The French designer of the bikini may have named his invention after the atoll in the Marshall Islands where the US detonated nuclear devices in the mid-1940s, but a power plant in the Czech Republic is in trouble after drawing too clear a line linking the explosive power source and two-piece bathing suits. Last week, the CEZ power-generation company had to apologize for putting on a bikini contest to select its newest intern, Deutsche Welle reports. Ten bikini-clad, hard-hat-wearing high school graduates had their pictures taken inside a cooling tower at the Temelin Nuclear Power Station, and Facebook users were asked to cast ballots for their favorite. The winner was to be given a 14-day internship at the plant and the title "Bouncer of Energy," per 9News.
Although CEZ later claimed the point of the contest was to "promote technical education," controversy in the Czech Republic and online came quickly, with one internet user calling it "degrading, disgusting, and primitive." The operators of the contest offered their mea culpa on Facebook and said all 10 finalists would be receiving internships. In a press release, CEZ compared the bikini contest to its other cultural programs, such as the time it hosted a local philharmonic orchestra at the plant in South Bohemia. (Read more Czech Republic stories.)