Monday, March 24, 2014
Over the course of one hour on the Saturday before the 2002 summer solstice, Simon Sleigh, an organic vegetable farmer from the village of Hawkchurch in Devon, England, crammed 76 feet of stinging nettles down his ravenous maw. The notion of ingesting nettles in some form isn’t odd, given the ubiquity and touted health benefits of teas, infusions, and even beers made from the weed. But eating the plant straight is another matter. Spiny stalks aside, each nettle leaf is tipped with thousands of microscopic hairs that, when brushed, detach as needles and inject a cocktail of irritating chemicals into whatever flesh tries to disturb them. The tongue and throat are abraded. The mouth turns black. And sometimes the nettles start to ferment in the gut with an audible gargling noise.
Sleigh wasn't alone. He embarked on this test of endurance alongside several dozen others and a crowd of hundreds who’d turned up for one of southern England’s numerous bizarre spring traditions: Dorset’s own World Nettle Eating Championship, in the town of Marshwood.
Airlines today just aren’t up for a good party anymore. Look at those fancy folks hanging out in comfy swivel chairs, ordering Martinis and asking attractive strangers, “So, do you come here often?“ Don’t they look like they’re about to have the best flight of their lives?
The 1970s was without doubt, a golden age of air travel. It was the era that saw the upper decks of Boeing 747s turn into full-scale cocktail lounges and restaurants for first class flyers. On the lower deck, there were also coach or economy lounges. Continental Airlines had a pub while American Airlines had an infamous piano bar.
Qantas Airline’s 747B boasted a luxurious “Captain Cook First Class Lounge” Here’s a closer peak into life on the upper deck…
Do you ever wonder, "How much of this can I accidentally ingest before I die?" Yeah, so do we. For your safety (and enjoyment) here's a bunch of stuff you should only enjoy in small quantities or not at all. Some things just don't belong in your mouth.
While it’s usually challenging to trace the origins of specific cocktails (with all the drinking the details get lost), we understand pretty well how ice got into all of them. It started when one entrepreneur named Frederic Tudor had the idea to harvest lake and pond ice from New England states and sell it in hotter countries. He began sending ships full of ice from Boston to Martinique and Cuba in 1806, expanded the business to Southern US states, and his ice reached as far as India. In the process he created the ice trade.
For centuries, professional letter writers have helped millions of illiterate Indians but many have long disappeared from the cities - but not in Delhi, where one man claims to be the last letter writer left in the country's capital.
Wednesday, March 05, 2014
Even if you're not among the 63 percent of Americans who drink coffee every day, caffeine is hard to avoid. It's all over your corner store, from energy drinks to colas and bottles of iced tea to cans of Starbucks "Refreshers." For a while there, it was looking like even your gum was going to be caffeinated.
Romain Jacquet-Lagrèze and his latest photographic series, titled Wild Concrete. It shows a singular Hong Kong phenomenon: trees and plants that grow out of bare concrete walls all around the city. It's shocking to see how stubborn nature is.
Labels: Hong Kong
One of the most dangerous fireworks festivals in the world is held once a year at the end of the Chinese New Year in Tainan City, Taiwan. Here, thousands of bottle rockets are ignited from a "beehive" to ward off evil spirits and bring good luck to those who are in the path of the rockets.
No propaganda can hide the stark contrast between South Korea and North Korea as seen from orbit. A buzzing megalopolis and a bright constellation of cities versus a sea of nothingness and a capital that looks miserable despite the fact that it houses 3.26 million people.
One day last year, an engineer and I went to a pizza place for lunch. The engineer told me he wasn't very hungry, but he said he was going to get the 12-inch medium instead of the 8-inch small — because the medium was more than twice as big as the small, and it cost only a little bit more. This sort of blew my mind.