May 2008 Archives

200x190.jpgA group of skydivers have starred in a live television advert on Channel 4.

The ad showed them as they jumped out of a plane above Madrid, Spain and spelt out the letters of car maker 'Honda' mid air.

The feat is all the more impressive when you consider they only had a three minute and 20 second window of time to complete it on live TV.

The team of 14 skydivers - which included European champion Phil Curtis - appeared to have problem with the letter N, but got there in the end.

The message is thought to have cost Honda £500,000 but one cheeky member of the crew broadcast his own on the cheap, bringing his gloves together to form the words "HELLO MUM".

200x190.jpgBrighton is the happiest place to live in the UK, a survey has revealed.

A whopping 94 percent of residents say they live in a happy home - compared to just 75 percent in Coventry.

Leeds came in second in the poll, followed by Edinburgh, Cardiff and Plymouth.

The research was conducted by O2 Home Broadband who say there are seven key factors to having a happy home - shockingly the internet company said a good broadband connection was one of them.

Other factors include: location, marital status, having children, your earnings and good neighbours.

200x190.jpgEU politicians are to set up their own social networking site to rival MySpace and Facebook.

The site is to be launched later this year as a cyberspace they can meet to discuss legislative proposals (that happens on MySpace all the time.)

It was hoped MyParl would lmake people feel closer to Brussels but it has already come under criticism for it's reputed £3million cost from MEPs - many of who are already on Facebook.

While members of the public will be able to access the site only MPs and MEPs would have profiles and be able to add comments.

It is planned the site will operate in the three main working languages of the EU - English, French and German - but users will also be able to add content in their own languages.

200x190.jpgBrave architects are to start improvement works on the cursed grave of William Shakespeare.

The Bard wrote a warning which was cut into the stone marker which sits above inside the Holy Trinity Church in his hometown of Stratford-upon-Avon.

"Blest be the man that spares these stones," it reads. "And curst be he that moves my bones."

But now renovations to the church mean that work will be conducted around the stone which has been worn down by visitors to the church.

200x190.jpgThe leaning tower of Pisa has been stabilized for the first time in its 800 year history.

Major engineering works should now mean the famous Italian tower is safe from toppling over for another 300 years.

Even as the 183-foot tower was being built constructors noticed the lean - caused by a poor foundation and shifting soil - and tried to correct it.

But the lean continued to develop and in 1990 the marble tower was closed for fears if may fall completely.

One of the rarest rhinoceros in the world has been filmed for the first time - and then promptly attacked the camera.

The footage was captured in Java, Indonesia and shows a female rhino with her calf before she charges at the lens knocking it over.

Motion-triggered cameras and infrared lights were used by the WWF in the month long operation to capture the previously unseen sights.

"With fewer than 60 Javan rhinos left in the wild, we believe this footage was well worth the risk to our equipment," said Adhi Rachmat Hariyadi, who heads up WWF-Indonesia's project in Ujung Kulon National Park.

200x190.jpgTwo men have spent a consecutive nine and a half hours shaking hands with each other in a bid to break a world record.

The pair from San Francisco now look to be the new record holders for the endurance handshake though The Guinness Book of World Records are yet to confirm this.

Kevin Whittaker and Cory Jens say they looked through the book for a record they thought they could break and ruled out any difficult ones.

The rules from Guinness for the endurance handshake are: Handshakers are not required to look each other in the eye or exchange pleasantries; they simply must grip palms and continuously move their hands up and down.

200x190.jpgThe Chinese Prime Minister has joined Facebook and with over 20,000 supporters signing up within two days he can now boast having the Great Wall of Facebook.

The Facebook page for Mr Wen -  the increasingly popular Chinese leader - appeared this week and supporters are signing up in their droves.

On Wednesday over 10,000 people added themselves to his profile which included a portrait and biographical details.

While the site says he is a fan of Chinese literature and baseball he has not (yet) installed Scrabulous.

Hug a hoodie - make them glow

200x190.jpgDavid Cameron may have said hug a hoodie - but a designer has gone one step further by making a special jacket for being hugged.

It may look like the sort of dark hoodie you would see worn by dangerous street gangs, but makers Studio 5050 say the £50 top is worn as a show of affection.

The 'Embrace Me' hoodie even contains sparkling lights on the back which ares switched on when wearers are hugged.

Rather than appeal to Britain's lawless teenagers the fitted dark-blue canvas hoodie, which is being sold online, it targeted at couples wanting to display their love for each other.

200x190.jpgA huge 101.27 carat diamond has sold at auction for £3,000,000 ($6m.)

The gem -  one of only four colourless diamonds over 100 carats ever to go on sale - was snapped up at Christie's auction house in Hong Kong.

Set in a tiara the diamond was put up for sale by an anonymous individual and bought by an auction first-timer bidding on the telephone.

It is not known if the buyer will wear the tiara but with the diamond being the size of a ping pong ball they may struggle to keep their head upright.

200x190.jpgThey may have been the largest creature that ever flew but these giant reptiles hunted their prey by walking, scientitss believe.

Azhdarchids had a ten-metre wingspan and lived 230-65 million years ago along with dinosaurs.

Until now it has been thought the monstrous reptiles lived like modern seabirds: as gull- or pelican-like predators flying over lakes and oceans, grabbing fish from the water.

But boffins at Portsmouth University have studied fossil distribution and footprints and now claim they were strongly adapted for life on the ground.

200x190.jpgA UFO has exploded over a southern Vietnamese island, according to reports.

The report "UFO explodes over Phu Quoc Island" comes from the state Vietnam News Agency only a day after Cambodia's air force retracted a report of a mysterious plane crash.

It says that villagers on the island heard a loud blast and later found chunks of grey metal on the scene.

The agency also reports that soldiers were sent out to look for the wreckage and local authorities have contacted airlines in Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand, but not found of any missing aircraft.

200x190.jpgThe BBC have received a number of complaints after Kirsty Wark wore a short dress to present Newsnight Review.

Hosting the show from Cannes the 53-year-old wore a black dress which ended several inches above her knee, nothing wrong so far you might think.

But viewers (and presumably Daily Mail readers) have been sending messages of complaint to the corporation that the mother-of-two was wearing a dress "much too short for a lady of her age."

Another irate poster on the BBC Newsnight blog added: "Could someone not have told Ms Wark that it would not be advisable presenting this show naked from the waist down?"

NASA needs plumber on space station

200x190.jpgDays after landing a probe on Mars NASA has been confronted with a more down to earth problem - their toilet is broken.

But it is not as easy as calling the plumbers in when your loo is 217 miles above the earth on the space station, anyway can you imagine the call out charge.

The problem is that the toilet is not producing enough suction to transport human waste away from a crew member’s body in zero-G.

Now NASA must try to find critical spare parts so the long-term hygiene of the international space station is not threatened.

200x190.jpgScientists believe that chubby cheeks are the key to being attractive to the opposite sex and looking youthful.

According to new research a deep fat compartment located within the cheek is vital to a youthful-looking face and helps eliminate lines around the nose and mouth.

The study by American Society of Plastic Surgeons named Angelina Jolie as having ideal cheeks.

“From the irresistible urge to pinch the cheeks of adorable infants to our admiration of Hollywood stars like Audrey Hepburn and Angelina Jolie, we’ve known for a long time that cheeks are vital to what we consider beautiful,” said Joel Pessa, MD, a co-author of the study.

200x190.jpgA Spanish estate agent who has been unable to sell his own apartment is to offer it as a prize in a five Euro raffle.

Miguel Marina bought the 320,000 euro pad near Madrid in 2005 but has recently been unable to keep up with mortgage payments.

After trying to sell the flat he will now give it to the winner of a raffle he is holding, with tickets selling for just five euros each.

Speaking on his website (thefiveeuroflat) he says he came to the decision after many sleepless nights worrying about debts.

200x190.jpgBoffins have developed a revolutionary new diet pill that leaves the taker feeling full as soon as they start eating.

It is now thought the pill could be made available to the public within three years and become a viable alternative to gastric banding, surgery or stomach stapling.

In tests, takers of Tesofensine - which works by altering the brain chemicals controlling appetite - have lost up to one and half stone in just six months.

Study leader Arne Astrup, president of the International Association for the Study of Obesity, studied the effects of the drug on 200 overweight men and women.

200x190.jpgScientists believe men spend hours playing computer games because it satisfies a basic urge to 'conquer'.

Winning a game on a Xbox 360 or Playstation 3 is now thought to produce primal rewarding feelings which can be addicting - explaining why so many men are hooked on the games.

Researchers at Stanford University in California tested men and women as they played a video game, monitoring the activity in their brains.

They found that while both were able to understand and play the game, men had a much greater drive to do well.

200x190.jpgScience-fiction fans are rallying to save a new show by Buffy the Vampire Slayer creator Joss Whedon before it has aired, let alone been canceled.

The fans have seen previous shows by Whedon canceled and have now started a internet campaign to save Dollhouse before watching a single episode.

The show is a sci-fi drama about a team of high-tech assassins and is due to be shown on Fox in early 2009.

More than 2,500 would-be viewers have signed up to a fan page on Facebook and hundreds of others are starting fan sites.

200x190.jpgBlundering customs officers at a Japanese airport hid cannabis worth £5,000 in a passengers case during a training exercise ... and then forgot where they had put it.

The error means the unknown passenger who was arriving at Japan's Narita airport will unpack to find the unusual souvenir of 142g of cannabis.

The narcotic was hidden in a randomly selected case in order to test airport security with a specially trained sniffer dog due to locate it within minutes.

But the pooch failed to track it and then the hapless customs officer could not remember where he had hidden it.

Five in hot water over TV goldfish

200x190.jpgAn animal rights group has attacked television station Five claiming the conditions provided for goldfish on one of their shows are unacceptable.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (Peta) say they have received a number of complaints about the treatment of two goldfish on the morning chat-show 'The Wright Stuff.'

In an open letter to channel Five bosses the group has now urged that the fish, Brad and Jen, are removed from the studio.

Peta say the goldfish should not be kept in a "small bowl with no stimulation" and that they are there for only "decoration purposes."

200x190.jpgAreas such as Lancashire and Yorkshire could become the ideal locations for "hot climate" wine-making within 75 years, claim academics.

If climate change continues as predicted winemakers in the north could be growing vines for wines like Merlot - currently only cultivated in warmer climates like the south of France and Chile.

Prof Richard Selley of Imperial College London says that as this change happens (by 2080) southern England will become TOO HOT for wine production and could produce raisins, currants and sultanas instead.

200x190.jpgIndiana Jones has been branded a bad role model who breaks every rule in the archaeological book.

Professor Claire Smith, head of the World Archaeological Congress, has slammed Indy for his unethical and illegal behaviour.

Indy's use of human remains as weapons and destruction of archaeological sites are cited as examples of his poor archaeological skills.

Prof Smith says that while the latest movie "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" will spur interest in archaeology, it gave a false view of the subject.

200x190.jpgNASA today landed a probe on Mars in a bid to find out if there is life on the Red Planet.

It took Phoenix 10 months to get to Mars and cost NASA £230million to make the 422-million-mile journey.

Phoenix will use robotic arms to collect soil and water samples which it is hoped could help scientists determine if life has existed there, or still does.

Scientists also hope the 7-foot-tall, 904-pound craft will find ice — the remains of an ocean that covered much of Mars millions of years ago.

200x190.jpgA sexy model nibbling  a Cadbury's Flake in an overflowing bath has been voted Britain's sexiest TV advert.

The 1991 ad featuring Rachel Brown, beat off competition from the Diet Coke man and Melanie Sykes' Boddingtons commercials for the top spot in the OnePoll survey.

Spokesman John Sewell said: “They say sex sells and this proves it. Some of these ads are nearly 20 years old but are still in the minds of the public.”

Danger tortoise on the run

200x190.jpgMembers of the public have been warned not to approach an aggressive tortoise which has gone on the run in Hampshire.

Anyone who sees sixty-year-old Rupert a North African spurthighed tortoise is warned to exercise extreme caution.

According to his owners, Rupert has been known to attack children and dogs biting their legs.

Stonehenge attacked for souvenirs

200x190.jpgVandals have taken a hammer and chisel to the 5,000-year-old Stonehenge in a bid to get cheap souvenirs.

Security guards spotted two men using a hammer and screwdriver to take a small chip the size of a 10p piece from the side of the Heel Stone.

Police are currently trying the identify the men who ran off and have appealed for anyone who might have been taking photographs at the time to come forwards.

200x190.jpgYosuke the parrot found his way home after flying from his cage ... by telling passers-by his name and address.

The African grey parrot, which got lost in Tokyo, gave his name and full home address to strangers who contacted police.

Officers say they were shocked to find a family by the name he had given at the address in Nagareyama, near Tokyo. 

200x190.jpgA "priceless" ceramic dish which dates back to 1680 is set to go on display after being discovered under a farmers bed.

The Fleur de Lys decorated dish signed by Thomas Toft has spent the last three decades under the Shropshire farmers bed for safe keeping.

It has now been donated to the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery, Stoke-on-Trent who said: "It is very hard to put a value on this. To the museum it is priceless."

200x190.jpgRural homes in the UK are adopting broadband faster than their urban counterparts, according to a new Ofcom report.

59 percent of rural homes now have broadband, compared to 57 percent of people living in towns and cities.

Meanwhile Sunderland became Britain's broadband capital with 66 percent of its population using a high-speed connection.

200x190.jpgFans have voted Indiana Jones' escape from the boulder in Raiders of the Lost Ark, as the best scene from the now classic movie series.

As Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is released fans have looked back on the three original films to pick the most iconic clips.

The top three moments all came from Raiders of the Lost Ark and the boulder dash was joined by 'Why Did It Have To Be Snakes?' and 'Shooting the Swordsman.'

200x190.jpgThousands of music students could have found their GSCE easier than expected this year - because the answers were printed on the back.

The gaff meant that pupils found a list of composers related to the test written on the other side of the question paper

Exam board OCR said the exam paper was one of four taken by GCSE music students and the printed answers would account for no more than 5% of the marks on that paper.

200x190.jpgA fugitive kangaroo which escaped from a German wildlife park has been caught, by using Peanut butter sandwiches as bait.

Toto the kangaroo went on the run after vaulting the 13ft fence of his enclosure at Hanover’s Serengeti Wildlife Park.

For the past fortnight keepers have tried to recapture him even trying to lure him towards them with the six-year-olds son.

200x190.jpgChelsea may have lost the Champions League to Manchester United because their penalty takers did not maintain eye contact with the goalkeeper, scientists believe.

Sports psychologists at the University of Chichester claim goalkeepers are far less confident at saving spot-kick if the strikes maintains eye contact during his run up.

In last nights final Ronaldo missed a penalty, John Terry hit the post with a kick that would have won it for Chelsea and Edwin van der Sar saved from Nicolas Anelka.

200x190.jpgA photographer who was speared in the leg by javelin at a sporting event carried on taking pictures despite his injury.

Ryan McGeeney of the Standard-Examiner even took pictures of his leg because he said his editor would ask him where they were when he got back to the office.

The javelin hit just below McGeeney's knee and went right through his leg, sticking out  of the other side. (for pictures click here)
200x190.jpgCrooks are turning to social networking sites like Facebook to sell stolen goods worth £5 billion, it has been claimed.

Because of tighter checks at car boot sales and even on internet auction sites the criminals are using marketplace sections of other sites.

Researchers working from a database of 30 million stolen goods - say that two stolen items are discovered on the sites every every minute.

Extinct gene brought back to life

200x190.jpgScientists have resurrected the DNA from the Tasmanian tiger and inserted it into a mouse embryo.

This is the first time a gene from any extinct animal has been brought back to life inside another living creature.

The last remaining Tasmanian tiger died in captivity in 1936, but the boffins say it is unlikely the development will lead to the cloning of an entire Tasmanian tiger, or thylacine Jurassic Park-style.

200x190.jpgActor George Takei is set to web his long-term partner now that California has lifted its ban on same-sex marriage.

Speaking on his website the Star Trek star, 71, said he and his partner o 21 years Brad Altman were going through the "delicious dilemma" of where to marry.

"We can have the dignity, as well as all the responsibilities, of marriage. We embrace it all heartily," he added.

200x190.jpgA father was shocked when he realized that what he thought was his son's toy snake was in fact a flesh-eating constrictor.

It was only when Mark Yip remembered his son was at school that it dawned on him little Leonard, 4, could not be making it wriggle.

He quickly shut the snake in the living room and contacted the council who sent a animal handler to catch it.

200x190.jpgA Saudi woman has filed for divorce after her husband tried to look at her face ... after 30 years.

Oddly after three decades the man had suddenly become curious what his wife looked like and tried to sneak a peak under her veil as she slept.

Unluckily for him she woke and is now seeking a divorce, despite his claims that he will not do it again.

Jessica Alba: stare at me

200x190.jpgMany men enjoy looking at Jessica Alba - but now she has given them permission, by challenging them to a staring contest.

In a bizarre internet video watched by over 500,000 users the Into the Blue star stares at the camera for 1 minute and 32 seconds without blinking.

The clip had been released to promote competition website - run by Alba's fiancee Cash Warren.

Noise maps released online

200x190.jpgMaps which show which parts of the country are the most noisy have gone online for the first time.

The brightly coloured maps can be used to see where, industrial, airport roads and railways cause the biggest noise.

On the Department for Environment and Rural Affairs website users in the 23 urban areas can search by post code.

200x190.jpgDJ Chris Evans has spent a record breaking £5million on a classic car to add to his growing collection.

The purchase of the Ferrari 1961 250 GT SWB California Spyder, is the largest sum ever paid for a vintage car at auction, and was twice the estimated value.

Chris is said to have sat in the front row of the RM and Sotheby's auction in Maranello sipping a bottle of beer as he made the bid.

Solar bra to charge your iPod

200x190.jpgA underwear manufacturer has revealed a solar powered bra which can generate enough power to charge a mobile phone or iPod.

Triumph International Japan Ltd unveiled its environmentally friendly bra last week in Tokyo and it features a solar panel on the wearers stomach.

The concept design will have to overcome the problem that the solar panel becomes useless if a woman is wearing anything on top of her bra.

200x190.jpgThe exclusive delicacy the black truffle is becoming even more exclusive because of global warming.

Latest harvests of the underground fungi are down 50 percent on expectations because many of the areas where they grow are experiencing prolonged drought.

As a result prices for the reported aphrodisiac are soaring and are now three times that of 10 years ago.

200x190.jpgWhile A-listers moan about press intrusion, would-be celebrities are paying paparazzi £600 per hour to follow them around like stars.

Wannabe celebs are flocking to organizations which offer evenings out with the added extras of being followed by photographers.

For a fee the paps will follow you around shouting questions (based on your info your have provided) and taking pictures.

200x190.jpgA 72-hour blackout in Albania has been blamed on a Tom and Jerry style cat and mouse chase.

The animals are believed to have run into an area of high-voltage cables where they caused the electricity shortages which hit parts of the capital, Tirana.

Authorities usually blame drought and the dilapidated state of the communist-era grid for the increasingly frequent outages. Unlike the cartoon creatures the animals were electrocuted. 
200x190.jpgResidents of a remote village in Gloucester have bought a pair of donkeys to help them get their shopping up a steep hill.

Villagers in Chalford, Gloucestershire - who are unable to access their homes by car - will now use to donkeys, Chester, aged one, and four-year-old Teddy, to ship their shopping up the narrow paths.

The eco-friendly idea came from local sculptor Anna Usborne, who applied to the parish council for support.

Council spends £1 million on newts

200x190.jpgA council which spent £1 million protecting a colony of great crested newts has been left red-faced after discovering non live there.

Leicester Country Council were forced to spend the cash and delay a £15 million road development after evidence of great crested newts was found on the site.

Under EU law and the Wildlife and Countryside Act, it is illegal to capture or kill them or even disturb their habitat.

200x190.jpgIt doesn't take the most advanced culinary skills but eight out of ten people say they don't know how to boil an egg.

And even fewer are able to prepare basic meals such as a roast chicken, a survey has revealed.

Supermarket Somerfield found that 79 per cent can’t boil an egg, 37 per cent believe shepherd’s pie is made with beef and 9 per cent think it takes less than 30 minutes to roast potatoes. 

200x190.jpgA daredevil inventor has flown over the Alps using a home-made jet-fueled wings strapped to his back.

Swiss, Yves Rossy, 48, jumped out of plane 8,000 feet up and then unfolded the 2.5m wings and activated the four jet turbines accelerating to 186mph.

The five minute flight where Rossy reached speeds of 186 miles per hour, set a new record for powered personal flight.

200x190.jpgOne in eight children aged between 11 and 16 has had a "hot product" such as an iPod stolen from them. One in three victims was using the item at the time.

The shocking figures come from research by the Design Council which highlight the increasing level of crime among youngsters.

It is claimed that "must-have" gadgets like iPods and the iPhone are driving the crimes with a third of 11-year-olds saying they carry gizmos worth over £200, half put the value of their technology at between £100 and £500.

Asimo robot conducts orchestra

200x190.jpgClassical music went high-tech yesterday when a robot conducted a orchestra for the first time.

The Detroit Symphony Orchestra was handed over to Asimo, a diminutive 4ft3in robot, who then proceeded to conduct a performance of Mitch Leigh’s “Impossible Dream” from the musical “Man of La Mancha.”

The Honda made bot gave what was described as a dramatic and impressive performance complete with hand gestures and nodding of his head.

Man tries to sell wife on eBay

200x190.jpgSuspecting his wife was having an affair Paul Osborn descided to take revenge - by putting her for sale on eBay.

The 44-year-old MOT inspector from Bucks, kicked wife Sharon out of their home before advertising her on the online auction, where bids reached £500,000.

But the ad for the “cheating, lying, adulterous slag of a wife” has now been pulled from the site by Paul who says it was not the right thing to do.
200x190.jpgThe levels of fat in doner kebabs are so high that eating just TWO in a week could kill, experts claim.

A sample of take-aways showed the snack, traditionally eaten at the end of a evenings drinking, contained 111g of fat, that's the same as a wine glass filled with cooking oil.

Nutritionists from Portsmouth Hospitals Trust say doner kababs can be so saturated with fat that eating two each week could lead to a heart attack within 10 years.

200x190.jpgThe sloth is often regarded as one of the worlds laziest animals, sleeping for over 16 hours per day.

But scientists now believe this is not the case and that it is only captive sloths which spend so long each day snoozing.

Researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology in Starnberg, Germany, caught sloths living in the rainforest of Panama and fitted them with a device that monitors sleep.

200x190.jpgA painting of a naked job centre employee has sold for a record breaking £17.2 million.

The picture by Lucian Freud called 'Benefits Supervisor' has become the worlds most expensive work by a living artist after being sold at Christie’s auction house in New York earlier today.

The 1995 image by the artist, shows London benefits supervisor Sue Tilley sleeping on an old sofa and was snapped up by a private European collector.

RAF sends 20000 condoms to recruits

200x190.jpgThe RAF are to send out 20,000 condoms as part of a new recruitment drive.

Mounted on cards with the words “Apply to weapon when on manoeuvres.” the cheeky ad invites men to road-shows where they could learn more about the infantry regiment which defends air bases.

Potential recruits also learn how a non-lubricated condom can be used by troops on operations to carry water, stop bleeding and prevent sand jamming  a weapon.

Ministry of Defence releases X-files

200x190.jpgSecret files detailing UFO sightings and contact with aliens have been made public by the Ministry of Defense.

Accounts include people who have seen strange lights in the sky and those who say they have had physical and psychic contact with little green men.

The documents, which can be downloaded from the National Archives website, cover the period from 1978 to 1987.

200x190.jpgListening to music while drinking can alter the taste of wine, scientists have claimed.

Boffins from Edinburgh's Heriot-Watt University say that in tests the type of music played controled what tastes were experienced.

The researchers concluded that to best experience a cabernet sauvignon it should be drunk while listening to Jimi Hendrix. Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker led to wines being regarded as subtle and refined.

200x190.jpgIt costs almost five times more to send an SMS text message than it does to receive info from the Hubble Space Telescope, a scientist has claimed.

In the UK the average price for a SMS is 5p, which means to send one megabyte of data would cost £375 (over 7,490 texts) this compares to just £85 to send the same info from Hubble, which is 370 miles into space.

Scientist Dr Nigel Bannister, of Leicester University made the calculations after contacting NASA to get the costs.

200x190.jpgFerrari have contacted a limo company which stretched a 360 Modena and told them not to do the same to any more of their cars.

The Italian car giant have also told Dan Cawley, 36, of Manchester to stop calling his 166mph limo a Ferrari and to remove all Ferrari or 360 Modena badges from it.

They say since he cut the car in two and inserted an extra 9.5ft, it is no longer a Ferrari.

200x190.jpgWhen you think of heavy metal, drugs, sex and leather might spring to mind ... now add coffee to that list.

Megadeath guitarist Dave Mustaine is so convinced their fans love coffee he has set up a company to put his name to some of the worlds finest gourmet beans.

For £10 per month fans of the thrash metal group can join 'Dave Mustaine's Monthly Coffee Crew' and will special blends chosen by the Megadeath frontman.

Judges ditch wigs after 300 years

200x190.jpgFor 300 years horsehair wigs have been standard across British courtrooms, but now a new outfit will see bare-headed judges.

The lord chief justice yesterday showed the new outfit which will be worn by all judges hearing civil and family cases in England and Wales.

The traditional heavy robes have been replaced by continental-style black gown designed by Betty Jackson but most strikingly the wigs have gone.

200x190.jpgVending machines in Japan are to start counting the wrinkles on peoples face to determine if they are old enough to buy cigarettes.

Fujitaka say their new machines will use a digital camera to analyze customers facial characteristics such as bone structure, sags and crow's feet.

They will then only serve the smokers if they are believed to be over 20 years old.

200x190.jpgActress Salma Hayek has become a godmother - to a boat.

In a ceremony which included the traditional breaking of a bottle of champagne over the boats bow the star became its official godmother.

Hayek christened “Il Mostro” a new racing boat by PUMA which will compete in the Volvo Ocean Race 2008-2009 at the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston at Fan Pier on Monday, May 12th.

200x190.jpgThe Marathon chocolate bar is set to make a return - 18 years after it was re-branded Snickers.

Makers Mars have now re-registered the name as a UK trademark as part of what looks likely to be a re-naming and retro revival of the sweet.

In 1990 the name Marathon was ditched in favor of the bars international brand name Snickers.

Having a dog costs owners £31,000

200x190.jpgDogs cost their owners on average £31,000 over their lifetime, it has been claimed.

A poll of dog owners found they spent on average £45 per week paying for food, vets bills, grooming and insurance.

But some dogs are more expensive than others. Chihuahuas favored by stars like Paris Hilton cost an average £88,691 during their 13-year life - though we are sure Tinkerbell can get through that in a couple of weeks.

200x190.jpgOver 300 Pagan worshipers locked up in British prisons have been given the right to keep magic wands in their cells.

The prison service consulted with the Pagan Federation as part of a move to protect convicts' rights and ensure equality among different faiths before making the ruling.

Inmates will now be allowed to collect twigs from prison grounds and decorate them to use in rituals. The move also allows the Pagans to keep other “religious artefacts” which include hoodless robes and rune stones.

200x190.jpgBritish paratroopers are having to practice their parachute jumps in wind tunnels - because the RAF is short on planes.

The elite troop are being forced to train in the vertical wind tunnels because so many RAF Hercules planes are in Afghanistan and Iraq, or have been destroyed.

They are even having to hire the tunnel by the hour - and only when it is not being used by members of the public.

200x190.jpgOver 500,000 people have had their computer infected with a trojan virus after trying to view images and videos of Girls Aloud.

Anyone trying to access the dodgy files will see their screen bombarded with pop-up windows and risk compromising the safety of their PC, warn security firm McAfee.

The files were initially distributed on file-sharing networks eDonkey and Limewire though have since spread across the web.

200x190.jpgWhile we might like to think of England as a land of fair-play, manners and tradition a travel guide says we are a "nation of overweight, sex and celebrity obsessed TV addicts."

The new 'Rough Guide to England' goes on to say nowhere is "so fascinating, beautiful and culturally diverse, yet as insular, self-important and irritating, as England".

Tourist are also warned about dealing with the English "However long you spend in the country you'll never figure them out," it states.

200x190.jpgAn alternative version of original Rambo movie "First Blood" - where the hero commits suicide - is to be shown on the big screen for the first time.

Had the original ending been used in the 1982 Sylvester Stallone classic it would had denied (or spared) movie-goers of the three sequels.

Now it will be shown in a special one-off digitally re-mastered, high-definition screening on 15th May across 430 US movie theaters.

Police hunt serial bottom pincher

200x190.jpgPolice in Manchester are hunting a serial bottom pincher who has grabbed the bums of at least 19 women.

The man, believed to be Turkish or Greek looking, approaches women from behind and tries to grab their bottom.
The assaults, on girls and women aged 13 to 43, have happened over the past 12 months in the Tib Street area of the city, normally in the early hours of the morning.

Flowers 'wave' at passing insects

200x190.jpgFlowers wave at passing insects to get their attention, scientists have discovered.

Academics at the University of Aberystwyth found that flowers mounted on long, thin stalks move around more and attract more insects than less mobile flowers growing atop short, thick stems.

But Dr John Warren says the level of flower wobble has to be just right, if they move around too much the insect can't land on them.

Men chat up virtual shop girls

200x190.jpgMen keep trying to chat up virtual shop assistants without realizing they are talking to a computer.

Many sites use the digital sales girls as a way of highlighting offers and promotions - but dim-witted men keep asking for their phone number and even racy propositions.

Creators Justdevelopit say some punters are confused because the cyber chat is so convincing ... that and they get distracted by the photos.
200x190.jpgPrincess Bea, daughter of Prince Andrew and Fergie, has started a new job as a shop assistant.

As fifth in line to the throne Bea might be more used to be waited on than serving other people - but for the next month she will work as a personal shopper in Selfridges.

The 19-year-old, currently on a GAP year before going to university, will help rich shoppers find the items they want and will in the nine-to-five job.

A huge water fight planed on Facebook has caused thousands of pounds worth of damage to a prize winning gardens.
More than 350 people armed with water pistols arrived at Millennium Square garden, Leeds, on May 5th after organizing it on the social networking site.

The garden, which was built in honour of Nelson Mandela and scooped a medal at the Chelsea Flower Show in 2004 has been left with damaged flowers and turf.

200x190.jpgA musician who has had hiccups for over 15 months is to undergo surgery in a bid to make it stop.

Chris Sands, 24, from Lincoln, can hiccup as often as once every two seconds and sometimes continues even when he is asleep.

After trying over 100 different cures with no success he is now turning to doctors who will assess whether key-hole surgery might help.

200x190.jpgChildren at a British theme park have built what is believed to be the worlds tallest Lego tower.

The 100ft structure at Legoland in Windsor, is made from almost 500,000 bricks and was built over the Bank Holiday weekend.

Thousands of children and families helped with the epic construction in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the classic children's toy.

200x190.jpgFormer Baywatch star Pamela Anderson has sold off the entire contents of one of her LA homes - including some rather private items.

The 40-year-old held the sale after the break-up of her third marriage and even sold off pairs of lacy knickers, a chain-mail bra and the float she famously carried as lifeguard CJ Parker on the hit show.

The sale which was filmed for her new reality TV show comes a month after Pam's marriage to Rick Salomon was annulled - six months after their shock wedding in Las Vegas.

200x190.jpgItalians are ditching their traditional dish because of rising prices.

In the past 12 months the price of the famously Italian food has soared by 20 percent because of increase in wheat prices, in turn caused by higher oil prices.

Now the Confederazione Italiana Agricoltori (CIA) which monitors the nations shopping habits says pasta sales have fallen by 2.6 per cent.

200x190.jpgCouncils across Britain are to start using lie detectors to catch benefits cheats claiming money they are not entitled to.

It is hoped the 'voice-risk analyser' system, which monitors speech patterns, could save taxpayers tens of millions of pounds.

The device looks for changes in the sound of a claimant's voice, a sign they might not telling the truth.

200x190.jpgBritish Prime Minister Gordon Brown faces losing another public vote, this time to see if he should be included in Madame Tussauds.

The tourist attraction requested a sitting by Brown so they could create a waxwork of him to go on display with the likes of Prince Charles, Kate Moss ... and Tony Blair.

But now, after Downing Street failed to respond, Madame Tussauds is to hold a public vote to decide whether he should be included.

200x190.jpgSo keen not to come into contact with his fans, Simon Cowell has begged councils to give him special parking privileges during this years 'Britain’s Got Talent.'

Well Simon, 48, didn't do the begging himself. According to the Sun he got producers of the ITV show to secure the parking which is normally reserved for the Queen - because he was worried about being mobbed.

Simon's driver will now be able to wait in his $400,000 Rolls-Royce outside each of the venues after getting the permission from several local councils across the UK.

Fashion elite or comic book geek

200x190.jpgGeorge Clooney, Julia Roberts and Giorgio Armani might not be the first names you think of when the you hear the words 'comic book' and 'exhibition.'

But the the trio were just some of the guests at the launch of the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art's new show "Superheroes: Fashion and Fantasy."

The exhibition features 60 outfit from movie costumes to fancy gowns is said to show how the likes of Superman, Spiderman and Batman have influenced big-name designers.

200x190.jpgAt 24 times larger than a traditional egg you will need a large appetite (and an entire army of toasted soldiers) to finish it, but a UK supermarket thinks it onto a winner by selling ostrich eggs.

Waitrose say they have started selling the enormous £16 eggs after seeing increased demand for unusual eggs such as duck, pheasant and goose.

"The ostrich egg is a real show-stopper, in terms of looks and taste," said Waitrose egg buyer Frances Westerman.

Goldfish taught to perform tricks

200x190.jpgA man has taught his goldfish how to dunk a basketball, score a goal at football and limbo under a bar.

Two-year-old Comet the fish cam also swim through a tube and collect hoops after the positive reinforcement training by owner Dr Dean Pomerleau.

The technique is the same as those used to train dolphin. By rewarding the common goldfish with food each time it does a trick Pomerleau is now able to get it to perform on command.

200x190.jpgAn artist who vowed to stay buried under a Kent beach for two days has failed his attempt ... despite giving himself regular breaks.

Mark McGowan said he would stay in the sand buried up to his neck as a protest and hoped his stunt would encourage more people to take British seaside holidays.

Speaking before the art stunt he said: "I'm allowed to take breaks - I'm not David Blaine."

200x190.jpg“My cat doesn’t match my new carpet” and “I’ve just bought a new leather sofa and I don’t want the cat to scratch it” are just some of the reasons pet owners have given for ditching their animals.

The RSPCA say the number of animals being abandoned in the UK has risen 25 percent in the past 12 months and say that pets are becoming the latest victims of throwaway society.

They warn the nine million cats in the country are particularly at risk and that the charity was forced to rescue over 3,700 of them from the streets last year. 

Argos to sell DIY houses

200x190.jpgIn what has been described as the 'ultimate DIY challenge' catalogue store Argos has started selling a flat-pack homes for £13,000.

Catalogue store Argos, normally know for toys and electrical is now offering a flatpack log cabin complete with five rooms, underfloor heating and laminate flooring.

The £13,000 Helsinki comes, according to the store: "supplied in kit form containing all the components and instructions required for self assembly".

Brits ate better 700 years ago

200x190.jpgA chef has claimed people in medieval Britain had better diets then they do nowadays.

Self-confessed medieval foodie, Clarissa Dickson Wright, says food in the 1300s was better for you then much of todays offering.

Clarissa is currently using 'The Forme of Cury' Britain's first cook-book
as a basis for a new BBC Four show where she sources authentic ingredients and cooks in a period kitchen.

200x190.jpgThe man behind one of the UKs largest estate agents has turned down a £200 million offer for his own home.

John Hunt, who made £370 million when he sold off Foxtons estate agents last year, is believed to have said no to an unsolicited approach for his London mansion.

Aditya Mittal, 32, the son of Indian-born steel tycoon Lakshmi Mittal, is thought to have offered the huge sum for the the seven-storey grade II-listed property at 10 Kensington Palace Gardens.

200x190.jpgThe billionaire owner of Newcastle United is quids in after winning £1.3 million on a single roulette spin.

Mike Ashley put £480,000 on the table at Fifty London, in Mayfair, covering every combination of his lucky number 17 in a complex bet known as a complete.

When the ball dropped into black 17 at the £650 per year members casino Ashley scooped the £1.3 million.

One in five dentists offer Botox

200x190.jpg20 percent of England's 20,000 dentists are now able to offer Botox to their patients.

Dr Bob Khanna, who runs a training institute says they have taught 4,000 dentists to perform procedures which also include facial peels and anti-ageing fillers.

Dentists charge between £150 and £1000 for Botox and some claim "cosmetic injectables" now account for up-to a quarter of their workload.
200x190.jpgIndia is to open a retirement home for elephants which have played an active role in religious ceremonies.

The animals can be used for up-to 40 years in the ceremonies where they are  painted and are worshiped.

But while they are prized few owners can afford to look after them after they stop working - they cost £350 per month to maintain and the average wage is just £50.

200x190.jpgA local council worker in Japan accessed porn sites more than 780,000 times while at work.

The 57-year-old was at one point viewing 10,000 pages a day which works out to more than 20 each minute he was meant to be working.

Somehow he has managed to keep a job with the city of Kinokawa in southern Japan but has now been demoted and seen his salary cut by £960 per year.

200x190.jpgCampaigners on a Greek island are to go to court in a battle to stop a gay rights group from using the term "lesbian"

Their problem is that as residents of Lesbos, they are lesbians, and claim use of the word in its sexual context violates the human rights of the islanders and causes much embarrassment.

A court will now decide whether to grant an injunction against the Homosexual and Lesbian Community of Greece forcing a name-change. If it does the campaigners says they will start to fight the word lesbian internationally.

Teen drivers ignore passengers

200x190.jpg67 percent of young drivers say they would continue sending texts on a mobile phone while driving, even if a passenger asked them to stop.

A survey of 17-year-old drivers in America found that requests from passengers to stop dangerous driving behaviors would often be ignored.

The National Organizations for Youth Safety (NOYS) and The Allstate Foundation, found that at the request of a passenger only 33 percent of drivers would stop text messaging while driving 35 percent would stop talking on their mobile phone.

Le Pen selling armored car on eBay

200x190.jpgJean-Marie Le Pen, the French far-right leader, is selling his armored car on internet auction site eBay

The bullet-proof 1992 Peugeot 605 was regularly used by Le Pen including in Frances 2002 presidential elections where he finished a surprising second.

But since embarrassing defeats in last years elections his party have gone deep into the red and have even put their headquarters up for sale.

200x190.jpgMany computer users risk becoming ill because their keyboards are up-to FIVE TIMES dirtier than a toilet seat.

Consumer group Which? took swabs from keyboards across London offices and tested them for bugs such as e.coli, staphylococcus aureus and enterobacteria.

They found the bugs to be present in many and say this could cause upset stomachs and food poisoning or 'qwerty tummy' as they are calling it, after the first six letters on a keyboard.

200x190.jpgWomen sound sexier when they are at their most fertile, experts have claimed.

Research has shown that as a womans hormone levels change throughout her menstrual cycle so does the sound of her voice.

Scientists at the State University of New York at Albany played recording of female voices to a number of subjects and asked them to rate them according to 'attractiveness.'

200x190.jpgNext time you go for a run you might want to check you have got your swimming costume with you.

Boffins have created an underwater treadmill which they claim reduces the problems of stresses on the joints normally associated with the exercise equipment.

The £50,000 'Hydrophysio' device is said to be ideal for treating people with mobility problems and makers Syspal even produce a version for dogs. 

200x190.jpgCash strapped scientists in Ivory Cost are trying to sell a rare coconut tree for $1,000,000.

They say the tree is "a rare botanical curiosity" because it has three 'heads' as apposed to the normal one and produces double the normal number of fruit.

If they manage to sell the plant it will become the worlds most expensive tree with all raised money will go towards funding more research.

200x190.jpgThe hand written lyrics for John Lennon's Give Peace A Chance could fetch £300,000 when they are sold at auction.

The scribbled words were given to a fan during one of Lennon's "Bed-in" peace protests in 1969. As he handed them over he told her "“…one day they will be worth something…”

Gail Renard - now a comedy writer - has had them in her possession ever since but they will go on sale at Christie's auction house in South Kensington, London on 10 July.

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