Big Wind – Probably the Most Powerful Firetruck Ever Built

What to you get when you combine an old Soviet tank with two Soviet jet engines and a lot of water? The answer is Big Wind, a fire truck capable of stopping oil well fires all by itself.

In February of 1991, near the end of the Gulf War, the retreating Iraqi army set over 700 Kuwaiti oil wells on fire, thus creating the desert into an almost apocalyptic landscape. Up to six million barrels of oil burned every day for 30 weeks, sending flames as high as 300 feet into the air and covering the sky with thick, black smoke. The fires reached temperatures of 2000 degrees Fahrenheit, and even the air around them was an unbearable 650 degrees Fahrenheit, but even if anyone managed to get close enough, putting out the fires was a nearly impossible task. But that was just the kind of job that Big Wind was built for…

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Police Arrest Entire Fast Food Restaurant Staff After Being Denied Free Burgers

A group of Pakistani police officers are facing suspension after allegedly arresting 19 employees of a fast food restaurant in Lahore for refusing to give them free burgers.

According to local reports, staff at a Johnny & Jugnu fast food restaurant in Lahore, Pakistan, were rounded up and arrested at around 8 PM on Saturday and held in custody overnight for having the audacity to refuse a group of policemen free burgers last week. Employees weren’t even allowed to close down the kitchen, allegedly leaving the fryers running and customers waiting in line for their orders. In an official statement, Johnny & Jugnu representatives offered details about the incident, explaining that it had been caused by staff’s refusal to give policemen free burgers.

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Thief Arrested on His 18th Birthday Gets Surprise Party from Police

A Brazilian young man recently got a rather humiliating birthday party thrown for him by police after being arrested for theft right on the day that he turned 18.

Celebrating your 18th birthday should be a joyous occasion, but for one Paulo Rodrigo das Neves, from Brazil’s Rio Grande do Norte region, the event was anything but. Arrested on his birthday after being caught on camera stealing sound equipment and other parts from people’s cars, the birthday boy got to enjoy a humiliating celebration at the police station, with staff there singing him “Happy Birthday” and even serving cake and soda in his honor. To make matters worse, the whole thing was filmed and posted online.

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Meet Takimika, Japan’s 90-Year-Old Fitness Instructor

Most 90-year-olds can barely walk, let alone exercise, but 90-year-old Takishima Mika not only conducts daily fitness regimens religiously, but she actually works as a fitness instructor at a gym.

For most of us, “age is just a number” is just a tired cliché, but people like Takishima Mika, aka “Takimika”, are proof that it doesn’t have to be. The sprightly pensioner, who turned 90 on on January 15, is more active than most 20-year-olds and probably fitter too. She is Japan’s oldest fitness instructor and has become somewhat of a minor celebrity in the Asian country, both because of her excellent physical shape, and her positive attitude and infectious smile. But Takimika wasn’t always like that. In fact, her transformation began late in life, when she was already in her 60s.

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Woman Missing For 11 Years Found Secretly Living in Neighbor’s House

An Indian woman who had left her family home in 2010 and hadn’t been seen since was recently found living just 500 meters from her parent’s home, in the house of a man she had fallen in love with.

Sajitha’s family had given up home of ever finding her, after she simply walked out of the house one day, in 2010. Thinking that she had died or was living thousands of miles away somewhere, they never even entertained the idea that she could be in the same village, let alone in walking distance from them. As it turns out, the woman, who was 18 at the time of her disappearance, simply walked out of the family home and into that of her secret lover, a local man who she was convinced her parents wouldn’t approve of. How they managed to keep the secret from both of their families for over a decade is a tale fit for Bollywood.

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This Florida Pub Is Decorated With Nearly Two Million Dollars in Cash

McGuire’s Irish Pub is a popular restaurant and local landmark in Pensacola, Florida, famous for having an estimated two million dollars in cash hanging from the ceiling.

The history of McGuire’s Irish Pub’s unique decoration can be traced back to 1977, when Martin McGuire and his wife, Molly opened the opened the business. He tended the bar while Molly waited tables, and when she made her first $1 tip, she celebrated by writing the date on it and tacking it to the back bar for good luck. Little did she know that this was the start of a longstanding tradition that is still being respected by patrons of the pub. The very next day after that first bill was tacked to the bar, people started adding to the collection, and they’ve been doing it ever since.

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Mirrored Ceiling Makes Bookstore Look Like an Infinite Library

Dujiangyan Zhongshuge, a bookstore in Dujiangyan, China, relies on strategically placed mirrors and gleaming black tile floor to create a stunning illusion that makes the place look like an infinite bookworm’s paradise.

The roughly 10,500-square-foot bookshop was designed by Li Xiang, founder of Shanghai-based architecture studio X+Living, and inaugurated in the Fall of 2020. Using clever elements like spiraling staircases, curved archways and strategically-placed mirrors, the designers of this unique bookstore were able to create a downright stunning illusion of infinity. One need only look at photos of Dujiangyan Zhongshuge’s interior to experience the otherworldliness of the place.

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Genetically-Modified Plants Glow When They Are Stressed

A team of researchers at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem has managed to genetically modify potato plants to glow under fluorescent cameras when stressed by various factors.

One of the biggest challenges of modern agriculture is reacting to stress factors before it’s too late. Plants don’t really have a way of conveying how they feel, and, more often than not, by the time visible symptoms appear, it’s already too late to do anything about it. But scientists are hoping to fix this big problem with the help of advanced genetic manipulation. A team of Israeli researchers led by Dr. Shilo Rosenwaser managed to genetically modify a potato plant so that it glows under fluorescent camera when affected by physical stress (lack of water, cold weather, lack of sunlight, strong light etc.).

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Pablo Escobar’s “Cocaine Hippos” Pose Serious Threat to Colombia’s Environment

Brought into Colombia as exotic pets by the most notorious drug kingpin in human history, have been breeding at an alarming pace over the last few decades and have become a serious threat to the Colombian flora and fauna.

In the 1980s, Pablo Escobar smuggled four hippos from an American zoo into Colombia, as exotic pets. They were kept at his luxurious Hacienda Napoles, in Puerto Triunfo, Antioquia, but after the collapse of his crime empire, they were set loose into the jungle. With no natural predators, plenty of water sources and suitable climate, the hippopotamuses thrived and multiplied. The initial four water giants have now ballooned to an estimated population of over 100, which scientists say could reach over 1,400 specimens by 2039.

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2D Cafe Makes You Feel Like You’re Inside a Black and White Coloring Book

BW Kafe is an unusual-looking cafe with venues in Moscow and Sankt Petersburg which look like the setting of A-ha’s famous “Take on Me” video.

BW Kafe first made international headlines last year, when photos of the Sankt Petersburg branch went viral online. Designed by Russian artist Anfisa Toshina, the interior of the cafe looks sketched with charcoal on a piece of white paper, creating the illusion that you are the only 3D “object” in a two-dimensional world. It’s a pretty nice trick, but one that might seem oddly familiar if you’ve been on the internet sometime in the last two years…

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Chinese Superstar Sues Doppelganger for Using Her Looks for Financial Gains

Fan Bingbing, a popular actress, model, singer, and China’s highest-paid celebrity for the last four years, is suing one of her doppelgangers for relying on her looks to sell products during online streams.

In many cases, looking like a popular celebrity can be considered a blessing, but in the case of one doppelganger of Chinese superstar Fan Bingbing, this turned out to be more than a curse. Up until September of last year, 32-year-old Chen Xinling had been able to use her striking resemblance to Fan Bingbing to build a strong following on a series of Chinese streaming platforms and even start a lucrative business selling products on Chinese e-commerce site Taobao. But the dream turned into a nightmare when Chen discovered that her uncanny resemblance to Fan Bingbing was actually a legal liability.

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Unique Service Lets You Rent Fat People by the Hour

A new Japanese service is drawing attention for allowing both individuals and companies to rent out “fat people” for 2,000 yen ($18) per hour.

Renting people for various purposes isn’t anything new in Japan. From renting someone to befriend your cheating partner’s lover and convince them to back off, to renting middle-aged men for company, the offers vary a lot, and starting this month you can add another option to the list – renting fat people. Called “Debucari”, the new service allows virtually anyone to rent a fat person by the hour. Apparently, fat people – over 100 kilograms – are somewhat of a rarity in Japan, so the entrepreneur behind the service thought that making them available via an online service would be a great business opportunity.

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You Can Now Accessorize Your Chin Thanks to This Bizarre Piece of Jewelry

If you feel like you’ve run out of body parts to accessorize, you may want to check out “Mundstück” a line of chin jewelry designed by German company MYL Berlin.

As you can see in the photos, Mundstück (Mouthpiece) is a piece of metal designed to be worn on the chin. Only it doesn’t require any piercing, instead it attaches to the inside of the wearer’s lower lip via two blunt hooks. It’s apparently quite comfortable to wear, doesn’t impede the wearer’s speech at all, and can even be worn when eating. And best of all, it helps you stand out, which is why anyone would wear something like this in the first place, isn’t it?

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The Desert Healer – Man Spends Two Decades Creating Green Oasis in Middle of Cold Desert

Anand Dhawaj Negi, a retired bureaucrat turned desert farmer, spent over two decades of his life turning the cold wastes of northern India’s Himachal Pradesh into a vibrant oasis.

In 1977, the Indian Government kickstarted an ambitious program to mitigate the adverse effects of desertification in the Asian country’s cold and hot deserts. A. D. Negi  worked in the financial department in charge of the Desert Development Program and saw millions of dollars go down the drain with no real results to show for it. Whenever he asked scientists and officials involved in the program why there was no real progress, the answer would always be that they lacked the technology to develop any type of sustainable crops in the inhospitable environment that is the desert. A farmer’s son himself, Negi grew tired of excuses and took a leave of absence in 1999 to take a crack at it himself. By 2003, he had already permanently retired from his job to concentrate all of his energy on his growing desert oasis.

A native of Sunam village in Kinnaur, Negi took it upon himself to turn a barren patch of land in the cold desert of Himachal Pradesh into a green oasis just to show everyone, particularly the struggling farmers in the area that it could be done. It wasn’t the easiest thing to do in the world, but the former bureaucrat knew what he was getting into and had the ambition and patience to see it through.

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Retiree Who Took Up Mountaineering at Age 68 Conquers Everest at 75

A 75-year-old retired attorney from Chicago recently became the oldest American to ever conquest Everest, the world’s tallest mountain top. The craziest thing is that he had only started mountaineering 7 years prior.

Arthur Muir, a married father of three and grandfather of six, had been fascinated with mountain climbing ever since his father gave him a book about the Himalayas when he was a child, and that fascination only grew when  Barry Bishop, a legendary climber and conqueror of Everest, visited his high-school in 1964. However, he never followed his dream of picking up mountaineering until a friend convinced him to do so, seven years ago, but once he did, he couldn’t stop.

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