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Deposit Bits of Nature Into Old Spice's Weird Vending Machine, Get Even Stranger Stuff Back

Got a pinecone? Trade it for a Sega Genesis

Old Spice spokesman Terry Crews tests out the vending machine at its unveiling today.

To promote a new collection of scents—Timber, Amber and Citron—Old Spice has placed a rather generous and oddly specific machine in Grand Central Terminal's Vanderbilt Hall.

Nestled behind fake pine trees and prickly plastic grass, the giant vending machine lets passersby submit various items found in nature (snake skin, owl pellets, brain coral, etc.) and reap corresponding rewards. 

The brand's vending machine, which became open to the public today, will be in Grand Central until Saturday, Feb. 14. Submitting easy-to-find items like a leaf or a dozen acorns will score you low-rent prizes like a firm handshake and mashed potatoes with gravy, respectively.

Weirder items offer better payouts. An African horned melon will win you a pair of tickets for the NBA All-Star Game. Got a 6-inch bamboo stick? You've got yourself a $1,000 scholarship to wrestling school. Abalone shell? A fake Vince Lombardi trophy is yours.

You can find the full list below, but here's a video explaining the idea:

To drive off in the classic bright-red Lotus, you'll need to be lucky enough to find a seven-leaf clover.

On hand to introduce the new scent collection were brand spokesman Terry Crews and 2012 Miss Universe Olivia Culpo. A picnic date with Culpo was part of the vending machine's wares, but a young man decked out in a crisp red blazer submitted a camellia flower to the machine and won the prize. 

How does the machine work? How do you deposit four amoebas? How does it know the difference between a shark tooth and a shark tooth fossil? Most importantly, how many of each prize are up for grabs?

Old Spice representatives were vague about such details.

Of the machine and the brand's kooky advertising, Old Spice spokeswoman Kate DiCarlo did tell Adweek: "We pride ourselves on trying to entertain men while we build brand loyalty and that means trying new things. If it's been done before we're probably not going to do it, or if we've done it before, we're probably not going to do it again." 

Translation: this weekend's vending machine could be a one-time-only deal, so grab all the pinecones, sea grass and black sand that you can carry and try to win the Sega Genesis, Laserdisc player and 100-pound Olympic dumbell while they last. 

Here's the full list of what to bring and what it could win for you:

Trilobite fossil: Leather chair
Lichen: Snow skis
Shark tooth fossil: Karate lessons
Seven-leaf clover: Automobile
Six-inch Bamboo Stick: $1,000 scholarship to wrestling school
One leaf: A firm handshake
Brain coral: Bungee jump vacation
Owl pellet: Telescope
Prickly pear: Giant medieval tapestry
One camellia Flower: Picnic meal (with a supermodel)
A sprig of sea grass: Laserdisc player
A cup of black sand: 100-pound Olympic dumbbell
Five potatoes: Autographed baseballs
A very smooth river rock: Nautical sextant
One typha/cattail: Badger skull
Lava rock: Gold watches
An African horned melon: one pair NBA All-Star Game Tickets
Pyrite: Electric guitar
Ocean water: All the wadded up cash from a rich guy's pocket
Fist-sized rock: Hot dog
Thistles: 1980s-style Oakley Blades sunglasses
Pine needles: Root beer float
Abalone shell: Fake Vince Lombardi Trophy
Pinecone: Sega Genesis
Lily pad: Xbox One
A snake skin: Ninja outfit with fake throwing stars
Four amoeba: Darryl Strawberry rookie card
Leaves, Sticks, Twigs: Old Spice Fresher Collection products
Dozen acorns: Mashed potatoes and gravy
Shark tooth: Roller Blades 

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