Lucha Libro: Peruvian Writer Spectator Combat

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It’s a twist on Lucha Libre, Mexico’s version of pro wrestling, where competitors put on masks and pseudonyms to duke it out in a ring.

Peru’s Lucha Libro is kind of like that, without the violence. It’s literary “wrestling.” New writers don masks, and head onto a stage where they’re given three random words, a laptop hooked up to a gigantic screen, and five minutes to write a short story.

At the end of a match, the losing writer has to take off his or her mask. The winner goes on to the next round, a week later. And the grand prize? It’s a book contract.

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Via PRI.

Arctic Reindeer Change Their Eye Color on the Season

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In summer, Arctic reindeer eyes are a golden hue. In winter, they turn deep blue.

Scientists think the blue eye’s compressed structure actually scatters some of the light toward other photoreceptors on the sides of the eye. In essence, the blue eye may be an evolutionary adaptation to more effectively recycle light for an animal that has to survive several months of the year in inescapable darkness.

[O]ne group of reindeer never made the shift from golden eyes to blue, despite the fact that Norwegian winter was very much upon them.

The researchers observed this group at the University of Tromsø, which is situated near town and is in proximity to permanent urban lighting. The eyes of these animals were green—apparently a transition color suitable for neither the full light of summer nor the full dark of the true winter typical of rural Norway.

Via Slate.

The Temple of Rats

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Karni Mata Temple (Hindi: करणी माता मंदिर) is a famous Hindu temple dedicated to Karni Mata at Deshnoke, 30km from Bikaner, in Rajasthan, India. It is also known as the Temple of Rats.

The most intriguing aspect of the temple is the 20,000-odd rats that call this temple home. These holy rats are called kabbas.

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Legend has it that Laxman, Karni Mata’s stepson (or the son of one of her storytellers), drowned in a pond in Kapil Sarovar in Kolayat Tehsil while he was attempting to drink from it. Karni Mata implored Yama, the god of death, to revive him. First refusing, Yama eventually relented, permitting Laxman and all of Karni mata’s male children to be reincarnated as rats.

If one of the rats is killed, it must be replaced with one made of solid gold. Eating food that has been nibbled on by the rats is considered to be a “high honor”.

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Via Wikipedia.

The Tale of Mike the Headless Chicken

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Mike became “the Headless Chicken” on September 10th, 1945 after being decapitated by his owner, Lloyd Olsen from Fruita, Colorado, who wanted to cook him for dinner.

During Mike’s attempted decapitation, Llyod hit all the wrong (or right) spots, leaving Mike headless but still alive. Baffled, the owner had a change of heart and decided to nurse the rooster back to health.

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Olsen took Mike to the University of Utah where flabbergasted scientists took a close look at the death-defying chicken. According to them, a blood clot prevented Mike from bleeding to death after Olsen’s ax had missed the jugular.

As if by miracle, Mike was still left with his left ear and most of his brain stem intact which was enough to keep this feathered critter healthy for the following two years of his life.

Apparently chicken’s reflexes lie in their brain stem which explains why Mike still attempted to peck and even sing – gurgle rather, despite his handicap.

Naturally, people being people: “Mike and Olsen’s story inspired other people to behead their chicken in an attempt to create another living headless miracle. Some unlucky birds did survive but only for a short time.”

WTF, people. Come on.

Via Oddity Central.

$400,000 Pigeon Tests Positive for Cocaine

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A South African laboratory that tested a number of Belgian racing pigeons has found that traces of doping in samples taken from six of them.

The results showed traces of drugs in no fewer than six birds. [T]races of cocaine were found in one of the birds tested.

All 20 samples had already been analyzed by a Belgian laboratory that found no traces of drugs in any of them.

Via Flanders News.

Wengenn in Wonderland

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As a mother of three boys [Sion Queenie Liao] always enjoys artworks that focus on her children and created some dreamy fairy tale like sceneries inspired by her indulging in fairy tales when she grew up.

After the birth of her first son she began to take pictures of him, frequently drawing inspiration from the beautiful works of Anne Geddes. After seeing the work of Ms. Adele Enersen on her sleeping daughter, she began to experiment similar ideas with her then three-month-old son Wengenn.

Her vision was to create a series of photos portraying him exploring his imaginary, enchanting fairytale-like world.

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Queenie Liao via igant.

Fake Severed Hands Sold for Halloween by Norwegian Discount Store

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The Europris discount shop thought putting realistic plastic human body parts in their freezers would help their customers get into the Halloween spirit.

However, they were rather surprised to discover that parents who came in with their kids were furious after, among witches and monster costumes, they found severed human body parts wrapped in plastic and packed just like ordinary meat products.

The bloody limbs, which came from a made-up butcher called “Chop Shop”, not only looked incredibly realistic, they also came with nutritional information stickers, which only added to the gruesomeness of the whole thing.

Best Facebook quote from an outraged client: “There’s no doubt my children would have been terrified if they’d seen this in the shops. I think it’s such a shame that we have an American tradition so violently forced down our throats.”

I wonder if they would sell these in bulk over the Internet? I wonder how many friends’ freezers I could sneak these into before anyone noticed…?

Via Oddity Central.