Can dancing in the nude break a drought?
SO YOU'VE tried and failed to get it to rain by hanging wet washing outside on the clothes line.
Now might be the time to try something drastic, such as dancing outdoors in your birthday suit, arranging a frog or toad wedding, or deploying rain rockets.
In North America, Africa, India and other parts of Asia the locals prefer a rain dance, sometimes in the buff.
Farming naked is also done in some parts of the world. For example, in Nepal in 2002 about 200 women who ploughed their fields naked in a desperate attempt to bring rain to their drought-stricken region were rewarded as the monsoon began shortly afterwards.
It was reported the women locked their husbands inside their houses and then stripped off to till their fields at midnight in a bid to appease the Hindu god of rain, Indra.
Using animals to induce rain is also popular around the globe.
In rural India, during times of drought, villagers have conducted frog marriages in temples to please the rain gods.
There's also cow weddings, including one last year when hundreds of villagers turned out for the marriage of a bull called Nandeshwar to a cow, Nandini, in India.
The media reported the wedding was arranged in a Hindu ceremony to appease Indra, as according to the villagers it was raining everywhere but not in their area.
In Thailand there's a tradition called the cat parade, which is performed when the rain season hasn't arrived.
According to Wikipedia, villagers take a female moggie around the houses, where the residents splash it with water.
Some people believe the cat represents drought, and if it is wet the drought will be driven away. Others believe the cat has the power to make rain.
For the record The Northern Star doesn't condone cruelty to animals, including spiders. An old wives' tale garnered from Yahoo! Answers says: "If you see or make a cockroach fly, it'll rain for seven days. If a spider you should slay, rain will follow within a day."
Romanians also have a few ways to induce rain, including paparuda.
According to Wikipedia, the ritual involves a girl, wearing a skirt made of knitted green vines and small branches, singing a traditional song calling for the goddess of rain as she dances through the streets of her village, accompanied by the people of the village who dance and shout. The girl stops at every house, where the hosts sprinkle water on her.
Another animal-free rain ritual includes Sam Dowsett's popular suggestion on Nimbin Hookups: "(It's) time to paint or draw water. Waterfalls, rivers, lakes, clouds. Think water, plentiful water."
And, lastly, if Page MP Kevin Hogan could lobby Canberra's coffers then maybe we could buy some rain rockets or "seed" some clouds.
According to the Scientific American website, cloud seeding is the "most widely used weather-modification technique ... which involves priming clouds with particles of silver iodide".
Basically, a plane dumps the particles into a "ripe" cloud, where "they collide with drops of supercooled water and form ice; the ice then falls to the ground, melting along the way".
Or there's China's solution, says Scientific American, which includes a "battery of 5000 rocket launchers, which fire particles into puffy clouds in attempt to draw rain".