Interesting Words That Don’t Translate

April 10, 2014

It was Rudyard Kipling who said that words are the most powerful drug of mankind. But unlike more conventional drugs, certain words have no use once they cross the border. Cultures make language in their image, and sometimes there are linguistic “reflections” in one language that simply don’t find their partner in another. Enter these fantastic words, each of which encompasses feelings and emotions that the English language can only use entire phrases to define.

Interesting Words: Toska, Russian

Though the word can roughly be translated as sadness or melancholy, author Vladmir Nabokov had much more distinct description of the endearing term:

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Burning Man Festival: Where You Can Buy Acceptance

April 9, 2014
Burning Man Sky View

Source: The Atlantic

How much does freedom from judgment cost? To Burning Man Festival coordinators, just $380. The steep ticket price affords you a communal experience where expectations and conventional social norms are tossed out the window. Complete self-expression is encouraged, and so long as you pay up, you too can enjoy what life looks like from outside society.

Burning Man Winged Bus

Source: Ignite

Truck Sculpture

Source: Snow Brains

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The 10 Most Dangerous Places On Earth

April 7, 2014

Dangerous Places: Verkhoyansk, Russia

Dangerous Places Verkhonyansk

Source: Sunnyscope

Located deep in the heart of Siberia and 3000 miles east of Moscow, Verkhoyansk is one of the coldest cities in the world. Referred to as the Cold Pole, the city is well-known for its endless winters, with the Yana River frozen solid nine months of the year. Winter temperatures fall between minus 60 and minus 40 degrees Fahrenheit, and from September to March, the city averages fewer than 5 hours of sunlight every day. For most of its history Verkhoyansk was used as an exile city by czars and Soviets. Nowadays, 1500 people call it home and extreme tourists make regular appearances there. Think “Winter is Coming”… or more like, here to stay.

Verkhonyansk Trucks

Source: Blogspot

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6 Strange Museums Around The World

April 2, 2014
Strange Museums Sewer

Source: Flickr

From the mundane to the bizarre, if it exists, there is probably a museum somewhere dedicated to it. Both in the United States and abroad, people are infinitely fascinated by things, their variety, and their history.

Below are six items so arcane or lackluster that dedicating more than a moment’s thought to them—let alone a museum—is already quite the task. But in this world, is anything really shocking anymore? Some are interesting, some disturbing, and some may be considered flat-out gross, but in our human quest to satiate our curiosities, we collect, we curate, and we open the doors to anyone with similar intellectual appetites.

Strange Museums: The Paris Sewer System – Paris, France

Strange Museums Sewer Museum

Source: Panoramio

The Paris underground has long been known for its hidden catacombs filled with skeletons and other mysteries, but what few people are aware of is that citizens and tourists have also been exploring the city’s underground sewer systems since the 1800’s. There are displays of sewage history directly within the pipes and tunnels of ‘Gay Paree’. As you can imagine, while the history visitors are presented with while traipsing about a city’s centuries-old inner workings is rich, it also stinks.

Strange Museums Sewer Museum

Source: WordPress

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Modern Sword Fighting In Japan

March 31, 2014

Hidden behind the shadows of modern skyscrapers, two men take part in the ancient art of Samurai sword fighting. Despite the evolution of weaponry and technical innovations therein, Japanese sword fighting has maintained much of its original integrity.

5 Terrible, Scary, Brilliant And Weird Parasites

March 25, 2014
Parasites Fish

Source: Flickr

The dirty little secret at the heart of nature is the parasite. For every animal we humans regard as noble—your tigers, your dolphins, whatever—there are thousands of these horrifying little monsters. So numerous are these microscopic tyrants that naturalists believe that an actual majority of animals might be parasites. It’s entirely possible that life on Earth exists solely to provide adequate hosts for our many, many parasites. And you thought looking at a starry sky made you feel insignificant.

Here are five of the weirdest that we know of so far.

Weird Parasites: Cymothoa exigua: Worst. Kisser. Ever.

Weird Parasites Exigua Pale

Source: Neo Gaf

Human beings can come to terms with some parasitic diseases. Malaria, for example, is refreshingly straightforward. You get bitten by an infected mosquito, you get sick and you (maybe) die. The parasite is just trying to weaken you to the point that you can’t swat the next mosquito that comes to drink your infected blood. It’s nothing personal.

Some parasites, however, despite being harmless to humans, make their living in such a gothic horror show manner that we really can’t be comfortable sharing a planet with them. Meet Cymotha exigua, the marine isopod that thinks it’s a tongue.

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