Storytelling is one of the most advanced technologies human beings have. For centuries we have been sharing these stories with each other. We have created whole worlds and people that exist solely in our creative brains.
Those stories have the power to teach us lessons. We can carry those lessons with us throughout our entire lives.
Here were those answers.
Just One Book To Start
I remember when I read Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean M. Auel. I was about 10 years old and I had seen the movie a dozen times before I found out it was a book.
I devoured it in 2 days. I was hooked on the whole series for decades and it started my obsession with books. I will read anything but historical fiction is my favorite and it started with the Earth's Children series.
A 4th Grade Standard
My side of the mountain. I was young and have always camped and loved the outdoors (still do) but this book had such an exciting story!
Its about a boy who runs away from home and plans to live in the wild on his own. He goes to a library and checks out a bunch of books on survival and lives in the forest. He even burns the base of a large tree and hollows it out and makes a living space inside. its a super easy read but I loved every page.
A Mystic Power
The Easy way to stop smoking by Allen Carr.
I had zero intention to stop smoking when I started reading that book. To say I was skeptical about it would be an understatement. I was a heavy chain smoker. Smoked more than anyone I knew.
But I went cold turkey after I read it. 3 years strong. I have not had a single puff since finishing that book.
If you smoke. You want to read this book now. I wish I read it earlier.
It's not just fiction that has the power to change people: non-fiction and self help does too.
There is a Monster at the End of this Book. It really led me on a journey to overcome my fears and deeply examine what it means to be a monster.
Also, pulling really hard against Grover to turn the pages helped me get buff. Really I was helping Grover face fears he was not ready to face. But we faced them together.
An Unconventional Method Of Change
The End of Mr Y.
My ex partner threw it at my face during an argument and knocked down and burst my forehead. So I left her and totally changed my ambitions in life.
Kinda funny. Sometimes I see that book and scowl, and wonder what people think is going on.
Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler; an incredible sci-fi book that was written in the 80s and is a mix of apocalypse fiction, socio-political critique & resilience.
Completely changed my world view & put me on the path to sustainable off-grid living, which I'm really grateful for.
Travel Far, Pay No Fare
When I was 13 years old I had a long school bus ride home from school almost an hour long, and would pass the time by reading. One day I was in the library frantic for something because I had no book and picked out an astronomy one that was called From the Big Bang to Planet X by Terrence Dickinson, and had a fetching picture of the Andromeda Galaxy on its cover.
That book, wow. I was completely enchanted about outer space, and by the time I was done reading it I knew I wanted to be an astronomer. I remember thinking at the time how fantastical it was that people could have that job, but anyone who was an astronomer was 13 once and this was a thing you could do, even if you lived in Pittsburgh.
Anyway, that was over 20 years ago, and there were many twists and turns along the way, but I'm now two years into working as a professional astronomer at Harvard.
I just submitted a paper last week on a black hole that ripped apart a star, which was super fun to work on and I couldn't help but think a lot about how excited 13 year old me would be to see how it's going! I don't know if she would have believed it. :)
It is because of our superpower of empathy as humans that we are able to vibe so heavily with books.
Truly effective metaphor
Maus; the first and only graphic novel to win a pulitzer prize
It is a book about a second generation survivor of the Holocaust retelling his father memoirs of the event. This semi-biographic book puts into perspective the whole feeling of absolute terror and give us an insight on the before-after situation.
The jews are portrayed as mice and the nazis as cats, elaborating on the whole cat and mouse chase premise which demonstrates the horrors the jewish felt. Although it is a graphic novel, its images do really say more than words.
It is to this day, the only book which has made me cry and feel hurt; it makes the whole subject feel very personal.
It Ain't No Jack Kerouac
The Road. I read it before and after becoming a father. Drastically different experiences.
And the world according to garp. I read it when I was a kid and it was the first novel that made me laugh outloud and come close to crying in the same book.
When Your Brain Becomes A Movie
Terry Pratchett's I Shall Wear Midnight. It's a book from his famous Discworld series. I had no intention to read anything before I started a summer job with hell of a lot of free time, had a sh*tty phone back then so the Internet was out of the question.
I couldn't possibly BELIEVE a book can be so entertaining. The mixture of fantasy, light text with a great plot and story, one of the best humoristic dialogues I have never seen even in a movie and simply enticing environment got me soooo into his writing style.
And the best moment was when I realized he had at least thirty books from the Discworld. Highly recommending for... like... everyone who loves fantasy and a good laugh.
What are the books that absolutely changed your life?
The first time we all have sex is such a nerve wracking experience.
Everybody wants to be good. No... GREAT!
That probability is highly unlikely though.
There is so much to learn and navigate when it comes to sex.
RedditorBobirrrwanted to talk about the birds and the bees and all the information that surprised us. They asked:
"What did you not know about sex until you lost your virginity?"
GuidesBaseball Fail GIFGiphy
"You gotta guide it much more than you think."
"Just because you’re having sex doesn’t mean you’ll become good at it without a remarkable amount of trial and error."
"More than trial and error, you gotta ask your partner how it was, what they liked and didn’t like and what they want to try. Being able to have an open and honest conversation about sex with your partner makes it so much better."
"Agreed. An ex friend of mine boasted that he was great in bed because his body count was over 50. Bro, if your body count is that high at that age, it means no one’s coming back for more."
"When you have that mindset you won’t ever get the chance. It’s not that big of a deal and not something you need to put that much pressure on that you’re fretting about it like this. It’ll come, just be you and don’t sweat about it. I was 21 when I lost my virginity and all my friends were 15-18 when they lost theirs. I don’t regret when it happened and I don’t feel like I was late or missing out, it just happened when it happened."
"That two bellies rubbed together at just the right angle can make a loud fart noise. Funny tho when it does happen for the first time."
I hate that noise. Gross. It's confusing.
Stylemasturbation im horny GIFGiphy
"How you pleasure yourself can be a huuuge influence on your sex life."
It'a All New
"Instead of just after virginity, after years of having sex and looking back at my first time where my partner was much more experienced than me, I’ve realised that pretty much all sex with a new person, virginity or not, feels new. I was really hung up on being good at it when I should’ve treated it as a learning experience for the next time."
Too Much Porn
"That foreplay is SUPER important. You don't see it too much in a lot of porn so until you get into the bedroom you don't really consider the prep. Often times you just see people going at it which is great and all but everything is much better when both parties are warmed up."
It makes sense...
"That I was allergic to latex."
"Same. Friends would talk about having sex multiple times a day, and I was over here wondering WHY they would ever put themselves through that. It took days to recover. Someone finally mentioned a latex allergy, and it all made sense."
"Omg this. Except my allergy was fairly mild. It meant peeling skin a couple days later. Literally took me years to find out why that was."
Noises OffGrocery Store Reaction GIF by TravisGiphy
"The large amount of sounds that can be produced by the human body."
Take note friends. Nobody is perfect out of the gate. Take you time. Do it right.
America is in quite a state right now.
We are hurting in ways we've never hurt before.
And getting better doesn't seem like an option on the horizon.
America gets a lot wrong everyday.
But, maybe let's try to focus on what America does right.
Maybe it can be a little comfort in times of struggle.
People from all over the world want to live here.
Redditor Ulrich-Stern wanted to discuss the best of America. They asked:
"What does the United States get right?"
I think America certainly has a strong work ethic. We know how to work and win.
Getting AroundCivil Rights Equality GIF by INTO ACTIONGiphy
"Accessibility code for buildings. I come from a country where disability is looked upon like a crime or fault. USA does an amazing job making things accessible. I haven’t seen all of USA but majority of the places has amazing system."
"Our public libraries are a real backbone for the country."
"Andrew Carnegie's groundwork in building the institution of free libraries, even in small towns, set a precedent that we wouldn't fathom today but couldn't live without. They often serve not only as an information exchange but as cultural hub, art gallery, performing arts center, tax aid, voter registration, job resources, etc. in communities."
"Plus they're one of the only places you can just exist for hours indoors without the expectation you must buy something.And I feel like they've adapted to the ever-changing needs of their patrons in modern times faster in the US than most places."
"'A library outranks any other one thing a community can do to benefit its people. It is a never failing spring in the desert.' -Andrew Carnegie"
'restore' or 'create'
"Valuing actual wilderness in places like national parks. Here in England, they will 'restore' or 'create' natural habitats, which is sort-of nice, but they are almost like zoos. They are too small to survive by themselves so they are actively maintained."
"And in some English national parks, they actually allow housing developments as long as the architectural design is sympathetic. Here, 'countryside"'means farms. There is still a notion in the USA of protecting some large wilderness areas from development."
"The rate of smoking cigarettes. We do very little well in the US when it comes to overall health, but we are light years better than most places when it comes to the prevalence of cigarette smoking. Hardcore anti smoking adds + laws of inconvenience + social stigma really did work."
HollywoodMovie Theater Reaction GIF by CBSGiphy
"Films. Don't get me wrong, the US can put out some bad films, but the best ones I've seen are usually American."
We do do films well. That is a big plus.
FamilyKids Playing GIF by moodmanGiphy
"The United States adopts more children than the rest of the world combined."
"Burgers. Motherfreakin' burgers."
"I'd expand that to sandwiches in general. Burgers, Philly cheese steaks, Reubens, subs, clubs, chopped cheese, po'boys, just this whole sandwich spectrum. Americans just took sandwich concepts from across the globe and ran with them."
"I've always envied your wildlife. I'm from England and the only large wild animals (other than fish) we have are deer, boar and foxes. And they're incredibly rare. I've always thought it was so cool one country could have bears, moose, cougars, alligators, panthers, bison/buffalo, etc."
"Gas stations like QuikTrip, where they have clean bathrooms, lighted parking lots, free air for your tires, ten different coffees on tap, beer, hotdogs, any soft drink or snack you want, the list goes on. In other countries -- you're not gonna believe this -- their gas stations only sell... gas."
POWERbill nye GIFGiphy
"The US is an absolute science powerhouse. The technology we come out with has touched the lives of nearly every person on the planet."
"I say this as an immigrant who came to this country, so perhaps take it with a grain of salt. But it truly gives people a second chance at life. My life would be nowhere near as good as it is right now if I were back in my home country."
Maybe America isn't the hot mess a lot of people think it is. We'll see...
Sex is an important part of life.
That is just a fact.
But sex is also about connection and intimacy.
So it's not a surprise when many relationships take a hit after the sex dries up.
It's not something to ignore.
It's the biggest problem in the world, but partners should discuss it.
RedditorItsyBitsyJoxywanted to hear about reasons to stick around with a partner when there is no sexy time. They asked:
"Would you be in a sexless relationship? What circumstance would you find acceptable for this?"
Sex is fun. And when the sex stopped in my relationships... so did the fun. But that is just me.
A Certain EraVery Funny Oops GIF by America's Funniest Home VideosGiphy
"I'm over 80."
"There’s a lot of people that are going to be real shocked once they hit their 70s."
"Our second child has ruined her sex drive. Intimacy is still there but extremely infrequently. I've learned how much that intimacy brings to the relationship, it feels very lonely and although I know it's not her fault, it can still make you feel like she's not attracted to me anymore. It can be pretty lonely too if you go from a romantic relationship to borderline platonic one. You can't help wonder how much is body changes and how much is you."
"I had rectal cancer and because of the surgery I can no longer get an erection, it's very lonely."
"Not sure if one exists, but a site to just make friends to be cuddle buddies, or whatever, should exist for people like you & me. I lost my sex drive & would like a relationship for that occasionally."
"In my case, it's not wanting to see someone very often, as well as the lack of sex drive, that I think would make it difficult. I also don't like people over to my home as it's too small for a couch & we'd be hanging out on my bed, which is weird to me."
"I'm in one now. My husband had a stroke... no sex is not the big problem for either one of us."
"This comment brings a lot of perspective. My gut reaction to this question was no. Sex was and still is pretty significant in my relationship with my wife. We’re in our 30’s and have been together over a decade. But if something happened to her and it was no longer an option? I would never leave her and love her too damned much to imagine it, no matter how much we love sex."
PainScarlett Johansson GIF by NETFLIXGiphy
"I have a near sexless marriage. The love is strong, but the desire is one-sided. That hurts."
Sexless over loveless is definitely easier. So there is that.
Over time...up s GIFGiphy
"I am happily married to my good lady for decades and decades. There are times when it has been sexless for whatever reason but never has it been loveless.I wouldn’t have lasted 2 days in a loveless relationship."
You play the cards you are dealt
"I’m dating a man who got diagnosed with prostate cancer a year or so into our relationship. Prostate had to come out and it’s a hit or miss whether or not sexual function comes back. In his case, it was a miss. He wanted me to move on because he got very depressed over it."
"He’s so pleasant and a real decent human being so I stayed with him. Who would abandon someone due to a health crisis? Unfortunately he got bladder cancer next so this is another hurdle to go over. You play the cards you are dealt. We are together in this."
"The reasons for the 'sexlessness' and the depth of the relationship are key factors. My wife got breast cancer at 40 and while she lived another 8 years, the chemotherapy nullified her libido and made intercourse impossible. And yet I dearly wish we could have grown old together whether or not this would have changed. But that’s completely different from cohabiting a loveless marriage or even facing such a situation in one’s youth only a few years after marriage. That would be hard."
"A sexless relationship is better than a loveless relationship, as long as I'm loved and we share physical affection like cuddling and kisses and I'm allowed to beat my meat when I need too I wouldn't care. Just a heads up to all the people who take this personally enough to comment how wrong I am."
"There's no such thing as a wrong option, my opinion is in regards to myself and myself alone I'm not answering for anyone else. Different opinions aren't wrong... OP asked a question to be answered from your own point of view..so there's no reason to call anyone else wrong... it's about you, answer for YOU I've answered for me."
Love is there...Checking In I Love You GIF by Seize the AwkwardGiphy
"I'm in one. Not happy about it, but love is still there so that's nice."
"Same. Maybe had it once in the last 12 years. Finally decided to go to couples/sex therapy this year. Not sure it is helping, but at least I finally brought up that I wanted to try something. My wife is my best friend and I love here with every fiber, just wish there was more intimacy there."
it never happens...
"We haven't had sex in five months due to numerous reasons. Never have alone time with my mom and daughter here. We're both too tired. Our bed we have sex on is where my mom is sleeping. Our waterbed is difficult to use. We always say next weekend and it never happens. We're still going strong though. We love each other and that's what matters."
Well I guess some people can make it work. More power to you.
We all have things which get on our nerves.
Some people have a fairly high tolerance level, and are only truly perturbed by things which are beyond the bounds of common decency, or which are universally accepted as annoying or inconvenient.
Others are not so lucky, and tend to be set off by things which might go completely unnoticed by everyone else.
Redditor Onatic420 was curious to learn the things which instantly make others want to pull their hair out and scream, leading them to ask:
"What do you find annoying as f*ck?"
Is it so hard to pick up after yourself?
"Habitual litterers."- SuvenPan
"When people don’t clean up after themselves."- cheeto_has_spoken
If you can't take the heat, stay out of the kitchen
"People that can dish it but can’t take it."
"I work with a dude like this and it’s terrible."- MF_GhidraTea Time Reaction GIF by Kamie CrawfordGiphy
Never judge something by it's size.
"When skin tears near your fingernail and that teeny tiny wound hurts way more than it should."- BlackCaaaaat
"When mosquitoes fly by ur ears."- AxcesDrifter
Back to where we started...
"The Reddit app when it scrolls back up to the top of the 65 TRILLION FKN articles you’ve read."
"It should burn the articles as you read them."- Deathdar1577
Take some responsibility!
"A person's inability to say sorry."- rohankentsorry kristen wiig GIFGiphy
Get out of the way!
"People who leave the f*cking shopping carts in middle of the f*cking aisle!"- otherm0ther
But enough about me, what do you think of me?
"People who make it all about themselves."- ExtensionAir7Proud Drag Queen GIF by CameoGiphy
A lost cause
"Willfully ignorant people."- KingZaneTheStrange
Be it the way another person behaves or common, every day occurrences, we all have things which get on our nerves.
Most of the time it's best to grin and bear it.
But next time you see someone litter, it might be a fine opportunity to let that anger out.
For your sake, and everyone else's.