Look closely at Niko Alm's driver's license. That's not a yarmulke on his head. That's a pasta strainer.

After a three-year battle, the 19-year-old Austrian man, a self-professed Pastafarian, has won the right to wear a colander on his head in his driver's license picture.

Congratulations, Austria. You have now overtaken Florida as the wackiest locale in the world.

Alm, who belongs to the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, a spoof religion that was launched in 2005 to lampoon Kansas' attempts to teach intelligent design in school classrooms, says the sieve is required by his religion.

Austrian authorities tell the BBC that the license was issued because Mr Alm's face was visible in the photo.

“The photo was not approved on religious grounds. The only criterion for photos in driving license applications is that the whole face must be visible,” said Manfred Reinthaler, a police spokesman in Vienna.

Alm announced the decision on his blog, which is in German, (we're trusting The Telegraph's translation):

“Today I was able to get my new driving licence, and in it you can clearly see that I'm wearing a colander on my head to demonstrate my allegiance to the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. My headwear has now been recognised by the Republic of Austria.”

LA Weekly