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My mom sucks at giving compliments. There. I said it. I know 50 of you guys are going to forward this article to her and rat me out, so let me explain. She means well and in her mind she truly is giving a compliment. She just words things terribly, like she has this thing for pairing a compliment with a "constructive criticism." To my mom, saying something like "you're so beautiful, you'd be an absolute stunner if you lost weight" is just her telling you that she thinks you're beautiful - and have the potential to be woman-in-the-red-dress-Matrix-scene-head-turningly-distracting kind of gorgeous. All compliments! To the outside world she totally called you fat.


So I went most of my life never really hearing compliments when my mother thought she was giving them all the time. Then it happened, in ninth grade during the peak of my awkward era, I overheard her tell one of her friends that she loved the way I sang and that she knew I stayed up for hours after she sent me to bed because I would sing to myself for hours at night, but she never came in and told me to go to bed because she loved getting her own little concert.

Sure, my mom is biased - but she's also one of those painfully honest brown moms who absolutely would have told her friends if my singing voice was pure caca, ya know?

Moms are so pure, you guys.

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One Reddit user asked:

What's the most kind/beautiful thing you've overheard about yourself by accident?

And yup, it's exactly as warm and fuzzy as you think it is. So come on, guys. Let's do this. Brace yourselves, we're aiming straight for your feels.

Pretty Hard Not To

I don't have a lot of coworkers (about 13 altogether and I only work directly with 4-5). But when I was in the break room I heard a few of them talking about a coworker they don't like, saying she's rude to everyone. And one of them said "She's pretty nice to [whatever my name is]." And the others said "Well, everyone likes [whatever my name is], pretty hard not to." It was hard to walk back in there and not be like LOVE YOU TOO THANKS GUYS!

- merlot-o

That Fire

My dad doesn't really compliment people. He's the quiet type that hides behind jokes and sarcasm. However, I once heard him talk to an old friend of his at a Christmas party, saying; "That's my kid right there. Pure rock n' roll, just like his old man. Never gives up, just keeps steaming on like a freight train. I tell ya, some kids just have that fire, you know?"

- Saturdead

The World's Expert

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This isn't my story, but it's my favorite.

My college professor researched Egyptian mummified cats. He was back at the British museum looking at some cats and they had a staff shift while he was still in there. He started talking to the new guy on his way out and the guy says, "if you're interested in mummified cats, you should talk to [professor's name]. He's the world's expert in mummified cats." My professor was speechless for a moment and then said "I'm [professor's name]"

And that's how he learned he was the world's expert.

- uselessfoster

Good Job

Was home from college and my parents thought I was asleep. Heard them complimenting each other on how they "did a good job" raising me and how I had turned out really well.

- quantumhobbit

Worth The Effort

I had a girl over (first time dating in years) and my roommate (female, super close friend) was there as well. Heard my roommate say "I know he's shy and a little awkward at first but give it a shot, he's super sweet and really funny once he's comfortable, he's worth the effort". Gave me a huge much needed boost since I struggle with confidence and usually don't like myself.

- theImplication69

The Conference Call

Was on a conference call with one of our clients and they didn't know I was on it. I hadn't said anything since I was just taking notes. The client went: "It's a shame he's not on this call as I'd like him to know that he's positively changed the working life of many people and his work was much appreciated." I had to walk away and cry as it was my last day.

- LantusSolostar

Happy Laugh

I was joking around with some acquaintances at a party and somebody got me with a really funny joke. I started giggling like a madman and I heard a girl on the other end of the room turn to my sister and say "I just love his laugh, It's so happy!" and she responded "I know!"

That still makes me smile when I remember.

- pmapic4acompliment

The Honest Hottie

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Once, at a drive through, I was given an extra $20 bill change by accident. I gave it back to the clerk, and as I drove away I heard her turn to her co-worker and say "What an honest guy!"

Then I heard her co-worker say "yeah- he was really hot, too!"

I blushed so hard the whole way home with my greasy cheeseburger.

- OneFaraday

Mom Compliments Are The Best

When my Mom defends me over things I didn't think she cared about or notice. Like my weight training and powerlifting. All my siblings think it's unproductive and a waste of time because it doesn't fit into their small minded world of what a stay at home Mom should be doing.

I've heard her tell them how important it is to me and how much I love it because it's something I'm good at. I've always felt like an idiot, a screw up and s loser who could never finish anything I started. This meant a lot to me. I've heard her say stuff along the lines of somehow finding time to train and time to be a great Mom. That meant a lot because if you're a Mom, you'd understand when I say, I never feel like a good Mom even though you know damn well you're doing great. Mom guilt sucks.

I've lost 135 pounds and am on track for having a state record in all 3 squat, bench and deadlift in February. That's a fucking personal accomplishment to me. Waste of time? I'd like to tell my brothers and sisters to go jump in a lake....or go to church or go shopping or whatever the hell you do.

- sauerpatchkid

The Teacher Who Changed Everything

I was hospitalized for six months after a suicide attempt as a teenager. I had to go to school in the hospital. I love languages and every week a French teacher would come in and give me French lessons. She gave me an essay to write for homework and I wrote about my illness. I overheard her telling my nurse that it was a joy to correct my work. It might not seem like much, but to a 17 year old girl who felt totally worthless, it meant the whole world. I wish I could tell that teacher that I'm almost finished my degree in modern languages now.

- PrettyInteraction62

Must Be Fate

I'm a 19-year-old virgin, no girlfriend, haven't dated anyone since last year, so I kinda feel like shit sometimes

Recently met a girl, we've been on three dates.

On our 3rd date she gave me her phone to show me something on her twitter, as I scroll down I accidentally saw a tweet from her talking about me as her crush, that we both like a particular thing and that must be fate/sign of destiny.

I acted like I didn't see sh!t, scrolled up and gave her phone back. I'm aware that being on a 3rd date means that she kinda like me, but this really comforted me and gave me a huge boost. I hope that we'll end up as a couple as I really like her.

- Hydreo

Art Critic

In my freshman year of high school, everyone put up art installments around the school for a project. Mine involved drawing these floating heads that I spent hours on though I was still really hesitant about putting it up because I didn't think it was good enough.

A few days later, I remember these older girls walked past it and one said that it scared her because she thought it was an actual person for a moment and the other said it was the best project in the school. As an insecure little pansy b*tch, that honestly gave me so much confidence and helped me feel a lot better about my art.

I was too shy to be like "Hey, that's me!" but this is something that's stuck with me for a while and makes me feel a little better from time to time.

- starsyph

All The Family He Needs

My best friends father, who was like my own father before he passed away recently. I had overheard him say "...he's a great man, way better than his dad. And if his dad can't see that then fuck him, he doesn't need him. We're all the family he needs." This was a man who wasn't opt to share his thoughts, or feelings, on the subject of my family, so it was nice to hear that I wasn't a burden to him and that he believed that my own father was a fool.

- Chrio

The Literature Assignment

I'm not sure if this counts, but I think it does. My literature class had an assignment to write a letter to someone who had affected our lives and what we wanted to say to them. We could have the letters given to them after the assignment if we wanted. After the assignment, the teacher gave me a letter from one of my friends that said how much he appreciated me as a friend and how I inspired him to have a good attitude about problems. I didn't know that anyone really even noticed or liked me at that point, and I almost cried.

- NotAVet_Yet

Just Like Grandpa

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My parents lived with my family for a couple months, because to make a long story short, my dad got hurt at work and wouldn't be able to go back to work for at least several months.

I helped guide them through their financial situation, move out of their place into mine, and helped them make a new budget they had confidence in while my brothers and I fixed and cleaned their house for sale - all while working full time and having two kids.

My parents were a bit stressed out and very nervous, but happy someone (my brothers did quite a lot too, especially at their house, which is about 40 minutes away) could help take care of them.

Their temporary home was a big room right next to our kitchen. One day, they left the door to their room open and I overheard my mom say, "Of our three kids, they remind me most of my dad."

Which really hit me because my grandpa was a wonderfully generous person and a humble leader in every sense. He also became a self-taught engineer for a major Midwest pharmacy tech company. I named my son after him.

- notsurethepoint

This 2 For 1 Compliment

In college, we were giving presentations in this one class and I gave my presentation last. After class I was in the back of a packed elevator and I overheard a girl from my class say to her friend "that last presentation was honestly pretty interesting" and her friend said "who's presentation? Oh, the one that the girl with the really good jawline gave?"

A good presentation AND a killer jawline?!? Still kind of coasting on that one a couple years later.

- Carabou11

Princess

I was in the bathroom at the department store fixing my makeup and self. I had had a terrible day and as I was leaving, a little girl with her grandma saw me, and I overheard her say "wow that girl looks like a princess!!" Made my entire day :)

- swiggityswoogity895

Ranting And Raving

I accidentally overheard someone describe my ranting as an orgasm for their brain.

It has been something I grab from my pocket in times of low self esteem. It felt so good to hear!!

- byte-rider

A Christmas Angel

I was working retail and this very old lady came in. It was around Christmas time and she said that her daughter wanted a specific bracelet we sold. I asked her if she had a picture or knew what it looked like. She pulls out her flip phone and shows me a pixelated picture of a bracelet that I know we sold out of that morning. As I told her, she was heart broken. However, we can order items from our store on iPads and send it directly to her house.

As I pulled up the bracelet she wanted on the iPad, her face lit up. When I told her we can have it shipped to her house in 2 days, free shipping... she cried.

And to top it off we had a 40% off coupon that I applied to her order. As I told her she was good to go, she bawled and hugged me so tight. As she was leaving, still choked up she told her husband, who was in a wheelchair waiting for her at the entrance, that I was a Christmas angel.

I will never forget that. Sometimes you just need to give your time, attention and a little patience to make someone's Christmas!

- killerkickzz

"She's Actually Incredible" 

When I was in high school, I was the lead in the school play. We were getting ready for the debut show that night, and I saw that I had a voicemail from my best friend. When I listened to it, I realized that she had just pocket dialed me by accident. I wasn't going to listen to it because it was just the sound of her driving with the radio on, but then I heard our other friend say "Is she actually good at acting? Have you seen her act before?" To which my friend replied "Oh my god, she's actually incredible. I've seen her do performances where I've honestly been brought to tears. Just wait until you see her. You will be blown away."

It just warmed my heart that I overheard a conversation that I was never supposed to hear, but it was my friend saying the most lovely and supportive things about me. I never forgot that.

- luna-lemon

Image by Anemone123 from Pixabay

Life is hard. It's a miracle to make it through with some semblance of sanity. We are all plagued by grief and trauma. More and more people of all backgrounds are opening up about personal trauma and its origins. Finally! For far too long we've been too silent on this topic. And with so many people unable to afford mental health care, the outcomes can be damaging.

All of our childhoods have ups and downs and memories that can play out like nightmares. We carry that, or it follows us and the first step in recovery is talking about it. So who feels strong enough to speak?

Redditor u/nthn_thms wanted to see who was willing to share about things they'd probably rather forget, by asking:

What's the most traumatizing thing you experienced as a child?
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Image by klimkin from Pixabay

Being single can be fun. In fact, in this time of COVID, being single can save lives. But the heart is a fickle creature.

And being alone can really suck in times of turmoil. None of us are perfect and it feels like that's all anyone is looking for... perfect.

Now that doesn't mean that all of us are making it difficult to partner up. Sure, some people are too picky and mean-spirited, but some of the rest of us are crazy and too much to handle. So one has to be sure.

The truth is, being single is confusing, no matter how much we try to match. So let's try to understand...

Redditor u/Mcxyn wanted to discuss some truths about love and our own issues, by asking:

Why are you single?
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Tiard Schulz/Unsplash

Whether you're an at home parent, a college student just leaving the nest, or a Food Network junkie, there are a few basic tips that everyone should know.

Chef's gave us some of their top tips for amateurs and beginner at home cooks that will really make a difference. They are trained professionals with years of experience in the kitchen, so they definitely know what we're all missing.

If you're looking to improve some of your cooking skills and techniques, but you're still learning how to boil water correctly, this list is for you.

Redditor BigBadWolf44 wanted in on the secrets and asked:

"Chefs of Reddit, what's one rule of cooking amateurs need to know?"

Let's learn from the masters!


What a common mistake!

"A lot of the time when people add salt to a dish because they think it tastes flat, what it really needs is an acid like lemon juice or vinegar."

- Vexvertigo

"Instructions unclear I drugged my dinner party guests and now they're high on acid."

- itsyoboi_human

"Yes! Or tomatoes. They're pretty acidic too and go with so many things. Our dinners are so much better once the garden tomatoes are ripe. Or if a dish is too acidic, oil/butter or a little sugar can help add balance to it."

- darkhorse85

"Like tomato and eggs. Every Chinese mom makes those slightly differently and I haven't had a tomato egg dish I didn't like yet."

- random314

"There's a book called 'Salt Fat Acid Heat' that comes highly recommended to amateur cooks."

- Osolemia

"Reading even just the first chapter about salt made a lot of food I cooked immediately better, because I finally understood salt wasn't just that thing that sat on the dinner table that you applied after the meal was cooked."

- VaultBoy42

"Salt is important for sweets. A batch of cookies without that little hint of salt doesn't taste quite right."

- Osolemia

Unfortunately, this tip might not be accessible to everyone. Many people who contracted COVID can no longer use their sense of smell the way they used to.

"Have a friend that lost his smell from COVID, and now he only recognizes if food is salty, sweet, sour or bitter."

- AlphaLaufert99

"Just wait until he gets his sense of smell back and a ton of foods smell like ammonia or literal garbage now. Yeah, that's fun... It's been 7 months for f*cks sake just let me enjoy peanut butter again!!!!!!!!!"

- MirzaAbdullahKhan

You can't take back what you've already put in.

"You can always add, but you cannot take away."

- El_Duende666

"I find people's problems usually are they're too scared to add rather than they add too much."

- FreeReflection25

"I see you also grew up white in the mid-west."

- Snatch_Pastry

Safety first!

"Not really a cooking tip, but a law of the kitchen: A falling knife has no handle."

- wooddog

"I'm always so proud of my reflexes for not kicking in when I fumble a knife."

"If I drop anything else, my stupid hands are all over themselves trying to catch it (and often failing). But with a knife the hardwired automatic reaction is jump back immediately. Fingers out of the way, feet out of the way, everything out of the way. Good lookin out, cerebellum!"

- sonyka

"Speaking of KICKING in. On first full time cooking job I had a knife spin and fall off the counter. My (stupid) reflex was to put my foot under it like a damn hacky sack to keep it from hitting the ground. Went through the shoe, somehow between my toes, into the sole somehow without cutting me. Lessons learned: (1) let it fall; (2) never set a knife down close to the edge or with the handle sticking out; (3) hacky sack is not nearly as cool as it could be."

- AdjNounNumbers

"Similarly, NEVER put out a grease or oil fire with water. Smother with a lid or dump baking soda in there (do not use flour, as it can combust in the air making things worse)."

- Metallic_Substance

How else will you know it tastes good?

"Taste the food."

- OAKRAIDER64

"Also don't be afraid to poke and prod at it. I feel like people think the process is sacred and you can't shape/flip/feel/touch things while you cook them. The more you are hands on, the more control you have."

"No, this does not include situations where you are trying to sear something. Ever try flipping a chicken thigh early? That's how you rip a chunk out of it and leave it glued to the pan until it's burnt."

- Kryzm

Here's one just for laughs.

"When you grab a pair of tongs, click them a few times to make sure they are tongs."

- Kolshdaddy

"People really overlook this one. You've gotta tong the tongs a minimum of 3 times to make sure they tong, or else it can ruin the whole dish."

- BigTimeBobbyB

If you're looking to get into cooking or to improve you technique, pay attention to these few tips.

Salt generously, add an acid to brighten things up, and don't forget to taste your food!

If all else fails, you can always order take out.

Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.

Victoria_Borodinova/Pixaba

As part of the learning process, children often do embarrassing things before they learn a little more about the world and all the different implications therein. While the inappropriate moment is usually minor and ends in laugher some instances are truly mortifying.

One such instance involved a little sister who was around 6 at the time. It was the 90s and at the height of the youth-focused PSAs (think the frying egg representing your brain). One type was a safety PSA about stranger danger. The speaker would remind the children that if a stranger tried to take you anywhere to yell “Stop, you're not my mommy/daddy" to raise the alarm.

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