Russia

Russian climbers break into and scale the world’s second tallest building, Shanghai Tower

Vadim Makhorov and Vitaliy Raskalov, a pair of Russian and Ukrainian climbers, have made a name for themselves around the world after a video of them scaling the 632m (2,073ft)-tall Shanghai Tower went viral and attracted over 21 million views in a week.

In the video we see the pair sneak into and make their way from the foundation to the top, drawing comments from viewers such as “I almost s**t the bed just watching this,” and “[those] guys have some balls.” Indeed this video might be disturbing for those suffering from acrophobia or vertigo.

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Samsung, IOC deny asking iPhone carrying Olympic athletes to cover their Apple logos

The Olympics gives the world’s most talented athletes a chance to show their abilities to people all over the globe. It also gives the world’s most wealthy marketers a chance to show their products to that same audience.

Among the Games’ biggest sponsors is Samsung, whose Galaxy Note 3 was granted the title of official phone of the Sochi Olympics in thanks of its manufacturer’s generosity. Some reports are claiming that the Korean electronics maker isn’t showing a respect for healthy competition, though, by asking athletes with iPhones to make sure they cover the Apple logo when on-camera.

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Why a Korean speed skating star changed his name and started racing for Russia

Twelve years ago, South Korea’s Ahn Hyun-soo crashed into Apolo Ohno a few feet from the finish line in the men’s short track 1000m at the Olympics.

It sparked an intense rivalry between the two skaters that peaked at the 2006 Olympics in Turin, where Hyun-soo won three gold medals to Ohno’s one.

On Saturday night in Sochi, the Hyun-soo won gold again. But now his name is Viktor Ahn, and he skates for Russia.

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Simply amazing — these unbelievably life-like stuffed dolls will take your breath away!

Just look at those large, round, clear eyes that seem to see right into your soul! They belong to what appears to be an undeniably adorable yet otherworldly furry creature. But wait, this can’t be an actual, living animal, can it?

No, you’re right, this isn’t a living animal — but it certainly looks life-like, doesn’t it? What you’re seeing here is the work of young Russian artist Santani. And we have a collection of pictures showing her gorgeous creations to share with you, so sit back, relax and let these creatures take you to an alien world!

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Video shows “mutant” crawling on the side of a building in Russia

Having read comics a lot as a kid I always dreamed of having a mutation. Having my genetic material altered so that I could fly or turn invisible would have been great. However, as I grew up I realized that mutations often lead to things like health problems and considered myself better off.

Now watching this video, I may have to reconsider. According to the person who posted it on YouTube it was taken in Russia. It appears to show a humanoid creature crawling across the exterior of an apartment building.

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Russia thinks China is launching cyber attacks via microchipped irons and kettles, releases photo

In one of the strangest stories we’ve come across so far this week – yes, stranger than exploding yogurt and ramen cake – reports are coming in of a number of Chinese-made irons that contain “mini microphones” and chips that can plant viruses in nearby computer equipment via home Wi-Fi networks.

We always knew ironing sucked, but this is ridiculous.

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Magic mushrooms and what happens when you eat them【Video】

Many of us are warned when we’re children not to go picking mushrooms we’re unfamiliar with as they could be dangerous or possess hallucinogenic properties. But haven’t you ever wondered what happens when someone ignores these warnings and accidentally eats a magic mushroom anyway? It is not unusual to hear stories of the person becoming delirious or even oblivious to their actions after they’ve sobered up. But as they say, a picture tells a thousand words and when it comes to video footage, a whole new meaning emerges. Therefore, anyone curious about how someone behaves under the influence of these potent fungi, we urge you to check out the video footage below. It is likely to add a new depth of meaning to the dangers of picking species of mushrooms you’re unfamiliar with.

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Kuzya the cat assigned to assistant librarian position in Novorossiysk, Russia

Cats often get a bad rep for being lazy and selfish, but in fact they can back it up with a stellar job performance when necessary. For example, I once saw a cat swat and eat a cockroach in mid-flight. According to various industry insiders, employers hate cockroaches. Now that’s a valuable skill to add to any organization!

This is a fact of life that no one knows better than Russia. Their State Hermitage Museum is staffed by a team of cats who protect its treasures from vermin around the clock – or the sections of the clock they’re awake.

Even on the local level we now have Kuzya the tabby who is swiftly making his way up the ladder at a Novorossiysk Library. Coming straight off the streets he has already assumed the role of assistant librarian, and many are tipping him to be running the whole facility before long.

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Russian President Putin’s whiteboard doodle defies explanation

We’re often treated to videos of Russia’s President Vladimir Putin doing something ultra-macho, be it piloting jets and submarines, shooting large animals with tranquilizer darts, or fighting forest fires.

However, the leader of the largest country in the world also has a sensitive side. He just doesn’t let it show very often. When you give him the opportunity, though, just watch as he marvels you with his talent.

For example, while attending a demonstration for an interactive projection whiteboard, inspiration struck President Putin and he knew exactly how to visually express what was on his mind.

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Colossal hovercraft crashes pleasant day at the beach in Russia

Who doesn’t love a nice Sunday at the beach? It’s that one day of the week when we can all kick back and soak up some rays while listening to the relaxing sound of waves lapping against the shore.

At least some of us can while many other people still have to work on Sundays, including those in the Russian Navy who were doing a training exercise. However, it would appear this time they decided to make a detour and sneak their enormous hovercraft onto a locally popular beach on the Baltic Sea for some fun in the sun of their own.

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From Russia with love (for J-pop), we present trilingual cover band Pudra

It’s taken several years, but as anime and computer generated vocaloid songs continue to grow in popularity abroad, Japanese pop music has solidified a passionate overseas fan base. Go to YouTube and do a search for the opening or closing theme of a major recent anime hit, and you’ve got a decent chance of finding a foreign fan doing a cover, either while strumming a guitar or with the vocal-less karaoke mix from the song’s single playing in the background.

But that’s not good enough for Russian band, Pudra (meaning “powder”). This quartet of teenage girls goes all out with their anime song performances, with full arrangement and polished videos. And while many foreign cover artists rewrite lyrics in their native languages, Pudra sings all of their J-pop renditions in their original Japanese. Read More

Video of Russian Kindness Affecting People in Japan

There’s a new video from Russia that’s moving the world to tears, just with its simple content: random acts of human kindness. Using the same car dashboard cameras that brought images of a falling meteor to the world, it shows Russian drivers helping out animals, pedestrians and fellow drivers in a manner that defies traditional stereotypes and puts many of us to shame.

We’re happy to report that the video has reached Japan, and it’s wielding its magic over viewers here as well. Given the tense relationship between Russia and Japan, locked in a territorial dispute and still technically at war, having never signed a peace treaty after World War II, it’s nice to see that people in Japan are responding to the kindness in the video and rethinking the old stereotypes. View the full video and see what the Japanese have to say about it, after the break.

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Parents Group in Russia Deems Death Note ‘Harmful Matter,’ Requests Ban

On 24 April in the Ural region of Russia, a parents group published an open letter to President Vladimir Putin asking that the popular Death Note manga series be regulated in all its forms (print, anime, live action).

Death Note was a Shonen Jump series that ran from 2003 to 2006 and centered on Light Yamagi, a student who stumbles upon a magical notebook which has the power to kill people simply by writing their names in it.

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Russian Scientist Predicts “Massive Earthquake” to Hit Japan by End of 2014

During the European Geosciences Union (EGU) Convention in Vienna on 9 April, a Russian scientist declared that Japan would face a giant earthquake of magnitude 9.0 within the next year and a half.

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Maid Cafes in Russia are Sad, Sad Places

The below video, which we stumbled through with ears open for loan words like “kawaii” and “product placement,” presumably depicts that most otaku of Japanese exports – a maid café – in the middle of Russia.

The interior’s got style in spades, albeit with weirdly out of place old timey photos and a suspicious lack of vodka bottles (apologies to Russian readers for the ignorant stereotyping).

As far as the food selection goes, the menu’s got Japanese maid café classics such as omu rice, but apparently also some more exotic selections like some kind of taco-burrito hybrid, which the Russian reporter happily digs into.

Most glaringly, the legendary service quality of Japanese maid cafes seems to have gotten lost in translation, as the seemingly only maid on duty lacks any enthusiasm for the job, lazily reciting her lines like she’s been popping valium just to get her through one more bleak day of squirting ketchup squiggles on pimply-faced patrons’ omelets.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KhPJPkSMAo8?version=3&rel=1&showsearch=0&showinfo=1&iv_load_policy=1&fs=1&hl=en-US&autohide=2&wmode=transparent&w=560&h=315%5D

Source: Yahoo! Japan

Something Smells Funny about this 7-Eleven

With over 40,000 stores around the world, everyone should be familiar with the 7-eleven chain of convenience stores. Part of the fun of travelling is seeing how these mega-chains adjust their wares to suit the tastes of the local culture be it the Big Gulps in America, the various onigiri in Japan, or melt-proof ice pops of China.

Take this 7-Eleven found on the Russian controlled island of Sakhalin. The orange green and red markings are instantly recognizable despite the foreign language. So what goods are Russians running out for at 2:00 am in their pajamas?

The answer may shock you.

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Photo-Shoot in Freezing Underwater Cave Produces Eerie Images

You may think that these are photos of a mannequin, dunked in an indoor pool or some brilliant photoshopping stunt.

However, these are actual photos of two-time free diving world champion, Natalia Avseenko, in the freezing waters of Orda Cave in Russia. On the day of the photo-shoot, the temperature on land was a bone-chilling -32.8 degrees Fahrenheit (-36 Celcius) and the water was 41 degrees Fahrenheit (5 Fahrenheit).

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In Russia, Pressing “A” Button Makes Cat Jump 【Video】

We don’t know how they did it, but it seems the Russians have developed a technology that allows them to control cats with a Nintendo Entertainment System gamepad.

There’s really no other rational explanation for what’s going on in the video below.

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“End of the World” Survival Kit Selling Well in Russia

It has been revealed by Russia Now, a news blog that reports ‘beyond the headlines in Russia’, that people in the city of Tomsk, Western Siberia, are preparing for the end of the world.

The survival kit pictured above was put together by none other than a wedding planning company. Seems a bit morbid for a company that makes money on helping people plan their special day, but perhaps it’s intended to encourage couples to tie the knot before it’s too late?

The reason a survival kit is necessary in the first place is because of the rumour and Internet scaremongering surrounding the ancient Mayan calendar, which some allege puts the date of the end of the world at December 21st, 2012. On paper it does look kinda scary, all those ones and twos lining up like that, but really? That is just around the corner!

The president of the wedding planning company, Yurianna Shichogorewa, leapt at the chance to implement a new marketing strategy with this prophecy, coming up with the idea for a survival kit. Borrowing tips from a Mexican acquaintance, she was able to produce a kit in just two weeks.  Read More

Moscow’s First Maid Cafe is Russian-Made, Japan-Approved

Maid cafes have become a quintessential symbol of Japanese otaku culture and many foreigners who visit Japan make a trip to one an essential stop on their travel itinerary.

In recent years, some enterprising foreigners have even opened maid cafes back home, though some argue that they don’t translate well into other cultures and that foreign girls look awkward trotting about in stylized French maid costumes. In some cases, it is (see the video at the end of this article).

However, doubters need only look to Moscow’s first ever maid cafe, Otaky, which boasts a staff of young Russian maids so cute that even Japan acknowledges they’re doing it right.

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