Great mysteries of our time

Exploding milkcans with calcium carbide and water now recognized as an official Dutch tradition

Better than wooden shoes, or salty black licorice candies, perhaps…

Carbidschieten – the practice of mixing carbide and water in a milk churn with a lid and letting it explode – has become the 50th item on an official list of Dutch traditions. The activity is a noisy and popular New Year tradition in rural areas of the Netherlands which occasionally leads to serious injury.Ineke Strouken, director of the Dutch centre for folk culture, announced on Friday that carbidschieten had been included on the list, news agency ANP reports. The list stems from a Unesco convention which requires signatory nations to make an inventory of folk traditions and heritage.