they did what?: March 2011 Archives

275x250.jpg Rose Jardine hopes her new job never loses its magic… because she's just been employed as the 'resident dragonologist' a Warwick Castle.

Her duties there will include, watching over any fire-breathing beasts, keeping staff trained in the latest developments in sorcery, and telling visitors all about dragons.

To get the job - advertised online earlier this month - Jardine had to demonstrate "extensive knowledge of dragon myth and legend, with particular reference to dragon summoning and dragon powers and riddles."

And bosses at Warwick Castle are confident they've got the right person, during her interview she's said to have performed a dragon summoning incantation… but luckily stopped before unleashing the beast.


A red-faced man had to visit hospital after superglueing a tiny hat to his head for a party… and then being unable to remove it.

Luckily (for us, but not necessarily him) a BBC TV crew happened to be recording a show at the hospital when he arrived and caught the whole thing on camera.

Shawn Merter resorted to using the superglue to attach his little black sequinned top-hat after fabric glue which he'd tried using wasn't adhesive enough.

But the following morning he realised his error and went to his local accident and emergency department, still wearing the tiny hat.

Doctors cut the top off the hat and sent Merter home to soak the bizarre headwear until it fell off… all while trying to hide their sniggers.


We know that shark attacks are incredibly rare, and we also know that Basking sharks are harmless -- but this would still have made us nervous.

A kayaker in Florida recently came face to face 25-foot long Basking shark as he was paddling along in the sea in his 14-foot kayak.

While a number of onlookers shouted words of warning to Josh Reeves, it appears he knew he wasn't in any danger from second largest species of shark in the world. He jumped into the water and started swimming with the huge plankton eater.

Animal authorities say Basking sharks do not normally swim south to the warmer Florida waters… just like they're not normally known to hurt humans.

275x250.jpgRemember Luke Seall, the guy spending 2011 trying to trade one penny into something impressive? Well he's now the owner of a penny based artwork.

After trading his way from a single one pence piece, to a week-long Yurt holiday in France, Seall has now swapped this for a portrait of a banker.

The particularly relevant image is of ex HBOS Chief Executive Andy Hornby… and was made out of 2,500 one penny coins by artist Adrian Firth.

Speaking of the trade, Seall said: "Trading up from 1 penny to a picture made of thousands of pennies would be good enough. But the fact the picture is of Andy Hornby is even better."

We're not convinced. In fact being an image of him may make the work worth even less than the pennies it is made up of.

275x250.jpg Fuel duty was cut by 1p, but it wasn't the most exciting of budgets, just ask Kenneth Clarke… it's claimed he fell asleep.

But at least his impromptu snooze has meant dozens of people benefited from the budget -- they'd betted on the Justice Secretary to doze off.

As commented on by Ed Miliband, it looked like the 70-year-old nodded off during George Osborne's announcement, and he certainly had his eyes closed.

While Conservative officias deny Clarke was sleeping, Ladbrokes said the CCTV footage was good enough and paid out odds of 16/1 to around 40 punters.

275x250.jpg Facebook users are said to be making life difficult for supermarket staff…  by constantly rearranging stock on the shelves to spell out rude words.

Known as Supermarket Scrabble the game has become a hit on the social networking site with users competing to see who can create the most offensive words.

Typical examples see people rearranging jars of spices and herbs to spell words like 'cock' tits' and 'boobs' -- then taking a photo which is uploaded to the Facebook page.

But supermarket staff say the popularity of the game is making life hell for them as they're constantly having to put the letters back… unless they can come up with something ruder themselves.

275x250.jpg Musicians form the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra are used to playing to a packed auditorium… just not normally an audience made up solely of plants.

But that's exactly what happened when they performed a three-hour recital to over 100 different varieties of plants in a bit to see whether it helped them grow.

It's been claimed that classical music - and the reverberation of sound waves - stimulates protein production in plants, and could lead to increased growth.

While we're not sure the potted audience of geraniums, fuchsias and perennials enjoyed the performance which included Mozart's Symphony Number 40… at least none of them got up to leaf.


The Russian military are using artillery to shoot shells at snow in a bid to control avalanches and prevent them blocking important roads.

It's said that creating controlled avalanches with the blasts is the best way of preventing unwanted ones cutting off vital transport routes.

So, over the past couple of weeks the army have been targeting the snow on the only route between Russia and Ossetia, in the only way they know how, with some pretty big guns.

As this this video shows after several shots the military are able to 'force' an avalanche… but maybe they should do it from a bit further back next time.

275x250.jpgA man who returned his iPad 2 to Apple along with a note saying "Wife said no" has been given it back free of charge, with a note saying "Apple said yes".

At least that's the story currently doing the rounds after it was posted on MacRumours and picked up by several news outlets.

Apple keep a record of the reasons people give if returning a product to an Apple store and it's claimed this one was circulated by amused employees.

When two Apple VPs heard the story they are said to have decided to ship the iPad 2 back to the customer as gift along with the "Apple said Yes" note.

While it's a great story if true, we're not sure if we believe it… and neither will your wife if you tell her Apple gave you your new toy gratis too.


When you think about adverts selling houses, it's probably dubious estate agent clichés like "delightfully bijou" and misleading photos, which spring to mind.


Well that's all about to change the moment you click play on this video and witness the way an Australian firm markets houses, complete with a lingerie model and armed commandos.

Estate agents NEO Property say they prefer to sell houses by creating viral adverts which feature gratuitously sexy close-ups of breasts and action shots… oh yeah, and the house.

This particular one shows a woman being held hostage wearing just her underwear and phoning for help and then describing the house as armed commandos are dispatched to save her. Foxtons it is not.


When we first saw this video - seemingly showing AC Milan doing the limbo, fencing and dancing minutes before a match - we thought someone had spiked the water at the San Siro.


But it turns out that not all was quite as it seemed ahead of the Serie A match between AC Milan and AS Bari.

That's because the 'players' doing the bizarre and odd stunts are actually footballing lookalikes - hired to help advertise Italian sports newspaper Gazzete dello Sport.

We should have known something was up when we saw what we thought was Gennaro Gattuso ballroom dancing with the referee rather than head-butting him. But it's a funny old game.


A woman has given Stephen Fry an amazing ukulele serenade asking him to let her act as a surrogate and have a baby for him, so that his DNA can continue.

Molly Lewis made the unusual request to the actor as he was being awarded the 2011 Lifetime Achievement Award from the Humanist Chaplaincy at Harvard University.

Getting up during a question session she sang to him about the various reasons he should have a child and why she would be an ideal surrogate mother.

To be fair we can't do Molly justice in words, so it's probably best if you just sit back, click play and enjoy the song almost as much as you will enjoy the way Fry responds.

275x250.jpg You might expect your granny to knit you a woolly jumper, but one pensioner has been defying expectations by using her needles to craft amazing knitted BREASTS.

Coral Charles-Dunne, 91, from Birmingham, has knitted dozens of the unusual educational tools as part of a project to inform expectant and new mums about breastfeeding.

She says spends about two hours creating each of the woolly boobs and makes them in a range of sizes, knitting for up to six hours per day.

The knitted breasts are then used by expectant moms to learn techniques for breast feeding… their partners probably use them to create an unusual game of football.

275x250.jpg In a bid to celebrate Pancake Day in the only way they know how, staff from TV channel Food Network UK have created the world's tallest stack of pancakes. And why not.

The impressive pancake tower took over 13 hours to produce and required a whopping 253 eggs, 11lbs of flour and over 26 pints of milk.

After the hours of hard work they were lest with 725 pancakes which were stacked into a 32 inch high tower to break the current record.

Should you fancy setting pancake-based record yourself when you get home, the highest pancake flip currently stands at 9.17m, the largest pancake measured 15m long and the most pancakes eaten in 1 hour by an individual is 855. Good luck.

275x250.jpg Lifting a house off the ground with balloons looked easy in the animated hit movie Up -- but it took a team of scientists and engineers to achieve it in real life.

This weekend the scientists and engineers, along with two world-class balloon pilots gathered at a airfield east of Los Angeles in a bid to recreate the iconic scene from the movie.

A lightweight 16 x 16ft 'house' was built and then attached to 300 coloured weather balloons making the experimental aircraft more than the equivilant of a 10 story building.

Filmed for the National Geographic Channel the ballon house was then taken to an altitude of over 10,000 feet and flew for approximately one hour. Carl Frederickson would be proud.

275x250.jpg An MP has been criticised for giving Liam Fox an air guitar accompaniment as the Defence Secretary delivered a Commons statement on troop cuts.

Graham Evans appeared to pluck away on a rolled-up copy of the Parliamentary order as Fox spoke about job losses announced in the Strategic Defence Review.

Rival MPs claim his behaviour was disrespectful to the armed forces and their families who are being impacted by cuts. In his defence Evans says he was "just tapping".

Check out the footage of the musically-minded Weaver Vale member below, and if you spot any other plucking Tory MPs be sure to let us know.

Footballers around the world often celebrate goals with gymnastic jumps and flips -- but only in Brazil do team medics get in on the action too.

During a recent Copa do Brasil match between Comercial PI and Palmeiras, one of the players went down and required medical attention.

Nothing too unconventional there right? Wrong! After running out onto the pitch with his bag the Comercial PI medic did a cartwheel before looking at the injured player.

This (quite understandably) prompted thousands of the fans in the crowd to cheer… which in turn prompted the medic to do backflips, wheels and rolls every-time he came out.

While the match ended with a 2-1 win to Comercial PI, we know who our man of the match was.

275x250.jpg A Japanese artist is struggling to keep her feet on the ground after her latest project became an online hit… featuring self-portraits of her levitating.

Natsumi Hayashi scored the viral hit by taking a series of striking photographs of herself jumping in everyday situations, meaning in the images she appears to float mid-air.

The blogger and artist’s assistant from Tokyo, came up with the idea two years ago when thinking about how most people are bound by societal conventions, much like  they are gravity.

She says she started playing around with the idea of being pictured levitating as a way of showing her true self and how she is different.




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