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Japanese Company Offers Single-Person Karaoke Rooms

We now have one more reason to visit Japan – private Karaoke rooms.

Do you find yourself wishing that you could have had a little more practice before getting up to karaoke before all your friends? Or are you just a bathroom singer who prefers to sing alone, along with just music and lyrics? Either way, private karaoke rooms could be just as fun and exciting for you. The single-person karaoke room, also known as ‘1Kara’ in Japan, was launched late November, and has been gaining in popularity. The store is located in front of Kanda station in Tokyo and offers small, solo rooms, equipped with a table, chair, microphones, headphones and a small screen.

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Chinese Chef Builds His Own Jeep with Just $600

Qu Zhibo, a chef from Zigong City, China’s Sichuan Province, spent three years and just 4,000 yuan ($628) building his own knockoff Jeep. His efforts have made him somewhat of an Internet celebrity, in China.

I was convinced Chinese car enthusiasts can be very resourceful when it comes to building their own dream cars after seeing photos of a young man working on his home-made Lamborghini, so Qu Zhibo’s achievement just comes as a confirmation. Because he was busy running his own restaurant, Qu Zhibo took three years to complete work on his 2-meters-long, 1.5-meters-high Jeep, but he did use just 600 bucks to do it. The car, which many Chinese netizens called a “knockoff Hummer” was actually inspired by an American military vehicle, and even though right now it pretty much looks like a pile of junk on wheels, a bit of camouflage paint could go a long way.

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Designer Creates Shirt That’s More Expensive Than a Car

The Royals of ancient times wore clothes that were studded with precious stones and metals. Now you can too, if you are ready to pay an arm and a leg, that is. Or just five million rupees ($97,500).

This pricey shirt was created by an Indian designer, Amitabh Chandel. A descendant of a royal family himself, he says he wanted to create a shirt suitable for today’s royalty. What makes the shirt so expensive is the fine silk it’s made of, and the diamond buttons, set in gold. The shirt is in fact part of an entire collection, the price range starting at around 50,000 Rupees ($950). He says that modern royal men, as well as commoners are welcome to place orders for the shirts. Mr. Chandel says claims these shirts are a perfect blend of the practical and the royal. Since traditional royal attire cannot be worn every day, these shirts allow a sense of richness to pervade regular clothing.

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Taiwan Trades Lottery Tickets for Dog Poop

This is perhaps one of the most innovative methods ever employed to keep a city clean. The authorities in New Taipei City, northern Taiwan, promised the citizens a  free lottery ticket, in exchange for each bag of dog poop they collect from the street and hand over.

It has become a common sight in the city now, several citizens cleaning up the streets. The competition was started in early August, and so far 14,000 bags of dog waste have been handed in. In fact, the response to the campaign has been beyond the expectations of the city’s environment protection bureau, according to one official. The top prize of the lottery draw was gold worth T$ 60,000 (US $2000). The second and third prize were T$18,000 and T$12,000 respectively.

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Mom Buys Realistic Baby Doll, Treats it Like a Real Baby

36-Year-Old Ashleigh Kirby is obsessed with her new-born baby, Finlay. Only, Finlay isn’t a real boy. In a story that strongly reminds us of Pinocchio, Ashleigh is emotionally attached to a realistic, life-size baby doll, even more than with her own daughter when she was born.

Ashleigh lives with her 12-year-old daughter Becky in Andover, Hampshire. She separated from her partner when Becky was just five. After trying several years, she lost hope that she would ever find a suitable man and have babies again. Describing herself as strongly maternal, she wanted to have a baby in the house at any cost. When Ashleigh came across the ‘reborn’ dolls online, she immediately placed an order for one, priced at £250. She has since spent hundreds of pounds on the doll, on clothing, nappies and more. She takes the doll out to the park for a walk in a stroller, cuddles with it and even takes it shopping, treating it just like a real baby. Sometimes other women come over to her to see the baby, mistaking it for a real one. Ashleigh says she just plays along.

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Twitter User Gives Modern Twist to the Nativity Story, Gains Massive Following

A Twitter user has taken on the identity of Joseph of Nazareth, to give us a perspective of what he might have been going through during the birth of Jesus Christ.

The work of an anonymous tweeter from Germany has attracted thousands of followers on social networking site Twitter. He goes by the pseudonym Joseph Von Nazareth. His profile page, joseph_von_naza, is aimed at re-inventing the nativity. He writes “We have heard the story a thousand times, but nobody has ever thought about how Joseph felt about the whole thing.” The tweets began on Dec 1 and are written in German. The tweeter intends to continue until Christmas, narrating the nativity in 140-character messages right until then. For now, his tweets are focused on his girlfriend Mary and her pregnancy. He has been in a state of turmoil ever since he found out about it.

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Woman Lives with Both Her Boyfriend, Her Lover and Their Baby

We’ve seen polygamy, same-sex marriages and even threesomes. But what about the polyamorous? Defined as the practice of having more than one intimate relationship at a time with the full knowledge and consent of everyone involved, Jaiya Ma’s relationships are a perfect example of this.

This is the bizarre story of Jaiya, aged 34, and her two lovers – Jon Hanauer, 49, and Ian Ferguson, 44, along with – get this – the baby she’s had with Ian. Confused? Let’s start from the beginning. Jaiya and Jon met in 2000 and lived together for six years, when Jon suggested that she take a new lover… Incidentally, they had met at a Tantric Yoga class and fell in love when they were training to be teachers. At the time, Jaiya was engaged to another man, Tony, who wasn’t comfortable in an open relationship and called it quits. She then lived with Jon in an open relationship the whole time.

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Students Take Up Boxing to Become Better Musicians

 The students of the Eastman School of Music, Rochester, N.Y., learn more than just music. In groups, they are asked to attend classes of a highly different nature. Classes that test and train them physically, and teach them the basic skills of boxing.

While it’s perfectly understandable that a musician may enjoy a little physical exercise, fitness is not a priority for these students. They have taken up boxing to improve their music skills. It all started when their professor, James VanDenmark, took up the sport himself. The world renowned double bass soloist says the classes had a remarkable difference upon his skills on the instrument. He reports better bow control, more confidence, stamina and energy. Intrigued, VanDenmark began to send a few of his female students to learn boxing, along with some conditioning and strength building. When they displayed the same results, he made this a regular feature with all his students. He now sends them in groups to Rochester gym ROC Boxing & Fitness to learn boxing basics and practice strength training. The students, he says, are now able to produce a bigger and more focused sound from the big instrument.

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Fake Pregnancy Bellies Become Top Sellers in China

China is notorious for making cheap copies of almost every item in the world. And now, they seem to have moved on from man-made objects to replicating nature itself. The latest in the long list of fake Chinese items is a fake pregnancy belly. Put it on, and you can deceive anyone.

These artificial copies of pregnant women’s abdomens are made of silica gel, and are being sold on the internet. The silica gel makes them take on a very natural quality, close to human skin texture. Some online shop owners have said that the fake bellies are highly comfortable and have a flesh color. If you’re wondering what use anyone could possibly get out of fake pregnancy bellies, we have some answers for you. For now, the people who buy it are actors, purchasing them for performances. Others have bought it as a joke, and also to get an idea of how it feels to be pregnant. Apparently, the product is a hot seller online.

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Week in Hell – Five Days Locked in a Hotel Room, Making Art

It sounds like the title of a horror flick, but it’s actually a short video documenting artist Molly Crabapple‘s project, for which she locked herself in a hotel room covered the walls with doodles.

Molly started contemplating “what happens when an artist leaves their studio, their cliches, and their comfort zone and draws beyond the limits of their endurance” and she also wanted “to see what tarts and squidbeasts look like frollicking on a massive scale”. So she decided to spend her 28th birthday locked in an East Village room, covering the walls with art. She began by launching a Kickstarter fundraising campaign to help cover the cost of her daring project, including the photographic talents of Steve Prue. In September 2011 she did just what she promised, and spent five days locked in a room making art. Luckily, she wasn’t alone, as she brought along Keith Jenson from Brainwomb to document the experience, and also had a “cast of muses, musicians and miscreants” to keep her company.

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Guy Has over 10,000 URLs Tattooed on His Body

Pat Vaillancourt is the current record holder for the most web addresses tattooed on his body, with over 10,000 URL’s inked on his back and shoulders. That sounds like a lot, but he’s not stopping until his body is covered by 100,000 website addresses.

In 2010, 30-year-old Vaillancourt, from Quebec, Canada, decided he wanted to set a world record of his own, and because he wasn’t an athlete and he couldn’t do extreme stunts, he chose tattooing as the way to leave his mark on the world. “I want to break a Guinness World Record, but more importantly, I want to help others. And this is my way of doing so,” he said back then. People and businesses can pay $35 to have their URL tattooed on Pat’s body and listed on his website, Back2thelight.com, with half the proceeds being donated to help the people of Haiti and Somalia. Vaillancourt says the other half is used to pay for his tattoos and promote the project. If my calculations are correct, he hopes to ultimately raise $3.5 million, including expenses.

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Alexa Fisher – An 8-Year-Old Poker Prodigy

Alexa Fisher, from Texas, looks and talks like any other 8-year old girl. However, she has a skill that is most unusual for girls her age. She can play poker fabulously well. In fact, Alexa is so good at poker that she can take on card sharks seven times her age. She was introduced to playing cards at the age of three by her father Justin, a 35 year old poker enthusiast. He says he taught her the game to help improve her Math skills.

Justin began by having ESPN and other poker game shows on TV playing in the background all the time. He also used playing cards as a way to teach her to count and learn math skills before she began school. And his efforts payed off. Alexa slowly began to understand which cards were higher and recognized poker terminology, like a flush, a pair and three of a kind. He then went on to get her poker chips. By the age of four, when other kids are barely able to hold an entire pack of cards in their tiny hands, Alexa was could shuffle, deal and also knew the basic strategies of bluffing. When she reached five, she could play No-Limit Texas Holde’m like a pro. She slowly began to learn more games like Badugi, Double Flop Hold’em, and many other WSOP (World Series of Poker Tournaments) games.

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Students Claim Haunted Toilet is Causing Them to Faint and Scream

Kids love exchanging horror stories at school, even if it means weeks of sleepless nights. But what if a real ghost decides to make a guest appearance? It could cause kids to lose not just sleep but even their sanity. In Vietnam, it’s causing them to faint on a regular basis.

The students of Son Hoa Ethnic Boarding High School in the Son Hoa District claim to have had supernatural visitors in the bathroom at night, causing many of them lose consciousness. It all started with K Pa Ho Luon, a student of the school. He returned to his dorm one night  in November, from the toilet area, in a state of hysteria. He was talking gibberish, fell to the floor and began to scratch the walls and the floor. All this, just before he passed out. Luon was then rushed to the hospital by school authorities. When he recovered, he claimed to have met a ghost in the toilet.

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Photocopied Portrait Recreated with 3.2 Million Dots

People have been photocopying their body parts for a while now, and even though it’s still pretty funny, it’s not that impressive at it once was. But what about a portrait of a photocopied face recreated with over 3 million dots, is that impressive enough for ya?

Artist Miguel Endara started out with a portrait  of his father’s photocopied face, and somewhere along the way he decided to recreate it with millions of dots made with a variety of Micron pens. he took a piece of paper, drew an outline of his dad’s face with a pencil and started adding dots. As you can imagine, this kind of painstaking work takes a lot of patience, and luckily Miguel managed to keep it together for all the 210 hours it took him to finish his masterpiece. He even made a cool video documenting his amazing effort and posted a high resolution image of the portrait on his website, so you can actually see all of the 3.2 millions of dots he had to use.

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Germaphobe Artist Spends Four Days Living and Sleeping with Pigs

I’ve always thought that the best thing in the world would be getting paid to just eat and sleep. Well, Miru Kim, a Korean-American performance artist found a way to do just that. Except, she calls it a form of art. Influenced by Buddhist teachings that all livings beings are connected in a circular manner through life force, Kim wanted to mingle with animals and feel her existence more than ever.

She therefore decided to eat and sleep with pigs, naked, for four straight days. Starting last Friday, she ended up spending 104 consecutive hours in a makeshift pen right in front of her gallery, in the company of pigs. Her project “I Like Pigs and Pigs and Pigs Like Me,” for Art Basel in Miami, is in fact a small scale version of what she had done earlier, when she curled up naked next to pigs in hog farms.

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