Niko Alm in his religious headgear, a pasta strainer.
Niko Alm in his religious headgear, a pasta strainer.

'Pastafarian' Man Wins Right To Wear Colander On Head in Driver's License Photo

​He calls it a "religious head covering." It looks oddly like a pasta strainer.  

After a three-year effort, Austrian man Niko Alm has finally earned the right to wear the symbolic Ikea kitchen tool on his head in his driver's license photo, saying it is a requirement of his faith. The BBC has the full story

Alm belongs to the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, whose followers call themselves "Pastafarians." 

Pastafarianism is a real religion.

Most of us do not believe a religion - Christianity, Islam, Pastafarianiasm - requires literal belief in order to provide spiritual enlightenment. That is, we can be part of a community without becoming indoctrinated. There are many levels of belief.

To outsiders it makes us hard to define, but here are some general things that can be said about our beliefs:

We believe pirates, the original Pastafarians, were peaceful explorers and it was due to Christian misinformation that they have an image of outcast criminals today

We are fond of beer

Every Friday is a Religious Holiday

We do not take ourselves too seriously

We embrace contradictions (though in that we are hardly unique)


According to Austrian law, wearing a head covering is not allowed in driver's license photos except for religious reasons.

However, this may not be a complete win for Pastafarianism--a police spokesman told the BBC that the photo was not approved on religious grounds, but rather because Alm's entire face is visible, a requirent for license photos. Alm's next step is to help make Pastafarianism an officially recognized faith in Austria.

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