If we consider only a single year, it's not difficult to see just how many events and news stories will fall through the cracks as time marches on.
Sure, the events that affect many people and the stories that concern influential leaders may persist in our memory, but unfortunately, the experiences of so many common people will simply not make the cut of remembered history.
And that is just a single year.
Now consider hundreds of years of history. Imagine all the events and victims of disaster that you've never even thought of, never conceived existed at all. Truthfully, that describes most of the people who've ever lived.
There are plenty of tragedies that didn't receive much press at the time they occurred, let alone make it into the record of common knowledge.
But never fear, a Reddit thread is here to shed light on at least a few of those catastrophes, be they immoral transgressions or random calamities.
The Value of Laws
"In the early 80's, Bayer knowingly sold millions of dollars worth of HIV and hepatitis tainted medications to Asia and Latin America. These countries didn't have laws to prevent the proliferation of tainted drugs. Thousands of people died as a result."
"It was hardly mentioned on any news platforms."
"Once in the seventies, a film crew was filming an episode of The Six Million Dollar Man, and they were shooting at an amusement park fun house kind of thing."
"A stage hand was moving what he thought was a prop wax figure on a noose, only for one arm to fall off, revealing human flesh and bone underneath."
"After an autopsy, it was revealed to be the 60 something year old corpse of an old wild west outlaw that had been taxidermied to an extent."
"The Ideal Maternity Home here in Canada. From the 1920s till the 1940s, they took in babies from unwed mothers and they were selling them especially to desperate Jewish families in New Jersey (adoption was illegal in the US back then)."
"It was later discovered that the people who ran this business would starve the 'unmarketable' babies by feeding them only molasses and water (the babies would last around 2 weeks on this diet). They put the corpses in wooden box often used for butter and that's why the victims are called the Butterbox Babies."
"The boxes were either buried on the property or at sea or burned in the home furnace. The parents who gave their child to this maternity home would go back and see how their child is doing but were told the child has died when in fact it had been sold to adopting parents."
"Between 400 and 600 died in that home and at least a thousand were adopted but sadly, the adopted babies often suffered from diseases because of the unsanitary conditions and lack of care at the home."
"During prohibition the government funded and lead an operation to release barrels of alcohol that they had poisoned to make people sick and shy away from bootleg liquor."
"Lots of people ended up dying but people still drank more than ever."
A Rough Decade
"The Halifax Explosion."
"Regarded by many as the biggest man-made explosion prior to the invention of the atomic bomb. A ship laden with explosives collided with another vessel in Halifax Harbour. The resulting explosion flattened much of the city's downtown core, killing roughly 2,000 and injuring 9,000."
"The blast is said to have temporarily displaced the water in the harbour, forming a tsunami that reached up to 15 metres high, surging over the wreckage of the waterfront."
"The following day, Halifax was hit by a blizzard that dumped 40 cm of snow on top of the city, further complicating rescue efforts."
"The city is also home to a cemetery where many victims of the Titanic were laid to rest. It is said that the body identification system developed at the time of the Titanic's sinking in 1912 aided efforts to identify victims of the Halifax explosion in 1917."
Nicer On Paper, Dreadful In Real Life
"In my family's region in Africa they used to carry out the death penalty by snakebite."
"Just a snakebite to each ankle, and then letting the man spend his remaining time with his family before he died (under supervision)."
"I thought it sounded sort of humane in a way, like our lethal injections, but apparently they say it was one of the most horrific ways that existed."
A Week Is Plenty
"'Khuk Khi Kai,' or the 'Chicken Poop Prison' in Thailand. Used by French forces to hold political prisoners (rebellious Thai people) in the Chanthaburi region."
"The long-standing impacts of this much-feared torture are still felt in the region today - there's a Thai saying for those who buck authority that roughly translates to 'Be careful not to get caught in a chicken poop prison.' I learned about this prison from my parents who learned about it from theirs."
"How it worked, was there was a small, 2-story prison. Bottom floor houses the prisoners, and the top floor is basically a huge chicken coop."
"The grated floor/ceiling ensures that the chicken poop falls onto the prisoners below."
"Apparently, even though the 'maximum sentence' in Khuk Khi Kai was around a week, it was one of the most feared punishments there was."
An Elder to Tell About It
"The massacre of kalavrita. It is a village in Greece. The Germans entered it and rounded up all the male villagers in a field. They then shot them all with machine guns."
"After that they got the children and women and put them in the church. When everyone was inside, they locked the doors and set fire to the church."
"Around 20 minutes into the burning, a German soldier couldn't take it anymore and opened the doors. Around half of the people escaped the fire but the rest perished. The German soldier was shot for this, and if you go to kalavrita today his name is on the memorial."
"No one was punished for this apart from the leader of the division, who I was told by my grandmother that he died in a gulag. But everyone else got away with it. It is sad that no one knows about this, as things like this happened all over Greece and Russia and Poland."
"I only know about this because my Great grandmother was one who escaped in the church. This massacre was in retaliation for the villagers supporting the local resistance force, which had recently killed about 10 Nazis."
PPE Problems Have Been Around for Awhile
"The Radium Girls. In the 1920s, they worked at a watch company painting the hours on the watches using radium, a radioactive element that glows in the dark. They did this with no PPE and weren't told radium is dangerous. Meanwhile, the chemists had full PPE and worked in a sealed environment."
"Worse, they were instructed to lick the tip of the brush to make a very fine point. Some of them would paint their nails or their teeth with it for fun when they went out at night."
"They would develop cancer whenever the paint touched, and many of them had such decay in their jaws that their mandibles had to be held on with bandages."
Earth's Sudden Changes
"The Children's Blizzard. It occurred in January 1888 on an unseasonably warm day. The weather was nice and many school-kids were tricked into not wearing coats or jackets to school, some only in short sleeves."
"While the kids were in class, the weather outside changed dramatically from warm and sunny at noon to dark and heavy like a thunderstorm, with heavy winds and visibility at 3 steps by 3 pm."
"Children left school to go home and do their chores (this was in Minnesota) and were expected to milk the cows and do whatever else was involved in the family farm."
"But they got lost in the darkness and snow and the wind and many froze to death in their town, just yards from houses or other sources of refuge. 235 people, mostly children died."
Popes on Popes on Popes
"The Cadaver Synod"
"Basically the pope had a previous Pope's corpse exhumed so the corpse could stand trial for something made up. So they dug up his bloated 7 month old corpse and convicted him, retroactively nullifying his papacy."
"Then they dumped his bloated and convicted corpse in a river. The people got pissed and overthrew the pope, who was strangled in prison."
"The next pope came along and had the corpse collected from the river and its papacy posthumously reinstated."
"897 was a crazy year."
"The San Francisco Plague of 1900-1904 was a terrible, scary time when the Black Plague was beginning to ravage San Francisco."
"California's governor tried to suppress information about the outbreak and restrict any activities to curtail it because he feared economic damage to the state. He even tried to get the doctor who was warning people about the outbreak fired."
"What information did get out was used against the Chinese residents as it was believed that it was a disease of the 'unclean.'"
"Had it not been for the earthquake in 1906 that devastated the city, the plague outbreak would have probably been more remembered."
Not to be Forgotten
"There's a surprising amount of people that don't know about the Rwanda genocide that happened pretty recently (like when Bill Clinton was president)."
"Basically there were two 'types' of Rwanda natives: the Hutus and Tutsis. The Hutus believed the Tutsis were invaders of land that was theirs, and after the assassination of the Rwandan leader (who was a Hutu), the Hutus were ordered to 'chop down the tall trees' which meant kill the Tutsis."
"The 'differences' between Hutus and Tutsis were that Hutus were supposedly darker-skinned, shorter in stature, and had shorter faces. That's why the Tutsis were called 'tall trees.'"
"The events that followed killed so many Tutsis, yet the UN was stingy to call it a genocide (they never like using that term because of its association with WWII and the Nazis)."
"It wasn't until very recently that the killings stopped. To this day, Hutus and Tutsis that survived the genocide speak at events side-by-side speaking about how terrible the events were."
Battered by Forces Beyond Him
"The sad case of Ota Benga. He was a 'pygmy' boy from the Congo who was essentially captured and brought to the USA to be displayed in freak shows. He had undergone tribal customs such as having his teeth filed into points before his capture."
"He eventually got out of the carnivals and dreamed of returning to Africa, then WWI happened, making the trip impossible for the foreseeable future."
In the Closing Days
"The sinking of the Sultana which occurred in 1865. Legally allowed to carry 375 people, it was carrying over 2,300 recently released Union POWs, civilians and crew when the boiler exploded. About 1,800 people died from steam burns and drowning."
"Why so many people? Greed. The U.S. government would pay $2.75 per enlisted man and $8 per officer to any steamboat captain who would take a group north."
"So the captain took on more and more passengers. Plus the men were desperate to get home as the war had finally ended."
"The Sultana explosion occurred the same month the war ended and Lincoln was assassinated, so it was barely a blip in the news."
A Disgusting Curiosity
"You know Jameson Whiskey? Well a long a** time ago in like the 19th one of their family Heirs fed a little girl to cannibals."
"Like legit went and bought a little girl in the Congo as a slave and brought her up to a cannibal tribe because he wanted to see them."
"Sick fu** drew pictures of it and sh** as it was happening."
"Of course for years the family tried to bury the fact, and the stories and such. Discredit the witnesses."
"But the crazy bastard was happy to document the whole thing, his only rebuttal in case it reflected badly on him was that 'he wanted to see if they would do it.'"
"And his accounts matched up with the evidence witnesses had provided."
Education System of Torture
"The Inuit people were brought to boarding schools in the mainland of the US. Then, since they lived full time at the schools, the school had some special rights over the kids."
"During the COLD WAR, the US military made these kids drink radioactive stuff for 'experiments' because the schools signed off on it. Obviously this has caused many of them to develop cancer, and many have had no reparations to this day."
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There are some questions that illustrate such vulnerability, such open tragedy on the part of the asker that we fend off tears while we come up with an appropriate answer.
Sometimes the question comes from someone who's been so steeped in struggle that they need help understanding that another possible reality exists.
Sometimes it's a question that cuts right to our own core with startling efficiency.
Whatever form it takes, it stops us in our tracks and we're likely to remember it for quite awhile after.
Curious to hear the saddest examples, Redditor julylovestory asked:
"What question has someone asked you that secretly broke your heart?"
Many Redditors responded by sharing the sad questions uttered by young children.
Kids just have the knack for cutting straight through to the essence of it all.
A Tragic Conscientiousness
"As we passed the toy aisle at the store, 'I know you don't have much money right now, but maybe when you get some we could come back and get a toy?' "
"I was not doing well financially back then and my daughter brought me to tears in the middle of the store."
Puzzled and Sad
"First day of preschool for my three year old son. The first time he would ever be away from Mom & Dad at the same time."
"I brought him to the room and expected a meltdown, but instead he confidently strutted, and I do mean strutted into the classroom."
"Three hours later, I picked him up. He was ok until we got to the car when he said, in quiet sad voice 'l thought you were coming with,' followed by an even sadder quieter 'Why did you leave me?' "
" 'Can I wish for my sister?' - A 10-year-old student of mine whose big sister died 4 years ago. We were working on an activity about dreams and aspirations for their futures."
How Bad Must It Be?
"I was like 22 and it was probably 10pm or so at a Walmart. I was on my way to a party and stopped for beer. The store was fairly empty and as I was in the beer aisle, I see this kid completely by himself."
"He was about 5 and at first I thought it was kind of funny because he was trying to pick up a case of beer. I waited like 30-60 seconds, looking around for this kid's mom/dad to come get him. A couple people walked right by him like it was normal, so then I started getting worried. I picked up my two cases of beer and walked over and kindly asked him if he lost his mom or needed help."
"The kid completely ignored the question and instead was thoroughly impressed that I was strong enough to carry two cases of beer. Eventually an employee noticed and came over as well. I told her everything I knew and she took over and told him that she was going to bring him to find his mom."
"As he was walking away he kept looking back at me and I smiled and said goodbye. The kid stopped and said 'can I just come home with you? I don't like my mom.' "
"I was caught off guard so I just laughed and told him the lady was going to help him. Now I'll never know the full story, or what happened to him but the more I think about it - that kid more than likely had a pretty shi**y childhood."
"I mean, the store wasn't busy and it was late at night on a weekday. It really makes you wonder why he was there in the first place, how he got separated from his mom and why would he ask to go with a complete stranger instead of worrying about where his mom was?"
"It still makes me sad. Hope everything worked out for the little dude."
Others talked about the times when they or somebody else realized just how tragic their own circumstances were.
"My ex asked me what I liked to do with my family growing up."
"Made me realize my family never did anything together and I literally had no answer to such a basic question."
Seeing Another Version
"During college, parents took a friend and I out to dinner. Very normal dinner, chit chatted about whatever. After we left and were walking back to my car, he turns to me and says 'Is that what a normal relationship is like?' "
"We talked more after that, I had met his parents a few times and they seemed strict but never seemed to have a terrible relationship. Turned out apparently his dad had cheated on his mom multiple times, dad had zero respect for any of my friends sisters and essentially expected them to do all the housework while the men did 'guy stuff.' "
"Hunting, training for sports, school, etc. Turned out his childhood was pretty fu**ed, dad was never around and he had to essentially be the father figure in the house. As the oldest child, never really saw a normal loving relationship that he could look up to."
"My friend is a really nice guy, still has some messed up views of relationships though. I never realized how 'abnormal' my very normal family/childhood was."
A Better Place
" 'You've never beaten me or told me I couldn't do something. Is that normal?'
"My first girlfriend told me that. I have never felt such a wave of anger, sadness, and heartbreak wash over me like I did when I heard that"
And some people discussed the time a question destroyed their social confidence.
Worst Teacher Ever
"I have a stutter, when I was a kid I had to read a page of a book to the class. I stuttered, and the teacher said 'can you even read' and that fu**ing broke my 13 year old heart."
"No one takes stuttering seriously."
There's the Answer
"When I was 19, I hung out with a cute girl from my high school that I never got to hang with when we were in school. Had a great day together, and that night she asked, 'can we be like secret friends or something? I don't really hang out with people like you.' "
"Never hung out again."
Comparing and Contrasting
" 'Oh, are you the girl with the hot sister ?' " -- JustehOK
"I worked in a department with two Melissas. One day, I was sitting next to one Melissa when we overheard another coworker say to someone, 'have you seen little Melissa?' "
"The other Melissa got kind of a defeated look in her eye and said, 'oh, I'm big Melissa.' " -- EarhornJones
It's a list that's sad enough to leave one wondering about the questions they've received that struck them as particularly hopeless.
Sometimes, though, that vulnerability can be the start of accepting new realities and new possibilities.
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If you live on this earth and you're fortunate enough to form long-lasting relationships with different people, chances are you'll know the pain of heartbreak. It's an unavoidable fact of life.
We are not guaranteed to stay with one person forever, as we were reminded once Redditor disturbance of mirrors asked the online community,
"People whose long-term relationship faded, what was the final straw that made you realize it was time to call it a day?"
"The last time..."
"When she 'broke up' with me for the 12th time.
We had a long-distance relationship and whenever we had an issue or a disagreement, instead of engaging in a conversation with me about it, she would say we were done and shut me out for two or three days before coming back and manipulating me into groveling for her forgiveness. The last time, I just said no to going back and stuck to it. She freaked out and tried to drive 6 hours to my place at 2:00 a.m... I got a call from her mom saying she had left in the middle of the night as a head's up and, upon finally getting ahold of her when she was just a couple of hours away, I was able to convince her to turn back.
That relationship f***** me up for a while but, once I began dating my now fiancee, it was unbelievable to me how wonderful a real, loving relationship with healthy communication can be."
"Her brother was living with us..."
"Mine was not a slow burn like most seem to be, but a very definitive moment.
Her brother was living with us and this was right when WiFi was becoming available to the general public. We couldn't afford it cuz we were broke kids, so her brother would take my GF's MacBook (it was a gift) and sit on a nearby bus bench and leech off someone's unsecured WiFi.
Well, one day we get a call from her sister and she says we need to get home immediately. Turns out some guys came up and asked him for change for a $20 and when he told them he didn't have it they tried to snatch the Mac and jump in their car.
He knew it wasn't his so he held onto it and tried to get it back but they were too much. He had gotten dragged by the car, kicked in the head, and then had his leg run over. He was in pretty bad shape.
As we turn the corner (didn't know what had happened yet) GF sees cop cars and an ambulance and says "This better not have anything to do with my Mac. We walk in and he's visibly in bad shape and she is just immediately "Did you lose my Mac?" I'll never forget his face. He was so ashamed and felt terrible and just started crying. She however started screaming my computer! My computer! And hitting him. To the point where the cops considered arresting her. It was an instant eye-opener."
"I'd sit in my car..."
"I'd sit in my car after work playing on my phone for like an hour because I just needed a break before going inside and dealing with him."
That would do it.
"I would find any excuse..."
"I would find any excuse to work late or sometimes go sit at a bar by myself just to avoid the misery at home. We divorced."
"He was a workaholic..."
"He was a workaholic to the point that I saw him about 6 days per month."
"Somewhere between giving up on small talk and not looking forward to the weekends anymore."
That's no way to live.
"It really forced us..."
"Honestly it was the pandemic. It really forced us to actually spend time together and I realized we kind of just didn't do much together at all. I had spent years thinking it was cool that we kept our own friends and space but once those distractions were taken away it was just really clear to me that we were more roommates than a couple."
"When I realized..."
"When I realized I was needed and not wanted. Constantly trying to make someone happy who didn't want to be happy."
This one hurts. I've been there myself. (And I have also been that person––I thankfully got help.)
"We lived together..."
"We lived together but lived completely separate lives. Basically a housemate I shared a bed with. Happened twice to me so far."
"I would have moved mountains for him..."
"I knew it was over when I cared more about his wellbeing than he cared about his own wellbeing. I would have moved mountains for him if it made his life easier and he just continuously put himself in shi!ty situations. I eventually just gave up. I can't be with someone who doesn't care about themselves. Thank God that's over."
If you think you might be stuck in a pointless or unhealthy relationship, it's worth evaluating your options. And it's never worth sticking around and risking your emotional and mental health.
Have some stories of your own? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below.
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There is always that "one." There is always going to be that person.
That person who you will always remember. And when they are the one who you regret losing most... they are the ghost that will haunt you forever.
I have a few escapees. I'll never know how it would've turned out. But that is part of why I'm haunted. I need to discuss....
Redditor u/AssistantNo1733 wanted to discuss all the times we've lost in love by asking:
Who's the one who got away?
Do we even have a clue that they're the "one" that got away? How long until it sinks in? And how do we not know there isn't another "one" coming behind them? I have no answers. Just asking...
The DraftEpisode 1 Omg GIF by RuPaul's Drag RaceGiphy
"The girl who summoned up the nerve to ask me out towards the beginning of high school. I was so humiliated by the life my family was living that I stalled until she gave up."
"Betsy, if by some stroke of dumb luck you're reading this... I'm so sorry. It was 25-27 years ago, but I still hate myself for that. You were beautiful, intelligent, a good person, and if I had anything resembling a stable, presentable home I would've said yes in a heartbeat... I had a crush on you since 7th-grade 'intro to drafting.'
I Love Her
"Weird, I was just confiding in my mom about this last night. I'm late but for catharsis's sake I'm going to post. My first girlfriend is a classic case of you don't know what you have until it's gone. She's the complete package. Beautiful, intelligent, compassionate, and so kind. We started dating when I was 17 and broke up when I was 21."
"For reference I'm 30 now. I was an idiot. I wanted to play the field. I wanted to party and hook up with college girls. It was fun at first but after a while I felt this gnawing hole in my heart. The feeling of doubt crept up slowly and still, a decade later my chest feels tight thinking about it."
"I didn't realize until my later serious relationships that getting along with your SO's family is so important. Her mom and step dad genuinely treated me like a part of their family. It's not a stretch to say I literally grew up with these people. I spent some of my most formative years with them. Birthdays, Thanksgivings, Christmases, you name it. They celebrated me and my accomplishments. They genuinely cared about me. Just amazing, salt of the earth, lovely people."
"Her birthday was in March and I sent her a text and we ended up talking for a bit. She's happily married and stable with a daughter and a second on the way. I'm genuinely so happy for her. She deserves happiness. I just wish I was a part of that. Sitting at work 10 years later I'm tearing up. I numbed myself out to it for years, it's so strange to me that I've been so stuck on her lately. Is this normal?"
15 Years Later
"My very first real love. I was a teenager and I didn't really know how to be comfortable in myself or with myself. I played silly teen girl games and lost him even as a friend. Now 15 years later I still think about R from time to time. I genuinely hope he's happy in his life."
"Edit: Wow this blew up while I was sleeping. Thanks for all the sweet words and to everyone with their "one" congratulations! I suppose I hadn't looked him up on social media because I'm scared, scared he won't respond, scared he will respond, scared he'll think I'm a stalker. I'm in a happy relationship now, but what if... Etc etc etc. But I'll give it a Google."
Missed You Muchrhythm nation dance GIF by Janet JacksonGiphy
A girl I dated in high school. Went on a date one time she took me out parking and I was too stupid to realize it.
"She always talked about moving away as soon as she got finished with high school. I always thought I would stay in a little town the rest of my life. Turns out I was the one who left and move to another state. Later I heard that she had told someone that I knew that she thought that we would be married at some point. Missed it by that much."
Ok... I've been a bit blind to the light. People can be cruel, but also highly creative. Why not just lead with the truth? It'll always hurt more after lies.
Chuck E.Chuck E Cheese Wink GIFGiphy
"Ah the rare AskReddit question I can answer."
"I met a wonderful woman circa 2013-2015. We worked at what I can best describe as an upscaled Chuck E Cheese. Or ghetto Six Flags. Your choice."
"We hit it off instantly, though at the time I was rather romantically inept. Eventually, she says she's leaving to join the Air Force. I tell her I'll miss her, and wished her well. The thought of asking for her number so we could stay in contact didn't even cross my mind."
"Cue the next day, I stop for lunch on my way to work, and as I'm walking to my car I hear my name being called. I turn around, and it's her, running toward me. Universe giving me a second chance, right? Wrong. My dumb butt still didn't ask for her number. She looked a little upset, and I still think about her often. Desiree, I hope you're doing well."
"He was my first and last love. I was 16 and he was 18 when we met. We bounced around like idiots, on again off again, finally got together mid 20s. We both fell into bad habits - drugs and alcohol, more booze for me, more drugs for him. We had some bad things happen that were pretty detrimental to staying sober. We would split, reconcile, get sober, fall off the wagon, split, etc... repeat as necessary. We realized we were very bad for each other unless we could BOTH just get sober for ourselves, and split."
"Ten years later, I was sober for 7 years (still am, going on 18 years end of this month, actually! Woo, go me!) and he was beginning to come back, sober about a year. He contacted me, we met, talked about trying again. He said that once he had been totally clean for a year, we'd do it. That whole "Don't make any changes for a year" thing. I would visit him, tho, things were good."
"He woke up one morning feeling bad, thought he had the flu. (This was pre-now) I stayed around because he was sick, but neither of us thought he was drastically bad, just the flu, right? He got worse and worse, finally we called an ambulance because he got up from a nap and couldn't breathe. He died in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. Aortic dissection."
"He got away, but someday I'll see him again. I never stopped loving him, and him me. We just weren't good for each other."
Ce la vie...
"My most serious Ex."
"Don't think I truly understood love until I met her. Loved her more than I ever thought I could love anything. It eventually ended when she told me that, through no fault of my own, she had fallen out of love with me. That was 2 years ago, still hurts to think/talk about."
"Ce la vie..."
"I'm in the middle of trying to avoid that right now actually."
"It's not worth the heartache trust me. I fought to stay in a relationship for an entire year. If I would've just let her go the first time she wanted there would've been a lot less pain. We would've left on good terms. I would've lost a lot less sleep. Rip the band-aid off because once the band-aid starts peeling it's inevitable it'll fall off with time."
Sweet...Kim Tate Eye Roll GIF by EmmerdaleGiphy
Damn man why bring this up.
"My ex and I broke up over 3 years ago. Mutual breakup through a lack of communication on both ends I feel."
"Thought I was over that hill until this week she messaged just to say hey and ask an innocent question. We text for the best part of the day and it's brought up a lot of old feeling. Feeling pretty bitter sweet right now."
Love is a mess. Why even bother trying if you can't be true? It's not hard to just spell out the situation. And if you're the one needing to put together the words... look closer. The dialogue shouldn't be difficult.
What are the odds you'd click on this link today?
What was the biggest coincidence that made you question the fabric of reality?
There's small coincidences, occurrences so minute that you wouldn't even notice them if you weren't paying attention. However, once someone makes a big deal out of them then there's no other choice but to acknowledge that what just happened was spectacular.
Each Having A Buddy Coming To Town
"My friend and I were on a road trip a few years ago and needed a place to stay. We both told each other we had a friend in the city we were going through, so we figured we'd be able to crash with one of them. Turns out our two friends were roommates and had both been telling each other that they had a friend coming to town soon."
What's That Got To Be? A 1 in 1000 Chance?
"Several years ago I was at a coffee shop with some friends and one of them had an ipad, another friend went to unlock it and asked him what his 4 digit unlock code was, so I just blurted out 4 random digits pretending like I knew it, and it actually worked. I had never unlocked it before or knew of the same numbers being used for anything else, or his phone number, etc."
Both Probably Assumed What The Best Time Was
"I passed out after receiving a flu shot when I was 28. The nurse who helped me up kept asking if I wanted my mom. It seemed like a really weird thing to offer an adult woman - the option to have her mother phoned and brought in - so I was really confused and getting progressively more annoyed at her repeatedly asking...
...until my mom walked up to me. She had the appointment after mine to get vaccinated. The nurses assumed we had come together, but neither of us knew about the other's appointment, and we lived an hour away from each other in different cities."
Living in such a big world can lead you to the conclusion that math is silly and odds are never in your favor. With over seven billion people roaming around, chances of meeting someone of significance?
Less than you think.
A Simultaneous Love Of Traveling
"This guy I went to grade school and high school with, an acquaintance at best. I've seen him in 5 different locations in different countries throughout the last 15 years.
Disney World when I was a kid.
Some beach bar in Thailand.
The Bean in Chicago.
A pub in Budapest.
A library in San Jose, Costa Rica.
We've become friends due our love of traveling, but neither of us post on social media and neither of us communicated with each other our plans to travel. We never talked outside of the random meetings. Now if I see him, its like the world wants us to have a beer together. haha"
"I Mean, The Crash, Yeah, But How Have You Been?"
"My dad lives in a national park here in Australia. It's farmland that's grandfathered in. It's the remnants of a volcano that blew itself up very violently, so it's very hilly terrain.
One day we were sitting out on the deck, when we see a hang-glider come down halfway down the valley, and it didn't look like a nice landing. "Sh-t, we better see if he's alright, they don't land anywhere near here"
So we get in the car, drive for about 10 minutes to reach the spot. We head over to the guy who is standing by a very damaged glider. The pilot is staring at us incredulously, he stammers "F-ck, Jack, is that you?".
My dad, who hasn't seen his childhood friend for 35 years shouts "F-ck, Tim, is that you?".
They both grew up in Greymouth, NZ. Found each other randomly after a glider crash in NSW, Australia."
Takes A Wedding To Bring People Together
"My wife and I were looking to hire a caterer for our wedding and when we met, my wife and her started talking about their lives a bit.
Turns out they had both literally grown up on the same street, in a city of 10 million people, on the other side of the world. Both had left the city around a decade before immigrating to our current country.
They knew the same people, had hung out at the same coffee place, attended the same church. They even used to grab mangoes off the same large tree that hung over the wall of one of the large houses in the neighbourhood.
But they had never met one another until meeting on almost the exact opposite side of the planet, in a small town of about 50,000 people."kor_hookmaster
What we can gain from these experiences is a coincidence will occur more than you think, you just have to have the eyes sharp enough to spot them.
But how would you explain these?
Position Is Key
"I dialed my mum on my mobile when I was on public transport and accidentally swapped two numbers around.
The person I called was on the same carriage."
"Go on, tell us what happened then!"
"So I was listening to my phone and at the exact moment it started the ringing sound I heard a phone start ringing and I thought it was a coincidence but then the phone answered and it wasn't mum.
All I said was "Oh, are you on the Upfield train?" and they said "Yes, who's this?" but I got shy and I hung up.
Poor guy must have been so confused."
Universal Echoes Bringing You Closer Together
"One time, me and my dad were discussing his friend while out driving at night without many other cars on the road. As we were talking, we pulled up to a red light, and the car waiting in front was my dad's friend. He didn't even live close to there."
Extremely Unlucky Odds. Go Buy A Lottery Ticket.
"A couple of years ago I was visiting my hometown and decided to sit on a bench at my favorite park. As I was sitting, I felt something land on my head. Bird poop. After heading home and washing my hair, I went back into town. While I walked around, I watched as a guy got hit with a drop of sky sh-t. As I was laughing about the apparent irritable bowel syndrome of the birds in my town, a bird flying right over me drops a fat sh-t on my head."
There's no magic at play. All of these happenstances can be explained away with simple math and rudimentary probability.
Still, it's fun to live when you're in the moment.