By Dimosthenis Bakogiannis (A Class)
Extreme Ironing, UK
David Fitzgerald, aka “Safety Setting’, 26, an Environmental Health Officer from Chichester, irons a shirt during the water section of the Extreme Ironing World Championships being held near Munich in Germany.
First beginning in Leicester in 1997, extreme ironing is a craze that has seen the chore taken to mountains, helicopters, and even mid-air during a skydive.
Who knew that resembling this could net you some cash?
In Wisconsin, USA, a competition takes place in which competitors must do their best impression of a cow. The latest winner was a ten-year-old boy named Austin, who received $1,000, a cow print jacket, and a golden cow bell among other prizes.
Train Surfing, Germany
Presenter Andrew Marr train surfing in Dhaka
This began in Germany in the 80s, and it’s as dangerous as it sounds. Train surfing involves jumping on the outside of a passenger train and hitching a ride. Over 40 people in Germany died in 2008 alone from attempting to train surf.
Tattooing Vehicles, Taiwan
Palestinian artist Belal Khaled intricately paints graffiti on the car.
This comes from a Taiwanese pensioner, who enjoys tattooing words from Buddhist texts onto automobiles. His grandson has promised that when he is older and has the money, he will buy his grandfather a bus so that he can make the most of his hobby.
Paul Yarrow takes part in news-bombing. He has been seen on BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Sky News at random locations and at random times.
Here in the UK, one man enjoys finding the locations of live news-reports, and ensuring that he appears in the background behind the journalist being filmed. He claims that his aim is to make a serious point about broadcasters only allowing attractive people on-screen.
Ecstasy Collection, Netherlands
In 2009, a man phoned the Dutch authorities to report the theft of his ecstasy collection. This included over 2,400 tablets, which he kept in coin folders. Though he knew that this was illegal, he reported them missing as he was concerned that the collection could be very dangerous.
Collecting In-Flight Sick Bags, Singapore
Some people collect in-flight sick bags (like this one) as a hobby.
Believe it or not, websites are available for “Baggists” to buy and trade any sick bags they may or may not have found on aeroplanes. One of the original “Baggists” is from Singapore, and has now got an impressive collection of 388 bags from 186 airlines.
Bug Fighting, Japan
Originating in Japan, bug fighting is, as expected, where various insects are put into a small plastic arena to battle it out. These fights are recorded, and the videos placed online.
Fork Bending, Japan
Fork bending in shape of peace sign, close-up
Another bizarre Japanese hobby here, fork-bending is the theory that by concentrating your mind, one will be able to complete the action with minimal physical effort. Think Uri Geller.
Painting the Largest Ball of Paint, USA
Michael Carmichael applies the 22539th coat of paint to a giant baseball at his home in Alexandria, Indiana
This began in 1977, when Mike Carmichael decided to paint a baseball, leading to the creation of a 3500 pound paint-covered ball, with over 22, 894 paint coats upon it. This has become a local tourist attraction, his only rule being that each coat must be a different colour from the previous one.
Hikaru Dorodango, Japan
For some, rolling mud into a ball is a beloved pastime.
Imagine rolling mud into a ball, before then methodically dusting it with soil, and repeating the process again and again. This hobby was originally a traditional hobby among Japanese children.
Soap Carving, Thailand
Who wouldn’t want to carve pictures into something that smells lovely?
In Thailand, it’s common to see hand-carved soap flowers sold at night markets.
As a hobby, soap-carving is viewed very highly and people often sell their creations as souvenirs.