Sunday, October 25, 2009

10 Strangest Body-Part Insurance Policies +2 Bonus

Cricket player Merv Hughes insured his moustache for $ 370,000.

While playing on Australia's national cricket team from 1985 to 1994, Merv Hughes took out an estimated $370,000 policy on his trademark walrus mustache, which, combined with his 6'4" physique and outstanding playing ability, made him one of the most recognized cricketers in the world.
Three sisters insured their virginity for £1 million

An Essex insurance company has cancelled what may have been the most bizarre insurance policy in Britain. In the policy, three sisters in the Scottish highlands, who apparently were members of a "Christian group" of some sort, had insured their virginity for £1 million, against the event of any of them immaculately conceiving the second coming of Jesus Christ. Essex-based confirmed it had provided the policy.

The burden of proof that it was Christ had rested with the women and any premium on the insurance was donated to charity, said Mr Burgess. The siblings had paid £100 annually since 2000. If they had secured a payout, they stood to receive £1m. The policy was apparently cancelled partly because of complaints from the Catholic Church, which doesn't look kindly on unauthorized immaculate conceptions.
Wine taster insured his nose for $8 million.

After years spent worrying about losing his most valuable business asset, Ilja Gort doesn't have to worry anymore, his nose is insured to the teeth. The 47-year-old Dutch wine producer has had his nose and sense of smell insured for five million Euros (£4 million) by Lloyd's of London. The insurance policy states that he may not participate in winter sports, boxing or fire breathing. He may not work as a knife-thrower's assistant; he may not become pregnant and he may not commit suicide.
Food critic insured his taste buds for $ 300,000

In 1993, worldwide famous food critic Egon Ronay took out a £250,000 ($353,775) insurance policy on his taste buds.
Ronaldo's legs fetch for $144 million

It's normal that if you posses something valuable you insure it, right? Well, in some soccer news Real Madrid announced that they haveinsured their new star player Cristiano Ronaldo's legs, for an estimated $144 million.
13-year-old World Yo-Yo champion Harvey Lowe insured his hands for $ 150,000

Representing the Cheerio Yo-Yo Company of Canada, 13-year-old Harvey Lowe won the 1932 World Yo-Yo championships in London and toured Europe from 1932 to 1935. He even taught Edward VIII, the Prince of Wales, how to yo-yo. Lowe was so valuable to Cheerio that the companyinsured his hands for $150,000!
Coffee taster has a tongue insurance for $14 million

Costa Coffee's Coffee taster, Gennaro Pelliccia has a tongue insured for $14 million dollars. Pelliccia has tasted tens of thousands styles of coffee, and thru his tongue is able to discern the differences. “The taste buds of a Master of Coffee are as important as the vocal cords of a singer or the legs of a top model, and this is one of the biggest single insurance policies taken out for one person," said a spokesman for Lloyd's broker Glencairn Limited, which arrangedthe insurance cover.
Actress America Ferrera had her teeth insured for $10,000,000

Ugly Betty's leading lady America Ferrera has had her smile insured for $10 million by Lloyds of London insurance market. But the insurance wasn't taken out for pure vanity. The policy was taken out by Aquafresh White Trays, a teeth whitening manufacturer that is working with the actress on a charity campaign that gives jobless women free dental care.
Actress Bette Davis insured her waist for $28,000

In the '40s, actress Bette Davis bought a $28,000 policy buffering herself against losses due to gains - her own weight gain, that is.The insurance was issued by Lloyd's of London.
Keith Richards's middle finger – $1,600,000

Fearing that his foes would break his left middle finger he so often uses to flip them off, the 63 year-old guitarist for the Rolling Stones and poster boy for longevity through hard living had it insured. The Star article said he “recouped after an injury”. The actor is allegedly suffering from arthritis in his index finger.

Huge Policy

"Dolly Parton insured her infamous, theme-park-inspiring 42-inch breasts for $600,000, since who knows where her career would be without them."
Baby Got Back

It was rumored that Jennifer Lopez insured her butt for $27 million.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Anaconda Catcher In Africa

The Most Terrifying Mountain Bike Trail On Earth

All images by Victor Lucas via Hans Rey

Dawn was breaking. The wheels of the bike crunched over the shale-covered surface of the path as the wind swirled beyond the overhanging ledge. Conditions were far from ideal: damp, misty and with more than the hangover of a storm in the air, they left little margin for error – an error that equated to a sheer 600 foot drop down to the waiting rocks and waves of the Atlantic. The riders had ventured out not knowing fully what to expect, but it was too late to turn back now.
When Hans Rey embarked on a road trip with fellow mountain biking star Steve Peat, the plan, as he told Environmental Graffiti, was “to ride all the cool biking trails and spots in Ireland and to visit a few pubs along the way.” Yet the Swiss trials rider and multiple World Champion had long had his sights on the Emerald Isle’s legendary Cliffs of Mohan and just knew he had to “ride that edge one day.”
The problem was that they hadn’t foreseen the Cliffs being quite such a tourist trap by day, nor that the weather would be as adverse as it was. So they postponed their plans until early the next morning, though not without misgivings. “We were well aware of stories of the dangerous upward drafts, strong winds that would sweep the cliffs, and as stories have it, pulled several people down over the years,” said Hans.
Daybreak came, and it wasn’t just the visibility that was a bit on the murky side. “Our heads were slightly foggy as well,” Hans explained, “from the Guinness the night before.” Still, they only had one shot at it, and weren’t about to be put off. “As we went out there, I quickly felt comfortable and in my zone. As a trials rider you learn to focus on your line, on what you want to do, not what you don’t want to do – in this case, fall to death.”
The guys’ confidence grew as they became more comfortable in their environment – and like a dog that smells no fear on you, their environment seemed to grow more accustomed to them. “Even though it was a stormy day, the winds were calm right on the edge of the cliffs. We got more and more daring. We rode ledges that were only about 4 inches wide and even jumped over 4 foot gaps.”
Yet however crazy this sounds to us, pros who are used to navigating over all kinds of obstacles – often without ever putting a foot down – know where the real perils lie. “The dangerous part riding the ledge was not to ride too close to the hillside, since we didn’t want to catch a pedal on the rocks and high-side down the cliff.” Obviously it takes superlative skill to pull off a stunt like this, and the riders completed their spectacular trail without mishap.
Of course, the local authorities knew nothing about what was going down on the Cliffs of Moher that cold Irish winter morning, and apparently they were none too pleased when they later found out. But since when have extreme sports guys cared about doing things by the book? “Just for the record, there were no parachutes in our backpacks, as some had speculated,” Hans concludes. “Mind over matter and the mercy of Mother Nature.”

Fighter plane's bad landing