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Volume 341

This week’s coolsh*t is bringing you all the best new creations and innovations. We’ve got shrubbery shoot-outs, sweaty electricity, and an instrument that defies description and might haunt your dreams tonight.

Half-Pint Half-Pipe.

There are few things more humbling than seeing a child achieve a feat that you would never be able to even attempt without ending up with, at best, a few broken bones. Gui Khury is one of those over-achieving little sh*ts making us all feel inept, as he just became the youngest ever XGames champion, clinching the gold with a 1080 in the Best Vert Trick competition. For the uninitiated, that basically means he spun around a whole bunch of times and didn’t land on his face. And he did it in front of Tony Hawk, who I have it on good authority is rather a big deal in the skateboarding community. Not to mention that this was Mr. Hawk’s first time competing since his retirement in 2003, and the 1080 was a trick he famously never managed to pull off. And now he’s been shown up by someone who probably still gets his mum to tie his laces. Unreal. You’ll have to forgive the quality of the video, clearly it was shot on a camera from the late 90s when Tony Hawk was still in his prime and pop-punk was all the rage. Ah, simpler times.

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Convenience Creps.

There seems to be a pattern emerging over the last few coolsh*ts: people who spent the last year or so pursuing very specific – and arguably slightly odd – creative endeavours. Last week, we had a young lady who decided to draw a toilet roll tapestry, and now, allow us to present to you some bloke who has spent about 2 years building a shoebox. From that information, you can deduce that either he’s pretty crap at building shoeboxes, or, it’s an incredibly intricately-designed box. Thankfully, it’s the latter. Justin Poulsen decided to combine his two passions (expensive shoes and processed sugar) to build this 7-Eleven box to house a pair of custom-made 7-Eleven-themed Nike Dunks. The whole thing is built from scratch using a mixture of laser cut wood, 3D-printed accessories, and some random tiny objects Poulsen managed to acquire. He spared nothing in making it look as realistic as possible, with meticulous detailing right down to the smallest features, such as working lights, automatic motorised doors, and there’s even somebody selling drugs around the back.

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You're Never Coming Home.

For an Everton fan, it can often feel as if the opposition’s goal is at the other end of some sort of labyrinth. But in Luxembourg, it actually is. Artist Benedetto Bufalino transformed the maze in the centre of Kirchberg and set some kids loose to go kick lumps out of eachother in his project dubbed ‘LABY-FOOT’. I can see why he didn’t go for ‘Lab-ball’ – sounds a bit too medical. Considering that this week FIFA are supposedly discussing potential rule changes that include 30-minute halves, kicked throw-ins, and unlimited subs, perhaps this could be their next bright idea. The pitch will remain up and open for business all summer for any passers-by who fancy a kick-about but also fancy the occasional mouthful of bush. Well, unless someone robs the nets, which is exactly what would have happened by now if this was in England.

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Air Head.

If you have a particular interest in people running really fast, jumping really high, or twirling really, err, well (?) – seriously, what is rhythmic gymnastics? – then you’ll probably know that the Tokyo Olympics starts this week. However, that’s not the most interesting thing happening in Tokyo right now, as a giant human head has taken to the skies over the city. This is part of the cultural art festival that was planned by the contemporary art team ‘me’ to take place alongside the Olympics. Masayume, which means “a dream that becomes reality”, was inspired by a dream that a team member had when she was in middle school. Although judging by how creepy this floating severed head is, I assume that it was actually a nightmare. The face was selected from over 1,400 people all around the world regardless of age, gender, or nationality – but the identity of the mystery visage is still yet to be disclosed. I wonder how long it’ll take before Qanoners start claiming this is a new piece of government surveillance.

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Powered by Perspiration.

Given the sweltering temperatures over the last few days, this arguably couldn’t have come at a better time. A group of nano-engineering researchers from the University of California have potentially found a way to charge your phone using just your sweaty mits. They found that fingertips produce 100 to 1,000 times more sweat than other body parts – I don’t think I’m alone in saying lived experience would suggest otherwise, but clearly not. The team conducted a test to generate electricity by attaching an absorbent band-shaped device to the tip of a finger. Wearing the band for 10 hours produced about 400 millijoules of energy, which is enough to operate an electronic wristwatch for 24 hours. Now, they’re giving phones a go. It would be a perfect system really – as your phone battery creeps closer to zero, you get more anxious, producing more sweat and thus becoming a more efficient battery pack to remedy the issue. I’m sold – I’ll take 10.

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Pipe Down.

Sometimes things make coolsh*t because they’re impressive, but other times, as is the case here, we stumble across something bizarre enough to have been plucked straight out of a fever dream, and we just need to have a little talk about it. Introducing ‘OCTAV’, a wearable musical instrument made from plastic drainpipes. Why? Your guess is as good as mine. The creator, Asaf Wainberg, says he drew inspiration from the tubulum, which is a popular musical instrument on YouTube and in DIY circles. And, based off of the advert, if you play it just right, a load of the Manson Family will appear from thin air and start dancing in your back garden. Great! But, in fairness, it is an impressive piece of kit. And why wouldn’t you want to walk around looking like a musical, environmentally conscious, lower-budget Dr. Octopus? Exactly. I rest my case, your honour.

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