World’s Strangest

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The Meaning of the Olympic Rings

Withe games less than a week away, you see the Olympic rings everywhere! The symbol was an invention of Baron de Coubertin, who spurred the revival of the ancient Greek games as the modern Olympics in the late 19th century. After the 1912 Stockholm Games—the first Games featuring athletes from all five inhabited parts of the [...]

Radiation Reveals Unseen Van Gogh Painting

The electron synchrotron lab known as DESY in Hamburg, Germany made a startling discovery, and confirmed the authenticity of two of Van Gogh’s works, when they exposed Still Life with Meadow Flowers and Roses to X-ray and ultraviolet analysis. This painting of two wrestlers, assumed to be lost forever, was hiding underneath the layers of paint! Here’s [...]

Erwin Wurm’s Marshmallow Art

Well, these items are not actually made out of marshmallows–it just seems like it. Austrian artist Erwin Wurm has created an exhibit called “Wear Me Out” featuring items that people occupy such as sweaters, homes and odd Peep-looking… things (Peep/Human hybrids?) I’m not sure, but that may be the childhood home of the Stay-Puft marshmallow [...]

The Late Movies: Flash Mobs Around the World

Flash mobs, defined by Webster’s as “a group of people who organize on the Internet and then quickly assemble in a public place, do something bizarre, and disperse,” have become part of global pop culture. The clips below feature some that were organized for advertisements, some for commemoration, and some just for fun — but [...]

Strange Geographies: Abandoned Belgium, Part I

I recently spent eight days traveling around the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg, though explaining why I went is a bit complicated. The short version is that I was there on business: to film the interiors of abandoned houses. The somewhat longer explanation is that I have a novel coming out in June, and my publisher [...]

What Do the Olympic Rings Mean?

In 1894, Pierre Frédy, Baron de Coubertin—a French aristocrat and intellectual who had previously attempted to incorporate more physical education into the curriculum of the country’s schools—convened a congress in Paris with the goal of reviving the ancient Olympic Games (an idea Coubertin first introduced at a USFSA meeting in 1889). The congress agreed on [...]

Hail to the Thieves: Famous Heists We Love

A REAL LIFE “OCEAN’S ELEVEN”: The 2003 ANTWERP DIAMOND HEIST If you thought George Clooney’s Ocean’s Eleven character was smooth, check out the velvet finish on criminal mastermind Leonardo Notarbartolo. In February 2003, Notarbartolo and his gang, known as The School of Turin, pulled off one of the stealthiest heists in history. Daring to break into [...]

The Carrot Tree

Sometimes the best idea are the simplest! Marc of Wooster Collective posted this “carrot tree” in Antwerp, Belgium. Sadly, no other detail is forthcoming – does anyone know what this is all about? A viral campaign to make people eat their carrots? Link