3 Bizarre Wedding Customs Nobody Questioned (Until Now!)

1. Why Do People Tie Cans to the Back of the Married Couple's Car?

This tradition actually started during the Tudor period in England. As the bride and groom left in their carriage, wedding guests would throw their shoes at them because it was considered good luck if you hit the vehicle. Today that would be considered a lawsuit, so we tie them to the car instead. And since walking home from a wedding with only one shoe is no fun, Americans started using aluminum cans instead.

2. Why Is It Bad Luck for the Groom to See His Bride on Their Wedding Day?

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This common American tradition seems sweet, but its origins aren't exactly tender. For hundreds of years, fathers arranged their daughter's marriages by offering money to young men. However, if Daddy's Little Girl wasn't exactly fit for the cover of Maxim, Daddy might decide to search for prospective grooms in nearby towns, for obvious reasons. When these men showed up on the wedding day—not having seen their future brides before—it was common for some of them to flee the scene. So the tradition that it's "bad luck" for a man to see his bride before the ceremony really started out as insurance for her dad.

3. How Did We Get a "Ring Finger"?


What Americans call the ring finger is not the same for everyone. In some parts of India, wedding bands are worn on the thumb. In 3rd-century Greece, the ring finger was the index finger. But later, the Greeks believed that the third finger on a person's hand was connected directly to the heart by a route called "the vein of love." Today's Western tradition stems from that.

China Launches Crowdfunding Campaign to Restore the Great Wall

The Great Wall of China has been standing proudly for thousands of years—but now, it needs your help. CNN reports that the wall has fallen into disrepair and the China Foundation for Cultural Heritage Conservation has launched an online crowdfunding campaign to raise money for restorations.

Stretching 13,000 miles across northern China, the Great Wall was built in stages starting from the third century BCE and reaching completion in the 16th century. To some degree, though, it’s always been under construction. For centuries, individuals and organizations have periodically repaired and rebuilt damaged sections. However, the crowdfunding campaign marks the first time the internet has gotten involved in the preservation of the ancient icon. The China Foundation for Cultural Heritage Conservation is trying to raise $1.6 million (11 million yuan) to restore the wall, and has so far raised $45,000 (or 300,000 yuan).

Fundraising coordinator Dong Yaohui tells the BBC that, although the Chinese government provides some funds for wall repairs, it’s not enough to fix all of the damage: "By pooling the contribution of every single individual, however small it is, we will be able to form a great wall to protect the Great Wall," he said.

[h/t CNN]

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YouTube // Deep Look
These Glowing Worms Mimic Shining Stars
YouTube // Deep Look
YouTube // Deep Look

The glow worms of New Zealand's Waitomo caves produce light, mimicking the starry night sky. Using sticky goop, they catch moths and other flying creatures unfortunate enough to flutter into the "starry" cavern. Beautiful and icky in equal parts, this Deep Look video takes you inside the cave, and up close with these worms. Enjoy:

There's also a nice write-up with animated GIFs if you're not in the mood for video. Want more glow worms? Check out this beautiful timelapse in a similar cave, or our list of 19 Places You Won't Believe Exist topped by—you guessed it—New Zealand's Glowworm Caves!


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