, Alina Kovaleskaya  has managed to attract a decent online following after uploading a series of photos of herself in doll form. That means laying on several layers of makeup, especially around the eyes, to make them look abnormally large and posing as a lifeless toy. It’s now a well-known recipe used by all of the seven (yes, seven) human barbie dolls in Odessa who all use the same tricks, hold photo-shoots at the same locations around the city and sometimes even appear in each other’s photos. Although accused of being yet another clone of the internationally-famous Valeria Lukyanova, Alina, however, claims to be different from all other Barbie imitators. She says she resembles the popular doll naturally, with her big eyes, small nose and small plump her lips. And yet it’s obvious she uses tons of makeup to enhance her features, just like every other human doll we’ve ever features, from KotaKoti to Vanilla Chamu. Although no self-respecting barbie wannabe would ever admit to it, there are some who accuse her of also using photo manipulation software like Photoshop.

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Taxi-Driving Pastor Offers Confessions on the Go

Great news, you no longer have to go to church to confess your sins. Thanks to pastor Joseph Djan, who also happens to work as a cab driver, the confessional has been moved from the church into a New York taxi.

The 52-year-old taxi driver and Evangelical pastor sees cab-driving as running a “church on wheels”. Why? “It allows me to meet a lot of people and sometimes interact with them and it gives me the flexibility to attend to (the) ministry when it’s needed,” Djan says. He has Christian hip-hop playing in his cab and he sometimes lets his passengers know that he is a minister. Usually, after finding out about him being a man of Faith, people open up to him. This is what happened to one of his clients, a gay man who was afraid of coming out of the closet. “He heard my Christian hip-hop and while talking about it, it slipped out that I was a pastor. His mood changed instantly. He told me he wanted to tell me something that had never told anyone before”, the New York cabby says . The client confessed that he was feeling guilty about not telling the truth about his homosexuality, but Djan comforted him. “I told him that we all keep secrets. We all have to come out of the closet in some way or another. He was so relieved.” After stepping out of the cab, the passenger also stepped out of the closet and lived his life without hiding who he was.

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French Restaurants Seat Guests by How Good-Looking They Are

Looks are undoubtedly very important, but some people make too much of physical appearance. A group of restaurants in Paris is accused by two of their former employees of seating clients according to their good-looks. “The good-looking ones are led to the good places, where they can be easily seen”, claim the former employees, and “as for the non-good-looking ones, it is imperative that they be dispatched to the corners of the room”.

The restaurants accused of having such a shallow policy are strategically situated near popular tourist attractions: Le Georges is in the the famous Centre Pompidou, while Cafe Marly is located near the Louvre museum. Apparently, this marketing strategy has a lot to do with the way in which the two restaurants are perceived by those passing by them. In fact, the staff members in charge of placing the guests at their tables were allegedly confronted for seating less attractive people at the best tables. “What are these ugly mugs doing at this table? Everyone can see them when they come in. It’s very bad for our image,” the employees were allegedly reprimanded when they broke the rule.  The only exception to this rule are celebrities, who, regardless of their looks, are automatically offered the the best seats in the house.

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Gender Test Demanded for South-Korean Women’s Soccer Player Who Scored 19 Goals in 22 Games

Here’s something that doesn’t happen every day: the coaches of five of South Korea’s seven women soccer league teams have threatened to boycott the national competition if Seoul City Amazons striker Park Eun-Seon does not have a gender test. The 26-year-old was named best forward this season, with 19 goals in 22 matches.

At 1.80 meters tall and weighing 74 kilograms, park Eun-Seon really does have a physique worthy of her team’s name, and could probably even secure a place in a men’s soccer team, which is exactly why several coaches of rival squads are threatening to boycott South-Korea’s women’s soccer league if she isn’t required to take a gender test. But according to Seoul City Amazons officials, Park’s manly physique isn’t reason enough to humiliate the player by forcing her to pass yet another gender test. They claim the whole thing is part of a “conspiracy” because she has shown such remarkable form this last season, after a long career slump. Seoul Sports Council general secretary Kim Joon-Soo seems to agree. “We have no intention of accepting the gender verification test just to stop the boycott,” he said. “This is a serious violation of human rights that she’s suffering for a second time. The question regarding Park’s gender identity shall never be raised again. The city of Seoul will take all necessary measures to protect our player’s human rights.”

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Indian “Lady Tarzan” Talks to Elephants and They Listen

14-year-old Nirmala Toppo is the heroine of Rourkela, an industrial city located in the Indian state of Odisha, after she talked the elephants that had invaded the settlement into returning to the forest.

The Catholic girl from Jharkland claims she began talking to elephants after her mother was killed by some pachyderms. “I then decided to learn the techniques to drive them away”. The technique Nirmala refers to involves praying and literally talking to the elephants. “First I pray and then talk to the herd. They understand what I say”. By using these simple “tricks”, the girl helped the authorities of Rourkela deal with a herd of elephants that had settled in a residential area of the city. “When the herd entered the city, we tried our best to contain its movement. We managed to make the herd go into the local football stadium, but we were not sure how we could drive them back to the forest. It was a difficult task,” forest official P. K. Dhola said. Out of options and pressed for time, they remembered that there was someone who could help them. “We knew of a tribal girl who lived in Jharkhand, who talked to elephants and was able to drive them back. We called up her father and she arrived along with some other tribal people from her village”.

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Hamburger Harry – The World’s Biggest Burger Fan

For 57-year-old Harry Sperl of Daytona Beach, Florida, burgers are not only a tasty fast-food treat, but also representations of American popular culture that deserve a shrine. “They taste good, they look good and the hamburger is an icon of the United States of America”, explains Sperl. This is the reason why for the last 23 years, this burger enthusiast has been adding hundreds of items to the “Burgerbilia”, the world’s first (and, so far, only) burger museum, located in Sperl’s own home.

Sperl has been using burger memorabilia to decorate his house: he has a hamburger phone, a cheeseburger lamp and even a custom-made hamburger bed with little hamburger pillows. He also has custom carpets with hamburger designs, hamburger-shaped music boxes, erasers, clocks, trays and lots of magnets. Sperl’s passion began when he purchased some hamburger items from a toy store. From that moment on, not only did he start collecting items for the Burgerbilia from flea markets and garage sales, but he also designed his pride and joy – the Hamburger Harley, a unique hamburger-shaped tricycle, with onion wheels and pickle handles. He originally thought of using a Volkswagen Beetle, but he decided he didn’t like the sound of the air cooled flat 4 engines. Sperl then considered a hamburger dragster or a cheap go-cart, but in the end his love for Harley Davidson got the best of him.

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Michael Volpicelli’s Incredible Word Art

Young American artist Michael Volpicelli specializes in creating detailed portraits of people and animals exclusively out of written words related to them. After serving in Iraq and suffering a serious back injury, Volpicelli says art helped him recover and now he wants to share his talent with the world.

Ever since he was just a child, Michael Volpicelli loved to draw. While still in junior high-school, he enrolled in college courses to improve his drawing skills, and even though it was nerve-racking being the youngest person in the classroom, he says the experience really helped him flourish as an artist. During college, Michael started attending a fine arts school and an artistic career as an artist seemed like the only logical next step in his life. But then September 11 happened, and instead of pursuing his dream of becoming an artist, he ended up in war-torn Iraq. But even in this hostile environment, the talented young man couldn’t stay away from art. He started designing certificates of appreciation, and creating works of art for his Sergeant Major’s, drill sergeants, and even fellow soldiers. He was the “combat artist” of his infantry division. After leaving the Army and suffering a major back injury, Michael Volpicelli used art to help him recover. He enrolled into Oklahoma State University and studied fine arts. Today he uses his talent for drawing to create all kinds of beautiful artworks, but his forté is definitely word art.

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The Komondor – Nature’s Adorable Living Mop

The Komondor is undoubtedly one of the oldest and most unique-looking dog breeds in the world. It was mentioned for the first time in the Code of Hammurabi (a set of laws created by the Babylonian king Hammurabi around 1750 BC). However, the Komondor is nowadays considered Hungary’s traditional dog.

The first thing you’ll notice about these dogs is their resemblance to giant mops: indeed, their 2000-cord coat alone weighs around 15 pounds (30 kilos) and they are approximately three feet tall (a bit over 90 centimeters). The Komondor’s cords develop during its first two years of life and their length increases with time, as the coat grows. Thankfully, the dog doesn’t need brushing, but you do have to separate the cords, which may take a while, as they tend to get tangled. If the dog’s natural look is maintained, which means letting its corded coat grow long, you’ll be able to notice its distinctive rectangular shape. These adorable leaving mops were used as livestock guard dogs, and with their corded coat acting as camouflage they were especially useful for guarding sheep. The Komondor breed is believed to have been so efficient at its task that it nearly wiped out all Hungary’s wolf population.

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