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Showing posts with label Unique. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Unique. Show all posts

Thursday, June 01, 2017

Baby Born with 4 Legs has extra limbs removed in India

Indian Baby born with 4 LEGS has her extra limbs removed during a complex operation

The five-month-old, yet to be named, was born in January with her parasitic
twin brother fixed to her spine (pictured before surgery at the Civil Hospital in Ahmedabad, Gujarat)
A baby dubbed an 'alien' after she was born with four legs has had her extra pair removed during a complex operation.
The five-month-old, who is yet to be named, was born in January with her parasitic twin brother fixed to her spine. Local doctors were originally baffled as to why she had the extra limbs, and insisted that her mother, Surekha Muli, 22, was cursed. But after eventually getting a diagnosis, both she and her husband Pratap, 25, were forced to wait for months before she was allowed to have life-saving surgery. Surgeons finally performed the procedure last Wednesday, with the mother-of-four saying her family is now complete. Mrs Muli said: 'I felt so bad when people came to see my child, as if she was an alien.

'They would often pass comments and say I deserved it as I was cursed. I was helpless but I didn't lose hope.'  'I cannot even express my happiness in words and I cannot thank the doctors enough for their assistance and effort to save my child. 'I feel blessed to see my child normal now. Our family is now complete and life and can continue.' 
Surgeons finally performed the procedure to remove her extra appendages
 (pictured: scan of the girl taken before the operation)

Mrs Muli, from a small village in Gujarat, western India, was too poor to have an ultrasound during her pregnancy.  As a result, she was left completely unaware of her child's condition until they were delivered at a local hospital. Seeing the extra limbs on the girl devastated both Mrs Muli and her husband, Pratap, 25, a farmer who earns only Rs 100 (£1) a day. Doctors were unsure if the baby would even survive, forcing the family to seek medical help from various sources.

As weeks passed and the community became aware about the baby, Mrs Muli was called 'cursed' by cruel strangers. The couple eventually visited the government-run Civil Hospital in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, in February. 

Sources: Daily Mail
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Published by Gusti Putra at: 7:24 AM

Sunday, May 14, 2017

8 Month-old Baby Weighing 17 KG (38 pounds) Baffles Doctors in India

A doctor checked Chahat Kumar
An 8-month-old baby in India who weighs as much as a healthy 4-year-old has left doctors stumped over what could be causing her rabid appetite. Chahat Kumar, who weighs 38 pounds, was born a healthy baby without any complications, The Sun reported.

When she was around 4 months old, Chahat’s weight began ballooning, and now her parents told Barcroft Media that she cries whenever she is not being fed.

“It’s not our fault,” Suraj, Chahat’s dad, told The Sun. “God gave this condition to her. It’s not in our hands. I feel bad when some people laugh at her for being fat.”

Doctors have been unable to obtain a blood sample from Chahat because her skin is abnormally thick, the news outlet reported. She reportedly is suffering breathing and sleeping problems due to her extreme weight.

Chahat Kumar is seen playing at her house in Punjab, India.
“We don’t have enough money for her treatment, but we do our best to make sure she gets well,” Reena, Chahat’s mother, told The Sun.

Dr. Sharma, her pediatrician, said he recommended the family take Chahat to a pediatric specialist at the Civil Hospital, but they are not able to afford it, The Sun reported.

“Her weight is increasing excessively, and it has to be controlled,” he told the news outlet. “She has to eat less. She eats like a 10-year-old kid.”

Her parents, who lost a son before she was born, said they will keep searching for answers in hopes of Chahat having a normal childhood.

“We don’t want her to have difficulties in the future,” Reena told The Sun. “We want a good future for her.”

Sources: MSN
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Published by Gusti Putra at: 3:30 PM

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Mummified Monk from 200 Years Ago Found Perfectly Preserved in Meditating Pose

The stunning find was discovered in Mongolia with experts reckoning the body has sat undiscovered since the 1800s
The remarkable remains of a mummified Mongolian monk
These are the amazingly intact remains of a monk meditating that have lay undiscovered since sometime in the 1800s.

The discovery of the man sat in the lotus position has sparked a forensic investigation into the unknown religious devotee - with experts' initial evaluation suggesting the mummified remains are at least 200 years old.

The human relic, which had been preserved in animal skin, was found this week in Songinokhairkhan province, according to Mongolia's Morning Newspaper.

Preserved: Experts believe the monk has sat undiscovered for at least 200 years
Investigators are now studying the remains in the capital Ulaanbataar.

In Koh Samui, Thailand, a mummified monk wearing sunglasses - Luong Pordaeng, who died in 1973 – provides an unusual tourist attraction.

Pordaeng sits upright in a glass case at Wat Khunaram temple.

Quoted from Mirror
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Published by Gusti Putra at: 7:40 AM

Jasmine Tridevil, the Triple-Breasted Woman.

Woman has Surgery to Get Third Breast

Jasmine Tridevil, a Floridian massage therapist, has had an operation to give herself a third breast, in what is perhaps the most controversial boob job of 2014.

The 21-year-old previously told how she splurged £12,000 on plastic surgery to get and an extra breast grafted onto her chest.

Speaking at the time, Jasmine told a local radio station how more than 50 doctors turned her down before an unnamed surgeon agreed to do the job.

The third breast was made from a silicone implant and skin tissue from her abdomen.

She said at the time: "It was really hard finding someone that would do it, too, because they’re breaking the code of ethic. I called like 50 or 60 doctors - nobody wanted to do it."

Photos of her were soon circulating across the globe, but all did not seem right and many accused her of concocting an elaborate hoax.

Jasmine had to call 50-60 doctors in order to get her controversial operation. She said: “It was really hard finding someone that would do it, too, because they’re breaking the code of ethics”.

She did it because she wanted a reality TV show on MTV, but she had another reason, too.

“I got it because I wanted to make myself unattractive to men. Because I don’t want to date anymore.”

Average: Most women have two breasts

Quoted from Mirror
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Published by Gusti Putra at: 7:29 AM

Friday, March 02, 2012

Homes made from wacky materials

Humble materials get recycled to create outlandish homes,
such as this dumpster house.

Bedtime stories say the evil witch from Hansel and Gretel lived in a gingerbread cottage with window panes of sugar and a candy studded roof. And an old lady with so many children she didn’t know what to do lived in a shoe.

In real life, the possibilities are just as wacky, from paper houses to converted grain bins to homes made from a muddy mixture called “cob.” These architectural oddities — homes built out of recycled junk, gussied up dumpsters, or grounded airplanes — provide fodder for future fairy tales, or at least late-night shows on HGTV.

In the Hamptons, a resort area usually associated with oceanfront mega mansions, abandoned steel shipping containers are being used to construct a 2,000-square-foot beach house with a deck and a small pool. Andrew Anderson, the builder and owner of, says turning the containers into a home will ultimately help the planet.

“It’s the opportunity to take these products and give them a second life,” Anderson says. “You weld them together and tack them onto the foundation.” With loads of glass and an exposed corrugated ceiling in the upper container and an exposed corrugated wall in a lower crate, the shipping container beach house will be listed this spring for close to $1.4 million.

Here are five houses made from the most unconventional materials:

Fancy Fuselage
Where: All Over
Made From: Old Airplanes
The vintage Boeing 727's interior is adorned with teak paneling from cockpit to tail.
Photo: Costa Verde
Once they’ve made their last landings, Boeing 727s and Douglas DC-8s, don’t always get put out to pasture on the retirement tarmac. If not broken up for parts and scrap, the occasional airplane, wings clipped, gets transformed into a sealed, sturdily built fuselage-style private home. Corporate jets already outfitted with designer bedrooms, comfy leather sofas, media rooms and bars, may just need the seat belts removed.

Dumpster Home
Where: Berkeley, California
Made From: Dumpster
Extreme compromises include a toilet lid that doubles as a bed cushion.
Photo: Forbes
"A nice little home out of a garbage can." That's how artist Gregory Kloehn of Berkeley, CA describes, in a interview by Kim Aronson, the dumpster he made into a “luxury” compact home for urban living. The “elite waste” quarters boast stainless steel appliances, gas stove, hardwood floors, a toilet, storage and sleeping areas and a barbecue outside. At night its two front windows roll down into the elite dumpster for privacy.

Junk Castle
Where: Pullman, Washington
Made From: Car Parts, Sheet Metal, Car Windows
Building on a budget: this scrap-metal home cost less than $500 to build.
Photo: Forbes
Many folks have junk drawers. Victor Moore, an art teacher, had a junk house. Set on a hilltop with lookouts made from car windows and the glass from washing machine doors, the 1960s Junk Castle is filled with all sorts of, well, junk, from his workshop. The exterior walls are a mélange of old auto body parts, recycled sheet metal and household appliance parts.

Cob House
Where: Rutledge, Missouri
Made From: Sand, Clay, Straw
The 370-square-foot cottage took nine months to build.
Photo: Forbes
To build his snail-shaped "cob house," Brian "Ziggy" Liliola used 219 batches of cob, a wet mixture of straw, clay and sand. He chose the rustic building material used on 500-year-old thatched cottages in England, because of “how creative you could be” and “the flexibility and low cost and sustainable benefit” of building with local materials.

Converted Silos And Grain Bins
Where: The Midwest
Made From: Converted Silos, Grain Bins
Two grain silos were combined to create a unique 1,800 square-foot home.
Photo: Forbes
Silos and grain bins aren’t just for missiles or soybeans anymore. Structurally sound, ready made with a roof, round walls and a concrete floor loaded with interior space, the often abandoned, recyclable steel structures are easily converted into homes that are fire and termite resistant, weather proof and energy efficient. For larger lodgings, they can be placed side-by-side or stacked on top of each other. Even Rapunzel might let down her hair in these multi-story circular dwellings. After all, it’s like living in a metal turret.

Quoted from Yahoo

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Published by Gusti Putra at: 2:32 AM

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Japanese Tunnel was Massacre's tunnel, West Sumatera

The longest Tunnel on the bottom of the town Bukittinggi

Japanese tunnel in Bukittinggi
Japan hole in Bukittinggi is one of the historical attractions in the city of Bukittinggi, West Sumatra, Indonesia. Japan hole is a tunnel (bunker) the protection of the Japanese occupation forces built around the year 1942 for defense.


Earlier, Japan's Hole was built as a storage supplies and equipment Japanese soldiers of war, with a long tunnel that reaches 1400 m and winding and has a width of about 2 meters. A number of specific rooms contained in this tunnel, among them the space reconnaissance, ambush rooms, prisons, and armory.

One of Japan's entrance into the holes in the Ngarai Sianok 
In addition to its strategic location in the city that was once a center of government of Central Sumatra, the land that became the wall of this tunnel is a type of soil which, when mixed with water will be more robust. Even the earthquake that shook West Sumatra in 2009 and then not much damage to the tunnel structure.

It is estimated that tens to hundreds of thousands of forced labor or romusha deployed from the island of Java, Sulawesi and Kalimantan to dig this tunnel. Election workers from outside this area is the Japanese colonial strategy to maintain the confidentiality of this mega project. Labor from Bukittinggi itself deployed them to work on the tunnel defenses in Bandung and Biak Island.

Tourist Attraction

Japan began to run into holes historical attractions in the year 1984, by the town of Bukittinggi. Some of Japan's entrance into these holes are located on Gorges area Sianok, Panorama Park, next to the Bung Hatta Palace and Zoo in Bukittinggi.

Quoted from WIKIPEDIA
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Published by Gusti Putra at: 12:21 AM

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A Ghost Ship at Full Sail ... Without a Crew

Ghost Ship

In 1872, the crew of the Mary Celeste disappeared without a trace. Her story only got weirder from there.

The Mary Celeste
It's the stuff of maritime legend: a ship sighted in the distance, hailed without response, and boarded to reveal a vessel under full sail, its wheel creaking aimlessly, cabin doors slamming open and shut in the wind, and ...not a soul onboard.  

On Dec. 4, 1872, it actually happened. The Mary Celeste was discovered between the Azores and Portugal—her crew vanished without a trace of a struggle, the ship still fully provisioned. What calamity befell the ship remains a mystery. A final log entry, on Nov. 24, showed no hint of distress. The cabin of Capt. Benjamin Briggs was untouched, right down to the sewing machine and parlor melodeon belonging to his wife and infant daughter; the child's ghostly indentation remained visible on a bed. The crew must have "left in a great hurry," reported the boarding party, for their pipes and tobacco were still there—and no sailor, they noted, willingly abandons ship without his pipe.

Theories on the cause of the disappearance have ranged from cargo fumes to mutiny to (inevitably) alien abduction. The Mary Celeste's fate inspired fictional solutions in an Arthur Conan Doyle story (which blamed a race war), a 1935 Hammer horror film (a hook-armed Bela Lugosi), and a Dr. Who episode (Daleks, of course.)

What's not as well-known is that the Mary Celeste was also at the center of a second mystery. The disconcerting disappearance of its crew notwithstanding, the Mary Celeste still had plenty of life left in her, and soon went back into service. Thirteen years and 17 hapless owners later, Mary was mostly infamous for being in poor shape and for losing money on runs from Boston to Africa and the West Indies. It was merely one final indignity when she wrecked off Haiti in January 1885, slamming squarely into Rochelois Reef, a known hazard. The ship didn’t sink, but its hopelessly splintered remains would never leave the reef. Capt. Gilman Parker declared the cursed ship a loss, and then went ashore to sell the salvage rights to a load of ale, cutlery, and shoes for $500. That's where the story might have ended—except that police showed up at the captain's door in Boston three months later. The Mary Celeste, they charged, was a 282-ton, fully-rigged insurance scam.

The July 1885 trial of Capt. Parker and the ship's co-owners, now buried in the Boston Globe archives, offers a fascinating glimpse into a Gilded Age flimflam. Laying out charts and totting up blackboard figures in a broiling Boston courtroom, prosecutors revealed a chain of scams that reached from Haiti back to the alleyways of their own city.  

Capt. Parker might have pulled it off, too, except that he'd gotten greedy: Not content to rip off just his insurers, he also tried to con the local salvager in Haiti. The salvager hadn't found anything near the 125 casks of Bass ale promised on the ship's manifest, and the few he did locate weren't exactly good drinking. Called to the stand, a Boston bottler revealed they were moldy blanks with Bass labels pasted to them, and filled with "ullage"—bottom-of-barrel runoff from smashed and leaking bottles. The bottler hadn't even bothered filling many of them; some were “half full, some a third full, and some just enough to wet the bottle."
The rest of the cargo was similarly suspect. The 975 barrels of "New Fortune Herring"? That was actually 780 barrels of rotten fish that stank so badly that one fish merchant said it was good only "for fertilizers." Wooden barrels of "Fine" butter proved to be rank "slush." The Haiti-bound food cargo was so foul that one conspirator was overheard musing, "If these n— eat that fish and drink that beer, they will all be dead."

A crate supposed to contain $1,000 in cutlery, when pried open, revealed $50 worth of dog collars. Boxes of "women's high-button boots" were old galoshes. The ship and its cargo, covered by five insurers for a whopping $34,000, were hardly worth the kerosene necessary to burn the wreck. Capt. Parker, in short, was in deep trouble.

"The defense lawyers were wild," one investigator later marveled of Parker's shambolic team. Parker's attorney cited famed Massachusetts eccentric "Lord" Timothy Dexter—a late-18th-century merchant who supposedly shipped mittens and warming pans to the West Indies—to assert that the Mary Celeste's cargo belonged to a splendid tradition of crazy-like-a-fox speculations. If the vulpine side of the simile was left unexplained, the crazy part was easy to spot. Haitians didn't typically buy new Bass ale or salted herring, let alone rotten beer and fish.

"They say the goods were overinsured. Suppose they were. It is a common thing to overinsure," sputtered Parker's attorney. And if the crew said the goods were worthless, well, everyone knew they liked to tell stories. "Spinning a yarn is a sailor's phrase," he insisted. For more click Continue!

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Published by Gusti Putra at: 4:29 PM

Monday, December 05, 2011

Garut Pyramid Older than the Pyramids of Egypt

This after an intensive study and carbon dating tests, the staff said Yudhoyono, Andi Arief

Ancient catastrophic team discovered startling facts in connection with the mystery of the pyramid Garut, West Java. From the results of carbon-intensive research and testing confirmed that the life of the building is buried in the mountain area of ​​Garut older than the Pyramids of Giza in Egypt.

Sadahurip Mount, Garut
Ancient catastrophic team had previously conducted intensive research over an alleged pyramid-shaped building in the Village Sadahurip, near Wanaradja, Garut, West Java.

"From a mountain in which there is a building resembling a pyramid, having studied intensively and carbon dating tests, certain age older than the Giza Pyramids," said Andi Arief, Special Staff of President of Social Affairs and Disaster Assistance, in a written statement on 20 November 2011 .

Just for the record, the Pyramids of Giza pyramid is known as the oldest and largest of the three pyramids at Giza necropolis. Pyramid is believed to be the tomb of Pharaoh, the fourth dynasty of Egypt, Khufu, built for more than 20 years during the period around the year 2560 BC.

Astonishing Findings

In the near future, continued Andy, Tim Ancient catastrophe will do the public exposure of these findings. Not only about the findings of the pyramid on the Main Page, the team presented the findings will also be special in the region Trowulan, Stone Jaya, some menhirs locations in Sumatra and others.

"There's a stunning finding about carbon dating tests on the three layers of culture in the region already Trowulan which we call the Majapahit at the time of BC's history. Also on the findings of historical layers in Lamri, Aceh, and surrounding areas, "said Andi.

Upon these findings, he added, Ancient catastrophic Team will continue to coordinate cross earth science with respect to the findings of the history of disasters locally and globally to look for mitigation.

The team will also continue to coordinate with the field of archeology, anthropology, archeology, cultural experts, historians and others.

Adapted from VIVAnews

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Published by Gusti Putra at: 12:29 AM

Allegedly Has Three Other Pyramids in Garut

The three pyramids are buried in Mount Princess, Mount Kaledong and Haruman, Garut

Ancient catastrophic team formed the Special Staff of President of the Field of Natural Disasters, Andi Arief said the alleged pyramid building not only in Mount Sadahurip, Garut, West Java. The team is declared the building pyramids allegedly also found in three other mountain in Garut.

Sadahurip Mount, Garut
"The survey results in Gunung Putri, Mountain and Mount Haruman Kaledong can already be concluded that there was a" man made "strongly suspected pyramid," said Tim.

This assumption is made based on georadar cross section, geoelectric, photos and images IFSAR contours of the mountain in the distance of 5 meters. "All parties rather be patient, so that the stages and the completion of this scientific principle."

The team argues, if these findings can be affirmed, then the theory is not only in Indonesia but also potentially the world, that the prehistoric period are the backward and did not know the technology. "The discovery team potentially catastrophic state of the Ancient civilizations of the past amazing."

In addition to the three mountains, the team also conducted research at Mount Padang, Cianjur, where the rocks are widespread in the region megaliths sehektare more. Through the geoelectric tests, Team concluded on the site of Mount Padang which is also referred to as the largest megalithic heritage in Southeast Asia there are punden staircase-like structure of the pyramid.

On 20 November, the launch team at Mount Ancient catastrophic Sadahurip in Garut, West Java, pent-up buildings like the pyramids. From the results of carbon-intensive research and testing confirmed that the life of the building is buried in the mountain area of ​​Garut older than the Pyramids of Giza in Egypt.

"From a mountain in which there is a building resembling a pyramid, having studied intensively and carbon dating tests, certain age older than the Giza Pyramids," said Andi Arief, Special Staff of President of Social Affairs and Disaster Assistance.

On 5 November, the team also launched, Mount Klothok and a mountain in Sleman, also thought to keep the pyramid structure in it.

Adapted from VIVAnews
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Published by Gusti Putra at: 12:19 AM

Monday, October 31, 2011

The Coolest Cameras in The World

8 Coolest Cameras in The World

Panoramas like never before

Digital cameras are constantly evolving. The sensors get bigger, the mega-pixel count higher, and thus the images produced improve. But innovation and evolution can also throw up some interesting anomalies, as these amazing cameras show. For example, if you want to create a digital panorama you usually have to stitch together the pictures using an app or PhotoShop. The Seitz 16 x 7, however, has been designed to capture perfect panoramas in seconds. Up to 160 million pixels are packed into each shot, so every photo looks vibrant and sharp enough to step inside. For creating incredible epic landscapes, capturing architectural wonders or vibrant city scenes, the Seitz 16 x 7 Digital Panoramic Camera can be considered one of the best in existence.

Photography and video in 3D

Films, televisions and video games have all made the jump to the third dimension recently, and now your photos can too. The Fine Pix Real 3D W3 is the first camera that shoots high-resolution 3D photos and movies mass produced for consumers. It's surprisingly easy to use — just press the shutter and capture the world as it was meant to be seen. It also has a feature where you can take two shots of the same subject from different positions and the camera will merge them into a single 3D photo. Clever stuff.

The value of history

It might not look it, but the camera pictured above is the most expensive in the world. So if you thought a camera's price tag reflected how much high-tech gadgetry it had, think again. This 1923 Leica 0-Series is worth an incredible $1.74 million thanks to its historical significance and iconic status. Only 25 were ever produced in order to test the market for a new Leica camera; this is the seventh, and the only one with "Germany" engraved on the top plate. In 2007 the very same camera sold at auction for $475,000 — an amazing return on investment.

The camera engineered like a car

Leica still makes some of the finest cameras in the world, and the M9 Titanium is no exception. This exclusive special edition model is the result of collaboration with Walter de'Silva, famed for his design work with Audi. The camera body is made from precision-engineered titanium, and the trim is a special leather typically used in Audi's top-of-the-range cars. Only 500 Titanium M9s have been produced worldwide, each one is individually numbered and costs around $30,000.

A camera for space travel

The Wide Field Camera 3 is the size of a small piano. But when you're taking pictures of the farthest reaches of the universe, you need something with a big zoom lens. It's actually the third version of the camera housed inside the Hubble Space Telescope, installed during a spacewalk in early 2009. It can capture images of astronomical targets over a wide wavelength range, and has a massive field of view, allowing scientists to see as much as possible of deep space. As well as being scientifically useful, the images captured by this camera are also extremely beautiful.

Incredible resolution in a single image

The megapixel count often overshadows all other aspects of a camera's performance, even though the sensor, lens and other features are just as important for producing great images. However, for professionals shooting images that are going to appear on billboards or glossy magazines, normal digital cameras are often not enough. By using a traditional medium format camera with a digital camera back, the professionals are able to get great single images in incredible detail — and there's none higher than the Phase One IQ180 back, which can capture 80 million pixels.

Incredible images in the palm of your hand

The Pentax Q is currently the smallest camera body in the world featuring interchangeable lenses, a feat made possible by Pentax's newly developed Q mount system. The removal of an optical finder, mirror box, focusing plate and AF sensor makes the camera super light, too, so it's perfect for popping in a pocket.

Redefining the disposable camera

With a diameter of just 0.99 millimeters, the Medigus video camera is the tiniest in existence; yet the minute CMOS sensor inside is still able to capture video with a 45,000 pixel resolution. It's been designed for use in medical procedures that require the use of a small-diameter endoscopic device and is made from materials that won't harm the human body. Despite these impressive specifications, the camera is actually designed to be disposable, eliminating the need for sterilisation after use.

Quoted from MSN
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Published by Gusti Putra at: 1:25 AM

5 unique auto insurance policies

New products introduced this year are offering unconventional coverage, from pet injury insurance to a vanishing deductible.

Insurance with a difference

Let's face it, car insurance policies are about as exciting as Hello Kitty Snuggies.
Chances are, you haven't even read your auto policy cover to cover, unless you did so in a desperate move to lullaby a colicky child to sleep.

But this year, five new car insurance offerings hit the streets with enough thunder to wake the masses.

Two of these hot new products kicked off with equally funky national TV campaigns -- the commercials are for Vanishing Deductible from Nationwide Insurance, in which an insurance spokesman vanishes, and Better Car Replacement from Liberty Mutual, in which a guy peels away a wrecked car to reveal a new car underneath.

Two other innovative products -- pet injury coverage from the Chubb Group of Insurance Companies and mobile food vendors insurance from Whorton Insurance Services -- fill a very real insurance need that has never been met before.

Finally, you would need to witness the annual spontaneous artistic combustion in the Nevada desert known as Burning Man to fully appreciate the unique challenges of Heffernan Insurance Brokers' insurance program for Burning Man participants.

Shrinking deductibles, equal auto protection for pets, props for our favorite taco wagons, a guaranteed newer car and coverage for whatever weirdness might happen at Burning Man?

How to make your deductible vanish

If you've never filed an accident claim, why should your deductible remain the same?

Now it doesn't have to. Nationwide's Vanishing Deductible program will lop $100 off your deductible for every year of safe driving, up to a maximum deduction of $500, for preferred auto customers only. New program enrollees receive an immediate $100 deduction.

How do you qualify for preferred at Nationwide? "You need to maintain auto insurance for at least six months, have fewer than two at-fault accidents and fewer than three moving violations (aka tickets) with no major offenses such as a DUI," says spokeswoman Elizabeth Stelzer.

What constitutes "safe driving"?

"A safe driver is someone who does not have an at-fault accident," she says. "Not-at-fault accidents and moving violations do not impact the earning of our vanishing deductible."

The vanishing deductible magic act is available to preferred auto policyholders in all Nationwide states except North Carolina for a cost of $30 for the first vehicle on your policy and $5 for each additional vehicle. The fee is charged every six months at renewal.

The deductible credit can be used multiple times throughout the policy period and on all types of claims, including at-fault, not-at-fault and glass damage, Stelzer says.

Affordable coverage for food on the move

Mobile food vendors are all the rage today, with menus that extend well beyond tacos and tamales to fancy fare such as lobster and gourmet cupcakes. There are estimated to be 8,000 to 10,000 rolling restaurants in Los Angeles County alone and 10,000 among Dallas, Houston and Austin, Texas, according to Ron Ortega, program manager of Whorton Insurance Services in Austin.

Unfortunately, obtaining insurance coverage for the three major risks -- foodborne illness and fire and auto accidents -- required chefs to cook up piecemeal protection from expensive surplus-lines underwriters.

That just didn't taste right to Ortega. So he developed the nation's first mobile food vendor insurance, or MFVI.

"Costs vary by state and region, but on average, premiums range from $2,500 to $3,500 for $1 million to $2 million general liability and $1 million auto liability, including physical damage on a stated amount basis," Ortega says.

He estimates his MFVI policy saves mobile food vendors an average 30% over similar surplus-lines policies while providing better coverage.

"What's fueling this industry is its popularity, convenience and affordability in tough economic times, spiced up by social networking," says Ortega. "People love it and want more of it."

Car totaled? Replace it with a better one

Depreciation doesn't just affect the resale value of your new car. It also has an impact on the insurance money you'll receive if you total it.

Liberty Mutual feels your pain and includes new-car replacement as part of its standard auto coverage. If you total your new car within a year of owning it and within its first 15,000 miles, the company will give you the vehicle's full value minus any deductible.

The idea proved to be so popular that Liberty Mutual dreamed up Better Car Replacement for customers who don't drive this year's model. The optional coverage, which costs on average $60 per year, is now available in all states except Kentucky and North Carolina.

"Better Car Replacement works like this: If your car is totaled, we will give you the money for a car one model year newer with 15,000 fewer miles on it," says Liberty Mutual spokeswoman Nicole Guidara. "For example, if you total a 2008 Toyota Camry with 60,000 miles on it, we will give you the money for the value of a 2009 Camry with 45,000 miles on it."

Pets need auto insurance coverage, too

When you load up the van with Fido and the family, one of you isn't covered. Guess which one.

To rectify this industry oversight, the Chubb Group of Insurance Companies now offers $2,000 in pet injury coverage as part of its standard auto policy, at no additional cost to customers. So far, coverage is available in Arizona, Maryland, Texas and New Jersey.

The policy pays up to the claim limit to treat, board, euthanize and replace your pet if it is injured or killed in a crash. It even covers horses in trailers.

"We have a lot of customers who have pets and love their pets," says Chubb spokesman Dave Hilgen. "The distinction is, it will cover any animal that isn't used for business or profit. If you have a race horse and you're taking it to the track, it wouldn't cover that. It has to be a pet."

Any pet? Sure, says Hilgen: snakes, monkeys, hedgehogs. Even bigger exotic animals.

"The bottom line is, it's difficult to get a lion sitter if you happen to have a lion, so sometimes you have to take that lion with you," he says. "If it's a pet, it's covered."

Insurance that’s too hot not to like

Take Woodstock. Lose the headline acts. Add fantastically decorated "art cars" and theme camps. Multiply by Salvador Dali. Allow to rise in the desert sun. Then flambé.

That's Burning Man, a weeklong communal artistic experience that occurs each year in Nevada's Black Rock Desert, culminating in the ceremonial torching of a giant humanoid figure.

Woodstock with open-road vehicles -- what could possibly go wrong, right?

Enter coverage for Burning Man participants, offered for the first time by California-based Heffernan Insurance Brokers. For a premium of $500 to $850, the policy provides property and liability coverage for claims against participants in a theme camp, art car or artistic installation at Burning Man, from setup to breakdown.

Heffernan's Amy Vitarelli and Ben Stern spent two years developing the unique coverage. "As 'burners' ourselves, we know the risks inherent in an event like Burning Man," Vitarelli says.

They're also aware of the irony.

"There is no insurance requirement; that would be very un-Burning-Man-like for the organization to require anyone to purchase insurance," she says. "When you say 'insurance and Burning Man,' it's like this oxymoron -- like wait, those things go together?"

Quoted from MSN

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Published by Gusti Putra at: 1:00 AM

Saturday, October 29, 2011

The Best Ever Smashing Pumpkins.

Oh My Gourd! These Are Smashing Pumpkins

Feeling the squeeze
Artist Ray Villafane began carving pumpkins on a lark for his art students in a small rural school district in Michigan. The hobby changed his life as he gained a viral following online and unlocked his genuine love of sculpting. Here are images of pumpkin carvings Villafane created over the past six years, including 15 new images being shared for the first time this year.

What an adorable little girl
"When I carve, I kind of go with the flow," Villafane said. "Sometimes I might have a preconceived idea, but sometimes I make up the idea as I go."

A Viking’s life for me
Ray Villafane's signature Halloween pumpkins are known for their intricacy and lifelike subjects.

Lean on me
In addition to carving pumpkins, Villafane also works with wax and sand. “He is not limited by any material,” said Andy Bergholtz, Villafane’s colleague and a fellow sculptor. “The man could sculpt the statue of David out of a stick of butter.”

It’s a werewolf!
Villafane advises would-be carvers to steer clear of perfectly round pumpkins. His favorite carving pumpkins have an oblong shape.

Villafane also encourages aspiring pumpkin carvers to work with thick pumpkins. “Pick up three pumpkins of the same size,” Villafane advised. “If one feels much heavier than the others, it’s got a thick wall.”

We’d rather not ask what this poor fellow did to get himself this distressed.

Maybe this carving could inspire kids to cool it a bit with the Halloween candy?

Grumpy Gus
Funny detail: Villafane has made a name for himself with pumpkin carving even though he's allergic to pumpkins. "If I’m carving too many or too long, my skin gets really itchy," Villafane said. "If pumpkin juice gets anywhere near my eyes, my eyes itch."

This guy might just need to take two aspirin and call us in the morning.


Child’s play

People often ask Villafane whether he crafts some of his pumpkin creations by putting more than one pumpkin together. His answer? Nope. With only a few rare exceptions – like this embellished carving – he makes a point of using just one solid pumpkin.

Native American chief
Villafane said an oblong-shaped pumpkin is best for carvers who want to create realistic-looking faces.

Because everybody feels a little bit out of place at times.

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Published by Gusti Putra at: 6:06 PM