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August 26th, 2010

The Yaohnanen tribe on the South Pacific island of Tanna believe their true ancestral god is Britain's Prince Philip.

The Yaohnanen tribe on the South Pacific island of Tanna believe their true ancestral god is Britain's Prince Philip (based on photographs of him with the queen during a 1974 visit to Tanna's mother nation of Vanuatu) and believe he promised he would return for good on his 89th birthday (June 10, 2010). Although the prince has kept in touch, he failed to show up for the grand celebration, but fortunately, Scottish university student Marc Rayner was on the island, working as a volunteer teacher, and stepped in for the prince, which meant that he and not the duke of Edinburgh got to wear the "formal" ceremonial penis sheath appropriate for such special events.

Iconic female beauty in Mauritania (and in a few other African societies, as News of the Weird has reported) regards "rolling layers of fat" as the height of sexiness, according to a July dispatch by Marie Claire magazine, and professional force-feeders earn the equivalent of about $200 each from parents for bulking up their young daughters in boot camps that sometimes serve animal fat as drinks and apply the cattle-thickening drug Oradexon. "The stomach flab should cascade; the thighs should overlap; and the neck should have thick ripples," said Aminetou Mint Elhacen, the feeding drill sergeant. Some girls rebel, but others embrace their new bodies. Said one, "When I realized the power I had over men, I started to enjoy being fat."

Though most victims seemed baffled or distressed by the behavior of Sherwin Shayegan, 27, another thought him "completely harmless." From time to time (allegedly dating to at least 2006), Shayegan befriends high-school male athletes, questions them as a reporter would, and finally, jumps on their backs and demands "piggyback" rides. No other overtures are made, and the principal complaint about Shayegan, after the shock wears off, seems to be his obnoxiousness. His latest arrest took place in May in Tualatin, Ore., near his earlier haunts in Washington state.

"It's springtime in Japan, and that means (two) things," wrote GlobalPost.com in March: penis festivals and vagina festivals. Held annually in several locations (for the last 1,500 years, some say), with the best-known taking place at Komaki City's Tagata shrine in March, they were initially spiritual as prayers for procreation and crop fertility. However, they have grown into carnivals for tourists and children of all ages. Most Western visitors hardly believe what they're seeing: huge, parade-float-sized phalluses heavy-lifted through the street and giggling children brandishing toy penises and vaginas (to make offerings of them at local temples).
 
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