Here’s to the weird stuff that happened in the world of spirit and travel.

Photo: jonfeinstein

Ah, yes, it’s that time of the year, where we begin to look back over 2009, with all of its oddities and mishaps. Oh yeah, and good things, too.

I was inspired to write about some of those good (and bad) things at my website in a piece called 2009 Pondering Ritual: The Ups, the Downs, the Secret Travel Spots, based on Superhero Journal’s completion ritual for the year.

But these end of the year roundups are really more than just about us, right? They are also about all the crazy people out there (sans Michael Jackson and Tiger Woods, I’m keeping my fingers crossed).

Which made me happy to come across the Top Ten Weird and Wacky Travel Stories of 2009 over at the Vacation Gals site. Whew, I’m not the only one that tends toward the crazy – apparently, there are a whole lot of you out there that are following Danny Devito’s “troll feet” around the world. Ahem.

Even more importantly (in my mind anyway), what are some of the weird and wacky spiritual stories we’ve come across this year? We’ve covered more than our fair share here at BNT, but I thought I’d take this opportunity to highlight some of the wackiest ones.

Here they are, in no particular order:

Wrong Mind. Who in their right mind would decide to walk across China? And better yet, document the growth of his beard in the process? Survey says: this guy.

Virginity for sale? Apparently, we are still living in whatever dark ages this was appropriate for survival purposes (as well as was pretending to be a man). Only now, it happens to pay for school, and then the German government goes and takes half your earnings in taxes. How dare they.

Um, what? / Photo: Jeremy 白杰瑞

Signs, signs, everywhere signs. Yep, it seems that every time an atheist’s gun rings, a Christian gets his wings (via being shot and going straight to heaven). The moral of the story is believe in God. Thanks, Answers in Genesis.

By the same token, don’t forget the ever-increasing shock value inserted into PSAs.

Man, this place is crazy! A post over at Planet D prompted me to relive my most surreal travel experience, which involved snow followed by palm trees and 100 degree heat, all in the middle of the desert and within a 16-hour period. Good times. What’s yours?

Holy drunkenness. Looks like you can be a spiritual being while still getting your drink-on (thank God!). Oh, according to an article by Ted Rose of the Shambhala Mountain Center, you have to be mindful about it. I get it. Worth contemplating if the same is true for mushrooms.

Taking Over the World. Maybe this one should fall under the “scary” more than “wacky” category, but nonetheless, it fits the description of kinda insane. Baxter Jackson recounts how he almost became a religious hitman by way of obtaining a Masters in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. The Christian Coalition would be proud.

Say What? Alright, this isn’t a BNT one, and the only spiritual part is its melodious goodness, but this video has become one of my favorites mind-benders since I watched it…er, five minutes ago. Thing is, you have to be a native English speaker to fully enjoy it. Wait, I take that back – non-native speakers will probably cheer louder for its dead-on impersonation of what an English speaker sounds like when you don’t know the language.

What are some of your favorite wacky spiritual stories from the year? Share your stories below!