VIENNA — Pasta strainers are now considered suitable religious headgear in Austria ... at least as far as the transport authorities are concerned.
Three years after applying for a new driver's licence, an Austrian man has finally received the laminated card. And the picture shows him sporting an upturned pasta strainer on his head.
Nothing to worry about: the authorities ruled the kitchen utensil was a suitable religious accessory for a Pastafarian.
Niko Alm, an entrepreneur, told the Austria Press Agency he had the idea when he read that headgear was allowed in official pictures only for "confessional" reasons.
The atheist says he belongs to the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, a light-hearted "faith" whose members call themselves Pastafarians and whose "only dogma ... is the rejection of dogma," according to its website.
Accordingly, Alm sent his application for a new driver's license in 2008 along with a picture of himself with a colander on his head.
The stunt got him an invitation to the doctor's to check he was mentally fit to drive, but after three years, Alm's efforts have paid off.
He now wants to apply for Pastafarianism to become an officially recognised faith in Austria.