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   Undertoad  Friday May 29 12:32 AM

May 29, 2009: Gloucester Cheese Rolling 2009

My favorite IotDs, if I may say so m'self, are the ones that capture some weird festival, like the Spanish Tomatino or Delaware's Punkin Chunkin. Of course these festivals may suffer from success, and so it may be a mixed blessing to publicize them. The best answer is to start more such festivals.

Well here is an awesome one I hadn't heard of: the Gloucester Cheese Rolling.

Apparently it's an old tradition.

You start with an extremely steep hill.



It's very steep. View from the top:



Spectators line the sides of the hill. (image courtesy flickr user acechick)



Then you take a round of Double Gloucester cheese...



On a count of three, an official rolls it down the steep hill... (image courtesy flickr user urgent_98)



And when the count reaches four, a set of racers run down the hill chasing the cheese! (image courtesy flickr user Dave Withnall)



They're off! (thx acechick) (notice the rolling cheese in the middle there)



The first to reach the cheese will win the race.

But there's a catch.

You see, the hill is so extremely steep, the cheese goes very fast, and there's simply no way a person running down the steep hill can win the race and stay on their feet.

So everybody in the race starts to tumble. (image courtesy flickr user Nick 8890)



In fact, the hill is so steep that you can't help but tumble if you are running down it. So within seconds, everybody is tumbling! (thx acechick)



And they all tumble down to the bottom, spending most of their time upside-down, hand-standing, rolling, running into other racers... it's hilarious!

The women's race. Notice that NOBODY is on their feet. Most runners spend more than half the race tumbling. (urgent_98)



And tumbling HARD. There are faceplants a-plenty. The wipeouts can be really stunning, and are the whole point of it all. (Nick 8890)



In fact you can't imagine it happening without people getting really hurt. And so, yes there are casualties, and a set of emergency staff to cart off the injured. (urgent_98)



A set of human tacklers will stop you once you reach the bottom, if you haven't stopped yourself by then.



Winner winner cheesy dinner! (Nick 8890)



Oh but you MUST see the video. Required viewing:



Official cheese rolling website.

Many thanks to the Flickr folks who agreed to share their shots with us!



Aliantha  Friday May 29 12:45 AM

I want to know why anyone would do it naked except for shoes and undies...and I'd then like to know if anyone would want to tackle him when he gets to the bottom. lol



zippyt  Friday May 29 12:52 AM

That Looks Like Fun !!

Mad Dogs and English men in the Noon day sun !!!!!



xoxoxoBruce  Friday May 29 12:58 AM

If they stop you at the bottom how do you get to the cheese?



Undertoad  Friday May 29 01:18 AM

They say the cheese rolls at 70 mph (or maybe kph?) so there is really no chance at catching it. I think you just cross the finish line.



xoxoxoBruce  Friday May 29 01:55 AM

More at Boston.com.



Kolbenfresser  Friday May 29 03:13 AM

Joy!

Its not about the cheese - even if you get it in the end.
Its more about human nature - doing crazy stuff and enjoying it!



TheMercenary  Friday May 29 03:29 AM

Note: "set of human tacklers" are from a local rugby club. Their jerseys are clearly marked. I never knew my skills from rugby may one day land me a prestigious job tackling on a hillside rife with tumbling women. No poofta's need apply.



SPUCK  Friday May 29 06:03 AM

The lady in the wheel chair?
Yes, she's paralyzed.
She steers it by blowing on a little pipe.
It happens as she ran down a hill chasing uncatchable cheese...
Yes dear, it's very good cheese.



ZenGum  Friday May 29 06:16 AM

fetta-l attraction?

Well, everyone else had a gouda time.



capnhowdy  Friday May 29 08:18 AM

They should release a couple dozen angry bulls when the count hits seven. Now that WOULD be interesting. Not that this isn't.



spudcon  Friday May 29 08:43 AM

How do they stop a rolling cheese even if they catch it? And who gets to cut the cheese?



nil_orally  Friday May 29 09:14 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheMercenary View Post
Note: "set of human tacklers" are from a local rugby club. Their jerseys are clearly marked. I never knew my skills from rugby may one day land me a prestigious job tackling on a hillside rife with tumbling women. No poofta's need apply.
Yes, they must use the Union blokes for the girls race, and prise the League guys off each other to work on the boys race.


dar512  Friday May 29 10:38 AM

And did anyone think to yell "As you wish" whilst rolling down the hill?



glatt  Friday May 29 10:39 AM

What an excellent group of pictures!



TheMercenary  Friday May 29 12:09 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by nil_orally View Post
Yes, they must use the Union blokes for the girls race, and prise the League guys off each other to work on the boys race.




Trilby  Friday May 29 04:53 PM

why does no one think of the Cheese?

The Cheese Stands Alone, I suppose.



spudcon  Friday May 29 05:44 PM

Oh, the humanity!



limey  Friday May 29 06:55 PM

No-one can say that we in the UK don't know how to have fun, can they !



monster  Friday May 29 08:54 PM

Thanks, UT -I wanted to post this but had no time to find good pics, only videos.



hipshot  Friday May 29 10:29 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by ZenGum View Post
fetta-l attraction?

Well, everyone else had a gouda time.




SPUCK  Saturday May 30 05:58 AM

The same people that put on that cheese race must have put on this race.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9cmT8M_67ow



ZenGum  Saturday May 30 07:04 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by nil_orally View Post
Yes, they must use the Union blokes for the girls race, and prise the League guys off each other to work on the boys race.
I've done some research on this.
The gentlemen from the Rugby Union club kindly assist the ladies to stop.
The blokes from the Rugby League club aren't allowed near the ladies for fear it will result in a gang-bang, but they do tackle the male runners.
The lads from the Aussie rules club were invited, but they are too busy getting pissed and waving their schlongs at the crowd to assist.
The guys from the gridiron club are there, but are still putting on their safety gear.
The pansies from the soccer club were present at the start, but two were knocked down and taken to hospital screaming after the cheese passed within ten feet of them, four ran away, and the rest are still trying to surrender to the cheese.
The hockey club were not invited, after the unfortunate incident last year. Hockey sticks do make useful prostheses, though.


DanaC  Saturday May 30 07:14 PM

Did you see the people being stretchered off with spinal injuries?

Now that's a race!



Gravdigr  Sunday May 31 02:56 PM

Is this held during the fall?



dar512  Sunday May 31 03:09 PM

Maybe they were vacationing. It sure looked like they all had a nice trip.



xoxoxoBruce  Sunday May 31 06:08 PM

Bunch of damn Lemmings, I tells ya.



Mayor of Shekou  Sunday May 31 08:41 PM

If it wasn't for all the blond hair & round eyes I would have thought it was another Japanese game show!



ogwen69  Monday Jun 1 12:26 PM

Reminds me how cool it is to be British!



Sheldonrs  Monday Jun 1 12:37 PM

But those are PEOPLE rolling down the hill?!!!

OMG!!! SOYLENT CHEESE!!!!



glatt  Monday Jun 8 01:57 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Undertoad View Post
My favorite IotDs, if I may say so m'self, are the ones that capture some weird festival, like the Spanish Tomatino or Delaware's Punkin Chunkin. Of course these festivals may suffer from success, and so it may be a mixed blessing to publicize them. The best answer is to start more such festivals.
I just learned that there is an annual one on Easter Island called Haka Pei. It looks like it's every February. Painted natives riding logs down a long steep grassy hill.
image

Quote:
Originally Posted by travel site
But the most amazing event is known as haka pei, the “banana slide.” Contestants slide down a steep hill while perched on two banana tree-trunks, lashed together. They lay face up on this contraption, their feet braced against a short crosspiece. The one who remains on his tree trunk and goes the farthest, wins. It is suicidal. The contestants wear only tiny hami, plus lots of feathers and body paint, and so they have no protection. Every year some participants end up in the island’s hospital with broken bones, or worse.



Sundae  Monday Jun 8 03:22 PM

Tcha.
Foolish natives.



SPUCK  Tuesday Jun 9 05:35 AM

I thought there were only about 5 trees left on Easter Island!



glatt  Sunday Mar 14 03:37 PM

The internet exposure has killed the cheese roll. At least for this year. It's been canceled for 2010 because it's become too popular and they haven't figured out how to handle the crowds. The attendance had gone from a couple hundred each year to tens of thousands last year, and they were expecting a lot more this year.




squirell nutkin  Sunday Mar 14 04:03 PM

my ACL and my rotator cuffs are wincing just watching that vid.



Shawnee123  Sunday Mar 14 04:29 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by glatt View Post
The internet exposure has killed the cheese roll. At least for this year. It's been canceled for 2010 because it's become too popular and they haven't figured out how to handle the crowds. The attendance had gone from a couple hundred each year to tens of thousands last year, and they were expecting a lot more this year.

Visible Killed the Radial Sharp


Glinda  Monday Mar 15 01:51 PM

Wait.

The video was titled:

Quote:
Cooper's Hill Gloucestershire Cheese Rolling and Wake 2009



ZenGum  Tuesday Mar 16 08:00 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawnee123 View Post
Visible Killed the Radial Sharp
Nice one Shaw.


Shawnee123  Tuesday Mar 16 08:56 AM

Thank you.



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