China’s Pyramid-Shaped Mountains Spark Conspiracy Theories

China’s Guizhou Province is home to about a dozen conical hills known as the Anlong Pyramids because of their resemblance to the much more famous pyramids of Egypt.

In recent years, Anlong County has become a popular tourist destination thanks in no small part to its pyramid-like mountains which have captured the imaginations of millions of people around the world. Apart from their pyramid-like shape, these formations also feature layers of rock stacked on top of each other so neatly that you could swear they were placed like that by someone or something. Ever since photos and videos of the Anlong Pyramids started circulating online around 2018, conspiracy theories about their origin began appearing as well, and despite experts’ best efforts to convince the public that these pyramids are completely natural, some people still believe that they are the work of an ancient human civilization or of aliens.

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Self-Service Pet Vending Machines Spark Outrage in China

Photos and videos of unmanned vending machines selling live animals like cats, small dogs, and rodents installed in various Chinese cities have been going viral and sparking outrage among the general public.

The significant technological developments of the last decade have created a fast-growing “unmanned economy” that continues to spread into almost every sector of the global economy. However, there are still some industries that are incompatible with unmanned, self-service devices. The pet-selling sector has so far been considered incompatible, but things are apparently very different in China, as more and more unmanned vending machines selling live pets are being spotted all around the country. One such video showing a pet vending machine in a busy part of Beijing recently went viral on Chinese social media, sparking a heated debate around the ethics of this controversial business model.

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Wanted Criminal Pretends to Be Deaf and Mute for 20 Years to Avoid Prison

A Chinese man wanted for murder managed to avoid police detection for over 20 years by pretending to be a deaf and mute scavenger in the mountains of Hubei Province.

On the evening of May 22, 2004, a young and quick-tempered man named Xiao got into a heated argument with a neighbor in his home village of Oumio Daying, in Xianyang’s Xiangcheng District. At one point, Xiao allegedly picked up a shovel and hit his neighbor over the head with it, killing him on the spot. That night, knowing that he risked spending the rest of his life behind bars or worse, getting the death penalty, Xiao decided to abandon his wife and 11-year-old child to go on the run. He ran into the mountains of Anxi County, in Fujian Province, where he became a scavenger selling scraps to survive. To make sure he never gave anything away about his past life, Xiao pretended to be deaf and mute for the next 20 years, only smiling at people and communicating through gestures.

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Man Dies Trying to Exercise by Hanging from a Chin Strap

A Chinese man recently lost his life while performing a controversial type of exercise that requires practitioners to hang only by their chins to relieve neck and spine pain by reducing pressure on nerves.

Over the past decade or so, a bizarre form of exercise has been getting traction throughout China. It basically involves swinging one’s body while hanging in the air supported only by a leather chin strap. Reportedly invented around 2017 by Shenyang native Sun Rongchun as a way to relieve back pain, neck swings quickly became a familiar sight in parks and outdoor gyms all over the country. Although hanging in the air by one’s chin doesn’t sound like the safest thing in the world, paractiotioners swear by it, claiming it does wonder for neck and back pain. Still, doctors have been warning about the dangers of neck hanging for years and a recent tragedy suggests that when performed incorrectly, this type of exercise can be lethal.

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The World’s Deepest Subway Station Will Clog Up Your Ears

The Hongyancun subway station in Chongqing, China is 116 meters deep and the difference in air pressure will often leave users with clogged ears when accessed via its elevator.

When the air pressure outside of the eardrum becomes different than the pressure inside, you experience ear barotrauma. It occurs most often during steep declines and descents and is usually associated with plane takeoffs and landings, or driving up or down mountains. Most subway stations don’t usually cause ear barotrauma, because they aren’t deep or steep enough for your ears to register a significant enough difference in air pressure. But using the elevator to reach the world’s deepest subway station might actually clog up your ears. That’s because it is located 116 meters below the surface, the equivalent of about 40 floors underground.

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The Basic Dance Move Paralyzing Little Girls in China

The backbend is considered a crucial move in Chinese folk dancing, but it is also the main cause of severe spine cord injuries in children as young as five, leaving thousands of them paralyzed for life.

Ironically, the vast majority of parents pushing their beloved children towards folk dancing have their offspring’s best interest in mind, hoping to improve their physical fitness and overall health, but studies have found that one particular move taught in folk dancing schools is putting children’s lives at risk. Data analyzed by the Chinese Orthopaedic Association showed that the percentage of spinal cord injuries caused by the backbend exploded from just 4% between 1992 and 2002 to a whopping 33.9% of all pediatric spinal injuries between 2015 and 2019. Other reports show that, since 2005, over 1,000 children have been left paralyzed after doing backbends in dance classes, making this move the single greatest paralysis threat for young Chinese children.

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Ox Horn – Huawei’s Newest R&D Complex in China Looks Bizarrely European

Ox Horn, a sprawling research and development complex built by Huawei in Shenzen, China, features 12 towns and 100 separate buildings, all inspired by European architecture.

If someone were to be teleported in the middle of Ox Horn and made to guess where they were, China would probably be at the bottom of their answer list. That’s because the Chinese tech giant’s new campus is heavily inspired by European architecture, including both replicas of well-known Western landmarks and buildings heavily influenced by various European architectural styles. Completed in 2019 at a cost of a whopping $1.5 billion, Ox Horn houses Huawei’s main research and development offices and features its own tram transportation system, but has come under fire for its obvious European inspiration.

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Nanny Left with 5-Month-Old Child After Parents Disappear with Her Money

A Chinese nanny has been forced to take care of a toddler for months without any compensation after the child’s parents disappeared without a trace with money they had borrowed from her.

Ms. Yu, the victim in this bizarre case that has been making headlines in China for over a month, claims that she was hired by a couple in Harbin, Heilongjiang province, to take care of their newborn son for a monthly salary of 7,000 yuan (around $1,000). Shortly after striking a deal, the parents told Ms. Yu that they needed to travel to Tianjin to receive a sizeable inheritance, including property and luxury goods, and asked if she could help them out with a loan for lawyers and paperwork. As insurance that they would pay her back, the couple showed her photos of the goods they had allegedly inherited, as well as of the ownership papers for a hotel. Furthermore, they decided to leave their child with the nanny while they sorted everything in Tianjin, so Ms. Yu assumed that there was no reason to worry. She was wrong!

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Restaurant Sparks Controversy for Serving Alien-Looking Raw Octopus Eggs

A Japanese food restaurant in Singapore recently attracted criticism online for serving a bizarre-looking dish consisting of a raw octopus egg sack.

Known as tako tamago, the strange dish that landed Singapore restaurant Koji in hot water with social media users isn’t the most appetizing food we’ve ever featured on Oddity Central. It’s basically a large white sack with a very flexible membrane that conceals hundreds of oblong octopus eggs swimming in a viscous fluid. The sack is served raw and melted with a blow torch to release the eggs inside onto the plate. The eggs are usually served with soy sauce and have a taste similar to that of salmon roe.

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Mistress Uses Frozen Embryos to Conceive Dead Lover’s Child, Sues His Family for Inheritance

A Chinese woman who had an affair with a married businessman who died in a car accident used frozen embryos to conceive a child she claimed was his and then sued his family for inheritance.

In a case that sparked a heated debate in China, a Guangdong woman surnamed Leng sued her deceased lover’s wife for part of his fortune as inheritance for her baby boy, who she claimed was her lover’s heir. The unusual dispute began in 2021, soon after the tragic death of the man, surnamed Wen, in a car accident. Leng claimed to have frozen some of her eggs prior to the accident which were later fertilised using Wen’s sperm at a private fertility clinic. In December of 2021, she gave birth to a healthy son she named Xiaowen, and in August of last year, she sued her former lover’s family, asking for a part of their estate as an inheritance for her son.

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Japanese Rice Balls Rolled in Cute Girls’ Armpits Allegedly 10 Times More Expensive Than Regular Ones

Armpit onigiri is a bizarre take on the classic Japanese snack where cute girls allegedly press the rice using their armpits and infuse it with their pheromone-containing sweat.

The origins of armpit onigiri, aka underarm onigiri, are not very clear. Some sources claim it was inspired by an iconic scene in the manga Mahōjin Guru Guru (Magicle Circle Guru Guru), where an old man assists the protagonist by rolling rice balls with his armpits. This theory is supported by the plethora of armpit onigiri anime-style artworks that can be found online, but as for how the bizarre treat transitioned into real life, that still remains a mystery. And it was weird enough to know some people are actually trying armpit-rolled rice balls in their own homes, but apparently there are restaurants that proudly serve armpit onigiri to customers willing to pay 10 times their regular price.

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China’s Obsession with Protruding ‘Elf Ears’

In many cultures, ears protruding too much from the skull are considered a physical defect, but in China, people are more than happy to go under the knife to attain this physical trait known as “elf ears”.

China’s ‘elf ears’ cosmetic craze received worldwide attention in 2021 when it was covered by some of the world’s largest news outlets after becoming a trending topic on Chinese social media. It all started with a before-and-after photo posted on Weibo, China’s version of X (Twitter), by online influencer Chen Jianan who had recently undergone a procedure to make her ears more visible from the front. Chen was of the belief that this minor change made her face look slimmer and younger, and judging by the number of Chinese cosmetic clinics offering the ‘elf ears’ procedure, she is definitely not the only one. Many people are willing to go under the knife and pay big money to get protruding ears.

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Young Woman Who Called Boyfriend Up to 100 Times a Day Diagnosed with “Love Brain”

An 18-year-old Chinese girl who became so obsessed with her boyfriend that she tracked his every move and called him 100 times per day was eventually diagnosed with a condition called “love brain”.

Chinese outlet Yueniu News recently reported the case of Xiaoyu, an 18-year-old girl from Sichuan province who became so obsessed with her boyfriend that she made both their lives a living nightmare. The girl’s unsettling behavior began in her first year of university when she became romantically involved with a boy whose name has not been revealed to protect his privacy. According to Du Na, a doctor at The Fourth People’s Hospital of Chengdu, Xiaoyu quickly became unnaturally obsessed with her boyfriend, wanting to know his whereabouts at all times and freaking out when he didn’t immediately reply to her texts. Sounds like your average control freak behavior, but according to the doctor, Xiaoyu suffered from a rare mental disorder called “love brain”.

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Woman Kidnaps 11-Year-Old Girl to Raise as Perfect Wife for Her Son

A Chinese woman was recently sentenced to prison for kidnapping an 11-year-old girl whom she planned to raise into the perfect wife for her 27-year-old son.

The woman surnamed Yang met the underaged girl on February 13, 2023, while visiting a village in Liupanshui City in the southwestern province of Guizhou. Convinced that she would make a great bride for her much older son, she asked the girl’s parents if they would allow her to come back with her to Qujing City, Yunnan province. The girl’s father refused the proposal, but that only made the woman go ahead with her backup plan. She conspired with her 27-year-old son to kidnap the girl, and on February 14 they waited until the target was home alone and abducted her.

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Woman Poisons Pregnant Co-Worker to Prevent Higher Workload Caused by Maternity Leave

A Chinese woman is being accused of trying to terminate a co-worker’s pregnancy by poisoning her water to prevent her from taking maternity leave and thus avoiding a higher workload.

In one of the most shocking cases of work-related incidents reported in China, a worker at a government-affiliated institution in Hubei Province allegedly tried to terminate a co-worker’s pregnancy by repeatedly poisoning her water in order to avoid the higher workload caused by her maternity leave. The nefarious plan reportedly came to light when the victim noticed that her water kept tasting strange, regardless of its source. At first, she was convinced that it was the office’s water supply, but the taste persisted even after she switched to bottled water. That’s when she decided to investigate further.

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