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People Explain How The Smartest Person From School Turned Out

Reddit user After_Crab_1921 asked: 'What happened to the smartest kid in your class?'

Woman with white frame glasses
Photo by Peter Miranda on Unsplash

Every high school had the popular girl, the favorite jock, the weird kid, and the smart kid. Whether or not they were the weirdest or the smartest, the population always seems to come to an agreement about who should carry the title.

But sometimes what the smartest kid in school winds up doing with their life isn't what everyone might have expected.

Or, they might excel beyond even their peers' wildest dreams.


Redditor After_Crab_1921 asked:

"What happened to the smartest kid in your class?"

That Darn Mind-Gut Connection

"He got sick with a rare stomach disease and isn't doing too well."

- VoxMendax

"So, ironically, the smartest kid in our class was me (the bar was low) and my sisters and I all have a rare stomach thing."

"I presented first, got the shish-kabob treatment, and had a very sucky five years. Then it stopped, right around the time my older sisters started dealing with it."

"It will rear its head every few years for a month or just a weekend but overall I’m completely unaffected now (either that or my ability to adjust to a baseline is way op) but my sisters both deal with it daily."

"Their symptoms are less than I went through but have stuck around longer, I figure I speedran it on hard mode."

- Mimovich

"The stomach is closely tied to the brain. (Believe it or not)."

"Kids who underperform or overperform are often under extreme stress at home, and as a result are more likely to develop diseases related to the gut."

"It's a weird thing that has actual scientific studies going into it."

- Character_Tower_3893

Going Above and Beyond

"I believe he works for NASA."

"He deleted his Facebook a while ago (like the smartest kid in our class would do), but that’s what he was doing last I checked."

- gingeritis90

Double the Smarts

"There were two. They were twins."

"They're both geneticists now with PHDs, and they work at the same university."

- iARTthere4iam

It's Not Rocket... Oh, Wait.

"The smartest guy from my high school became an actual rocket scientist."

- TheKaptinKirk

Invented Themselves

"The smartest kid in my school was really popular and was one of my closest friends."

"But when he graduated he left everyone and everything behind, including his family. He even changed his name."

"I found out this little bit of information because a friend went to an academic conference and showed me a group photo and he was in it."

"I exclaimed, 'That’s my friend Pascal!' He kept his first name but his last name was an anagram of his original name."

- whittlingcanbefatal

"I knew a guy who did this! He was one of my best friends' older brothers. He got a degree in German and moved to South Korea for a little while."

"Next thing we knew, he had moved back to his native state but to a small town and had taken on a whole new persona. Different name and all. Apparently, he spoke with a German accent in his new life."

"We met a guy who only knew him as the new version. That conversation was wild."

- Zebulon_V

Too Tragic to Imagine

"He got a full ride to Harvard."

"He did an internship his first summer at Intel and was killed by a drunk driver a few weeks after arriving in California."

"I f**king couldn’t believe it when it happened 25 years ago. I still can’t really."

- bg-j38

Successful Careers

"There are two. I remember one of them crying when they got an A- on a test in seventh grade."

"One of them (the one who cried) is an executive in a Fortune 500 company. Nothing special but making a lot of money."

"The other one is a brain surgeon."

- iamacannibal

Important Medical Research

"She worked at John’s Hopkins doing research with Psilocybin for treating mental health conditions."

- ActorMonkey

Making Big Moves

"He moved to Poland and became a Molecular Biologist."

- AJCleary

Happy Ending for the Gamer

"He went to MIT, works for Apple, and has a very expensive home in California. He also has a wife and four kids and seems to be very happy."

"I remember he was programming games in high school and was valedictorian."

"A big nerd who became a wealthy big nerd."

- BullHorn100

A Unique Trajectory

"My best friend (at the time; we drifted apart and speak only rarely now). He got a Ph.D. at Harvard, studied science in Antarctica, and now teaches at an Ivy League university."

- TriTri14

Eternally Confident

"He's a superstar pediatric neurosurgeon."

"He's also the most confident person I’ve ever met. (Guess you’d have to be, to cut open a little kid’s skull and operate on their brain.)"

- Rainpickle

"I saw some interview during a documentary when a surgeon said something to the effect of, 'Yeah, I come off arrogant at times, but do you want a surgeon who’s not extremely confident in their abilities?'"

- followedbyferrets

"The gift is self-awareness here. I’d trust him with my life."

- Hormone_Monster69

"Yep. There's an infinite difference between narcissism and actual confidence."

- adamjfish

Going Down Different Paths

"I had such a big crush on her and told her."

"We dated, and then she moved across the country to study and is now a Doctor."

"I'm so proud of her even though our lives changed paths."

- No-Plantain8212

An Honest and Kind Life

"He dropped out of college to marry and support the much younger woman he got pregnant (he was 23 and she was 18, but he clearly loved her)."

"Now (30 years later), he owns a boardgame store with a large back room for mini painting classes and games, and he plays dad to half the neurodivergent kids in town."

"He's still married to the same woman, too."

"It's not a high-flying life, but he makes a difference to so many people."

- Yinnesha

Best Friends Forever

"He just accepted a full professorship at a big university in the States. He's a particle physicist."

"He's also my bestie."

- wscuraiii

While the nerds and the smart kids often get a bad rap during middle school and high school, it's wonderful to see how being true to their minds and their passions could truly pay off in the end.

People Describe The Most Historically Significant Event They've Ever Witnessed In Person

Reddit user FictionVent asked: 'What is the most historically significant event you witnessed IN PERSON?'

Aircraft losing control
Richard R. Schünemann/Unsplash

Do you ever wonder what it must've been like to experience major events throughout world history when reading about them in text books?

But if you take pause and actually think about it, we're living through many newsworthy current events that succeeding generations will be talking about long after we're gone.

Reading about them online or in newspapers is one thing. But seeing them happen unfold before our eyes is another.

Curious to hear from those who'll have anecdotes to tell in the future, Redditor FictionVent asked:
"What is the most historically significant event you witnessed IN PERSON?"

People recall the natural disaster events they've witnessed.

Tremors

"1964 Good Friday Earthquake 9.2 Richter. Was a boy in Cordova, Alaska at the time."

– KitchenLab2536

"My father was skipper of the USCG cutter stationed there. He was inport, and when the quake struck shortly before 5:30pm, he and my mom gathered me and my three siblings on the front porch. At first, it felt like the house was crumbling at the foundation, but on the porch we could plainly see our whole world was shaking. I remember watching telephone poles swaying, and the wires snapping and crackling in the street. The quake lasted about five minutes initially. My dad got his ship underway to avoid the tidal wave which was sure to come. We had several aftershocks in the coming weeks, some of which were quite strong, though nowhere near as strong or as long as the quake itself. I was seven at the time."

– KitchenLab2536

Collapsing Freeway

"October 17th, 1989. I watched the 880 Nimitz freeway collapse during the San Francisco earthquake. The Honda in front of me had the upper deck crush her front-end engine compartment. The mother and her daughter were shaken up but completely fine."

"I was driving a convertible Triumph Spitfire, which was scratched up slightly from debris. However, I walked away unscathed. Aside from the fact I pissed my pants, which I didn't notice until much later."

– CatDaddyWhisper

Thar She Blows

"I sat on the roof of our house and watched Mt. St. Helens erupt less than 100 miles away."

– stinkykitty71

"This must have been fascinating and terryfing in equal measure. What a thing to witness."

– runrossyrun

"It was amazing! The ash that covered everything like snow was interesting to kid me, but less so to my parents."

– stinkykitty71

People recall seeing major catastrophes as a result of malfunctions or judgement errors.

Bomber Crash

"The b-52 crash that led to changing what large military aircraft are allowed to do for airshows."

"I didn't see the plane, but immediately saw the fireball. It was just a perfect, bright red turning to black mushroom cloud."

"Fairchild is a nuclear air base and there were a few minutes there where I was sure the world was about to end."

"A few years before a KC-135 doing the same thing crashed near the school while we were in class."

– goffstock

Tragic Takeoff

"I was standing on my front porch watching the launch of the Challenger."

– StarChaser_Tyger

"Was riding in my parents car to a basketball game in the next town over in north texas when we saw a shooting star and thought that was neat."

"It was the Columbia..."

– Misdirected_Colors

Demolition Gone Wrong

"The failed implosion of the Zip feed mill in Sioux Falls, SD in 2005."

"They hyped it up, sold tickets to it, had a big 'BOOM' marketing thing, and broadcast it live on TV."

"The explosives took out the main supports on the first floor, and the rest of the building above it just plopped down 10ft or so and came to a rest. It was a massive failure, and was a funny little blurb on news stations around the world that day. Definitely not major news, just the rest of the world taking 20 seconds to laugh at us."

"The building sat like that (the leaning tower of SuFu) for quite a while until they figured out how to safely demolish it."

"Here's a clip of the failed demolition."

https://youtu.be/I8DEDUqd0RU

– KitchenBandicoots

These well-known historical events were seen by very few who are alive today.

Historical Remnant

"The tumbling of the Wall in Germany… along with people selling bits and pieces of it on tables in lobby in front of commissary and px in the following weeks and months. I had picked up a chunk about the size of an oreo and kept it… has blue spray paint on the flat side. Wonder if anyone is buying them now?"

– SingedPenguin13

Major Upheaval

"I would have to say the LA riots. I lived about two blocks from where it started. I was on my way home from school and saw someone throw a brick through a window. I didn’t even wait. I just started running the whole way home."

– Scarlaymama0721

Day Of Infamy

"9/11, I could SMELL the collapse of the towers."

– go4tli

"A friend of mine was there. One day in the warehouse we worked in together there was an odd electrical burning smell. He stopped in his tracks and went 'this is what 9/11 smelled like.'"

– mantistoboggan287

I didn't physically witness the fall of the World Trade Center but I was living in New York City at the time.

However, I did see the smoke.

I was living up north in Washington Heights at the time and knowing what happened, uncertain of what was to come, and seeing the plumes of smoke from the attack site was the most ominous sight I've ever seen in my life to date.

Have you ever lived through a historic moment or witnessed something sure to be noted in history books? Let us know in the comments below.

man in business suit standing near the stairs
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When I was in seventh grade, I had aspirations to be a poet. I made a Mother's Day card for my mom with a cute (but now, cringe-worthy) poem inside, and a hand-drawn picture of a rose that took me hours to perfect.

A friend saw the card and said they wished they could do the same. Then suddenly, she asked if she could buy the card from me. I said no, since I needed to give it to my own mother, but I said I could make her a copy. From there, my friend got the idea for me to make copies of the card to sell. I went along with it, mostly because I didn't think it would actually work.

Turns out, it did. After making sure people would actually be interested, we went to the library after school and made several color copies of my card for 10 cents each. The next day, we sold each card for $1. Not only did we make enough money so that my friend and I could both afford to get our moms an actual present in addition to the card, but we had enough leftover to put us over the top for the money we needed to buy the matching faux leather jackets we'd been wanting all year.

The next year, many people who bought cards asked me to do it again, so I did. Once again, we made a killing. We didn't try to do it again once we got to high school, but it was definitely fun while it lasted.

When we tell people this story, they think it's a pretty crazy money-making scheme. Maybe it is, but we're not the only ones who ever did anything like this. Redditors know all about crazy money-making schemes, and are eager to share their own stories.

It all started when Redditor primeiro23 asked:

"What are the craziest ways you’ve heard of people making money?"

Tumble Into Business

"In college, I take a class on how to start & run a small business. Prof tells us to think of ridiculous business models for our fictitious businesses as we will get more out of the class that way. Stupid ideas ensue. Selling paperclips door to door, refilling car gasoline tanks in people's driveways, service to read & summarize the newspaper to executives etc."

"One classmate decides he is going to sell tumbleweed."

"Guess who quits college and started a successful business? Tumbleweed guy. Takes a van to the desert, collects tumbleweed and sells them to Hollywood movie & TV studios who need them. Keeps the tumbleweed in a warehouse and since they never spoil, his only costs are gasoline, storage & a website. He eventually becomes the number one tumbleweed provider to studios around the world, shipping tumbleweed globally."

"Made a heap of money selling what millions of people drive by and ignore every year."

– Accomplished-Fig745

Synopses

"I did have a job reading and summarizing newspaper articles to the boss. Literally only task I was hired for."

– Draigdwi

"An actual union job in the film industry is reading scripts and summarizing them in short mean book reports."

– Trixiebees

Jump!

"Heard of crazier, but a guy I know, friend of my mother's, went to Texas 30+ years ago. (we are from Norway), and he noticed every single garden had a trampoline. And it was almost always "jump king" - the circular with blue mat ones."

"So he went to the HQ, bought 10 and took back to Norway. Within days they were sold, and he ordered 50 more, same thing. So he became the only importer and has God knows how many millions to his name today."

– alexdaland

"This IS wild. I went to Norway recently and one of the first things I noticed was that almost EVERY yard had a trampoline in it."

– TrulyMadlyCheaply

Working For A Home

"Back when Dogecoin took off I wrote a guide on recovering old lost wallets and it got so popular I was flooded with requests for further help. Some corrupted wallet files, some lost passwords, etc."

"I have a background in computer science and experience in data retrieval and password cracking, so I started helping people in exchange for a percentage cut (industry standard for wallet recovery). All above board with a contract and everything."

"For a while I was getting new clients every week and making hundreds up to thousands of dollars on every successful recovery (with a fairly good rate of success). The biggest one I ever recovered was a 19 letter long password someone had lost. The work dried up when the price of doge dropped but it got me the down-payment on a house."

– internetpillows

Horsing Around

"A cabbie in Dublin once told me a story about one of his fares who had a brilliant hustle."

"The guy was a sculptor. He would watch horse races, then when a horse won, he'd use social media to contact the owner directly with a digital mockup of a life-sized sculpture of the winning horse. Now, the people who own winning racehorses tend to be very rich - we're talking sheikhs, oligarchs, billionaires. Every now and again, one of these owners would bite, and spend €100,000 euros or so on a statue commemorating their animal's win."

"Dude only did a couple a year, and spent the rest of the time living the good life."

– escoterica

Sweet!

"Richest guy in a rich town near us makes enormous amounts of money buying Hershey bars and rewrapping them with customised retirement celebration designs or corporate logos to be given away at events. Literally just rewraps them in pieces of paper and doubles or triples his money."

"Every time I try to start a company or invent a better product or something, I ask myself why I’m not just rewrapping candy bars."

– perchance2cream

"F**k man, I think I found my new niche."

– LibertyPrimeIsASage

Slightly Used

"I went to college in a capitol C college town. A friend of mine bought an old school bus, fixed it up and took out all the seats."

"At the end of every semester she would drive around the neighborhood that was the fancier side of off campus living and collect whatever the rich kids were throwing out before they moved / went home for the summer. Flat screen TVs, couches, computers, tables, it was wild to see what people would chuck out and replace the next semester rather than having to deal with getting a storage unit or moving themselves."

"Sold it all on Craigslist over the summer or the beginning of the next semester and made a killing."

– sam_neil

Credit Where Credit Is Undue

"When I worked in a really busy, upscale restaurant my coworker would put all of his cash-paying customer’s bills on his credit card and keep the cash which he used to promptly pay off his credit card."

"He did this all day, every day for quite a while and the points started to add up and he was getting free airfare, etc."

"Worked great for a while until management notice a rise in credit card processing fees with an emphasis on one employee and they shut him down real quick."

– blinkysmurf

We Found Gold!

"My buddy worked his way through college by panning for gold. This was in 2009 in California. Most days he made nothing, occasionally he would come home with a couple hundred bucks worth and I think once he found a night worth over $1k."

– discostud1515

"My cousin had a metal detector when he was in HS. He would go every weekend down to the lake and take it with him on vacation. He found all kinds of things. He did find gold jewelry and would sell it online. He made so much money he bought his own car."

– Content_Pool_1391

Sleeping For The Job

"I knew a woman whose job was literally to sleep."

"A local office building owner wanted somebody on-site 24/7 to be the point of contact with first responders if they ever needed to be called. So they hired her to come in to the building in the evening when the maintenance crew was finishing their work. And she would settle up to sleep for the night in a bedroom they'd set aside for her. In the morning she'd hand the building back over to the office employees and go on about her day."

"No first responders were ever called. It's about the least stressful legitimate job I could ever imagine."

– CaptainTime5556

The Secret

"Back in the 90s, I knew a guy who put an ad in the classified section of the newspaper which read something along the lines of, “For $10, I’ll tell you my secret to making easy money. Send $10 cash to (address) to find out how.” People would send him $10 & he would then instruct them to put a classified ad in the newspaper telling people to send $10 & how to make money."

– freudianfalls

Accident Payment

"I was pushed down the stairs by a teen girl who told me to "pay attention and get out of her way" i ripped my dress during the fall and was getting back up when some guy rushed up to me, apologized for his daughter and handed me $500 as compensation."

– thebrilliantcounc

"LOL - years back, I was in a parking lot during a snowstorm. A guy was trying to pull around me, slid on the snow/ice and hit into my passenger side door. It really and truly was an accident. He was all apologies. We exchanged info - he said to get a quote and he would pay for the damage."

"Well, the car I was driving at the time was a crappy old Ford worth maybe $500. But, I went to a body shop, got a quote on the repair and it was $900. I faxed it to him (this was back in the 90's, LOL) thinking he'd tell me to go through the insurance company and just have the car totaled out."

"To my surprise, I had a bank check for $900 from him in my mailbox three days later. Now, I already owned another car, so I pocketed the $900, sold the smashed car for parts for $300 and ended up with $1200 on a car that was worth only $500 before the accident. I was very glad that he ran into me!"

– Deleted User

Only Feet

"I have a friend who sells pictures of her feet. In heels. Barefoot squishing cake. In mud. She charges extra for special requests. Has strict ‘no go’ rules. Never shows anything above the calf so she can’t be identified (no tats). All proceeds go to her kid’s college fund. Has made enough to fund a PhD."

– NotACrazyCatLadyx2

The things people do for money! But, I guess it works for her!