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10+ Absurd Laws From Around the World to Make You Question Reality

By The Hyperhive


3 May 2024

©️ Freepik

The world is full of fascinating laws, some designed to protect public safety, others remnants of bygone eras. But some laws are so absurd and just leave you scratching your head, wondering who came up with them and why. Today, we delve into the strange and absurd laws and regulations around the globe. Enjoy below 15 of the many absurd laws we could find around the world!

15 Absurd Laws That Will Shock You

Here are 15 absurd laws that will make you go through all of the face emojis:

1. Germany’s Quiet Sundays

In some parts of Germany, there are restrictions on noisy activities on Sundays and holidays. This might include limitations on lawn mowing, power tool usage, and even vacuuming. The aim is to ensure peace and quiet for those observing religious holidays or simply wanting a restful day.

Absurd laws
©️ Freepik

2. Singapore’s Durian Disdain

The pungent durian fruit, a Southeast Asian delicacy, has a powerful odor that can linger. To keep public spaces odor-free, Singapore has a law prohibiting bringing durians on public transportation. So, if you are storing a durian, make sure it stays firmly put until you are ready to enjoy it in the privacy of your own home (or a durian-friendly eatery).

Absurd laws
©️ 🆓 Use at your Ease 👌🏼 / Pixabay

3. Switzerland’s Bunker Bonanza

Switzerland, known for its stunning scenery and meticulous planning, also boasts a surprising number of private bomb shelters. Due to Cold War fears, many homes have built-in shelters. However, there is a catch: these shelters must be kept functional, meaning they can’t be used for mundane storage like old furniture. So, while you can store canned goods for emergencies, your grandma’s rocking chair might have to find a new home.

Absurd laws
©️ ddzphoto / Pixabay

4. Tokyo’s Tiny Abode Tetris

Living space in Tokyo comes at a premium. To address overcrowding, Japan has a law requiring apartments to meet a minimum size standard. This means using every square foot efficiently. So, storing bulky items in a tiny Tokyo apartment can be a real challenge – minimalism becomes a necessity, not just a design aesthetic.

Absurd laws
©️ Freepik

5. Germany’s Chimney Sweep Sweepstakes

Chimney sweeping might seem like a relic of the past, but in Germany, it’s still mandatory for most buildings with fireplaces or wood-burning stoves. This regulation often goes hand-in-hand with specific storage requirements. Chimneys need to be easily accessible for regular sweeping, so storing bulky items near the chimney might be frowned upon.

©️ Petra Tesařová /Pixabay

6. France’s Underwear Airing Affair

The French are known for their flair and fashion sense, but even undergarments face regulations. In some French towns, there are restrictions on publicly airing laundry, particularly undergarments. This might be due to aesthetic concerns or a desire to maintain a certain decorum. So, if you are storing delicates in France, be mindful of where you choose to dry them.

©️ Freepik

7. Queensland’s Bathtub Banana Bonanza

Australia’s Queensland state takes biosecurity seriously. This includes a quirky regulation prohibiting the storage of bananas near ripening rooms. The logic? Bananas release ethylene gas, which can accelerate the ripening of other fruits and vegetables. So, if you are storing bananas in Queensland, keep them well away from any ripening operations – even your own fruit bowl!

©️ pvproductions / Freepik

8. Sweden’s Right to Roam (…But Not Your Stuff)

Sweden’s “Allemansrätt” (freedom to roam) grants public access to most uncultivated land. However, this right doesn’t extend to storing personal belongings on public land. So, while you can freely roam the Swedish countryside, leave your picnic basket and camping gear at home – or risk having them confiscated.

©️ Freepik

9. New York City’s Pigeon Problem

New York City has a long-standing battle with its feathered residents – pigeons. To deter pigeon populations, the city prohibits feeding them in public spaces. This extends to storing birdseed or other potential pigeon food on balconies or windowsills. So, New Yorkers with birdwatching aspirations need to find alternative storage solutions for their birdseed.

©️ wirestock / Freepik

10. Thailand’s Mattress Mishap

In Thailand, there is a curious belief that keeping your feet pointing toward Buddha statues is disrespectful. This extends to where you store your mattress. Some Thais believe it’s disrespectful to store a mattress with its foot-end facing a religious statue. So, if you are visiting Thailand and plan on storing your own bedding, be mindful of its placement.

©️ mrsiraphol / Freepik

11. France’s Pig-Naming Predicament

In France, it’s illegal to name your pig “Napoleon.” This bizarre law dates back to the early 19th century, possibly as a way to distance the then-emperor Napoleon Bonaparte from farmyard animals. While the law might not be strictly enforced today, it’s a quirky reminder of historical figures and their legacies.

©️ Alexa / Pixabay

12. Scotland’s Salmon Shenanigans

In Scotland, it’s an offense to handle salmon “under suspicious circumstances.” This delightfully vague law, enacted in the 1980s, aims to combat salmon poaching. While the specifics are open to interpretation, it serves as a reminder of the importance of protecting wildlife.

©️ mdjaff / Feepik

13. Miami’s Mime Mishap

In Miami, Florida, it’s illegal to imitate animals in a way that disturbs the peace. This law might have been intended to address overly boisterous street performers, but it leaves room for interpretation. Does a silent mime imitating a cat get a pass?

©️ Freepik

14. Singapore’s Gum Gaffe

Chewing gum is strictly prohibited in Singapore. Introduced in 1992 to keep the streets clean, the ban remains in place. While visitors can bring in a limited amount for personal use, spitting gum out in public can land you in hot water (or chewing gum jail, as some call it).

©️ Freepik

15. Italy’s Obesity and Polyester Predicament

A (now largely unenforced) law in some Italian towns prohibited people considered “obese” from wearing tight-fitting clothing, particularly made of polyester. The law was intended to promote healthy living but faced criticism for body shaming.

©️ Anastasia Kazakova / Freepik

These are just a few examples of the strange and fascinating absurd laws and regulations found around the world. They offer a glimpse into diverse cultural norms, historical anxieties, and the sometimes quirky ways governments try to regulate everyday life.

Does your country have any absurd laws? Please tell us in the comments.

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The Hyperhive

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