He’s known in Alpine countries variously as Krampus, Klaubauf, Bartl, and Wubartl, a beast-like, half-goat, half-demon creature that takes over where Santa left off (think of Krampus as the anti-Santa). While Saint Nicholas rewards well-behaved boys and girls with gifts, Krampus captures naughty kids, places them in his oversized-sack, and carries them away to his lair or worse, hell. Traditionally, each year during the Christmas season, men in Austria, Bavaria, Germany, Hungary, Czech Republic, and Croatia dress up in frightening elaborate Krampus costumes and roam the streets looking for small kids to chase, scare, and beat with sticks.
It will forever be known as one of the luckiest breaks in poultry history – the day a propitious hatchet job left “Miracle Mike” (aka Mike the Headless Chicken) in a one-in-a-million state that allowed him to live for over a year without a head. The unusual event started routinely enough. On September 10, 1945, Mrs. Clara Olsen of Fruita, Colorado, sent her husband Lloyd Olsen out to the chicken pen on a routine mission to bring back a chicken for the evening’s meal. Clara’s mother was coming over for dinner and Lloyd wanted to make the evening special for his mother-in-law. And what a memorial evening it turned out to be…
Since the 1980’s, hundreds of mysterious “Toynbee tiles” have been found as far west as Kansas City, Missouri and as far east as Boston, Massachusetts. Verified reports of the Toynbee tiles have come from at least 25 cities around the world. Intricately patterned, they’ve been found laid in the sidewalks, in the middle of highways, and on […]
We’re not quite ready to call it perpetual motion yet but it is indeed an interesting machine. Norwegian artist and mathematician Reidar Finsrud is an outside the box thinker that has devised a machine, called the Finsrud Wheel, that he believes achieves true perpetual motion albeit, even he cannot explain how. The machine reportedly uses a combination of gravity, magnets, pendulums, and a little push to get it started in order to generate continuous motion.
Discovered on a shipwreck off the coast of Antikythera in 1901, some have called the Antikythera Mechanism the first analog computer; others the first mechanical computing device. Consisting of a sophisticated, intricate system of bronze gears, wheels, and differential cogs, the technology used to construct the device resembles that of 18th century clocks. You can imagine the shockwave that rocked the scientific community when the device was conclusively dated to the second century B.C., thousands of years earlier than it should have been possible to construct.
70-year-old Hua Chi, from Tongren, China, seems disappointed that his aging body only allows him to pray 1,0000 times each day (only 500 if the weather is cold). In his younger days, his strict daily ritual consisted of 2,000 – 3,000 prayers each day. In fact, Chi has prayed in his Tongren monastery for nearly 20 years, in the same spot, each day. His prayer routine is so consistent, he has left 1 1/2 inch deep footprints ingrained in the monastery’s floor. Check out the photo montage below.
If you saw the movie, Premium Rush, you probably figured those crazy New York bike messengers must be tamer in real life than they were portrayed in the movie. You’d be wrong. Premium Rush (and Quicksilver, another movie with a bike messenger theme) actually offer a very close portrayal of a professional bike messenger. Bike messengers are paid on commission, based on how many messages they deliver. Financially, it’s in their best interest to go fast – very fast. Safety wise – well… not so much. A recent study found their on-the-job injury rates that required time off from work were 1,300% higher than the national average (and three times higher than dangerous meat-packing industry).
For more than 800 years, man had known that finding a way into the delicate brain cavity and cutting or poking at the liquid filled tissue, would produce a dramatic change in a person’s behavior and demeanor. It was commonly used to “drive out the devil”. Although archaic and seldom used, by 1935, the practice had returned to favor.
Finding the earliest version of any given common fairy tale is an almost impossible endeavor. Before the Grimm Brothers gathered their collection of well-known German folk fairy tales into a single volume, these stories followed an oral tradition, being passed on from grandmother to mother to children. What you may not know is that these earliest oral versions of our most popular fairy tales, and in some instances the earliest print version, are far from the clean-cut “good guy always wins” tales we use to lull our children to sleep at night. The earlier versions of our classic fairy tales included stories of murder, cannibalism, incest, rape, and various other despicable acts.
Most people have lain in bed late at night, flipping through channels, and paused to watch the action when they ran across a professional wrestling match. Smashing head butts, thudding body slams, and brutal back breakers give pause to the viewer – how do that do that without getting hurt or worse – killed? Is professional wrestling real, or is it fake?
There’s an ancient map that is quite intriguing. It is extremely accurate and charts much of the land that had yet to be discovered. Even more remarkably, it charts Antarctica land mass which was not even possible until ground penetrating radar was invented that let us peer beneath the mile-thick ice covering.