TIME fun

Feel Good Friday: 15 Fun Photos to Start Your Weekend

From flying off mountains to backflipping in Palestine, here's a handful of photos to get your weekend started right

TIME royals

Can You Tell the Difference Between a Royal and a Dummy?

See your favorite members of the royal family and their wax dummy duplicates, which were unveiled at Madame Tussauds in New York City on Oct. 23

MONEY

Ebola.com Purchased for $200K by Marijuana Company. And It Gets Stranger From There

Gloved hand holding marijuana leaf.
Alessandro Bianchi—Reuters

Earlier this month, we reported that Ebola.com’s owner, a disease-obsessed domain name vendor called Blue String Ventures, was hoping to sell the URL for at least $150,000. Now, according to a report from DomainInvesting.com, Ebola.com has been sold to a Russian company that is apparently focused on the marijuana business.

Filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission show Ebola.com was bought by Weed Growth Fund for $50,000 in cash and 19,192 shares of Cannabis Sativa, a Mesquite, Nevada-based recreational and medical marijuana company that trades on over-the-counter markets. Based on Cannabis Sativa’s current stock price, those shares are valued at roughly $164,000, making the overall transaction worth just over $200,000.

So to recap: Ebola.com was sold to a marijuana-related company based in Russia that paid mostly in the stock of another marijuana company.

But the story’s not over yet. As recently as September of this year, Weed Growth Fund was known as Ovation Research, which according to this BusinessWeek profile was in the business of distributing “stainless steel cookware products for retail and wholesale customers in North America.”

Then, on Sept. 19, the company filed with the Nevada Secretary of State changing its name to Weed Growth Fund. (We tried to contact Weed Growth Fund by phone and email to ask about the deal and name change, but got no answer.)

Why would a marijuana company want to own the URL Ebola.com? Elliot Silver, DomainInvesting.com’s publisher, asked Blue String Ventures founder Jon Schultz this very question. And while Schultz replied that he did not know why Weed Growth Fund wanted the domain, he did send Silver to this Marijuana.com article in which Cannabis Sativa CEO Gary Johnson (the former two-term New Mexico governor and Libertarian Party presidential candidate!) claims that marijuana can be used to treat Ebola. (You can see him do it in this Fox Business interview.) Cannabis Sativa also did not respond to requests for comment.

So there you have it. A newly renamed, Russian weed-related company bought Ebola.com using shares of a medical marijuana business run by a former Libertarian Party presidential candidate who thinks that pot should be used to treat Ebola. And no, you’re not high (as far as we know). This really happened.

TIME Bizarre

These Very Weird Portraits Are Actually Alive

Artist Seung-Hwan Oh allows mold to grow on his negatives, distorting the images.

Seung-Hwan Oh is truly dedicated to his photo project, “Impermanence.” To produce his unique portraits, the photographer covers the positive film in light-sensitive emulsion-consuming microbes before immersing them in water. Over the course of months or years the silver halides destabilize and the resulting mold obscures the portraits. For Seung-Hwan, “this creates an aesthetic of entangled creation and destruction that inevitably is ephemeral.”

Seung-Hwan has been working on Impermanence for four years but only has 15 final images to show for his hard work. He is highly selective, and there is a very low probability the mold grows in the way in which he would like. He uses only one out of every 500 pictures he takes.

Impermanence began in 2010 when Seung-Hwan learned about how fungus threatens to destroy historical film archives. For him, he uses the reaction to “. . . deliver the idea of impermanence of matter applying this natural disaster into my work.” Impermanence is an ongoing project, and can be viewed in full on his site.

TIME Bizarre

Russian Artist Cuts Off Earlobe in Government Protest

He previously nailed his scrotum to the stones in Red Square

Less than a year after nailing his scrotum to the cobblestones of Red Square, a Russian artist cut off his earlobe Sunday in protest of the Russian government’s treatment of dissidents.

The artist, Pyotr Pavlensky, was hospitalized following the incident and will be released from the hospital soon, The Guardian reported.

In a Facebook post, Pavlensky said that he was protesting the government’s alleged detention of dissidents under the false pretense of insanity.

“Armed with psychiatric diagnoses, the bureaucrat in a white lab coat cuts off from society those pieces that prevent him from establishing a monolithic dictate of a single, mandatory norm for everyone,” he wrote, according to the Guardian.

[Guardian]

TIME

Washington Man Killed by Bus at Idaho Corn Maze

HAUSER, Idaho — A bus carrying paintball players struck and killed a Washington state man inside a zombie attraction at a corn maze in northern Idaho, authorities said Saturday.

Jeremy T. McSpadden Jr., 18, of Spokane Valley, Washington, was a role player in the “Zombie Slayer Paintball Bus” attraction at the Incredible Corn Maze in Hauser on Friday night, the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office said. Dressed as a zombie, he emerged from his hiding place and ran toward the modified school bus, but he tripped and fell in front of the rear passenger-side tires, witnesses reported.

He was run over and apparently killed instantly. Because of the uneven terrain of the corn maze, the bus frequently rocks, and the occupants did not immediately notice what had happened, investigators said.

“It was not until the bus had traveled away from the victim’s location and the role players began to reset for the next bus to come along that anyone realized something was wrong,” the sheriff’s office said in a news release.

The attraction is new this season, according to the corn maze’s website. For $15, customers ride the bus, which has paintball guns mounted outside the windows, and shoot at the zombies as the vehicle drives through the corn maze.

The bus was going forward, and neither speed nor alcohol was a factor, Sgt. Ward Crawford said.

“The focus of the attraction is the bus creeps forward so the customers have plenty of opportunity to blast away at the zombies,” Crawford said. “This looks like it was just a horrific confluence of events.”

A recording on the corn maze’s information line Saturday morning said, “We are sad to announce that all of the attractions, including the free drive-in movie, will be canceled for the remainder of the weekend.”

A message left seeking further comment was not immediately returned.

Hauser is near the Washington border east of Spokane.

TIME Bizarre

Here Are the Most Terrifying Pictures of the Sun You’ll Ever See

A NASA photo taken Oct. 8 appears to look like Jack-O-Lantern. NASA/GSFC/SDO

The sun looks like it's ready for Halloween

Just in time for Halloween, NASA released photos of the Sun on Wednesday—and it’s looking a lot like a Jack-O-Lantern, and it’s kind of terrifying.

The images, produced by NASA’s Scientific Visualization Studio, aren’t photoshopped, but they do combine images from two wavelengths that typically emit gold and yellow.

The difference in the photo’s brightness is a result of different levels of energy and light emissions from the surface of the sun. More energy emitted results in a brighter appearance.

TIME Bizarre

College Students Asked to Urinate in Showers to Save Water

The student-led campaign is called "Go with the Flow"

Two college students have come up with a plan that they say will save 720 million liters (about 187 million gallons) of water every year. Their radical new idea? Pee in the shower.

Debs Torr and Chris Dobson, two students at the University of East Anglia (UEA) in Norwich, started the Go with the Flow campaign to inspire the school’s 15,000 students to urinate during their morning showers instead of in the toilet, BBC reports.

“We’ve done the maths, and this project stands to have a phenomenal impact,” Dobson told BBC. “With 15,000 students at UEA, over a year we would save enough water to fill an Olympic-sized swimming pool 26 times over.”

He admits movement has been “divisive,” igniting passions in the age-old debate about whether or not it’s socially acceptable to pee in the shower. Though a school spokesperson told BBC that the university supports Dobson and Torr, Dobson made a concession to the skeptics who want to keep the firm separation of church and state between where they pee and where they shampoo: “We would encourage that every person using the same shower consents to the challenge and if not that they don’t take part.”

TIME Bizarre

Restaurant Menu Has No Prices So Customers Pay What God Tells Them to Pay

"Revenues are up," says the owner

A North Carolina restaurant has announced it’s putting the business in the hands of God and letting customers pay what they want for their meals.

According to a Sept. 29 post on the Facebook page for the restaurant Just Cookin in Dallas, North Carolina:

I am putting my “FAITH” where my CASH REGISTER is.

I am letting go and letting GOD!!

No prices….No totals…..You pay what you think your meal is worth!!!

“I gave Him control of the cash register,” Dana Parris told the Gaston Gazette. “There’s been a few people who got to eat who didn’t have the money. And there’s been a lot of people who have overpaid what the normal price would be. We’ve been blessed. Revenues are up.”

This unique policy is a complete 180º from the restaurant customers who claim their faith forbids them from paying for their entire meals because the servers’ lifestyles go against their religion. Also worth noting: the “pay what you wish” concept, most often associated with museums, does exist at some eateries. Panera has been running pay-what-you-wish restaurants across the U.S. for the past four years, so the neediest people can get something to eat and even volunteer to work there as payment.

TIME Bizarre

Boy Rescued After Falling 6 Stories Down Trash Chute

A bystander in the condo building heard the boy screaming

An 8-year-old boy survived a harrowing six-story fall down a Hawaii condominium’s trash chute before being rescued by a bystander who heard his screams, officials told Reuters.

The boy was on the 8th floor of the building when he fell down the chute before he crashed onto a buildup of trash on the second floor. Dan Kaetsu, a resident in the condominium, passed an emergency hose down to the boy, who grasped the hose and walked up the walls while Kaetsu and at least one other person pulled him up.

Kaetsu said it appeared the boy was throwing out trash when he fell into the chute. He had injuries to his face and hands, but is expected to survive, a hospital spokeswoman said.

[Reuters]

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