X

12-Year-Old Australian Boy Fights with His Mother, Steals Her Credit Cards and Flies to Bali for 4-Day Vacation

12-year-olds get into arguments with their parents all the time, but most of them just storm off to their room to cool off. Not Drew (made-up name), a boy from Sydney, Australia, who, after a fight with his mother, stole her credit card, got on a plane and flew to the island of Bali for an unforgettable 4-day vacation.

Drew’s name may be fake for privacy reasons, but his incredible story is not. After a quarrel with his mother, Emma, the 12-year-old boy decided it was time to do something drastic, and a vacation to the family’s favorite holiday destination, Bali, seemed like just what the doctor ordered. Only this time, he would go all by himself and experience the freedom of being alone in one of the most beautiful places on Earth, at his parents’ expense. For that, he needed his mother’s credit cards and a way to board a plane without having to answer too many questions. Sounds like a tall order, but this kid had it all figured out.

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.

real-life-iron-man Read More »

The Balinese “Deaf Village” Where Everyone Knows Sign Language

In the remote Balinese village of Bengkala every one of the 3,000-odd residents can fluently communicate in kata kolok, a centuries-old sign language, and people with speech and hearing deficiencies are always treated with respect.

That so many people would bother to learn sign language might seem strange, but there’s a good reason behind the unique tradition – the number of hearing and speech impaired in Bengkala is about 15 times higher than the world average and it’s believed to have been even higher in the past. So it’s only natural that, in time, body language took precedence over words, and villagers developed their own unique sign language which has been passed on for centuries.

The high incidence of deafness is apparently caused by the geographically-centric recessive gene DFNB3, present in the village for over seven generations. Parents with normal hearing may have a deaf child, and deaf parents are known to have children who can hear perfectly well. Either way, it seems to make no difference to the villagers, who have long learned to treat everyone the same, without any kind of discrimination.

Bengkala-village Read More »

The Tipat War of Bali Is What I Call a Real Food Fight

Every year the men of Kapal Village, in Bali, celebrate the rice harvest by throwing rice cakes at each other in one of the largest traditional food fights in the world.

Also known as the Aci Rah Pengangon ritual, the Tipat War is preceded by a collective prayer in the inner court of Kapal Village’s Pura Desa (the village temple). Here local men give thanks for the bountiful rice harvest and relax before the upcoming food massacre. After praying, dozens of bare-chested men start the first rice cake fight right in the middle of the temple courtyard. They are divided into two groups and throw tipat (cooked rice wrapped in a square shaped woven coconut leaf) at each other. This fight lasts for only five minutes and is a preliminary event to the full-scale war that is about to take place in the village street outside the temple.

Read More »