Creeped Out Police Officers Admit Their Scariest Real-Life Paranormal Experiences
Our police and first responders have enough drama to deal with on a daily basis, who knew they had to deal with the other realm. Ghosts don't care about your profession... they are watching you.
Redditor _PopCultureNerd called out to the police officers of Reddit to ask... Cops and other law enforcement people of Reddit, what were some cases you worked on that made you think (even if for a moment) that something supernatural/paranormal was going on? Maybe read this with the lights on.
THE POWER OF CHRIST COMPELS YOU.
Was driving along and found a girl just standing in the middle of the road, my initial thoughts was to just to tell her to pay attention but it was clear that while the lights were on, nobody was home. During my whole time with her she never uttered a word, I was left in a weird situation. She had done nothing, clearly needed help but medically nothing seemed wrong. As I am pondering what on earth I should do the girl suddenly starts spinning. Now spinning is not illegal and I'm starting to think this girl is one of those protesters that wind up police (I've dealt with troll station before) so I think crack on, spin to your hearts content. Then she loses her balance and falls whacking her head on the side of the police car! Great. So I call an ambulance but she seems fine. Still not talking but she is looking up at the sky. It's a nice day so fine enjoy the sun. I do some writing and look back at her now bright red face and watering eyes and realize she is trying to damage her retinas by forcing herself to look directly at the sun. That's a new one on me so now I'm holding a book or something above her to shield her eyes... ambulance arrives and we get to hospital and now she has forgotten how to walk. Now I'm 99% sure she is a wind up merchant but I get her a wheelchair. In the wheelchair she strikes up a 'I'm a little teapot pose' and keeps this up for the next hour, zero movement just frozen with her arms out. So I now have 3 potential situations.
1) she is pretending to be frozen in time.
2) she is suffering from a mental health issue.
3) she has been possessed.
By now I'm convinced it's the latter but I section her and leave her with professionals. A week later I call the hospital and they tell me she is still frozen.
WE DO HAVE ANGELS POLICING US.
Police officer working the desk 1500 - 2300, fire alarm signal goes off many many years ago the police department offered alarm monitoring service, still had 10-12 places that were hard wired and it would require pulling apart a lot of equipment to disconnect the system so we just kept it going. 1st shift dispatch is already punched in so she took it. I'm headed out the door to the fire department when 911 rings from the same address, I answer it. No one in the other end, assumed they barely got to call before passing out, I bolt out the back door, hop in a squad car, radio in the 911 call on channel three that both police/fire can hear and that I'm going directly to the house.
Arrive just as another unit shows up. No signs of smoke...no sign of anything.
Older woman comes walking up the street pushing a wheelchair with an elderly lady (her mother). They live there and just went out for an early evening stroll before dinner. Tell them what we have going on, nobody else lives there and as far as the elderly lady can remember the alarm was disconnected from the house years ago during some renovations. They don't have any alarm system either, just a couple of smoke/fire detectors.
We do a walk around the house, get to the back door off the kitchen and you can clearly see and smell gas.
We turned off the gas at the main, set up some fans to air it out and find a cracked gas line going to the oven. Daughter said she spilled some coffee she was making for their walk and had to move the oven a few inches to clean, probably broke the line pushing the oven back in. Nothing else in the house is disturbed and both phones are on the hook. Fire chief shows up about 15 minutes into the call. He goes over to the two ladies and gives them both a hug, he's nearly in tears.
The elderly lady in the wheelchair, her husband was the fire chief 60+ years ago for our department. The daughter, her husband passed away a few years ago, he was also a member of our department. Never believed in ghosts or spirits but that call made me think maybe people who spend their lives doing good are allowed by some power to look over their loved ones every so often.
Years ago my uncle told us about a woman who would call the police station just about every night claiming that "fairies or elves" were breaking into her house & stealing her food. As is custom, every time she calls, they send a unit to check on her (my uncle gets it about 2-3 times per week). Every night they stop by her house & reassure her that no one has broken in & calm her down.
One night when he gets to the house she has poured powdered sugar all over the floor to "record their tracks" & my uncle says he literally has to do a double take. All over the floor of her kitchen are these little tracks, tiny like nothing he's seen before. His partner starts taking photos & trying to figure it out. A few other officers come in, as most of them had gotten the call to her house too & want to see it. 10 police officers all completely baffled as to what these weird little prints are...
Turns out a possum had babies & they were sneaking into her kitchen for warmth or food. The prints looked so foreign because most of the time baby possums are carried by their mother not running around. 7 are rounded up & released in a less residential area.
JUST KEEP DRIVING!
My brother is a deputy and at the time I worked as an EMT for a few small towns in north east Colorado. I frequently went on ride alongs with him while waiting for 9/11 calls to come in. This took place in Amherst Colorado. The town is very small, Amherst has about 50 people, a church, some houses, a grain tower, and a park. It was about 3 am and we were about to call it a night. As we were making our last check on Amherst we noticed movement at the park but couldn't tell exactly what was going on because it was pitch black. We drove up and stopped along side the dirt road, flipped on the spotlight and as we moved the light around the park it finally settled on the back of a young girl (maybe 13) sitting on a swing with her back facing us. We left the spotlight on her, she wasn't moving, she just sat there facing away from us looking down at the ground. Needless to say it was a very creepy situation.
We both looked at each other with that face you would make when something is out of the ordinary. I quickly suggested that we should call her over using the PA system. He agreed. As we looked back over, she was gone. I mean no signs of anyone anywhere. The park was in a wide open area, she couldn't have gotten out of sight in the amount of time that we had our exchange of words. I remember saying, "should we get out and look for her?" Maybe she hid behind one of the park toys or something. My brother just looked at me and said "hell to the no" and drove away. It still creeps me out to this day.
Partner and I were dispatched to a welfare check. Elderly guy, nobody had seen him in a few days, mail over flowing in mailbox, missed a doctor's appointment, car hasn't moved, etc. We both know we are about to find a body. We arrive on scene and can't get anyone to the door, look through the window and sure enough, we can see his foot on the floor in the living room. My partner is a corporal and pulls rank and makes me go first. Door is unlocked and as soon as we open it we smell a mostly fresh dead body. Almost relieved, we both enter and he tells me to check vitals on dead dude. He is obviously dead, with lividity, dried feces on him and dried saliva around his mouth. So I go to stand over him and see if I can get a pulse at which point he takes a deep breath, rolls over, and asks why we are in his house. At this point we both start screaming as we both run out of the house. We called EMS and they transported him. Said they couldn't get a blood pressure or pulse on him. I think he died a week later in the hospital.
NOTHING GOOD HAPPENS IN "THAT" ROOM!
The Captain was on the first-due engine company that was dispatched to a residential fire alarm in the middle of the night. Our dispatch protocols require us to send the first-due unit emergency to a fire alarm, while the second due engine and ladder company respond routine. We go to tons of fire alarms and 99% of the time they are caused by a faulty system or burnt food, so we usually don't get too worked up over them.
Anyways, as they approach the neighborhood they see the orange glow in the distance, and when they get on scene they find a ~4,000 square foot house with heavy fire showing on the rear and that had already broken through the roof. The call was then upgraded to a working structure fire and more units were dispatched to assist. The Captain of the first-due stayed on the outside the whole time (he was incident commander until the first battalion chief arrived on scene and took over, and then he assumed the safety role). So, he's on the outside, in radio contact with crews that are inside fighting the fire.
After the bulk of the fire had been extinguished and as operations were winding down, the Captain sees smoke inside a second-story window and asks crews inside to go inside the room on the B/C corner to make sure the fire hadn't spread to the other side of the house. The crews search for a few minutes and radio back, "There's no room there, sir." The Captain is a bit confused, as he is staring at what is clearly a window that is attached to a room of some sort. He relays detailed instructions of where the room should be to the crews inside, and they again advise that they can't find anything.
Incredulous, the Captain asks the Incident Commander for permission to go inside of the structure so he can show the interior crews exactly where the room in question is. His request is granted, and he goes inside, walks up the staircase, and walks towards the corner in question. There's no room there. Just a hallway with a corner. No doorway, no window, no room. Knowing that there has to be something behind the wall, they breach the drywall and crawl through to find a child's bedroom. The bedroom had a dresser, a desk, and a perfectly made bed that looked as if it hadn't been disturbed in years. For whatever reason, the owners of the home decided to wall off the bedroom and leave it just as it was, untouched and unaccessible. The Captain said it was one of the strangest and eeriest things he had seen in a while.
WISH WE ALL HAD AN INVISIBLE SHIELD.
It's probably too late for this to surface, but this is my dad's story.
He went to a call where a father had gone crazy and decided to shoot his family. He killed his wife and was looking around trying to find his 5 year old son to shoot him. The boy had run outside and was trying to hide on the side of the house behind the trash cans. The father eventually found him and point blank emptied nearly a full magazine at the boy.
When my dad arrived, they found the boy in shock, hiding right where his dad found him, not a wound on his body. There were bullet holes in the side of the house all around the boy. When they finally got to question him about it, they asked him what happened when his dad found him on the side of the yard. The boy replied "the angel was in front of me with a shield, and he saved me. He pushed the gun away from me."
DAMN YOU CHUCKY!!
Crazy old woman called because she heard someone repeatedly banging on her front door and and garage door. It's after midnight and I get there, and the house is in the middle of the woods with nothing around for miles. I talk to the lady and she insists I check her large shed out back. So I open the shed door and peek in with my flashlight, and the entire shed is filled with creepy large homemade dolls. They're each probably like 2 to 3 feet tall and sitting upright facing the door. The hair on my neck went up for a minute. I didn't truly believe that something supernatural was going on, but dolls are just really creepy.
I am a CNA in a local hospital. One of my patients just had a quad bypass (open heart surgery) and I went into check her vitals. The room was dim and the hall was quiet. I'm looking at her and in the corner of my eye I see something drop from the ceiling out of nowhere. It makes a big clunk sound and I turn to see what it could be. There's nothing there. At that moment my patient looks up at me and say "my dads here." Passes back out... I finish my job and leave. When I would go to that floor again as a floater I would hate to go into that room.
OK. NO MORE YELLOW DRESSES!
ICU Nurse here.
We had a patient that was dying. No family. Around 3am the guy started crying and asking why the little girl in the yellow dress was in the hospital. We assure him there is no little girl. He cries even more saying yes there is she is at the foot of the bed. Kid you not the man passed in the next few minutes. Myself and my pod partner blame the hallucination on the meds we were giving him to keep him comfortable.
Next night. New patient in the room. She's completely alert and oriented. About 3 am she hits her call light. She wants to know why the little girl in the yellow dress was outside her room. We told her it was just her imagination from being in a strange place. Not 5 minutes later the guy in the next room goes into full cardiac arrest and unfortunately we can't revive him.
Of course we absolutely freak. Two different nights. Two different patients see the same thing. All followed by death.
BEWARE THE SHADOWS!!
I'm a second generation firefighter. My father spent the latter days of his career as a fire safety director at a massive mental asylum. Our state version of OSHA has to come and do inspections at all facilities. His was no exception so the OSHA inspectors make their way to an abandoned part of the facility that used to house the criminally insane. The absolute worst of the worst. My father left them with keys and a flashlight because the electricity didn't work. The inspectors were radioing back to my father that they kept hearing talking and footsteps which was impossible. Not even squatters could move around because each section is isolated with locked doors to prevent escape. Eventually, the inspectors give up and actually flee without finishing. My dad decides to stick around and check the alarm boxes they didn't. As he is checking one of the alarms, he feels as if someone is watching him from down the hall. As he looks, a shadow forms with a head, shoulders, torso but no legs and just two holes where there should be eyes. My dad noped the hell on out of there.
Since the hospital has shut down, it has been on Ghost Adventures, Ghost Hunters and a myriad of other shows and movies. My dad has been in some of them. Jason from Ghost Hunters called it the scariest place he's ever been.
SCARLET O'HARA IS THAT YOU?
I work in a pre civil war town that has lots of antebellum homes that survived the war. Ghost hunters have been to the town on several occasions. There is this one antebellum mansion that is more of a museum, that gets alarm calls semi frequently. Every time, the side door to the house is open and the kitchen has all cabinet doors and drawers open. Every. DAMN. time. The care taker says its been happening since she started looking after the place about 30 years ago. We don't clear it without backup.
THIS IS WHY I DON'T WATCH 'THE SIXTH SENSE.'
My dad used to work as a CO (corrections officer) at a rural prison. He drove perimeter, which just means he made circles around the jail in a truck, checking empty buildings for runaway inmates and just generally being bored for eight hours every night.
One night, my dad is parked on a hill just reading a magazine when he starts to feel a thumping in his body. He described it as the feeling you get when speakers are playing a song with really heavy bass and you can feel the bass in your whole body.
Anyway, he puts the magazine down and checks his rearview, and he sees someone outside the truck. He grabs his pistol and jumps out of the truck, weapon drawn. When he gets outside, he sees a procession of Native Americans walking through the truck (and directly through his seat) only to disappear at the exact spot he was sitting. He said it was clear they were ghosts because many of them appeared injured. This went on for a few seconds, and then whole procession disappeared.
He called the other perimeter guy on his walkie to try to explain, and the other guy almost immediately stopped communicating. Turns out the other guy had seen this happen before, but didn't believe in ghosts, so he wouldn't talk about it.
SOME ROOMS WILL NEVER BE CLEAN AGAIN.
I worked as a forensic nurse in a lock up unit in the hospital once with state and county inmates. Had one older/demented lady who swore she was being haunted/abused by a demon she would call Tiberius. So many crazy things happened whenever she was there - like we'd go into the room, do normal care, leave and seconds later she'd start screaming bloody murder and we'd run into the room to find her looking like she'd been in a fight with a boxing champ - bloody lip, black eye, markings all over her body - no one ever saw her doing this stuff to herself. Things would get moved around the room by themselves - like at one point she was in protective restraints because the doc thought she was hurting herself, there was no way she could have moved or done anything to herself while in these restraints, but new marks would always appear or her tray/cart would be across the room. The room was secure so there was no way someone else was doing this. You'd ask her questions and she'd just say "it was Tiberius." After she was discharged we always had trouble with that room - if there was going to be a rapid response or code, it happened in that room. One of the guards reporting that lights were going on and off in a room? It was that one.
STAY AWAY FROM THE LIGHT.
I was dispatched around 3am to attend a house where the caller was concerned that someone had broken into the basement and was still inside. The caller was a very old lady and she lived alone. As far as she could tell, she woke up and noticed that the basement lights were on, and she hadn't been downstairs in years.
My partner and I get to the call and the lady is standing at the front door with her walker anxiously waiting for us to come inside. My partner and I go into the basement and you can tell that no one had been down there for a while because as I walked I kept hitting cobwebs that were dangling from the ceiling. Anyway, everything appeared to be in order, and eventually I found the light switch further into the basement and turn it off. We shut the basement door behind us and clear the main floor too, since she was so adamant that she heard rustling and coughing in the basement (the basement was relatively empty, and I assure you no one was down there).
As we are about to leave she asks if we turned the light off. I said yes, and opened the door to show her, but the light was back on when I did. I kept my composure and asked her if I could turn the lights on/off from upstairs as well. Negative. My partner and I exchanged looks and I went back down to turn the lights off again, and go. We met up after the call and dug a little bit into the history of the house, and it turned out that a year ago on that day we attended to help paramedics because her husband had fallen down those stairs. Not sure if he made it or not but... nope.
HEAR NO EVIL. SEE NO EVIL.
Cop. Real call. I have been on patrol for several years, and love stuff like this. I had a back up officer with me, who witnessed everything.
Dispatch sent me to a call in a mountain area late one night. Dispatch said the caller reported several people holding a baby above their heads, and chanting, while standing on her property. The call sounded ridiculous and I smirked as dispatch gave the details. I arrived at the proper address after driving about 20 minutes along a mountain road. There is not much else up here, and it was extremely quiet. No one walks around out here, and there arent very many cars driving this late. I walked along a gated driveway, through a light wooded area. I found the callers house, with two dim lights near the front door. The house was surrounded on three sides by heavy woods. I felt a little uneasy, just looking at the house.
I knocked on the front door of the house, while standing on a large patio. I heard something move to my left, which startled me because it was close. It sounded like a person, something big. I looked to the left and used my flashlight to light up the patio....I didnt see anyone.
I continued to knock. I could hear two voices inside the house. I clearly heard a male and a female. This made me feel a little better. I thought I heard someone on the patio, but it must have been someone inside.
The female eventually opened the door. She was terrified, almost crying. She asked me to come inside and to close the door. She led me to the living room, where I saw a very cheap security monitor, almost like a baby monitor camera setup, with audio and video playing. The camera setup only provided live feed. The camera was positioned to view the front door and patio area where I was just standing. The audio was silent as I watched the monitor for a few seconds.
The woman began to explain, when I interrupted, and asked where the male was inside the house (I heard his voice). She looked confused and said she was here alone. I was surprised because I know for a fact I heard a males voice when I knocked. I asked her several times, and initially thought she was lying to me. My partner checked the house and did not find anyone.
The woman said she was reading while sitting on the couch, when she heard something over the security camera. She looked at the display and saw two people on the patio, standing at the front door. She heard knocking at the door and called the police. I looked at the monitor, and although it was low quality, I could see the patio and front door area with decent clarity. As the woman continued to explain, the audio on the monitor went from quiet to extremely loud. We all stop talking. The caller was shaking. I looked at the monitor, but didn't see anyone. Loud audio continued to blast from the speakers. The audio sounded like wind.....but it was not windy that night. I asked the woman "what is that?", and she said she said "its them." I looked at my partner who was nervous.
The woman gives me her cell phone, stating she took pictures of the monitor, showing the two people on her patio. I looked through several low quality pics and didn't see anything. I continue to scroll, and sure enough, I see what looks like two tall figures standing at the door. One of the figures is holding something. The figures looked strange, all dark and featureless, in contrast to the video I saw on the monitor.
I was in disbelief, and thought "oh my god, shes telling the truth."
I continue to scroll and saw one figure holding something up over its head. Another picture showed the item at the base of the door with both figures standing near it. I tried to reason, to explain what could have caused these images.....but it was pretty apparent that there had been two subjects on her patio.
We check outside, walking the property to the tree line. I mention the movement on the patio, and the males voice from inside the house. My partner asks me to stop talking about it.
We finish checking and return to speak with the caller. She says she will be driving into town and staying at a hotel because she is too scared to stay here tonight.
We walk along the driveway back to our cars.....my partner jumps into the patrol car and takes off. I laughed, but I felt really uneasy, standing there in the dark. I leave shortly afterward.
SAME YOUR FAMILY SQUABBLES FOR THE THERAPIST OR YOUR PRIEST.
My partner and I received a 911 call from an old woman having a dispute with someone. We get to the house and she says she alone. We say who are you having a dispute with? She says, "oh just this spirit in one of my rooms" immediately me and partner look at each other and give the ole "she's elderly, it's prob dementia or something along those line" As we're talking to her, she's explaining how sometimes a "bad" spirit comes around. She states that he's in the back room and (of course) the lights don't work. We try to tell her that spirits probably aren't in her house and we have to get to another 911 call. She insists we check it out. So we do. Now, the house, they way she was speaking about spirits, made me believe something was there. When we got the room and she opened the door, seeing a ghost wouldn't have shocked me. She did say that it's usually in the corner up on the ceiling. Well, that corner was dark and had the freakiest shadow that legitimately was terrifying. My partner and I shine our flashlights on the whole room and Thankfully, nothing was there. We told the lady, nope, your good, nothing going on here. I said to her "if you feel there's a spirit there the NYPD cannot help you, go to a local church religious institution of your choosing and best of luck". We got the HELL outta there.
SOMETIMES YOU JUST HAVE TO SAY.. "WHO CARES... RUN!"
My dad used to work as a correctional officer at Goulburn jail in Australia, which is probably one of the oldest and hardest prisons there. A story he tells of his time there is one I always remember. He said that the whole place was creepy anyway, not helped by some of the inmates at the time including the notorious Ivan Milat (on which 'wolf creek' is based). Anyway first thing he noticed was that dogs would outright refuse to enter the prison. He said they couldn't get them past the gate no matter how hard they tried. But the creepiest occurrence was one night when they heard the sound of running booted footsteps, everyone was in their cell so they couldn't figure out what was causing it, next thing all the doors of the open and unoccupied cells on the top floor were banged shut, one after the other with loud clangs. Then they see the source of the running noise. Now dad swears this is what he and his colleague (so he has another witness) saw. Apparently they looked up and saw what looked like disembodied hobnail boots run down the aisle right over their heads, banging as they went. Dad decided to stop working in the prison not long after this. Super creepy.
IF ANYTHING IS WET? AND SILENT? BASICALLY IT'S SATAN.
So my dad (ex London police) tells a story of getting a call to a known trouble makers house. The whole family is outside refusing to go in the house. Apparently Someone/something was upstairs. He just thinks they're making issues. Enters the house, it's a mess. Newspaper all over the floor like they're using it as a rug. Checks the lower floor, nothing. Walks up the stairs and 3/4 of the way up the temperature drops, so much you can see your own breath. The newspaper covering this floor is wet, and he has to check each room with the worst feeling of dread/eyes watching you he's ever had. Nothing is moving, but he says he's never felt such a sense of malice (except for Colin Ireland who he has to be on duty for as he was in the cells, my dad says he's never seen evil in someone's eyes except for him) they nope out of there, as there is nothing for them to do. But my dad, who was on the opposite side of the picket lines in the miners strikes and responded to the Broadwater Farm riots says it's the worst moment of his life, having to walk up those stairs, knowing there was something all around that wanted to harm him.
People hard up for cash will do anything. But what about the other way around?
There are a ton of jobs or favors that don't require much skill, experience, or labor, and people who are fortunate enough to get hired walk away with a king's ransom.
Looking for those kinds of "jobs," however, is like finding a teardrop in the ocean.
"What's the dumbest thing you were paid to do and how much were you paid?"
Good luck finding these well-paying tasks.
"Had a WFH gig working sort of as a personal assistant for a rich guy on the opposite coast from me. I did all kinds of wacky sh*t for him. For example, one time I had to break up with my boss's girlfriend because he was too wimpy to do it himself. That was literally my job."
"One day, I bought him a new pickup truck. Meaning, I negotiated the deal and paid for the truck with his credit card. All in all, I'd say the process probably took about two weeks, for which I was paid my usual wage at six hours per day. No big deal."
"Somehow, his dad found out about the new truck and he decided he wanted a new pickup truck too. He called me about a week after I bought the truck for my boss and said he'd pay me $2,000 to buy a truck for him. I called the same dealership back, spoke to the same salesman, told him what was up and basically said give me another truck, same price as before. The salesman was only too happy to comply."
"It took ten minutes to make the phone call and then a day or two to get the title and other paperwork sorted out. So, depending on how you look at it, I made $2,000 for just ten minutes worth of 'work.'"
"Somehow, my boss's rich friend found out about all this. He decided he wanted a new SUV. 'OhYeahThrowItAway, you have to buy it for me!' I told him the last time I bought someone a vehicle, I got paid $2,000. The friend was basically like F'k it, I'll pay you $3,000, just get it for me' and then he emailed me his wish list."
"That deal took a little longer, maybe two weeks."
"I made $5k extra in just two months buying vehicles for lazy (or dumb) rich people."
Staying Out Of The Picture
"I was paid $300 to move my car for a movie that was filming by my apartment."
Pack It Up
"Got paid 10k to leave an apartment because it was sold and new owner wanted to move in. I was tenant (renter) under previous owner. I had 4 months left in my rental contract. This was in Spain (Barcelona)."
"I was flown to Paris to do a compliance audit, the systems weren't set up for the audit, couldn't get access so spent the week being taken to restaurants and shopping. On 1 of the days and at the last minute the company decided to send me to London for a meeting, literally just to meet people. I missed the Eurostar because I forgot my passport (totally blanked that I was entering another country), they had to rebook the Eurostar. Nothing was achieved out of this trip. No audit was completed. Nothing came of the meeting. The cost to the company 25k+ for me to do nothing for a week. Corporate money is ridiculous money."
Not much labor was required for these so-called "jobs."
Ten-Minutes Of "Work"
"I used to work for a PR agency. Every month one of our clients wanted a handful of photos re-sized for their website; nothing fancy, just setting the width to 500px in Windows Photo Manager."
"It was maybe ten minutes of work every month, but the contract said the minimum amount of time we would charge them for was one day - and this was for the full team too, not just me. It must have cost them several hundred pounds every month."
"I showed the client how to do it several times, and explained that they could save a lot of money doing it themselves. They didn't seem to mind."
"In the end I made sure I got it in writing that I'd informed them of their options and let them get on with it."
Thank You, Goodbye
"$175 to do some kind of user study at Netflix, I show up in the lobby and then they go, 'actually we got the data we needed from the studies earlier today, you're free to go!'. Still got paid!"
"I did an event for a national association for deaf people at which they did every presentation in ASL. I am an audio engineer, who specializes in live sound and concerts. I did nothing for 5 days of show, $450 a day."
Paid To Play
"I got asked to do 2 hours of barrier watch (Guarding a barrier ribbon while a crew did x rays inside a power plant). This was asked last minute after a 12 hour shift so the bonuses of staying happening to be a Sunday, etc I was being paid $110 to stand and play on my phone and make sure sure nobody tried to pass all the DO NOT ENTER DANGER DANGER signs during a time of day with minimal personnel."
"I rented my chicken to a photographer for fifty bucks."
Gotta Have Wendy's
"I was driving for uber. Picked up a bunch of drunks at like 2 AM. They were like 'Yo we gotta grab some Wendy' I go 'I'm sorry this is my busy period' they go 'Can we bribe you?' I go 'Absolutely you can bribe me.'"
"One the guys said I'll give you $100...I was shocked it was that high, another guy said '$150' and finally his wife said 'F'k it I want Wendy $200 and we buy you Wendy too.'"
"I finally said yes, FYI I hadn't said yes yet because the reality is $20-$40 would have gotten me to stop at Wendy."
"So there I sat at Wendy as those 3 drunks bought me wendy and paid me $200."
"One time I was at this super fancy dinner party. I'm talking servers and everything, I was in a freaking tux! It was outside and catered by a professional bbq company. I mean these guys had won international competitions. Well get this, they were double booked and didn't show. The other servers didn't know how to grill, and this totally smokin server in her 30s is just staring at the grill like a deer in the headlights. Well I don't want to be a hero but I ask if I can help. The entire staff spend the rest of the night bringing me drinks as I make this bbq and NOBODY realizes the award winning chefs didn't show up!"
Where Do We Apply?
"Ok this wasn't a job or anything.... But I got 10$ to eat half a watermelon."
Some opportunities present themselves.
When I was a kid, I hung out at a Japanese summer festival booth where you roll a bowling ball on a track that had two hills. The objective was to push the ball hard enough to get it over the first hill but not too hard to get it over the second hill.
I was fascinated with the challenge and stayed there for a long time as my parents were over by the food booths with their friends.
It was a slow day, and the dude working the booth wanted to peace out for a bit, so he offered to pay me $50 to "hang out" in his stead.
Of course, I said "sure."
No one ever came, and I earned fifty bucks rolling bowling balls for an hour. Was it the dumbest thing I ever did for money? Maybe, but I laughed all the way to the piggy bank that day.
That guy really must have despised his post enough to give a twelve-year-old kid $50.
Everyone talks about how the 20s are supposed to be the time of our lives. And that's largely true. But it's not all wine and roses.
Among all the freedom and youthful exuberance, so many people spend that decade struggling through the chaos of having absolutely no idea what their passion is.
And when we've internalized the desire to find an occupation that aligns with our values, sounds cool to talk about, and provides us with existential fulfillment, it can be difficult to identify the perfect fit.
So we hum along rather aimlessly.
Thankfully, some people do find their vocation and hunker down. But for others, it takes a little longer.
Perhaps struggling to locate that ideal passion, Redditor wibly_wobly_kid asked:
"People who discovered their passion at a later stage of life, what is it and how did you figure it out?"
Many people talked about making a career switch when they least expected. For the longest time, they new they didn't enjoy their work, but they didn't know what to do instead.
Hiding In Plain Sight
"I went to college twice in my early 20s for journalism and communications, but never graduated. I spent the rest of my 20s in a dead end food service job, miserable and angry at myself. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life"
"My extended family has lots of little ones (cousins having cousins) and every time there was a family get together, I always found myself playing with and entertaining the kids. One day, my uncle pointed out how good I was with kids, and did I ever consider working with them? I laughed it off but later thought 'hey, I have nothing better going on. What's the harm in researching a bit?' "
"I found out I could become an early childhood educator, working in daycares or kindergarten classes. So I applied to a couple of colleges and got in right away (applied on a Monday and got accepted the Friday). I quit my dead-end job and focused entirely on school. I made the dean's list all 4 semesters (something I have never done), and aced all my classes."
"I had a placement at a daycare/before and after school card place, and they hired me right after I finished my placement. So now I'm working there and happier than I ever was in my 20s"
Never Too Late
"Law. I was 45 when I went back to school. I'd worked blue collar jobs all my life, was a high school dropout. My daughter started taking paralegal classes and I thought, 'I could do that.' "
"So I got my GED and signed up for a 2-year paralegal certificate program through the local community college. Fell in love with law. Also discovered I was good at it. I had several professors who were lawyers tell me I'd be wasted as a paralegal and should go to law school."
"So I transferred to a 4-year school. Worked full time through undergrad and graduated with honors. Got into law school. I graduated law school at 55, oldest in my class. But I'd gone from being a high school dropout to a lawyer in just 10 years."
"Passed the California bar first try and I've been a public defender ever since, which is the only thing I ever wanted to do with it. I'm 60 now but I'm healthy and energetic and have a lot of years left. I love what I do, I'm very good at it, and it's the best move I ever made."
Every Week an Achievement
"Was 39 when I took a temp job in a social services type industry. Just basic stuff."
"Realised after a couple of years that I'd circled back to my idealistic 17yo self's plan for my career. Spent the previous 20 working sh** jobs I hated."
"Turns out it's really important to do something that aligns with your values. Finish the week feeling like I've contributed to society, rather than working to screw people for money."
Others discussed the passions they've discovered outside of their working life. These won't bring home any income, but their importance to life satisfaction cannot be understated.
"My dad discovered his life's biggest passion at 67. Mountain climbing. Serious mountaineering."
"He climbed Kilimanjaro and Whitney just months apart."
Plenty More Shredding In Store
"I started Rollerskating (on ramps) just before I turned 40 , it's never too late to start, you just need more safety gear :)"
"I've been doing it for years now I'm in my mid 40s and still rollin. It makes me a bit sad I didn't start when I was younger, but I reckon i've got another ten years left in me."
Moving the Needle On Women's Pockets
"Sewing/tailoring clothes. On a whim I took a class at a local community center and got hooked. After learning some basics in the class and following some YouTube videos I can make a passable pair of pants/trousers and basic shirts. I'm lucky that my local library had sewing machines you could check out so I didn't need to commit any real money early on."
"The best thing to come out of learning this new skill was making a pair of pants with actual pockets for my wife. Guys, you have not seen joy until you see your wife get a pair of functional custom pants with human-sized pockets. I thought her head was going to explode she was so happy."
Keep an Ear Out for Jingles
"I always wanted to learn an instrument that wasn't academic related."
"Over COVID lockdown I picked up the guitar."
"I picked it up pretty quick. So I learned the drums."
"Now I'm finishing building a music studio. I wanna write commercial jingles and just throw a bunch of sh** online for fun"
Unexpected, But Sounds Awesome
"I'm 31, but one year ago I discovered camels. Now I own three. I love them 🥰" -- ZhenHen
"I assume you are not talking about cigarettes, so how does one acquire not only one but three camels? Where do you live? How much did they cost? I'm very intrigued." -- dufresne90
"When you're into camels, every day is Hump Day." -- HolIerer
And a few put a finer point on the nature of that work vs. hobbies dynamic. They assured that one's professional career doesn't necessarily have to provide all the fulfillment they're looking for.
Sometimes, we just need to punch the clock.
Earning Free Time
"PSA: you don't have to be passionate about your job. Your passion can be a hobby you do in your free time. I don't think I will ever find a vocational passion."
"Used to think I was broken because of that but really there is no requirement to be head over heels about what puts money on the table and food in the pocket!"
Career's Moving, Still Painting
"Late 40s here. Got a book called Learn to Draw in 30 Days about 4 years ago. Then about 3 years ago I heard about #the100daychallenge where the goal is to create art every day for 100 days. I never stopped and made it a goal to hit 1000 days."
"In that time, I won contests, got about two hundred commissions, raised over $5000 for a charity, and had a great time. When I hit the 1000 days back in December, I decided to go back to college and get an art degree. I signed up for classes and talked with my manager at work to see how much they would pay for college, she was excited that I was going to get a business degree and said she'd work on getting all of the classes covered."
"Free college became too tempting to pass up so now I'm planning on getting the business degree and then on to law school because they'll pay for that too. I just finished my first semester with a 4.0 and I'm on day 1136 of my non-stop painting journey."
So if you're still looking around for your passion and feeling discouraged, rest assured that it might come your way when you least expect it.
And life is long, my friends.
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Don't disturb my beauty sleep! That's the one rule I have––and thankfully I live alone, so there isn't anyone to bother me, which is fabulous. But that doesn't mean I'm immune to getting woken up in the middle of the night. The worst way I can think of off the top of my head? The time a drunk guy wandered into my friend's yard and started banging on the window while I was trying to sleep. It was 3 a.m. The incident also gave me the fright of my life!
People told us about the experiences that yanked them out of dreamland after Redditor GratefulD_86 asked the online community,
"What is the worst way you've been woken up?"
"By raw sewage pouring through my ceiling (in my bedroom) from my upstairs neighbor.
He partied and ripped the toilet out of the floor, then continued using it. Took maintenance almost 16 hours to show up and turn off the flow."
"I literally didn't even know..."
"Cops beating on my door to search my house for someone I was hiding. I literally didn't even know the person."
Terrifying. This could have ended very badly.
"Cops busted down my door..."
"Cops busted down my door to take me to jail for having meth except. They had the wrong house."
"Neighbor decided to hang shelves in her bathroom after midnight and drilled into our shared wall. Scared the crap out of me."
The walls do indeed have ears.
"The phone woke me up..."
"The phone woke me up a little after midnight. I was informed that my mother had died. It was not totally unexpected. Her health had been declining.
I still dread hearing the phone ring late at night."
"A cockroach entering my mouth on my first day of camp."
"Police department knocking..."
"Police department knocking on my door at 2 a.m. saying the meth lab across the street might blow up so we needed to get out ASAP."
Is this a deleted episode of Breaking Bad?
"My cats were chasing each other..."
"My cats were chasing each other and one ran across my face while I was sleeping. The scratches were pretty bad all across one side of my face. It was the day before my senior prom too, so I ended up having a scratched-up face for that. I still have a scar right by my eye."
Cats are always at their most unpredictable very late at night!
"My Dad would keep a bag of marbles in the freezer. If you didn't wake up the first time, he dumped them into your bed."
"The neighbor in the building across from us..."
"Glass shattering. Lived in a 6 story apartment building. The neighbor in the building across from us was having some kind of psychotic break and was throwing everything he could get his hands on off his balcony. He was aiming for the windows of other apartments. We were far enough away to not get hit but watching that go down was not super fun."
We don't envy anyone of these people. Hopefully their lives have been filled with plenty of glorious, uninterrupted sleep since.
Have some of your own stories? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below!
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I love food! Maybe a little too much. It's been an especially amorous relationship over this pandemic. And I know I'm not alone.
All of our palettes are tuned to our own personal tastes. And sometimes certain items and combinations of tastes can leave others less than enticed.
I've lost track of all the side-eye I've gotten when I declare how much I enjoy PINEAPPLE on pizza. I said it. I meant it. Fight me. Let's discuss who else has eclectic tastes.
Redditor u/CatVideoFest wanted to discuss the mixing of certain ingredients that don't leave the best taste in one's mouth by asking:
Food is for survival. That was the plan. But over the years it has become somewhat of a way of life. Some of the most annoying people are foodies. They get so uppity about the preferences of others. Like, let me just enjoy what I enjoy.
Mom No!Mom Smile GIFGiphy
"I don't like my mom's cooking."
"Livestock have refused to eat my mother's cooking. She's a terror in the kitchen."
Take them OUT!!
"I hate walnuts in baked goods. It tastes like wood shavings and completely ruins the flavor."
"I love walnuts but I feel this way about raisins in baked goods, raisins are fine by themselves but not in sweets, I once ordered cinnamon rolls at Hardee's and bit into it and found out there were raisins in it, and I was grossed out and didn't want to eat it. At least freakin' McDonald's serves real cinnamon rolls without freakn' raisins!"
The Fart Ingredient
"I don't like kidney beans except in chili."
Oh thew Crunch...
"Pickles and onion make the best sandwich. I make most of my own pickles from stuff I grow or get from local farms in the fall, but I responded to another comment with two different heinous concoctions I enjoy. Crunchy, salty, sour. I really like pickles and onions to begin with."
"I use more than pickled cucumber though. Like the last one I made, I used garlic naan, mayo, red onion, scallions, pickled garlic, green olives, Kalamata olives, garlic dill cucumber, and green beans. Shallot, sour pickled onion, sweet pickled cucumbers, and sushi ginger on sprouted 14 grain bread is also also a favorite of mine."
No Sizzlebacon GIFGiphy
"I do not like bacon."
Who doesn't like bacon? That seems like a sacrilege. Right? But to each their own. Though I will never understand not loving walnuts in comfort food. Y'all need more self love.
Love the Big M
"Fast food tastes amazing, yeah its unhealthy as hell but don't you sit there and lie and say it tastes bad."
Blasphemy!golden girls flirting GIF by HULUGiphy
"Cheesecake is disgusting."
Too Many Legs
"Lobsters and crabs are giant insects."
"I don't really think that's that controversial, in my area of the world we even call this creature a 'Moreton Bay Bug' even though some fisheries try to give it the more appealing name of 'flathead lobster'."
"Boneless wings are vastly superior to bone-in wings. I think bone-in wings are a ripoff because when you get half a pound of them, part of that half-pound is inedible. It's like if you ordered a quarter-pound cheeseburger, but the restaurant considers the weight of the plate to be part of that quarter-pound and you end up with just a slider. Just give me some damn meat."
The Slimeman oyster GIFGiphy
"Oysters are truly disgusting and absurdly overpriced for quarter sized pieces of snot that tastes like salt water and hot sauce."
Ok, I'm trying to stay calm. I don't want to judge. But some of these opinions... are leaving me shook. Except the oysters. That is that work of the devil. Look away...
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