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Company Sells Sneeze-Contaminated Tissues That Allegedly “Help” People Get Sick

Most people would never use a tissue that someone else sneezed in, let alone pay $80 for one, but one Los Angeles startup claims to have already sold close to a thousand sneeze-filled tissues to people who want to catch a cold virus now so they don’t get sick with the same cold later. Does that make any sense?

Vaev bills itself a “wellness brand” although technically it’s helping people get sick by selling them tissues that complete strangers sick with the cold have allegedly sneezed into. But who in their right mind would pay $79.99 on a germ-contaminated used tissue? Well, that would be “open-minded people” who appreciate the luxury of being able to get sick “on their own terms”. Vaev founder Oliver Niessen, 34, claims that these expensive used tissues should be viewed as alternatives to conventional medicine, in that they allow you to purposely catch a cold whenever you want, in order to decrease the risk of catching that same cold at a later date. It’s basically all about choice and getting “sick on your own terms”.

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Russian Utility Company Installs Wooden Outdoor Toilet Outside Apartment Buildings to Remind People to Pay Their Bills

A public utility company in the Russian city of Irkutsk has come up with an ingenious way of reminding people to pay their bills if they want to continue using their indoor toilets.

In November of last year, the Irkutsk Northern Housing and Utility Systems Directorate installed a wooden cabin toilet outside an apartment building with a sign that read “Toilet for Debtors” on the front door. This was the company’s unique way of reminding residents that it could cut off their utilities if they didn’t settle their debts. The measure was apparently so successful that the company has been moving the outdoor toilet to problem areas of the city for the last couple of months.

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The Bizarre Reason Why Chinese Television Started Blurring Men’s Ears

TV viewers in China recently noticed something strange whenever certain male celebrities showed up on screen – their ears were digitally blurred as if to hide something. While Chinese television has yet to make an official statement on this issue, the measure seems meant to hide men’s earrings.

Last year, China’s media regulator banned TV stations from showing celebrities’ tattoos as well as other elements of “hip hop culture, sub-culture and immoral culture,” in an effort to minimize Western impact on China’s pop culture. It was only a matter of time before men’s earrings were targeted, and earlier this year people started noticing that earring-wearing male actors and other pop icons had their ears blurred. The hashtag #MaleTVStarsCantWearEarrings recently went viral online, with tens of thousands of people criticizing the move as discriminatory.

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Company Makes Employees Crawl Through the Streets for Not Meeting Sales Targets

A company in Shandong province, China, has come under fire for forcing six of its employees to crawl through the streets on their hands and feet as punishment for not meeting sales targets.

The humiliating procession reportedly took place in the city of Zaozhuang on January 14 and was recorded by shocked passers-by. Six people can be seen crawling on all fours through traffic behind a man carrying a red flag emblazoned with their company’s name. With no protection other than their office clothes, the punished staff struggles to keep up with the flag bearer, but somehow find the strength to keep going, probably fueled by the fear of losing their jobs.

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Family Rents $1,500-a-Month Studio Apartment for Two Cats, Because They Don’t Get Along with Their Dog

A Silicon Valley family was in the news recently for renting a $1,500-a-month living space for their two cats, because they didn’t get along with the dog they shared their previous home with.

David Callisch couldn’t be happier with the tenants living in the 425-square-foot studio apartment behind his house, in San Jose, California. They don’t drink, they don’t smoke and they never turn on the music too loud. That’s because Tina and Louise are two cats who live alone in the $1,500-a-month living space. Callisch planned to use it as an Airbnb, but when his friend Troy Good asked him if he could rent it from him for his daughter’s cats, he agreed. He was shocked by the request at first, but then decided he couldn’t ask for better tenants.

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Startup Plans to Send Pregnant Woman into Space to Give Birth

Netherlands-based startup SpaceLife Origin wants to send a pregnant woman 250 miles above the Earth to give birth to the first extraterrestrial baby in history, in the name of science.

Should our planet ever become unable to sustain human life, our species’ only hope would be to leave and settle elsewhere, be it a haven floating through space or another planet. But in order for this exodus to be a success, we first have to learn how to reproduce in space, and the founders of SpaceLife Origin want to get the ball rolling by sending a pregnant woman into space and having her give birth in zero gravity conditions. It sounds like a crazy idea, especially since humanity is a long way from becoming a spacefaring species, but SpaceLife Origin believes that our long-term survival depends on it.

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Guy Spends 20 Days in Total Isolation and Pitch Darkness as a Bet

How long do you reckon you could last in solitary confinement and total darkness? How about for a prize of $100,000? One daring poker player bet his friend that he could spend at least 30 days in such extreme conditions and underwent a high stakes 30-day experiment to prove it.

It all started last fall, as a friendly discussion between friends. Australian poker player Rory Young asked his buddy and fellow poker enthusiast Rich Alati how long he thought he could last in a small, dark room without any human interaction. Alati’s answer of 30 days seemed unrealistic to Young, and from there the stage for an unusual “prop bet” was set. Prop bets are designed to test the mental toughness of card players away from the poker table, and usually have very high stakes. This one was no different, with both players depositing $100,000 of their own money in an escrow account and agreeing to pay the other side if they lost the bet. Alati stood to win $100,000 if he managed to spend a full month isolated in a small, dark room, and Young would pocket the same amount if his friend quit before the deadline. The game was on!

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Ambrosia, the Controversial Treatment That Allows Older People to Fight the Effects of Aging with Young Blood

Blood transfusions have been used to save lives for decades, but now one startup wants to use the medical procedure to combat the effects of aging by injecting older people with young blood. The treatment is called “Ambrosia”, after the mythological food of the Greek gods, which granted whoever consumed it longevity or immortality.

It only takes two hours to have two liters of plasma from donors aged 16 to 25 into your body, but according to Ambrosia founder Jesse Karmazin, the results are nothing-short of miraculous. He once called it “plastic surgery from the inside out“, told one reporter that while the transfusion doesn’t grant immortality, it “comes pretty close”, and told another journalist that just one infusion of young blood “dramatically improves people’s appearance, their memory and their strength”. The company even ran a medical study that officially ended in January of 2018, but despite boasting about its “really positive” results, Ambrosia Medical has yet to make those results public. And that’s what makes this treatment so controversial in the eyes of many health experts – no one has ever offered any solid proof of its efficacy.

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Wellness Guru Calls Looking Directly at the Sun a “Form of Free Medicine”

Australian celebrity chef and Instagram wellness guru Pete Evans has come under fire for saying that “sungazing”, the act of looking directly at the sun, is a one of the best forms of free medicine.

“Every day I love to immerse myself in an experience within the cleansing ocean water as well as a brief gaze into the radiant light of the early rising or late setting sun,” Evans posted on Instagram. “These simple, yet powerful practices have got to be two of the best forms of free medicine on the planet for body, mind and spirit.”

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High-School Student Injects Himself with DNA Pattern Made from Bible and Koran Verses

Adrien Locatelli, a young bio-hacker from the French city of Grenoble, has been called an “idiot” for undergoing a bizarre DIY experiment in which he injected himself with a DNA pattern made from translated passages from the Bible and the Koran.

Locatelli, who is believed to still be in high-school, started off by selecting passages from the Christian and Muslim holy books that he wanted stored in his body in the form of DNA. He then assigned one of the four letters corresponding to the chemicals that DNA is made of (ACGT) to every character in the passages, in the order GACT. Using a free online tool, the daring experimenter translated the nucleotide information into protein sequences that he ended up injecting into his thighs. Why? Simply because he was curious to know if it could be done.

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Photo of Bright Underskin Tattoo on Burned Hand Sparks Online Controversy

A photo of a tattooed man’s hand with the top layer if skin damaged by a minor kitchen burn sparked a heated debate on social media site Reddit last week. That’s because the section where the skin was burned off revealed a tattoo so bright you could swear it was just inked.

The photo, posted by Reddit user uhmodijia, reportedly shows the hand of a “friend of a friend” who had just suffered a minor burn which only affected the top layer of his skin, exposing the dermis. The man had a blue rose tattooed on his skin a while ago, and like all tattoos do in time, it had started to fade. However, the patch of burned skin that had peeled off because of the burn revealed a much more vibrant copy of the same tattoo on his dermis. Apparently, tattoo guns reach deep into the skin, and while the tattoos on the first layer begin to fade just months after they’ve been inked due to multiple factors, they remain vibrant under this first layer of protective skin.

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The Levitating Stone of Shivapur, a Controversial “Miracle”

Every day, hundreds of tourists and devotees visit a shrine in Shivapur, a small village about 180 km east of Mumbai, in India, to witness a controversial “miracle” known as the Levitating Stone of Shivapur.

The Shrine of Qamar Ali Darvesh, a Muslim Sufi Saint who lived about 700 years ago, features an ancient stone that reportedly weighs 154lbs (90kg). Lifting this stone off the ground would normally require a lot of strength, but according to believers in the Levitating Stone miracle, it’s possible for a set number of men to lift it up over their heads with only their index fingers, but only after shouting Qamar Ali Darvesh’s name. This phenomenon has fascinated Indian Muslims for centuries, but many believe it’s nothing more than a gimmick.

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Chinese Company Fines Employees for Not Walking Enough

A Chinese real-estate company has been accused of taking a wrong approach to encouraging its employees to exercise. Workers claim that they have been fined 0.01 yuan for every step they failed to take to meet their monthly target of 180,000 steps.

Taking a set number of steps every day has become a big deal in China. Some health insurers use apps to track their clients’ daily walks, offering discounts on future plans if they meet their goals, and many schools reportedly require students to walk/exercise every day and routinely check the pedometer apps on their phones to ensure that they comply. Even private companies have jumped on the walking bandwagon, encouraging their workers to take a set number of steps per month, but if one recent news report is to be believed, some employers are taking things too far, opting to fine those who fail to reach the required target.

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Chinese Scientist Claims to Have Created the World’s First Genetically Edited Babies

Chinese researcher He Jiankui recently shocked the entire world after revealing that he had altered the DNA of twin girl before birth, to make them immune to the HIV virus and AIDS. If his claims prove to be true, these twins would be the world’s first genetically-edited babies.

Professor He revealed his controversial genetic editing work earlier this week. In a video posted on YouTube, he claims to have used gene-editing tools to eliminate a gene called CCR5 in order to make a pair of twin girls, called Lulu and Nana, resistant to the HIV virus, should they ever come in contact with it. Speaking at a genome summit in Hong Kong, on Wednesday, the Chinese scientist defended his work and talked about the stigma attached to HIV/Aids in China. However, many of his peers believe that He Jiankui has gone too far, warning that meddling with the genome of an embryo could cause long-term problems not only for the individual, but entire future generations.

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Christian Missionary Killed by Reclusive Tribe After Going to Their Remote Island to “Declare Jesus”

A young Christian missionary has been killed after venturing to North Sentinel Island, a protected island in the Indian Ocean home to a 30,000-year-old tribe known to aggressively repel outsiders, in order to “declare Jesus”.

27-year-old John Allen Chau is believed to have been killed by a volley of arrows shot by members of the Sentinelese tribe shortly after encroaching on their remote island. He had been trying to make contact with the reclusive natives for years, and on Saturday he paddled to the island in a kayak, despite the warnings of several fishermen he had paid to take him close to it. According to eyewitnesses, Chau was hit by an arrow shortly after reaching the island, and his body was later dragged deeper inland and buried. In a journal he left fishermen before venturing to North Sentinel Island, the young explorer wrote that he knew he risked being killed but that it was “worth it to declare Jesus to these people”.

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