Historians Share The Strangest Chain Of Events That Played Out In The Past
Historians have a frustrating job, presumably because there are so many people out there who seem pretty intent on repeating our history... which sort of goes against the very point in the first place.
History is also chockfull of chain reactions, some stranger than others, that shaped the world as we know it today. Quite a few were explored after Redditor unchainedrobots asked the online community:
"Historians of Reddit, what is the strangest chain of events you have studied?"
"President Andrew Jackson..."Giphy
"President Andrew Jackson was walking out of the Capitol Building with his buddy Congressman Davey Crockett. A man approached them, drew a gun, but it misfired. The man drew a second gun, which also misfired. Andrew Jackson, fairly old at this point, lifted his cane and began beating the would be assassin. Normally, people would react with "justice served," but Jackson was beating him so badly that Davey Crockett had to pull Jackson off his would be assassin, who was arrested shortly after."
"The would be assassin stood trial, represented by lawyer Francis Scott Key, author of the Star Spangled Banner, and was the first American to be found not guilty by reason of insanity."
"Pretty much the fall of the Berlin Wall. The USSR was already crumbling by this point and so they agreed to allow the wall to be opened for a bit. Well the guy in charge over in Berlin didn't really get the point across to the public very well and as a result everyone assumed that the wall was permanently coming down. This led to pretty much all of East Berlin flocking to the wall and demanding to be let through. The guards there knew there was no way to restrain all these people without a massacre occurring and the Russian government had no real way of easily fixing the huge mistake. And so the Berlin Wall fell, all because of a misinterpretation."
"The events that led and culminated in the War of the Bucket for sure. Essentially one Italian State who followed Holy Roman Emperor stole a bucket from another Italian State who followed the pope. War broke out, The papal state highly outnumbered the HRE state, but HRE state won. Then stole another bucket. Was a trip for sure when I learned about this one."
"They invented tonic water."
"British officers in India in the 18th century were eating quinine powder to help treat malaria. Quinine is so bitter on its own so they started putting it in their club soda to make it easier to down. They invented tonic water. Brought the water back to Europe and they started putting it in their gin. Hence, gin and tonic."
"Horses evolved in North America, spread during pre-historical times into Asia, and then later went extinct in North America. If things had been only slightly different, horses could have been native only to the Americas, or just completely extinct by pre-history. Not having horses would have made a huge difference to Asian & European history: no Mongol invasions, no European knights."
"This leads to..."Giphy
"Recent history but it still boggles my mind."
"Jeri Ryan gets cast on Star Trek: Voyager as Seven of Nine."
"Jeri Ryan divorces her husband."
"Her ex husband, Jack, with a really strong resume and a lot of money, announces a Senate campaign in the state of Illinois in 2004. His entry in the race is enough that it is now considered a tossup."
"Because both Jeri and Jack are public figures journalists push for their divorce records to be released and a major factor in their spilt was Jack's desire to have sex in public locations."
"Jack Ryan drops out and the GOP struggles to find a replacement."
"This leads to an overwhelming victory from the Democratic challenger, Barack Obama."
"The entire Obama presidency exists because some writers in the 90s wanted a Borg girl in their show."
"Probably how Pepsi..."
"Probably how Pepsi briefly became the 6th largest military in the world."
"In 1959, President Eisenhower wanted to show the Soviet Union how great America was, so the government set up an "American National Exhibition" and sent Vice President Nixon there."
"Well Nixon and Soviet leader Khrushchev got in an argument over Communism vs Capitalism. As it got heated the President of Pepsi stepped in and was like, "Bro Khrushchev, chill out, have a Pepsi."
"Khrushchev must of loved that, because then the Soviet Union wanted to permanently bring Pepsi over to their country. The problem is that their money wasn't accepted throughout the world. Instead, like true Russians, the Soviet Union traded vodka for Pepsi."
"This was all good until the late 1980s when their contract was going to expire and vodka wouldn't cut it for payment. So instead they traded Pepsi a ton of submarines and warships for 3 billion dollars worth of Pepsi."
"Sadly instead of terrorizing the seas and shooting harpoons at their enemies, Pepsi decided to sell the fleet to a Swedish scrap metal company."
"As a boxing historian..."
"As a boxing historian probably the story of an ancient Greek boxer named Kleomedes"
"Apparently while in the Olympic final, he killed his opponent by stabbing his fingers into his opponents chest, killing him. Which means he loses due to a strange and awesome rule was if your opponent was killed by the fight, he automatically won. So despite surviving the fight, Kleomedes is judged the loser. No glory or olive wreath."
"Returns home to Astypalaia and lapses into deep depression. Commits the the first mass murder of school children after punching a support beam so hard the school fell down. All the kids die. Angry mob forms to kill Kleomedes who takes shelter in a giant chest in the temple of Athena. Townsfolk storm the temple and try to pry open the chest. End up having to rip it apart board by board. But when they got it open there was nothing in it."
"Naturally the people didn't know what to make of it. So they send people to the oracle of Delphi. Who declared that Kleomedes was The Last True Astypalaian and that he be worshipped as a Demigod."
"That is how an olympic boxer became a deity of fertility after murdering a ton of kids."
"So in 1968..."
"Nixon created a chain of events that I find hard to believe."
"So in 1968 Lyndon Johnson is president, he's a Democrat, and the Democrats are having issues, the party is majorly spit up between segregation issues, and they hate the Vietnam war that the country is stuck in."
"Nixon starts promising to end the draft, and he also proclaimed that he had a plan to end the war."
"Just before the election that year, on Halloween, (a Thursday) LBJ gets on the news, and declares that the war is almost over, and peace is at hand. The North Vietnamese were participating in peace talks, and all war activity had been suspended. They left the peace talks because NIXON HIMSELF told them that if they kept the war going for one extra week, HE WOULD OFFER THEM A BETTER DEAL ONCE HE WAS IN POWER."
"So by Saturday, the North Vietnamese had walked out of the peace talks, and the war was back on. The election on the next Tuesday, went to Nixon, but barely. The war continued for another five years, and in that time 15k Americans died, as well as who knows how many Vietnamese."
"LBJ knew about it at the time, because he had wire tapped the South Vietnamese ambassador as well as several others, and felt he could not reveal the extent of the wire tapping that Americans were guilty of. Even if it meant Nixon got away with treason."
"And it does."
"So, the Han heard the Qin were fond of mega projects and massive infrastructure investments, so they found a hydraulics engineer and sent him over to sell them on an absurd canal idea; build a massive canal to use runoff water from two flood-prone rivers to irrigate worthless plains. Tame the rivers' flooding, irrigate wasteland, everybody wins! And in the Han's schemes, it's an absurdly large project that will keep the Qin diverted and invested for decades."
"And it does. Except about halfway through, the Qin caught on to this and confront their hydraulics engineer; Zheng Gou, presumably confronted with whatever creative thing(s) they do to spies and saboteurs, throws himself on Qin mercy;"
"Yeah, I'm a spy, yeah, it was to sabotage your efforts- but I'm really an engineer, guys, and this will really work, honest! Let me finish it, and please don't do that thing with the cheese grater-"
"The Qin, presumably, conclude they can always torture him to death later, and let him remain in charge of the project."
"And wonder of wonders, it works. Thousands of hectares or rich but fallow desert are turned into fertile farmland. Existing farmland is made safer by giving the flooding rivers runoff channels. The canal makes the Qin rich beyond their already immense wealth, which they turn to larger armies, eventually crushing the Han and (briefly) uniting China."
"We learnt about this is school: in the 1950s in Borneo they were suffering from an outbreak of malaria, so, with the help of the world health organization, they sprayed DDT all over the island to kill the mosquitos. But the DDT also killed the islands wasps which helped control the population of thatch eating caterpillars, thatch that people's homes were made of, and thanks to this, their roofs began to collapse."
"Many other small insects started to get affected by the DDT, which were eaten by geckos, the geckos developed a tolerance to the DDT but the cats who ate the geckos didn't, and the cat population started to die off. This led to the islands rat population increasing greatly. And that's the story of how an island with a malaria problem, lead to cats being airdropped into Borneo."
"A Chinese man wanted to create a potion to become immortal instead he accidentally created gunpowder."
"This is an older BBC series called Connections, with James Burke hosting and it is incredibly fascinating. You can watch most of the episodes on Youtube. It's kind of what you're asking about, chains of events throughout history. From the Normans horse stirrups to mine shafts to vacuums to telecommunications, all connected. I highly recommend anyone give this a try."
MP Noel Pemberton Billing
"In 1918, British MP Noel Pemberton Billing caused a major scandal when he accused actress Maud Allan, and Margot Asquith, wife of the previous Prime Minister, of being at the centre of a homosexual ring sabotaging the war effort. Evidence included Allan having performed in a play by Oscar Wilde, and Asquith having attended the performance. He presented his case in an article entitled "The Cult of the Clitoris", in which he claimed the exiled prince of Albania had a black book, listing all the blackmailed homosexuals in Britain."
"Maud Allan (who was in fact homosexual; Asquith was not) sued for libel, but lost. During the trial, one witness claimed to have seen the Albanian prince's black book, and claimed that the judge's name was in it."
The immovable ladder!
"The immovable ladder!"
"Guy leaves ladder leaning against wall of the church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem some time before 1728. A thing called the Status Quo happens in 1757 which means don't touch stuff on holy sites."
"Ladder is still there."
Fact will always be stranger than fiction.
Do you have similar experiences to share? Let us know in the comments below.
The Creepiest Declassified Documents That Are Available To The Public
While many classified documents of disturbing cases are now accessible to the public, there are some things that have happened throughout history that are better left unknown.
Still, there will always be curious minds wanting to know the details of some of the most disturbing cases that were once strictly confidential information.
Curious to hear what some of these unsettling things are, Redditor Imakillaholic opened Pandora's Box by asking:
"What are some of the creepiest declassified documents made available to the public?"
To say these are disturbing is an understatement.
Sweden's Sterilization Program
"Sweden had a compulsory sterilization program running from 1935-1979. It was state-sanctioned and given without consent, sometimes without the people knowing they were being sterilized."
"The three main reasons for these sterilizations were:"
"Health concerns for the mother."
"Eugenic (not wanting to pass on mental illnesses or any form of handicap)."
"Social (antisocial people, criminals, drunks etc.). In other words anyone who didn’t conform properly and was considered unfit to raise children.
Graphic Method Descriptions
"Methods of reported torture that author Douglas Valentine wrote were used at the interrogation centers."
The Coup In Guatemala
"Not exactly creepy, but Operation PBSUCCESS , the CIA backed Coup in Guatemala at the behest of the United Fruit Company and US State Department. The official CIA history of the operation is truly one of the most f'ked up things I’ve ever read. It was also the blue print for the Bay of Pigs and other CIA interventions around the world."
It's crazy to think we are run by governments that are capable of coming up with and concealing the following. Trust no one.
We're Not Alone
"Not really creepy but more weird:"
"The Pentagon commissioned an initiative called the Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program and they recently just released footage of US military aircraft approaching these 'advanced aerospace threats.'"
"I mean what the hell are these guys doing."
New Kind Of Weapon
"The CIA was working on a heart attack gun back in the 1960-70's. It started off as a conspiracy theory but gained enough momentum nationwide that it forced the US Government's's hand and they finally admitted the theory was "mostly accurate".
"Short version, they never had a fully functional heart attack gun, but they did have a 'nearly working prototype.' The idea was that it would have a very small projectile that would be laced with a chemical that would induce a heart attack and leave a hole smaller than one left behind by a syringe. While they never had a fully working version, they did have a prototype but abandoned the project once they more or less had to admit the conspiracy was mostly true."
"I remember a US government funded project that involved teaching Dolphins how to talk."
Prepared For The Worst
"How about Nixon’s undelivered speech announcing that Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin were stranded alive on the moon with no hope of rescue:"
More was revealed about serial killers.
Toybox Killer Transcript
"Dude and his wife kidnapped young girls for his dungeon and played this tape for them when they woke up, detailing what he was going to do to them, including torture and how he doesn't get caught by brainwashing them to forget."
"Jeffrey Dahmer's full confession - a couple of hundred pages of pure madness. Dahmer became pretty close to his interrogating detectives (Dennis Murphy and Patrick Kennedy), and provided a lot of detail to them. A lot of it in a pretty candid, off-hand manner. It's incredibly hard to find Dahmer's confession online without it being behind a paywall, but it is in the public domain, so I've provided link to the pdf downloads. The first 63 pages are mainly forms and letters, the real meat of the confession starts afterwards."
To Catch A Killer
"Dahmer was caught just after I had read Silence of the Lambs. A central plot point of the book is that they catch the serial killer by profiling him; one of their tenets (proved correct in the book) is that the guy must have his own relatively isolated house to himself or he couldn't get away with what he was doing. Then Dahmer is busted after years of living in an apartment building where everybody complained about the smell of rotting meat. And where the police actually brought his victims back to him."
The Jonestown Death Tape
"That sh*t proves to be a solid way to lose all chances of sleep."
"So, here’s some context. Jim Jones started a cult called the Peoples Temple (yes, without the apostrophe) and eventually they moved to a new settlement they built in Guyana called Jonestown, named after their leader. Since he made them believe he was some form of the messiah (as a lot of cult leaders did), he could control them all to do whatever he pleases, and one of the things they did was practice drinking Flavor-Aid - not Kool-Aid as commonly believed - to prepare themselves for the time when they commit 'revolutionary suicide'. These practices were just normal Flavor-Aid / Kool-Aid, but Jones told them it was poisoned just to see their reactions."
"When the time came, someone recorded what was, essentially, the sounds of people drinking Flavor-Aid laced with cyanide, alongside a fatal cocktail of other substances, many victims including young children (which you could hear screaming in te audio). 900 or so people died, only a few didn’t. This was the biggest loss of American life in a deliberate act until 9/11, and there is an audio recording of it. And just a VERY strong reminder: This wasn’t mass suicide, this was mass murder. Many people were willing to die at his hands, but all the children and some of the adults didn’t. Since all of them were forced to take the drink, it wasn’t their own choice to drink it, it was Jones’s. So, whilst people believe that it was a suicide, they were all duped into being murdered by Jim Jones."
Do you think some of the most captivating crime dramas on TV are original stories?
Think again. Many of the cases you see dramatized are inspired by actual events, a preface often shown at the start of a program.
People are capable of some of the most twisted forms of violence. We see it everyday in real life.
So much for escaping from reality.
The Biggest 'Money Mistakes' People Have Ever Made
While there might be some financially savvy unicorns among us who just seemed to "get it" since birth, most of us have had some mishaps with our wallets.
And in some cases, those financial lessons have been pretty expensive.
Redditor The_guy321 asked:
"What is the biggest money mistake you have ever made?"
A Big Life Change
"I took a job way up North in Canada. I quit my old job, got rid of tons of stuff, had my dad help sell my house, etc. This was in 2019/early 2020 just before the pandemic hit big."
"I ended up hating the job up North; it was terrible. I went back home and somehow managed to get my old job back, but my house is gone, and I can’t afford a new one in the current market."
"Stupid, idiotic decision on my part, and it keeps me up at night. I hate where I am in life right now. A stupid, big, and expensive mistake that I’ll regret for the rest of my life."
Sentimental Value and More
"My mom gave her original, 20+-year-old wedding ring to a jeweler to work it over and improve fitment (since it was too tight I think)."
"The jeweler f**king lost the ring in the mail. They sent it out without insurance and it never arrived at the place that was supposed to do the jeweler's work."
"She did not get her original wedding ring back, and all they offered her was 'a new one of equal worth.'"
"Honestly, that was the biggest f**k you to her. The best you can get in that situation is at least a ring visually similar to the original one, or one made to be identical to the original."
"Don't tell me 'copying an existing ring' is not possible, because the ring itself was very simple. Basically only metal, no diamonds or any other fancy rock, just metal with a groove in it and smooth edges."
"But no, their only offer to 'make up for it' was to choose a cheap looking one from their stock, basically saying 'we f**ked up but we won't put in any work to replace your ring; this is what we already have.'"
"Let alone the fact that the ring was 20+ years old and had a lot of sentimental value, because unlike my dad, my mom wore that ring all the time."
Student Loan Arrangements
"Spending all my student loan refund checks instead of saving those f**kers to, oh, I don't know, PAY OFF MY STUDENT LOANS."
Extra Funds Available
"Accepting larger loan amounts than I needed."
"Tuition, for me, was about $1200 a semester. But when you’re 18 and someone offers you $5,000 (which is more than you’ve ever had) and you don’t have to pay it back for years, you don’t hesitate to click accept the full amount."
"So yeah, I’m $20,000 in student loan debt when it could have been $10,000. Praying that student loan relief actually goes through but doubt it."
Attending College At All
"Going to college right out of high school. College is great if you know why you're there, but not for someone who isn't yet sure."
No Return on Investment
"I can't speak for everyone but when I was fixing to graduate high school back in 2000-2001, everyone thought college was the next step because literally no one ever told us anything different. Parents, teachers, school guidance counselors, and the culture. EVERYTHING was about pushing kids into the college pipeline."
"I literally thought everyone working trades were living in poverty until I was in like my mid-twenties because no one ever brought it up unless it was to disparage the whole idea of working for a living."
"Not my mistake, but my dad's. He bought like $500 worth of collectible Star Trek dinner plates in the 80s thinking they'd be worth a ton of money in a few years. They're not."
"I was at $1800 per month for alimony and child support for six years, but it was more losing half of the assets (including retirement savings) that was the killer."
"Oh well. It's in the past now and I'm in a much better place and happy rather than resigned to being miserable like I was for quite a few years until I decided to go through with it. I'm just going to have a late retirement (most likely) instead of early like I had hoped."
"As f**ked as it is, the financial expense is what got me to quit nicotine. I realized that I was spending $150 a month on disposable vapes and started comparing it to my other bills."
"I was paying more for my unhealthy addiction than my car insurance, or my utilities. Kinda hard to justify when you look at it like that."
Beyond Her Means
"My ex-wife was an expert at spending us into a black hole. She was a widow. We got engaged. The very next day, I told her to bring me all her debts, and then I wrote checks to pay them all off. $14,000."
"That became the pattern. She never saw a dollar she couldn’t spend before we earned it. She looked at things by what they cost each month and not by what they actually cost."
Someone Else's Debt
"I agreed to take over my ex-girlfriend's bills so that she could pay off her debts. Five years and over $100,000 of my money later, she was in more debt than when we started, and she was cheating on me."
"Don't ever do this. Just make her be an adult or dump her. It's never worth it."
Just One More Semester
"I paid for my ex-girlfriend's college tuition for three semesters as she 'just one semester left'-ed me for all three."
"That was AFTER she got a letter stating she was no longer eligible for the Pell Grant or further loans. So, the banks said, 'No more,' but I paid for another year and a half, while also paying all the household bills and supporting her kid."
"We broke up, and she had the nerve to talk about what I supposedly OWE her."
Scammed by the Pound
"One of those Bootcamp-style gyms opened up within walking distance from our apartment. We wanted to get in shape and figured we'd check it out. It was run by a married couple who was really nice."
"Initial classes were very small but the exercise was great. The husband also did martial arts instruction so I was considering getting into that."
"They were doing a really reduced special to get a year membership so I went for it and paid half upfront. A few weeks later, I can't remember the conversation, but they asked for the remaining payment, and I said, 'Sure, why not?'"
"A little bit after that, they called and said, 'Sorry, but we opened the gym with a verbal agreement we would be getting a large number of karate students and that fell through, so we have to shut down. We will get your money back once we get settled after we move back home.'"
"I foolishly had paid for all this but never had even gotten a written contract or whatever. They just ended up ghosting me and stopped replying to everything."
Buying the Wrong Home
"I bought a mobile home as a starter home. No one ever explained to me as a young adult the importance of investment and future planning."
"Mobile homes of course do not hold nor increase in value so you never build equity. It's akin to renting except you have to cover all your own repair costs too."
"Terrible financial decision. Don't buy mobile homes kids. Just don't do it."
Helping a Friend Out
"I let her move in with me and then covered all of her living expenses so she could pay off debt. It only cost me a little more money since I was already covering 100% of my living expenses. Some of my bills like water went up a little and I voluntarily covered most groceries."
"I told her upfront that there are no hard feelings if it doesn't work out in the long run (and it didn't). I would have done the same thing for any close friend."
"I suggested her first step should be to save an emergency fund to protect herself if we break up because I would expect her to get the f**k out. And if she cheats on me, her stuff will be on the curb the same day."
"I'm a practical person. We had been discussing moving into together anyway. This way we see how things work out and she ends up with less debt. But I didn't put any money directly towards her debt. That would have felt like I was being taken advantage of."
"This wasn't completely selfless on my part. It seemed like we may have been headed for marriage and in that case, I would want that debt gone. It didn't happen for us but I'm still glad she got a little further ahead in life."
While some might argue that each of these were learning experiences that were worth experiencing, there's no denying that they were expensive lessons.
We've all seen an episode or two of at least one reality show, and we all vary in how entertained we are by these shows.
We can all understand that these shows are exaggerated for the sake of entertainment, but we have to wonder, what really goes on behind the curtain?
Curious, Redditor body_by_art asked:
"People who were on shows like 'Supernanny,' 'The World's Strictest Parents,' or 'Scared Straight!,' what was the experience like?"
"And what was the aftermath?"
"I really dislike this ‘idiot dad’ narrative that a lot of media pushes. It’s sexist not only in that it says that men are stupid, but also in that it assumes women’s ‘place’ is managing the household."
For Health Benefits
"I'd like to contribute from a different show; hopefully someone sees this! My brother was on a show called 'Violent Children: Desperate Parents,' and honestly they were brilliant."
"I wasn't part of this whole experience because I was in University at the time, but my father and my brother both were in this show and the show staff was honestly brilliant."
"Here in the UK, especially Wales where my family lives, mental health is not really a thing the poor have access to and my family is definitely working class. This show gave my brother and my father access to mental healthcare they would have never been able to access themselves and made quite a large difference in both their lives."
"They continued to support my family for almost a year after filming with offers of more mental health help, and both my father and my brother are happier people today because of this."
"One thing I will say is the only reason we were featured on this show was out of pure desperation. There was basically no other way that my father could imagine getting help, given he'd spent almost eight years fighting with the NHS to get my brother psychological help, all to basically no avail."
"My family was made into entertainment for the masses so that we could access something fairly basic. Something about the whole experience doesn't sit right with me at all."
Exaggerated to a Fault
"I'm a little bit late to this one, but my younger siblings, mother, and then stepfather were on a program in the UK called 'Mum's On Strike' in the mid-2000s."
"The premise was that the mother would be sick of doing everything around the house, and would be whisked away to a luxury spa for a weekend, leaving the clueless father in charge of trying to take care of the household duties."
"A lot of the conversations and scenarios were faked. I supposedly visited them for the weekend, but I did multiple different shoots across a few hours on the last day of filming, then went back home."
"They'd cause fights between the siblings by purposely creating situations where one was favored over the other, so the others would throw a tantrum."
"There was a shoot on location in our local town center, and they encouraged my little brother to run off into all sorts of different shops, causing hilarity as my stepfather tried chasing after him with two other children in tow."
"Mealtimes were a bit of a farce as well. As it was a weekend, my stepfather had to cook a traditional roast dinner. The production company intentionally supplied incorrect ingredients to make sure my stepfather looked like an idiot. They filmed my reaction to him trying to add beans to the roast a few different times, so they could pick the best one."
"In the end, after they'd got all the footage they wanted, they sent one of the production team out to the chippy to get us some actual edible food."
No Air Time
"I was on 'Scared Straight,' and my episode never even aired because they only select a very small amount of footage to make it look a lot worse than it actually is. Most prisoners were pretty nice."
"A classmate was on MTV's 'Made.' They came to my high school too and turned a classmate into prom queen. It wasn’t a stretch, she was naturally pretty but went back to her nerd look right after they left."
"It was crazy how MTV made it look like she had no friends when she actually had a huge group she’d hang out with all the time."
"They also made her love interest look like such a jerk when he was actually the nicest guy you’d ever meet."
"I haven’t believed reality TV since 2005. Still enjoy the ridiculousness of it sometimes."
"A friend of mine worked on 'Nanny 911' in NYC. Nothing on that show happened unless the producers okayed it. They would come up with scenarios and plot points to film."
"You don't just shoot TV shows like that and hope that something magical happens. They created every 'issue.'"
"Reality TV is not real."
"Also, the camera crew who worked on 'Nanny 911' also worked on other shows like 'Real Housewives of New York,' Kitchen Nightmares,' and 'Hell's Kitchen.' The film business is a very small world."
Nothing Revelatory About It
"My friend was on 'Supernanny,' they don't actually do anything, it's just acting, he and his brother are still exactly the same as they were before."
Breaking the Cycle
"Her techniques on 'Supernanny' (and, honestly, the children themselves) are never really the problem, it's the parents."
"She's not there long enough to break years of bad parenting habits. I imagine that a lot of the parents just revert right back to their old ways as soon as the camera crew packs up their stuff."
"One of my friends in grade school was on 'Nanny 911' as a kid (maybe around five years old)."
"There were a lot of kids in her family and one of the biggest problems the nanny had with their household was safety. She baby-proofed the entire house and lectured them on safety precautions they have to take in their lives to ensure that the children wouldn't get hurt."
"She even gave them all helmets to wear whenever they rode bikes or 4-wheelers."
"After she left, a lot of the safety precautions went out of the window, and later my friend told me that they still had the helmets but they were all sitting in a dusty corner."
"I worked on 'Teen Mom' and saw how the process works. It’s mostly just the crew following the people around, letting them live their lives with the producer occasionally throwing in some talking points and guiding the 'talent' on what topics they need to touch on."
"But there was no actual scripting involved. There was way more emphasis on the editing if anything."
"I lived in India. Once in my school when I was in sixth grade, these 'foreign kids' popped up with a bunch of cameramen and stuff. Speculation went wild. We thought our terrible principal probably wanted to create a 'cool' image for the school and was creating some kind of weird advertisement."
"Anyway, years later, I saw a YouTube clip by complete chance of 'The World's Strictest Parents.' It was my school and those exact kids! They had come to visit an Indian family, whose children went to my school."
"The episode was a lot of drama. The parents were kind of obnoxious, at least for the episode."
"However, the last I heard on asking a few friends was that those parents were fine and their children are doing reasonably well. Not sure about the 'foreign kids' who came."
"What a small world! Seems like ages ago."
Close to Home
"Like three years ago, I lived in a big 5-bedroom house with four other friends in college. The house was in an episode of 'Supernanny.' We found out because our nice neighbor literally gave us a signed headshot from Jo Frost as a gift out of the blue."
"He literally told us, 'I think y’all would like this more than me and get a kick out of it.'"
"It made our week and we found the episode online and watched it. I asked about the family to the neighbor as our house was rented out and owned by a property company."
"He told me after the show the parents fought all the time, lost all of their money due to 2008 crisis, and lost the house to foreclosure."
"The picture stayed on our mantle for three years and I thought about that family every time."
- Redditor deleted
"My childhood home had been in a famous episode of a famous reality show. (I'd doxx myself if I said which.)"
"It was so odd watching it. It was filmed before we bought it and my parents remodeled it. So it was weird seeing how it looked when we first bought it. Seeing all the old stuff. And also my neighborhood. The outside of my best friend's house was also featured heavily in the episode."
"My parents loved pointing out bits they personally remodeled. 'I remember pulling that out!' and 'Ug, remember that awful wallpaper!' and that sort of thing."
"The funniest part was that they pretended a closet door was a bathroom door in the show. My parents actually built a bathroom there, before ever seeing the episode. So it was really head-spinning to see that."
The Dreaded Watch Party
"A coworker was featured on SuperNanny. They had a pretty good experience filming and were so excited for their show to air that they hosted a watch party."
"I’m sure you can imagine what’s next. The way the show was edited made the parents look SO bad (like, neglectful bad) and made the kids (who were pretty wild) look even worse."
"It ended up being a pretty awkward watch party."
A Great Future
"I don't know if this counts but I was on an episode of 'MADE' on MTV (if anyone remembers that show)..."
"It was my senior year of high school, so about seven years ago. People gave me crap about it forever and still do. I was made into a 'screamo' singer, and the experience was interesting, to say the least."
"The money and flight/trip to NYC though at 17 years old made the whole embarrassment worth it. Plus, I work in the broadcast business now, so it really opened up a lot of doors and showed me a career I LOVE."
"Seeing kids now that were in my shoes, so fascinated by entertainment media, makes me so genuinely happy."
While everyone expects reality shows to be at least somewhat exaggerated, it's interesting to think about what goes on behind-the-scenes in order to make those dramatic scenes happen. Imagining someone acting completely out of character for the sake of a few scenes is particularly wild.
People With Thin Walls Describe The Strangest Things They've Ever Overheard In Their Apartment
When I was a junior in college and moved into my first apartment, the combination of thin walls and the overall loudness of the boys in the unit next door made me privy to every aspect of their lives.
I could hear them so clearly, I know what movie they were watching the night before, if one of them spilled something on the other's laptop, and even who was fighting with their girlfriend that week.
The fact is, there are a lot of apartment buildings with thin walls, meaning everyone can hear everything. Sometimes, this is just annoying: too much noise when all you want is some quiet.
However, every now and then, you overhear something interesting and funny. Redditors certainly have, and they are eager to share!
It all started when Redditor EskildDood asked:
"Redditors with thin walls, what have you heard in your apartment?"
How To Save A Life
"In college, I lived in a crappy apartment nearby the school, that was mostly populated by students. Halfway to class one day, I realized I forgot a book and had to rush back to my apartment to get it. As I was running up the stairs (which shared a wall with the stairs in the next door apartment, which mirrored my own) I could have sworn I heard someone yelling. I ignored it and ran to my room to grab my book. As I clambered downstairs, again I heard yelling, and I paused to listen. I heard some unintelligible moaning, and eventually heard the words “help me,” weakly groaned from the stairs next door. I rushed out and tried their door, but it was locked. I totally forgot about my class and ran to the apartment management office, hoping that someone was there."
"A manager was, thank goodness, and after I explained the situation, she grabbed her master keys and we booked it back to my neighbor’s place. She opened the door and the poor guy was laying in the stairwell (it was one of the ones that goes up halfway to the second floor, then turns 90 degrees for the rest of the way), clearly having fallen. I called 911 while the manager ran over to the guy. Ambulance came and picked him up, and I later learned that he had fallen down the stairs after passing into a brief diabetic coma. I guess he hadn’t eaten in some time; I don’t know too much about how diabetes works. Anyhow, to this day, I feel grateful that I forgot that book. That poor guy could have died, slumped halfway down the stairs with his face in the carpet."
"Edited to add: also, relevant to the thread, I was grateful for the thin walls. Just for that though. Thin walls suck."
I Know What You Did Last Workday
"my old neighbour was a cam girl and I could hear absolutely everything she said in every single session for a good 4 months. pretty much learned the names of her clients. I work from home and it was always a gamble whenever I had to meet with someone virtually."
"I once heard a former roommate laughing with his then-girlfriend about how they're screwing me over on money. Turned out they were taking my utility portion and buying various games and alcohol."
"Instead of confronting them, I confirmed what they said with the utility company (they hadn't paid the bill in 2 months) and I moved all my stuff out that day while they were at work. For good measure, I took myself off the lease and told them about the GF that had been there 6 months."
"I once heard an argument that went a little like this:"
""Stop treating me like I'm stupid!""
""You asked if Seahorses were mammals, Jessica!""
""THEY GIVE LIVE BIRTH.""
"I was at a bookstore once and a strange couple walked by. I wonder if it was them, because I overheard"
""Tinkerbelle is half fairy, half PIXIE, Jessica, geez!""
The Day The Music Died
"I actually manage an apartment complex where my office is surrounded by a one bedroom unit. The building is old and the walls are thin. The tenant that used to live in the unit was a quiet man but would frequently sing beautiful opera music. His voice was amazing and I loved it every time I heard him sing!"
"Then one time I saw him in the halls and made the mistake of asking if he was the one who sang these beautiful opera songs. His face turned red but he confirmed that it was him. I told him that I always enjoyed it when I heard him sing and that it would always brighten my day."
"Never should have said anything because I never heard him sing again."
– Deleted User
He Will Always Be Her Kid
""William! We do not hit!"""
"His mom was visiting. He was 30."
"Poor mom, I feel bad for laughing at this."
– Deleted User
Ain't That The Truth
"“Yeah girl, you know you want this.”"
"My college roommate. 3 kids later it’s apparent she did, in fact, want it."
We Know Who Won That One
"Heard the couple next door arguing. The wife was furious because she realized he had been cheating on her after she found out she had chlamydia. He tried to convince her that she must have been the unfaithful one. She still lives there. He doesn't."
I Know What You're Up To
"I moved from far away, so I have a different state license plate than everyone else at the apartment complex. A couple of days ago I head my upstairs neighbor drunkenly ranting to his wife about what he thinks I'm up to. He's convinced that I'm on the run from something. I'm just in grad school lmao."
"Grad school...for crime!"
Oh My God!
""Gina, I love you! Gina no! Gina, dammit put the knife down!!" At this point, both the apartments adjoining to Gina's called the police. Gina's husband decided to spend the night elsewhere."
"Had this exact thing happen about 12 years ago when I was pregnant with my oldest. I was tired, so laid down for a nap, trying to ignore the action movie hubby was watching."
"After somehow falling asleep for a while, I end up waking up to a male voice going, "No, please, put down the knife! Can't we talk about this?" And then a dramatic outcry that sounded as if he'd been stabbed."
"Figured hubby was still watching the action movie, go out to the kitchen for a snack, see the TV is off. I freak out and tell him what I heard, and we call the police. We never heard anything about it after that though."
"I lived next to a couple some years ago and they came home after a night out and started fighting about who was better at darts. I thought they were joking but it got pretty heated. Doors were slammed."
"Edit: Since people are asking, they were playing darts at the bar earlier that night. From what I could tell they were playing as a team and the boyfriend wasn't pulling his weight and was super defensive about it (had an off night, allegedly). The girlfriend was mad he couldn't accept she was better. I'm no detective but think they had some relationship issues bigger than darts."
The Alarm Worked...
"More what my neighbour heard...I'm a deep sleeper and was an even deeper sleeper as a teenager. My phone alarm was going off for 30 minutes and my neighbours could hear it through the walls, assumed it was a burglar alarm and called the police. Waking up to the police banging on my door was confusing."
""Everyone in my family thinks you're gay!""
""I am though?""
""Well we haven't told them yet, so tone it down a bit.""
""F*ck you, man! If you don't like spaghetti, then you don't like me!""
I can't stop laughing at that last one!
Do you have any thin wall stories to share? Let us know in the comments below.