When driving around on a long trip, you're liable to pass through towns of all stripes. You'll wind through big cities, inspiring earthly landscapes, and small, unknown little dots on the map.
And those tiny little towns can seriously pack a punch.
You might only drive through for about 15 minutes, maybe fill up the gas tank and grab a drink from the corner store, but that's all it takes to catch a vibe.
There's something about the buildings, the people, or the desolate quality of the entire place that's enough to make your skin crawl.
Some Redditors took a moment to describe the towns that freaked them out completely.
sorvivordemigod asked, "What are some of the Scariest Small Towns in America?"
Plenty of people described the places that legitimately seemed haunted. Some people even treated readers to the backstory and broader context of the creepy place left behind.
Other times, they could just tell.
People Explain The Worst Thing That's Ever Happened To Them On Their Birthday
Reddit Users Share Their Best 'It's A Small World After All' Experience
"Carpenter, WY. It's a super tiny town. I've only driven through once, so I can't say it's super scary, definitely creepy though. The one time I was there there was nobody outside except this little girl outside the town hall that just stared at us while we drove by, shaking her head the whole time."
"On the way out of town we did see a kid playing basketball in his backyard, so that mitigated the creepiness of the little girl."
A Mix of Influences
"Samoa, California. I've been in some weird places. Nowhere has ever creeped me out like that little village of the damned."
"Imagine Stephen King and David Lynch fell asleep playing Silent Hill, and shared a fever dream directed by John Carpenter."
"Anyone who's been there feel free to back me up. There's a straight up evil energy there."
Remnants of a Cult
"Rulo, Nebraska. The town has a real haunted vibe to it. Lots of abandoned buildings with no one around."
"Plus it was home to a Christian Identity cult lead by Michael Ryan in the early 1980's that tortured and murdered several members. Ryan was sentenced to death for the murders but ended up dying in prison before the sentence was carried out."
"Rod Colvin wrote a book about this cult called 'Evil Harvest.' "
Lived In, But Empty
"Yellowdog, PA. Here's one account."
"I guess it's not super scary, but one of my elementary school friends grew up there and I probably stayed there every other week for like ten years. They eventually moved out. It took maybe five years later and the whole place was abandoned."
"We went to visit not that long ago and it's fu**ing creepy. There are still toys and stuffed animals just lying around. The houses are in bad shape but they're all still standing, and you can absolutely just go in and have a look around."
"Hillsville, PA aka Zombieland. Some crazy local legends brewed up about that place over the years. Involving lighting a torch in the woods to begin your journey, a haunted bridge, graveyard & murder house."
"Was really fun to go there back in High school. Theres a really creepy underpass decorated in hundreds of statues of mother Mary before going up what seems a 90 degree incline to actually get up into the hills."
Other people explored creepy towns that drew their horror from more secular sources. The actual behavior of people and other man-made entities can sometimes be as scary as old legends or haunted ghosts.
A Fleet in Pursuit
"Colorado City, AZ if you are not known there, you will be followed by several white SUVs." -- brockdaywatch
"First place that came to my mind! You get a weird vibe driving through and seeing all these half built compounds and people just stare at you as you drive by" -- libtech1776
Just Something Awry
"Orangeburg, SC Had to spend a week there for work once. From the moment I arrived, I felt uneasy. The town was eerily quiet when I drove in. I felt like I was in a post-apocalyptic movie of some sort. I'm a pretty happy guy and I loved my job but I felt depressed all week and don't think I smiled once while I was there. Not one person I worked with that week seemed happy either."
"The hotel I stayed at gave me the creeps. There was quite a bit of drug activity going on in the parking lot which made the situation worse. I had to move to another hotel in the middle of the night because I didn't feel safe. The week went by so slow. On my departure day, I woke up early and booked it tf out of there. Once I was on the highway headed to the airport, I felt such relief."
Let It Burn
"My GPS re routed me through Gary Indiana last week. There was a literal car fire in a neighborhood it routed me through."
"Seemed to have been burning for a while...no one around. 👍"
"Protected by levies. Mostly abandoned."
" 'What is it, would you say, you actually do here?' "
"The area around Manly, Lousiana. The town was nice, great Mexican food. But once you're out of town...it's 30 min on bad roads to the highway. I was sent out there for a job. Nothing is paved, 'county roads' are gravel or dead end into gully's, wild dogs roaming, and random houses are just abandoned in the woods. Locals from town won't go into some of the areas like Coushetta. Nothing matches the map, and there was no cell service. I passed an abandoned hospital? Or something, it was a sign and then foundations in the woods."
"The creepiest part was I was talking to some locals and a guy tells me out of no where 'oh yeah, I saw you by the lake, figured you weren't from here' I hadn't seen him there at all. It was a one lane dirt road. He kept talking and it turned he knew where I'd been all day. He and his friends had kept tabs on me. And his smile scared the hell out of me. I've never left a town so fast."
"I feel like this comment doesn't fully explain the weirdness and creepiness of the abandoned houses, wild dogs and locals keeping tabs on me all day."
Guardians of the Tunnel
"Hawthorne Nevada was a very strange place. It has a navel base in the middle of the desert and a lake called walker lake that's rumored to have a tunnel for subs to go to the pacific."
"When I drove thru and stopped for gas there everyone wouldn't stop staring and it just gave me a vibe."
Finally, some people could point to a very true, historic reason for the way a place turned out. Natural disasters and other mass tragedies laid the groundwork for total eeriness.
The Influence of One Man
"Skidmore, MO. The whole town cowered down to a bully, Ken McElroy for years as he stole, raped, and intimidated the residents. Then one day they had enough and gunned him down outside the local bar."
"I visited the town several years later while in the area on business and I got the weirdest vibe from the townsfolk. Perhaps it was because I was an outsider and they were probably sick of the notoriety and unwanted attention. Whatever it was, I couldn't get out of there fast enough."
"Newtown, MO. Part of St Charles I'm pretty sure. Place is eerie. The trees line up too perfectly. No noise. No dogs barking. No kids playing. Nobody just waking around."
"The houses are all less than 10 years old but nearly identical and made to look like 1910s-20s bungalows. Landscaping is pristine. Then 'downtown' there are frikkin massive animal statues and the buildings all look like the Parthenon."
"It feels like those videos demonstrating the effects of a nuke, if a place could feel like that."
"I'm surprised no one mentioned Picher, OK."
"When the Tornado went through in 2008, it destroyed a majority of the town. However, it was known for their piles 'chat' a residue that comes from Zinc mining. Little did the realize how incredibly toxic this was as it was used for building roads, sidewalks, and sandboxes."
"Kids of the area would even play in the piles unbeknownst to them the dangers associated with it. Eventually there would be an influx of cases of children having learning disabilities and a school guidance counselor sought to have the tests done to check for lead poisoning. The town became a toxic waste ground and the EPA had to force residences to evacuate the area."
"Going into that town know, it's nothing more than a grave-site - this video shows a documentary filmmaker (Dan Bell) walking through the town and showing what remains. Truly scary and at the same time depressing."
"Cairo, Illinois. Drove through a few times with my boyfriend when he was a truck driver. Had a very spooky and dark feeling to it. Only place open was a subway.. and all the lights in the parking lot were out."
"I looked the town up and apparently a flood had come through and destroyed most of the town years before. What was left was probably the most unwelcome, eeiry place I've had the dissatisfaction of visiting."
There's no doubt you've passed through just such a town in your day.
The question then becomes, did it pique your interest enough to go back, or spook you so much you never will?
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You work hard for your money, you should be allowed to use it.
What's the most expensive thing you've bought?
Being an adult means sometimes, the most expensive thing you can buy, is something extremely practical and inoffensive.
Aw, That's Nice
"Diamond earrings for my mother. She believes that you can't buy diamonds for yourself, as a tradition, but no one has ever given her diamonds as a gift, so when I grew up and started earning money, I bought her earrings, she cried with happiness."
Should Have Kept It Small
"Small boat w/ trailer. Worst decision ever. I should've just gone with a kayak"
"Mountain bike. It cost more than any car I've ever owned"
"I only slightly regret the price because I should have gone higher. Yeti SB130 if you're wondering."
Treat Your Fingers
"An Ibanez Prestige guitar for 1500$. I've always played on normal priced guitars so wanted to try what the deal is with these higher priced guitars. The thing plays like a dream. Being new to a floyd rose bridge system, it is a pita but I'm sure I'll overcome this hurdle later. In case anyone is wondering, it is a model RG652AHM."
The most expensive thing you buy might not even be something you were expecting to spend a lot of money on. In fact, it might be something you didn't even plan on buying in the first place.
Something To Play On
"A ps4 at a third-world country."
"You think ps5 scalpers that sell the console for thousands of dollars are bad? That's cute. They ain't got shit on legit big stores that import the console legitimately and have to raise the price because of nasty import taxes."
"I bought a Gaming PC and the cost was like buying a Cheap Motorcycle in my country (Mexico)"
"Gaming in 3rd World Countries is hard , no wonder why everyone plays mobile games like Free Fire"
Do They Make Good Pets?
"I got pigeons as pets, 4 in total. My second pigeon I brought him (Pulgas) from a slaughter house cause I was looking for a mate for my first pigeon (Nieves). Well I ended up paying $20 for him and after a month he got really sick and we had to take him to the vet. After treatment and care the total cost was $550. And that's how I ended up with a $570 pigeon named Pulas, the little isopod of the house lol"Bormahu-3-
Buying Something That Might Explode One Day
"A freeze dryer. This thing had an 80 lb vacuum pump that ran on mineral oil and it could drop the air pressure of its chamber to below 300mTorr and the temperature to below -50 F. It would take about 36-48 hours to freeze dry 7 lbs of food. It was an electricity hog and probably could have exploded or caused a fire if operated incorrectly."
"I kept it in my parent's garage."
Looking at all the entries, for the average person, the most valuable thing you own might be the very thing you're living in.
Or clothes. It could be clothes.
"But it was worth it"
"Marriage is grand. Divorce is 5 grand."
Hurts Now. Pays You Back Later.
"Yep! And then all the things you need to work on in the house..."
"The Great thing about a house, though, is that while it is extremely expensive (absolutely the most expensive thing I have ever purchased by far) it is almost guaranteed to make you money over time. Where I live, housing is at a premium. We bought our first home a year and a half ago and it's estimated value has already risen $70 k. It's an investment that you also get to live in and enjoy. That's not something you can say about all expensive purchases."
It's A Storage Unit Full Of Useless Crap
"I'm going to clarify the question by adding "useless" to the sentence. The obvious answers as the question stands are going to be those big ticket items like a house or car, luxury or not."
"So what's the most expensive, useless item I have ever purchased?"
"Well, maybe useless wasn't the best choice but I bought an RV with a payout received from a court case. Should have paid bills or something. I rarely use it."
"I once dropped $3500 on "dress clothes" at Macy's only to never wear them because the office I worked at wasn't business formal."
"I pay monthly for a storage unit full of stuff I don't need or want but can't manage to get rid of."
"When I get a windfall like a bonus or stimulus check, I like to go on AliExpress or Joom and buy $2-300 worth of useless crap."
Don't fret over what you own. Enjoy it. There's no reason no to be thankful you could afford it in the first place.
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Rules are in place to maintain some semblance of order. But that doesn't mean they are always effective.
There are many grammatical rules that are broken, like nouns acting as adjectives, or nouns acting like verbs.
To explore this concept and to hear input from strangers online, Redditor Shabbydarstqc asked:
"What 'exception to the rule' do you live by?"
According to these Redditors, telling the truth doesn't always set them free.
"Being honest. There's times where the truth isn't always for the better."
"You can be honest but you don't have to tell them everything you know."
Feel The Room
"Actually, when you are saying the truth you should consider why you are saying it. If it's to make someone look bad or yourself look good, you should say nothing at all."
Reeling It In
"Everything in moderation, including moderation."
"Basically, exercise restraint and self-control, but not to an extent that it bars me from new experiences, and with the understanding that it's okay to be a complete, sloppy disaster person sometimes."
Generally speaking, we should all treat everyone with kindness.
But, when we're wronged, do we take it lying down?
"Be nice to everyone, you never know what they are dealing with..."
"Except the b*tch that made a huge scene about my disabled son in a packed store at the checkout."
So What Happened Was...
"My son was 5 at the time. He has Septo-optic dysplasia, schizencephaly, and autism. Basically, he's missing two parts of his brain, had brain surgery for a large mass from the schizencephaly, totally blind in one eye and tunnel vision in the other. (It's honestly a miracle he is as functional as he is)."
"Anyway, we were behind the woman currently checking out. There was coloring books at the end of the check out line. He asked if he could look at them and I said that's fine. So he starting flapping his hands while walking that way because he was excited. The side she was standing on was the side he can't see out of. While flapping, his hand grazed her backside and she went off that he groped her. Yelled and pointed in the store that my 5 year old, that you can physically see is disabled- sexually assaulted her by groping her butt. Thankfully he had no idea the scene was about him because he was looking at the coloring books at that point. Im not one to yell, especially in public but I did. Then went to my car and cried wondering how many people like this he's gonna have to deal with in his life. It sucked."
It's all a matter of preference for these Redditors.
Being In Control
"Everyone in the neighborhood hires a lawn service to mow, weed, and trim their properties."
"I do my own - not because I can't afford it, but because I prefer the results when I do it myself."
"100%, same for food."
"$15 at home gets you a family meal and maybe leftovers, tastes good, decently healthy."
"$30 out gets you a family meal that is kind of meh, too salty and probably too greasy."
"Home Ec is a dying art."
"All things sugar free - except my coffee."
"Hah I'm the other way around. I love sugar, but keep it away from my coffee."
A Matter Of Taste
"Vegetarian except for lobster corn chowder."
"In my defense, the haters claim there is no actual lobster in the chowder so that's my excuse for eating it. It's been so long since I've had actual lobster that I forgot what it tastes like."
Going Off The Footpath
"Shoes. I just don't wear them unless I'm snowboarding, my boss is gonna show up to work, or I plan on doing a lot of walking around outside in the snow."
"I don't care about the needing to wear shoes signs at places."
As a general fan of cinema, I am open to watching all genres of film.
I'm also a huge fan of horror, and I can take bloody carnage, and everything having to do with the supernatural.
However, there is ONE film I refuse to watch, and that's Human Centipede.
Seriously, why would anyone ever watch it? I don't have to see it to know it is gratuitous and made for shock value only.
I challenge anyone that might argue it has artistic integrity. And if they try to make me watch it to prove a point, I just might allow them the win if only to spare me from puking my guts out.
Secrets, lies, and betrayal. That is often the foundation of a family. We can go through life thinking our families are perfect and everyone loves one another, that's the training that keeps us from searching for the skeletons in the closets.
But our secrets will always find a way to break free. We may not even be alive to see the outcome, which is anti-climactic, but they will be out of the dark eventually. And once we learn what some loved ones are hiding, life as we know it can be obliterated.
Some secrets may best be buried. So be really sure you want to know everything.
Redditor u/mykirto wanted to hear about all the family drama they've been uncovered, by asking:
What is the most f**ked up thing you found about your family?
My family has a history that includes the mafia, the FBI, murder in an asylum, alcohol, drugs... the list is endless. And I'd rather just watch Days of Our Lives.
Family IssuesStephen Colbert Love GIF by The Late Show With Stephen ColbertGiphy
"My mother told me that my dad, wasn't my real dad, drunk one night when I was 16. That was 31 years ago. To this day his side of the family still thinks I'm his."
Show me the $$$
"One of my uncles borrowed $20,000 from my other more successful Uncle to start a business and refuses to pay his more successful brother back because he's "got so much money already". The more successful uncle refuses to sue him because that's not what family does, but they are no longer on speaking terms."
Mum is crazy...
"My great-grandmother helped cover up a murder. Claimed the guy was a psychopath and attacked her daughter and granddaughter for no reason. In actuality, my mum was going through a phase where she would try to get men turned on by rubbing her arse on them. This guy pushed her off and told her to screw off."
"My mum took offence to this and claimed the guy was trying to take her clothes off. My grandmother, who was on all the drugs, came out of her room and stabbed the guy to death to protect her daughter. My mum told the truth after the guy was dead and they came up with a cover up story so that they wouldn't get in trouble."
We were on a BREAK!!!
"My grandpa and grandma broke up for a few weeks in August 1962. In that one week my grandpa got drunk one night and got the woman living across the hall from my grandma pregnant, and my grandma had a fling with a married man while on the late shift as a bartender and got pregnant herself. My grandparents got married and my grandma passed my aunt barb off as my grandpas child."
"The other woman gave my aunt Joyce up for adoption. Both were born exactly a week apart. 30 years later my mom was getting married and visited my Grandmas sister to hand out wedding invitations. My Grandmas sister decided that was the perfect occasion to tell my mother out of nowhere that my Aunt Barb was not my grandpas biological daughter. My mom was shocked and confronted my Grandma after the visit and who denied it."
"My mom then decided stupidly to keep it secret. It was kept a secret from my Aunt Barb for 40 years until my aunt Joyce found my grandpa and looked exactly like him. That is when my aunt Barb had a DNA test done and confirmed she wasn't his daughter. It took my aunt barb 17 years to find her real fathers family and she finally found them last year. They all accepted her into the family."
WTFSteve Harvey Reaction GIFGiphy
"My Dad lives in his car and is only given enough money for basic food and is only allowed in the house to clean it. He's more of a household servant than anything."
Yeah, that is a whole lotta mess. That's why sometimes you just have to change your name, or fake your death. These people are crazy.
CaptorFrustrated Skip Bayless GIFGiphy
"I have done extensive genealogical research and found that my maternal family enslaved over 700 human beings."
"My grandad had sex with everyone of my grandma's 5 sisters, over about 40 years, 3 he had long term affairs with. It all came out at my grandma's 60th birthday party when everyone had too much to drink. Fun times, trying to get between several old women, trying to prevent them from punching one another."
"While cleaning out a relative's house after his funeral, we discovered that the family member was virtually on a first name basis with every major law enforcement department (city, state and federal) within a 100 mile radius. Among other things, he had consulted on FBI cases."
"He wore his disdain for all politicians openly. So, imagine our surprise to discover that he'd been invited to almost every Presidential inauguration within the last forty'ish years. I never had any illusions that I ever truly knew this family member. But if I had, they would've gone away after discovering all that stuff."
"My great grandfather would lock my uncle in one of those big metal toolboxes you sometimes see in the back of trucks for hours as a form of punishment when he was a kid. I can't even imagine how hot it must have been being locked up outside in one of those during the summer. He must have been terrified. I see now why my uncle's a drug addict with a crap ton of mental health issues. And that's not even the worst thing my great grandfather did but that's not my story to tell."
Lord DNA can be messy. And now I want to know even less of my family's past. I'm going to cancel my Ancestry DNA package. Let's be strangers.
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There are some things that society just seems to expect adult humans to be able to do, but it looks like not everyone got the memo.
Whether due to never being taught, or a simple inability to pick up the skill no matter how much you practice, there are some things that some folks just can't do.
I was a teenager before I was finally able to properly ride a bicycle, and even now I'm not a stranger to falling off. Let me tell you: flying over the handle bars of a bike hurt a heck of a lot more at 25 than it did at 15.
Reddit user DeterminedGames asked the folks over on AskReddit:
Whistle While You Work
I can't whistle.
I'm certain it has something to do with the shape of my mouth and tongue. Been trying to whistle for 20 years and all i've managed is a very deep single tone that sounds like wind through an old building lol
Ugh I even watched YouTube tutorials and read a whole wikiHow article and I am still unable to do it.
Sticking With It Is Hard
Long-term passion for an activity.
There are people who remain active in a single hobby or club for decades. I can't do that. I burn out on most things after a couple months max.
I'm the same but I've convinced myself it isn't such a bad thing.
I enjoy trying new things and I'm kind of the 'jack of all trades but master of none' type, which I think is probably more useful in day to day life, rather than being really specialised at something.
I’ve always struggled with that. lately I’ve been trying to wrap new hobbies into my old ones. Oh, you’re tired of woodworking but doing photography? Guess what we’re filming your woodworking now!
Is It Worth It, Though?
Neatly folding the laundry. Usually it looks... acceptable. Unless it's a fitted sheet, then it just looks chaotic.
Shower thought: but is it worth it?
I can’t roll my R’s
So I’ll never be able to properly speak Spanish or impersonate AOSTH Robotnik
Same, my mother tongue has a lot of rolling Rs and I just never clicked it. It's taken me years of practice to even manage to do it properly occasionally, and if there are a lot of consonants around the R, there's no way I'm gonna say it right. People frequently laugh at my pronunciation of certain words in said language bc I sound like a lil kid or that dude in the Princess Bride. Meanwhile my younger brothers, who've lived in the UK all their lives, can speak the language with perfect accents. :/
Words Are Hard
I forget words and end up silent or saying something really stupid and then it's awkward.
I feel that, people always seem to have every word they need ready, and I'm just sitting there thinking of a single world that fits the situation...
I feel you. Sometimes I’m at the end of my sentence and then just forget the last part. I just give up on the sentence when that happens. Sometimes other people finish the sentence for me which is pretty awkward.
As Long As It Works
I can only tie my shoes by doing bunny ears
Yeah same and I don’t give a damn that I can’t do it the ‘adult’ way.
What's That Look For?
When someone gives me 'a look' I have absolutely no idea what they mean
People shouldn't always expect people to pick up on subtle signals, even if they think it's very obvious themselves.
And then they get mad because I couldn’t understand the “weshouldgotalkoutsidewhiletheyaregoingtodancesothatwecanbealoneandeatsomefreepizza” look. what the f**k?
I can't even make straight lines due to my hands being so shaky. Fortunately I can get around this by using art programs with bézier curves and other shaping tools.
Drawing is an unfathomable mystery to me. I just don't understand how people can do it. I've never been able to.
Talking to people randomly. I can carry the conversation for hours with literally anyone, but they have to initiate it
My brother is 48. He mostly has his same friend circle as we did in high school. Other people can be around for years but if they haven't initiated a conversation with him. He doesn't speak to them. People have said they thought he was an arrogant a*s but one day they said something to him directly and he talked their ear off. He's shy, not arrogant.
I Want To Ride My Bicycle
Bike riding. Never learned because I had supposed epilepsy and fainted a lot when younger.
I can't ride either. Tried to learn as a kid but couldn't get the hang of it. Friends tried to teach me as a bigger person. I can go, but can't turn. I'm afraid of getting hit by a car too.
You might get teased for not being good at any one of these skills. But the likelihood is, if you've made it this far without the skill, you're probably fine.