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27 Awesomely Staged Roller Coaster Photos

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When amusement parks started using cameras to snap shots of guests on rides, the companies thought it would just be a good way to make some extra money. Little did they know that the cameras would also serve as the backdrop for elaborately staged photos that only become more ridiculous given their setting. 

1. Memelicious

XKCD inspired many of these pictures with a cartoon about someone gluing pieces to a chessboard to create the most epic ride picture ever. The comic started a meme of people trying this out for themselves, but Redditor The Panda of Mexico took the concept to its next logical conclusion with this picture of rage faces playing chess on a coaster—making a meme of memes.

2. Don’t Go Alone, Take These

Ukuleles, stuffed chickens, and chess? It’s just another delightfully goofy picture inspired by that same classic XKCD comic, this time courtesy of Redditor Compoundaudio and his friends.

3. Get Ready For Action

This delightful picture from Redditor t*tsforf*ck—which is filled with typical morning bathroom behaviors—is even more impressive when you realize that the ride they’re on, Millennium Force, reaches a top speed of 93 miles per hour.

4. Making A Splash

Redditor mynameiszachary posted this delightful Splash Mountain picture featuring a riveting game of beer pong.

5. Dinner for Two

A few months after taking their beer pong photo, mynameiszachary returned with his sister and their cousin to take another silly picture, this one quite a bit classier. Despite encountering a few problems with Disney security when trying to bring in their photo props, the trio eventually got their picture taken and the photo booth staff was so impressed they even gave the group a free framed photo.

6. It’s the Circle of Rides

Every year this friend of Redditor skalex does a wacky picture on a coaster. While some of his old pictures have been fun, his newest—a parody of The Lion King—is a true masterpiece.

7. Brothers of a Feather

Redditor DannyCabes and his brother had some fun when they discovered where the cameras were on the log flume and Gold Rush rides at Rainbow’s End. They didn’t stop with one goofy picture, but took at least a dozen—this is just one of our favorites.

8. Dapper Snaps

Redditor Ayalat took this fun pic on Space Mountain during the annual Dapper Day at Disneyland. Hey, when you’re dressed up that nice, you might as well snap some selfies—even if you're on a roller coaster.

9. Love Is A Roller Coaster

If you and your gal love coasters, a ride might be a great place to propose—but instead of popping out a ring and risk it flying off the coaster, take advantage of the in-ride photo to surprise her. That’s exactly what Redditor Nightzel did—and his girlfriend said yes!

10. What A Creeper

This picture might not be as over the top when it comes to props and planning, but there’s no denying that Redditor BPP198’s friend planned to turn into a Creeper before he hopped onto Las Vegas’ New York, New York coaster.

11. Clowning Around

Brent Ray Fraser’s Clown Series shows the artist as a very grumpy clown having fantastically miserable experiences at an amusement park. The roller coaster picture is particularly amazing. Warning: This link to his artwork is very NSFW.

12. and 13. Creative Gamers

Perhaps the most impressive of all the posed coaster pictures ever taken is this one, featuring a gang of friends casually enjoying a game of Super Smash Brothers on the log ride’s biggest drop.

That same group also managed to keep playing their Monopoly game on the ride a little while before that.

14. A Close Shave 

Of course, the award for most dangerous Splash Mountain picture has to go to Reddit user cefriano. I hope that’s a safety razor.

15. Snakes

You've heard of Snakes On A Plane, but what about Snakes on a Flume?

16. Another proposal

The most romantic staged ride picture is probably this one. Here’s the story, as told by Redditor Joefamous:

Lindsay is, in fact, the girl in the front and she did say yes. I would know because I was holding up one of the signs! The guy right behind her is her fiance, Chris.

I carried a backpack around all day with the signs folded up in the laptop sleeve along with snacks and jackets so she wouldn’t suspect anything. The 5 of us behind her practiced holding the signs the day before so they wouldn’t block each other from view. As soon as we were far enough on the ride, I passed out the signs(which were numbered so we had them in the right order) one by one and we hid them until we started going up the hill to the drop. As soon as we hit the peak, we all pulled out the signs and held them up until the pic was taken, then immediately passed them to the back of the log where I re-hid them in my backpack.

She didn’t see what happened until they posted the pic on the screen at the end of the ride! The actual ring was hidden in the backpack as well to keep it safe. As soon as we got off the ride he gave her the ring and we purchased the pics! We actually planned the whole thing and practiced so that it would be a complete surprise to her and pulled it off with a great picture to remember it by and a funny story to tell!

17. An unbalanced breakfast

Sometimes the best staged photos are those that are completely nonchalant, like this one showing Tsetan Tenzin, who'sholding the Honey Bunches of Oats, and three friends enjoying a delicious breakfast filled with whole grain.

18. Rocky VII

It seems appropriate to stage a fight from the movie Rocky IV, complete with announcers and fans, at the Raging Bull coaster at Six Flags Great America in Illinois. Granted, these friends of Redditor Zeuslightning could have done a scene from Raging Bull, but that might just be overkill.

19. and 20. Bring a paddle

Here is the same group of gents trying their hand at ping pong on Raging Bull a few months earlier.

Those Raging Bull fans aren’t the only ones who enjoy playing ping pong on roller coasters. Here are Mike McFerran and his friends staging a match on The Comet at The Great Escape & Splash Water Kingdom.

21. Smile!

It’s important to always have fresh breath, which is why Matthew Morrell, Alicia Kramer, Rob Meyer, Abby Decker, and Jessica Brosius made sure to stay true to their brushing schedule even though it meant doing so on the Coal Cracker at Hersheypark.

22. - 27. Chess trend

The most common form of staged coaster pictures these days though are those involving a chess board or other game. That’s because they were all inspired by this XKCD comic. Since then, the site has a whole gallery dedicated to people who tried out the idea for themselves. These are a few of the best:

Here’s Thomas Hart and Daniel Madden at Canobie Lake Park.

These chess masters are Cam O'Grady, Jake Barnett, and Shelby Fowler who staged their tournament on the Cedar Point Millennium Force.

Karl Malakoff and his cousin, Lori Coulson, enjoyed a game on the Diamondback coaster at King's Island on Halloween. Eventually, Karl lost when his white king fell off the board.

Now this looks like a serious game, even if spectator Billy Brooks doesn't seem too into it. Players  Kristjan Moore and Daniel Carey definitely seem to know what’s at stake during their match on the Loggers Leap at Thorpe Park.

Of course, chess was just too easy for Randall and Ben Wald, so they decided to build a house of cards on the 79 foot drops of the Goliath coaster at Six Flags over Georgia.

Justin Howell and his friend felt the same way, which is why they took to playing Extreme Jenga while riding Thunder Run at Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom.

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A Hairy Situation: Meet the Winners of the 2017 World Beard and Moustache Championships
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Greg Anderson Photography

From long and thick to coiled or curly, every type of mustache, beard, and goatee under the Sun (and barber's pole) seemed to be present at the 2017 World Beard and Moustache Championships. The biannual competition—held in Austin, Texas in early September, according to Laughing Squid—brings together hairy rivals from around the globe, who come before a panel of judges to see whose facial hair is the most coiffed and creative.

Participants compete across 17 traditional categories in three main groups: mustaches, partial beards, and full beards. Awards are granted to individuals with the best Salvador Dalí–inspired mustache; the best "goatee freestyle," or short beards styled into elaborate arrangements; and the best natural full beard, among other looks.

Held in Leogang, Austria, the 2015 World Beard and Moustache Championships had just 317 competitors, Bryan Nelson—who helped organize this year's event along with the Austin Facial Hair Clubtells Mental Floss. But the 2017 Championships attracted a staggering 738 participants from 33 countries.

Nelson believes that the Austin Facial Hair Club pulled off history's largest facial hair competition (the group is awaiting validation from Guinness World Records), and also says that the tournament was the first of its kind to include craft-based categories for women.

"We had Creative Moustache and Realistic Moustache, Creative Beard and Realistic Beard," Nelson says. For the realistic categories, female participants used either real or fake tresses to create authentic-looking facial hair (which they attached to their faces), and for the creative categories, "they were all over the place and could be made from whatever," Nelson explains. "Seashells, bacon, bones … it's such a creative event."

You can check out a handful of 2017's winners—who were captured in all their hairy glory by Las Vegas-based photographer Greg Anderson—below, or view even more hilarious looks on his Instagram.

[h/t Laughing Squid]

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The Funniest Word in the English Language? 'Booty,' According to New Survey
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Some words, regardless of their meaning, are simply more chuckle-worthy than others. To determine which expressions in the English language are truly the most comical, Smithsonian reports that psychologists at the University of Warwick in the UK conducted a survey in which they asked people to rate the “humor value” of a sampling of chosen words. They recently published their findings in the journal Behavior Research Methods.

The researchers selected nearly 5000 words, and then used Amazon’s online crowdsourcing tool Mechanical Turk to ask more than 800 individuals to rank the humor value of 211 randomly chosen words from the list, on a scale from 1 (humorless) to 5 (humorous). Likely not surprising to anyone with younger siblings, the funniest word ended up being “booty,” with an average ranking of 4.32. In descending order, the remaining top 12 words—which all received a score of 3.9 or higher—were “tit,” “booby,” “hooter,” “nitwit,” “twit,” “waddle,” “tinkle,” “bebop,” “egghead,” “ass,” and “twerp.”

Why these words are so funny remains fuzzy. But when they analyzed their findings according to age and gender, the researchers did find that sexually suggestive words like “orgy” and “bondage” tended to tickle the funny bones of men, as did the words “birthmark,” “brand,” “chauffeur,” “doze,” “buzzard,” “czar,” “weld,” “prod,” “corn,” and “raccoon.”

Meanwhile, women tended to laugh at the words “giggle,” “beast,” “circus,” “grand,” “juju,” “humbug,” “slicker,” “sweat,” “ennui,” “holder,” “momma,” and “sod.” As for people under the age of 32, they were amused by “goatee,” “joint,” and “gangster,” while older participants liked “squint,” “jingle,” “burlesque,” and “pong.” Across the board, all parties were least amused by words like “rape,” “torture,” and “torment.”

Although humor is complex and dependent on elements like syntax and delivery, the study's researchers say that breaking comedy down to single-word units could demystify its essence.

“The research initially came about as a result of our curiosity,” said Tomas Engelthaler, the study’s lead author, in a press release. “We were wondering if certain words are perceived as funnier, even when read on their own. It turns out that indeed is the case. Humor is an everyday aspects of our lives and we hope this publicly available dataset allows future researchers to better understand its foundations.”

[h/t Smithsonian]

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