Oddly Enough Blog

News, but not the serious kind

Just do one, and you’re the champ!

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Regular readers know this blog is all over unusual sports of the world, such as cyclist hunting and farmers golf.

I don’t know much about the particular sport in this photo - like, what it’s called, for instance. But it’s probably something like One-Armed Horse Push-Ups, in which the rider must lift himself and his horse all the way off the ground as many times as possible, using only his arm and a strong pole.

This is not as easy as it sounds, what with horses weighing, I’d guess, maybe 300 pounds or whatever. My researchers are on it, and we should have more details sometime soon. Remember our motto: “If this blog doesn’t cover a sport, then it’s probably on TV somewhere.”

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An Indian villager takes part in the Kila Raipur sports festival on the outskirts of Ludhiana, in the northern Indian state of Punjab, February 9, 2008. The festival, also known as the ‘Rural Olympics’, is held annually in the northern city. REUTERS/Stringer

That big red “S” stands for Smith?

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tough-guy-2-140.jpgThis is some kind of living nightmare. In England, they have this Tough Guy race, sort of a masochists’ marathon, where people run through fire, swim in mud, hang from cargo nets, and I don’t know, probably even get eviscerated and eat Brussels sprouts.

So say you’ve entered, and you’re choking in a pool of sludge, you’ve pushed yourself to the limit, and you look behind you and the next participant looks familiar, what with his red cape and blue outfit and…

“It’s a hook! It’s a rook!”

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chess-2-140.jpgSome readers will think I’m making this up. There was just a championship competition in chess boxing, a sport with alternating rounds of boxing, chess, boxing, chess, like that.  See, I warned you.

I know what you’re thinking: chess players are smart, and boxers, um, aren’t. So  where do they get players? A good question. And how do they move those little-bitty pieces with boxing gloves? How can you say “check-mate” with those  teeth-guards?

Watch out for that rex, Becks!

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Remember when you were a kid, arguing about who would win in a fight between Wonder Woman and Batman, and stuff like that? Well, hold on to your hat, because scientists have just revealed that the Tyrannosaurus rex could outrun today’s athletes. I’m not making this up.

…this carnivore was certainly capable of running and would have little difficulty in chasing down footballer David Beckham, for instance, said one paleontologist in our news story.

What are you doing in a dive like this?

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The screams and epic splashes coming from Toronto Wednesday were the result of the National Cannonball Championships. For those who can’t remember their childhoods, that was the name given to swimming pool dives designed to make the biggest possible splash, and to cause a bit of pain as well.

First place went to the guy in this photo from Alberta – they call him the “Hurtin Albertan” – who, according to one story said doing these dives felt like running into a wall repeatedly.”

Hot summer knights, a visor advisory…

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Blog Guy, recently you told about some people who go jousting for sport, but their concept was disappointing.

Have you found anyplace else were real armor enthusiasts can go to use their lance a lot?

No food? What kind of toilet IS this?

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Lovers of good food know you can find some of your best meals at little hole-in-the-wall places. But hole-in-the-FLOOR places, I don’t know.

It turns out, officials in Beijing are cracking down on food stalls that are attached to public toilets, in advance of next year’s Olympics. This makes me feel much better, because now I don’t be tempted to buy food from the person tending the toilet I’m standing in line to use, and I won’t have to learn the Chinese phrase for “eeeeeeeeewwwwwwwwwww!!!!”

Finally, a sport that lets you wear a tie!

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joust300.jpgFriends, I urge you not to watch this video clip. When I saw a story about the popularity of jousting, I asked for some video of it, picturing in my mind Men of Iron charging one another with lances on snorting steeds, the losers crumpled in shiny piles of metal on the ground.

Fat chance. No, what we get here is a form of jousting where competitors charge this contraption and stick their itty-bitty lances through a small ring. And you can just forget about bloodied helmets and chainmail; these folks play in white outfits with neckties! 

That’s enough of a head start… Fire!

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This blog is proud to bring you, for the first time ever, photos of the Belgian sport of cyclist hunting. A match consists of two teams – the “pedalers,” with their festive regalia and jaunty helmets, and the “huge cannon-shooters,” with, well, their massive field pieces and really heavy cannonballs. That’s the team you want to be on if you have a choice.

While this sport is growing in popularity, it has not yet eclipsed the other so-called “history buff sport,” golfer hunting.

But you said to choose a nice flour for the bride…

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It was one of those challenges that modern women with full lives sometimes have to face, and Pam did it beautifully.

Her to-do list told her that on Saturday she had to get married, then rush immediately to play in a pro football game, and then cover her evening shift as a street mime. A born problem solver, Pam had the brilliant idea of buying a wedding gown that would cover her bulky shoulder pads during her nuptials, and she also saved time by wearing her cake mime makeup during the ceremony.