Category Archives: NEWS

A Street Artist Raises Homelessness Awareness In An Awesome Way. A Must See.

Poverty and homelessness are two poorly discussed topics in America. The number of impoverished people has sharply increased in recent memory. They sleep on the streets, panhandle for food, and often can’t get a job no matter how hard they try.

To help jump start the conversation on poverty, an anonymous street graffiti artist named Skid Robot goes around Los Angeles armed with a can of spray paint, a basket of food, and a full heart. He paints imaginary homes for those most in need. His work drew the attention of many across America today, showcasing the incredibly tough lives these individuals face.

Enjoy his thought provoking work for yourself. More importantly, please take the time to consider helping those most in need.

(via Vice / Bored Panda)

If you want to support his work, or help spread it, check Skid Robot’s Instagram page for more tremendous work. It’s truly inspiring, and worth sharing until we can finally start the proper (and necessary) discussion on this subject.

A Bouquet of Any of These Bizarre Flowers Beats Roses Any Day. So Strange.

Everyone loves flowers. They’re pretty, they smell nice, and they brighten up a room. Florist shops and gardens can boast a good variety of flower types, but we doubt that you can find any of these at your grocer’s florist section. And for some of them, you should be glad. Check out these beautiful, but bizarre, flowers from around the world.

Tricyrtis hirta, or Toad lily

Native to Japan, this perennial looks more like a starfish than a flower.

Fritillaria

The name “Fritillaria” comes from the Latin word for “dice box” and refers to this flower’s unusual drooped shape as well as its checked pattern. It’s also known as the chess flower for this reason.

Lady Slippers (Cypripedioideae)

These flowers have a pocket-like petal that resembles a puffy slipper

Ghost Orchid (Dendrophylax lindenii)

The endangered ghost orchid is native to Florida, Cuba and the Bahamas, and resembles nothing so much as a miniature, bowlegged Cthulhu.

Jade Vine (Strongylodon macrobotrys)

This aqua-colored vine is in the pea family, and is closely related to the runner and kidney beans, and is native to the Philippines.

Passion Flower (Passiflora incarnata)

There are many types of passion flowers that can be found throughout Asia and the Americas. The same plants produce passionfruit. They’re a favorite of hummingbirds and come in a variety of striking colors and shapes, but we like the psychedelic incarnata.

Datura

Also called angel’s trumpets, the flowers of the datura genus are highly toxic, producing severe states of delirium, sometimes resulting in death. It was a popular drug for both suicide and murder in Europe and Asia.

Zebra Blue (Primula)

Related to the primrose and cowslip, this patterned flower is always stylish.

Balloon Flower (Platycodon grandiflorus)

Before blooming, the aptly-named balloon flower’s buds appear as bright bubbles. Native to East Asia, its roots have long been used as an anti-inflammatory in China and Korea, and is a popular ingredient in salads.

Beehive Ginger (Zingiber spectabile)

The actual flowers can be seen protruding from the “beehive” structure at the top of this plant’s stems, which can reach 15 feet in height. This member of the ginger family is used in medicine as an anti-infammatory and to treat burns.

Flying Duck Orchid (Caleana)

Guess how this one got its name.

Chinese Lantern (Abutilon × hybridum)

This cultivar group comes in a variety of shapes and colors, but this bright, bowl-shaped flower is certainly eye catching.

Titan Arum (Amorphophallus titanum)

The less-pretty name for this enormous flower is the “corpse flower,” because it smells like rotting meat to attract carrion-eating pollinators. It also produces heat, and when it’s blooming, it’s about the same temperature as a human body. It can reach about 10 feet in height, and takes 7 to 10 years to mature to the point of blooming.

Hookers Lips (Psychotria elata)

No, really, that’s the name. These lip-shaped flowers can be found in Central and South America. The red parts aren’t petals, but bracts, which protect the actual flowers inside. Eventually, the “lips” of this flower open further, revealing the flower.

White Egret Orchid (Pecteilis radiata)

This orchid, native to Central and Eastern Asia, resembles a feathery white bird. It’s the official flower of the Setagaya ward of Tokyo.

Black Bat Flower (Tacca chantrieri)

Named for its black color and its vaguely bat-shaped petals, this flower is native to Southeast Asia. In keeping with their goth color scheme, they prefer to stay out of the sun.

Holy Ghost Orchid (Peristeria elata)

Not to be confused with the ghost orchid, the holy ghost orchid of Central America gets its name from its resemblance to a dove. It might not be that holy, though: it smells like beer. Sadly, these plants are highly endangered due to overharvesting and illegal trafficking, and face extinction.

Sporting Flowers (various species)

Botanists call this phenomenon “sporting,” and it means that one part of a plant spontaneously mutates. The results, seen here, are striking two-color flowers.

Snake Gourd Flower (Trichosanthes cucumerina)

This delicate, lacy flower grows a long, snake-shaped fruit and is native to South Asia, although it’s been naturalized in warm regions across the globe. The fruit and the greens are edible.

Naked Man Orchid (Orchis Italica)

Well, you can see how these orchids got their name. The flowers are so silly-looking that people were convinced they were hoaxes, but these little guys are quite real.

Hoya Wax Flower (Hoya)

These nubby little flowers look like candies.

Pink Moth Orchid (Phalaenopsis)

Close up, this otherwise fairly standard-looking orchid looks more like a bird in flight than a moth, but it’s still reallt interesting.

Monkey Orchid (Dracula simia)

This orchid is notable for its resemblance to a sad monkey.

Japanese Camellia (Camellia Japonica)

This flower isn’t weird in shape or color, but rather in its perfect spiraling petals. They grow only at altitude of 1,000 feet or higher, and bloom in the colder weather.

Epiphyllum

These plants flower rarely, and only at night. They are extremely delicate, and picking them can damage the whole plant.

Snapdragons (Antirrhinum)

The flowers of the snapdragon are bright and showy, but things get weird when the flowers fade, leaving beind these ominous-looking, if miniature, seed pods.

From the ethereally lovely to the kind of icky to the downright weird, nature is pretty amazing!

What You’re Seeing Here Isn’t Photoshopped, But You’ll Wish It Was…It’s Shocking.

Mexico has seen a lot of economic improvement in recent years, but it still has a long way to go. Despite a growing middle class, there is still a huge segment of the population that is impoverished.

According to the Wilson Center, almost 46 percent of people in Mexico live in poverty. While rural residents in poverty suffer just as much, the inequality problem is especially explicit in big cities like Mexico City (as you’ll see).

To provoke discussion on the issue, Mexican bank, Banamex (owned by Citigroup), launched a graphic public awareness campaign. It depicts the stark reality of poverty in one area of Mexico City. The bank hired photographer Oscar Ruiz to take some aerial pictures of the Santa Fé district in there. What he found is extremely disturbing. 

Here you see the dilapidated buildings and houses of impoverished neighborhoods, butting up against the stunning villas and condos of a rich neighborhood.

Most of these area are separated by just a line of trees and fences.

The tagline on the ads reads: “This image has not been modified, it’s time to change that.”

These pictures are now up on billboards, and in publications across the country.

(H/T: Adeevee)

That is disturbing. It’s crazy to think that income inequality can get that bad. Don’t forget to share this story on Facebook and spread the word about the dangers of poverty. 

I Had No Idea It Would Be THIS Expensive To Live In Venezuela. Wow.

Inflation is common in countries during an economic crisis, but the rapid nature of inflation in Venezuela is too much. Good luck feeding your family when vegetables run you nearly $20. You can forget about washing that down with a can of Coca-Cola, too, as one can be bought for $5.56. In the United States, you could get four 2-liter bottles of Coca-Cola for that kind of money. If you think those prices are bad, brace yourself before you look at the cost of other everyday items in Venezuela. Take a look.  

Rice Cooker

Colored Pencils

(via Reddit)

These prices are so bad, it makes doing your shopping at a movie theater’s snack bar seem like a good financial decision. Over a grand for sneakers? That’s too much.

A Few Pictures That Make Us Happy That Disco Is A Thing Of The Past.

You can hear faint influences of Disco in modern music, but boy am I glad that the fashion hasn’t followed. Just in case you forgot, here is what we used to look like when we all had Disco Fever…

It wasn’t pretty.

EMMY AWARD WINNING?! Oh boy.

Just in time for Christmas!

Yuh huh.

Oh yea, they made a Star Wars disco album.

Oh Disco, you so silly.

He looks pained in that second picture.

Easy, fellas. Easy.

Only the sexiest.

The classic Disco dance move, the raptor hand.

Look at these former dudes, but now studs.

These kids are super into it.

Oh man, look at how fashionable these guys are.

As if Disco wasn’t bad enough.

*Shudders*

We all make some fashion mistakes over the years… but yes? Yikes. If I ever say that I need a pair of Bell Bottoms, please do me a favor and slap me, because I’ve gone insane. Share this post if you remember these Disco days.

The Skeleton Coast Is A Real Place On Earth…And It’s So, So Creepy.

The Skeleton Coast spans from Namibia to Angola. It’s one place where you wouldn’t want to find yourself without fresh water and–oh, yeah–a camera. While the Bushmen of the Namibian Interior have dubbed it “The Land God Made in Anger,” there’s no denying that as intimidating as it may be, it sure is beautiful. If you’re into desolation and scary animals remains, that is. I mean, there’s a reason why Portuguese sailors once referred to it as “The Gates of Hell.”

It’s called the Skeleton Coast because of the whale and seal bones that once littered the shore from the whaling industry.

Although the coast is also home to many shipwrecks as well.

More than a thousand vessels found their final resting place here.

(via list25)

So beautiful but so, so scary. I don’t think I’ll be planning any vacations out there any time soon, but I think I’ll keep admiring the pictures of the people who do make the trek.

I Had No Idea It Was Possible For A Subway Ad To Be So Moving.

Barncancer Fonden noticed a favorable reaction to a Swedish shampoo ad featuring a woman with “waving” hair that activated upon a subway train’s arrival. They decided to go a similar route with their advertisement, but added  something to the end of the spot that’s moving in its own right. At first, it’s a fun and interactive poster that takes advantage of today’s technology. It then turns into a sobering reminder of a reality that many of us are quick to forget about. Take a look at the ad below.

(via Barncancer Fonden)

It’s difficult not to be moved by that.

Here Are 16 Pieces Of Undeniable Proof That America Is Really Weird. #14 Is Hilarious.

If you live in the United States of America, then you’ll know it’s a little different from other countries around the world. It’s a relatively young nation and a melting pot of different cultures. You may think you know how the US differs from other countries, but you probably don’t know the half of it. Here are some interesting ways that the United States is a little weird, relative to the rest of the world. These facts may make you feel a little proud… but also a little strange.

1.) We’re too cool to use Celsius.

2.) What is this “ananas” thing you speak of?

3.) It’s called “world cup soccer,” people.

4.) Only losers use the metric system.

5.) We’re going to make things REAL confusing for you.

6.) No big deal.

7.) LOLOL, labeling?

8.) All of our cities are big. ‘Merica.

9.) The cool kids hate the 24-hour clock.

10.) Not to brag, but…

11.) Because Internet forms know the most popular country

12.) We also have tall buildings.

13.) America also loves its gold.

14.) USA! USA! USA! We’re the #1 Superbowl Champs.

15.) But we’re not so special when it comes to baseball…

16.) But we’ve got the moon covered.

If you’re proud to be an American, then you’re also proud to be a little weird (that’s not a bad thing). The US marches to the beat of its own drum…  celebrate it by sharing this article!

How Much Would You Shell Out For A House Like This? Pun Completely Intended.

This traditional Chinese house on the secluded Lingshan Island (off the eastern coast of China) recently had an interesting makeover. Owner Xiao Yongsheng initially wanted to renovate it using modern designers and architects. However, Yongsheng was put off by the high cost of the construction due to the location. What he did instead is pretty amazing.

Instead of hiring contractors, Yongsheng started collecting shells from the beach.

Over the next two years, Yongsheng managed to cover the entire house with seashells.

Here’s how Yongsheng describes his project: “I’d always liked shells, but it never struck me to use them until I was walking on a beach one morning and came across a very unusually colored clam shell and then it hit me. I realized I was sitting next to a huge, free supply of beautiful building material.”

“I used them for everything,” he said. “For decoration, for roof tiles, as handles, and even crushed up to make mosaics. They are everywhere.”

At the moment, the house is used as a museum for displaying the history of the island and local fishermen.

What started as a pet project quickly became the most popular tourist attraction on Lingshan Island.

Via: Fun Start

This house is sure to cause some waves in the design community. You have to admire the dedication it took to accomplish something like this. The house is just so fascinating.

I Had No Idea This Was The World’s Scariest Job, But It Actually Makes Sense.

Take a minute. What’s the scariest job that you can possibly imagine yourself having? If you’re like a majority of Americans, the scary job you thought of was being a politician. Yep, that’s right, Americans are afraid of being politicians. This is according to a survey of 56,857 Americans conducted by the jobs website CareerBuilder.com.

If being a politician is at the top of people’s scary jobs lists, what other terrifying positions are in the top 10? I think you’re going to be surprised. 

10.) Parent.

There are more parental jobs in the United States than you can count. But being a parent makes people nervous for well…pick a reason. There are so many.

9.) Stand-Up Comedian.

40 percent of Americans are afraid of public speaking. So it only makes sense that those people would also be deathly afraid of performing in public whether it’s as a comedian or some other form of entertainment.

8.) Radio, Cellular, and Tower Equipment Technicians. 

Do you have a fear of heights? Well then this job is definitely not for you. I personally couldn’t imagine spending my days strapped to the top of a giant structure trying to install expensive, high tech equipment. 

7.) Mortician. 

I think it’s telling of the real fears of Americans that this job is so far down the list. Nevertheless it is a pretty creepy job to have, especially if you’re afraid of zombies. The morticians are always the first ones to go in zombie movies.

6.) Animal Trainer.

This one might depend a bit on which animals you’re trying to train. I think it’d be less terrifying to train puppies, than it would be to train sharks or tigers. Then again, maybe not much if you have allergies. 

5.) Crime Scene Investigator.

For this job most people say they’re afraid of the blood, and the disappointment of telling people that the job is nothing like it is on TV. 

4.) Kindergarten Teacher.

I totally understand this one. Have you ever seen a room full of kindergartens that wasn’t in, or near total chaos? These teachers are the bravest among us. Not to mention all those little kid germs. Yuck.

3.) Security Guard At Teen Pop Concerts.

People say that this job scares them because of the fear of being stampeded by hoards of screaming tweens. I also share this fear.

2.) Microbiologist.

One word explains why people are afraid of this job: Ebola.

1.) Politician.

Yes, being a politician is the scariest job to have in America. I suppose it’s not hard to see why. It’s the perfect storm of the fear of public speaking, rejection, and a huge level of accountability. Yeah thanks, but no thanks.

(H/T: Huffington Post)

To be honest, I expected more people to be afraid of being a stand-up comedian than a politician. I suppose we can at least thank our elected officials for taking on the jobs that no one really wants, right?