There's an old philosophical discussion about humans having no control over our lives. No matter how well you plan, you can always step out onto the street tomorrow morning and get hit by a bust. No muss, no fuss, and no control. However, on the rare moments when you do avoid the bus, you're left with a feeling of "Well...I survived." The people below know exactly what that feeling's like.
Reddit user, u/scissormytimbers, wanted to know what situation you aren't sure how you made it out of when they asked:
I am a flight instructor. The first 500 hours of flight is called the "killing zone".
However, many flight instructors are hired right out of flight school (190 hours to 250 hours depending on the path). I had maybe 200 hours at the time.
I flew into a small dark cloud that was obviously a thunderstorm. Completely dumb thing to do. Within seconds, ice built up on my wings and propeller.
Next thing I knew, I was falling out of the sky. Wings with ice on them no longer fly, nor did my propeller offer any power. My attitude indicator had tumbled, I had no idea of attitude, and my turn coordinator was beyond standard rate turn. Altimeter was circling fast, like 500 feet per second.
We broke out of the clouds maybe 500 feet above the ground, nose down, and I was able to recover within 100 feet of crashing into the ground.
I was training Chinese students at the time, and after that, they were scared of any weather.
100MPH To Hell
When I was 6, my mom, brother, neighbor, and her son all took a trip to the beach. On our way back, we were driving on the highway at about 75 MPH. I was in the car with my neighbor and her son. My mom was in the car behind her with my brother and his friend. (Side note, my mom and my neighbor were having an affair. My mom had filed for divorce 6 months prior to this event). My neighbor turns around to ask us what kind of ice cream we wanted at the next stop. Two 16 year olds were driving drunk on the opposite side of the highway. They came flying across the median and hit our car head on, going over 100 MPH.
Our SUV flipped over and over and over again- it was a crunched up mess by the time it came to a stop. My mom watched the whole thing. Both of the boys who hit us were killed on impact. My neighbor died. My neighbor's son had a fractured skull, broken ribs, broken arms, both broken legs.. he had to use a wheelchair and had pins in his legs for over a year. Apparently, my mom pulled over and pulled me out of the car. I was knocked out, and had blood ALL OVER me. She thought I was dead. Then I woke up and started crying hysterically.
I was fine. I wore my seatbelt because I wanted them to think I was responsible. Since I was so small, and wore my seatbelt, all that happened to me was a fracture in my skull, by my eye.
On August 4th 20 years had passed since the crash. My mom texted me and said that today marks 20 years since I was given back to her.
Motorcycle vs. SUV
This happened to me and my wife 2 weeks ago. We're on my motorcycle (wearing helmets) stopped with our signal on and displaying hand signals to turn left into our neighborhood.
We had sat there for about 10 seconds when an SUV (driver texting) plowed through us at 55mph.
Spent a week in the hospital an another week in rehab. I'm tied to a walker and the wife is wheelchair bound and will be for some time. It's amazing to consider how we survived. Very thankful to be here. We're finally home and it's going to be a long road. Luckily I work from home.
No Way To Breathe
I was swimming and got caught in an underwater cave/tunnel, had no clue where I was in relation to the entrance or exit, zero visibility, and no way I was getting out, my buddy luckily saw me struggling and somehow dragged me out just in time, 5 years ago and I still get heart palpitations when I think about it.
Yeah, I'll Go Ahead And Push That Tree. Why Not?
Was out hiking in my woods. Saw a dead tree that looked rotten and ready to fall across the trail. So I gave it a shove so that it would fall away from the trail.
It started falling, the trunk shattered on the side, and it was suddenly falling sideways. Hit another tree, bounced directly back at me.
Had just enough time to take a single step to the side as several hundred pounds of tree slammed into the ground right next to me, enough that I felt the ground shake.
Would have squished me like a grape had it hit.
Who Caused This Problem?Giphy
December, 1979, Cincinnati, Ohio, the Who concert. Myself and my friends were in the front waiting for the doors to open. In the background you could hear music playing, the crowd behind us started to rush to the door, I was literally picked up off of my feet. I'm in the air about 3 feet off the ground wedged between 2 bigger guys when my left leg got caught on the hand rails spreading me apart, I yelled once the pain became too much and a guy behind me lifted my leg over freeing me. Once inside the arena we settled down and smoked.
Then, when I went to relieve myself is when I saw the bodies covered up in sheets. Very thankful I was in front and not the middle. That concert is the reason we now have reserved seating vs. festival seating.
What Was In The Acid??
I fell sick for about a week. Couldn't eat or drink anything without it coming back up. Unbearable cramps to the point i couldn't walk. My mom thought it was menstral things until one night i was vomiting acid and things just stopped. Like everything stopped hurting and i felt this ease come over me. My mom comes in and immediately panics (i guess i was white, and my eyes were lifeless) but i felt so at peace. We rush to the hospital.
They took 9 hours to see me. At this point nurses and doctors kept trying to keep me awake but i just wanted to sleep. They ended putting me under and next thing you know im awake. And i woke up screaming. They said it was impossible for me to have made it as far as i did. This was 11 years ago.
**it was my appendix. It had ruptured the final night when things felt peaceful. And i was experiencing sepsis at that point.
In this day and age it can be difficult to flirt. Let's just talk truth. Everyone is trying to navigate a new normal where we try to let someone know... "Hey! I think you're cute!" Without getting the cops called. It can be done. There is a misconception running around that women don't like to be flirted with. That is untrue. Flirting and being a creepy disaster are two different things. Here... let's discuss...
Redditor u/hungary70 wanted to hear from the ladies out there about when they've some cute come ons by asking... Girls of Reddit, what was the best flirting technique someone did to you?
All my ladies will tell you... "Just be respectful!" How hard is that? Don't be handsy, and be able to read the room. And most of all? NO. Is no! It's literally that easy. Everybody likes to flirt. Flirting is fun. Let's see how...
The TubHappy Ice Cream GIF by GIPHY Studios OriginalsGiphy
He brought me a huge tub of my favorite ice cream flavor after hearing that I was having a bad day.
When I was 10 I received a love letter from a boy. It contained a flower inside, and at the bottom of the letter he wrote some cheat codes for Mortal Kombat for me. He knew I was always playing that game on my Sega.
13 Years In
I'm British, and I came over to the States on a temporary work visa, to do "one" ski season with Vail Resorts. I was bartending at an on mountain restaurant, and a couple of snowboarders come in and start talking to me. It came up that I was only there for the season, then one of them says "I'll marry you so you can stay... but we have to go on a date first".
... we just celebrated our 13 year anniversary, and I'm still in Colorado.
Rotted Fruitfruit of the loom GIF by NBAGiphy
"Hey do you want to help me throw fruit at my friends?" - 16 year old boy at summer camp, holding a bunch of oranges, who wanted to meet me. I was also 16 at the time.
The third time we hung out I went to his house. We were both in grad school and were talking in his room but I was exhausted from school and my 2 jobs. I was sitting on his bed and fell asleep. When I woke up he had put a blanket on me and was playing beautifully on the piano. I was so embarrassed cause I had drooled all over his pillow and surprised that he was so kind about the drool and not creepy about me being passed out on his bed.
We've been married for almost 4 years now and been together 8.
Bonus fun fact, his brother didn't believe I existed and accused him of making it up till I met him a year later. I was his first real girlfriend at like 25.
Oh I am feeling butterflies. I thought love was dead. So far, I've been given hope. Love can be born with trust. Tell me more...
Thanks to the Migraine
I was in Chicago on business, got a horrible migraine, and had to cancel a meeting with a man I had met with (for work) the day before. I get really bad migraines, really, really bad. After it was over I had to get a bit of food and something to drink, but it was very late and there was no way I would survive any kind of car/cab ride.
He was the only person I knew in town, so I sent him a text to see if he knew of anything in my area that would be safe/open that late within walking distance. He drove 30 min across town in the middle of the night to walk me to a 24hr restaurant and buy me dinner. I've been with him for 11 years now.
Was riding home with the friends group back in 2008. We stopped to drop off the one guy, and I got out to stretch. I mentioned that the stars were so much more visible up there in the mountains and he said, "Yeah, they're really pretty. Wish I had someone to watch em with."
I'm a sucker for corny guys. We got married the next year and are celebrating 12 years this June.
Happy HalloweenHocus Pocus Wtf GIF by FreeformGiphy
We met at a Halloween house party and when I was going to leave he walked me to the room with all the coats which also happened to be a kids room and he asked me "what color crayon would you like to write your phone number with?" I married him. Celebrated 20 years.
My first boyfriend came into the store where I was working and just straight up told me he had seen me through the window and needed to run home to clean up/put on something nice so he could come back and ask me on a date. It was super endearing :)
Edit to add: he didn't WATCH me through the window lol, just saw me in passing and wanted to ask me out.
This was well before dating apps where you basically had to ask in person. He was within my age range, nice smile and just had a good energy.
Also his secondary flirting technique worked just as well, he brought me a book on our second date because I had mentioned in passing that I loved to read :) he was good at making me feel heard.
Silencedeaf sign language GIFGiphy
Not me but my mum. My mum and dad were set up by a friend of theirs.
My mum is completely deaf, upon being told this before he met her my dad went out and learnt as much sign language as he could before he met her.... my mum doesn't know sign language... adorable and hilarious.
Women are so much better at this. And there is a lot to learn in this thread. I hope y'all gents took some notes. Willing gestures speak far more volumes than money, attitude or status. If you like then put a ring on it!
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There are just too many things we witness throughout life. And there are just some things no human should have to witness. I've lost track on the amount of things I wish I could unsee. Don't you walk away thinking... "Why God? Was that really necessary?" That one moment will almost certainly be one one the moments that you never escape. It's seared into the memory. There when our eyes are open and closed. Awake, asleep, it lingers.Redditor u/Rainbow-Pickel-Squid wanted to hear some stories to get us SHOOK by asking... [NSFW] What's the most f*cked up thing you've seen?
CAUTION!! Going forward, there is some material here not suitable for young eyes. NC-17!!
I'm easy to faint. My knees go weak at the drop of blood, mine or other's. So when I have to witness horrific life moments I try my best to flinch or look away. I just don't have the stomach for it all and my dreams are already rough enough. Let's see what everyone has had to flinch for...
The bruising and swelling of my dad's eyes after being shot in the head during a robbery. He did not make it.
We were at the lake with some friends. We were waiting at the dock for some more people to show up and we're just chilling in our boat. Well another boat came flying in and rammed the boat ramp. I noticed the people inside that boat were trying to lift a person off the floor.
I realized the people were covered in blood so I ran over to help. I jumped in the boat, and there was just pools of blood everywhere. And a dude that had gone face first into then boat propeller. I was 16 and will never forget the sound he was making, like trying to breath. His face was stripped like cut up almost perfectly. His jaw and one of his eyes dangling.
I helped them get him off the boat and onto a towel. Covered in blood, waited for an ambulance to arrive. He ended up dying about 20 min later. Legit didn't sleep for like 2 days. The worst part was there were two little girls in the boat, like maybe 6-8 years old. I can't imagine what trauma it did to them.
In the Fires
I was a firefighter for years and saw a lot, but one thing that still sticks with me is trying to perform CPR on someone who had been shot five + times. With the amount of bright red blood squirting out with every compression, we knew he was going to die but had to try something.
Bodies squished beyond recognition in car wrecks was always tough too, especially since it was often a hit and run or drunk driver in the bad wrecks.
Also, CPR on an infant is something that I never want to be involved in or see again in my life.
No one had noticed him...
Day at the lake...
Alice Lake, north of Vancouver toward Whistler, is a popular place to spend a summer day. There's a beach for those who don't mind chilly water, picnic ground, and a wooden pier. Our whole family was out there for a picnic, as were many others, enjoying Saturday in the woodland park.
Suddenly a man is striding through the the various knots of people: "We're looking for a two-year old boy who's gone missing..." The chatter and laughter stops in seconds; some people head for the forest to see if he's toddled up a trail, others to the parking lot or out in their canoe or boat to scour the shore. Nobody finds him.
Attention turns to the dock, usually crowded but now empty. RCMP members have arrived, and a man who has his diving gear in his car volunteers to search offshore; the distraught parents agree. He is in for less than a minute before his head appears. The cops speak with him. Shortly after, the boy's body is lifted from the swim ladder, covered in a sheet, and carried to a waiting ambulance.
The whole beach goes back to their day, but much subdued, many people visibly upset. Word comes that the boy had wandered through the busy pier and tried to climb down the ladder. He fell backwards, his legs hooking on the lowest rung as he went upside down and drowned.
No one had noticed him.
In the Box
The corpse of a woman who was in a metal box for 50 years.
I work at a cemetery and was helping with an exhumation. This person was in a metal casket. I was fairly new at that point and I had only seen bones so far so I wasn't expecting much different. I suppose the smell and the fact that the senior guys were wearing rain gear on a cloudless day should have clued me in on this being different. We had dug down to the casket, but here was difficulty with getting the casket out of the ground.
It was decided that we would get the doors off, remove the body, then remove the rest of the casket. For whatever reason I was the one told to get in the hole and open the doors to the casket once they were exposed. After ripping on the door to force it open I was met with a few seconds of pure, abject horror as I gazed upon the desiccated, lipless, eyeless face of a woman who was buried 50 years earlier, now 4 feet away from mine.
She still had teeth and hair, her eyes and nose had collapsed, and the rest of her exposed skin was some ghastly mix of yellow, green and blue. The bottom of the casket had a layer of yellow/green fluid that made me unable to swallow any of my saliva for the next hour without feeling the urge to throw up.
I was able to get somewhat over it and helped rig some spinal board thing with some ropes so we could slide it beneath her to lift her out of the hole (which was only 3.5 feet deep or so).
We had to prop up her upper body with a pitchfork to be able to slide the board beneath her, it was surprising how stiff and heavy she was. We got her into a temporary cardboard casket and she was loaded into the van of the coroner/funeral home people. I think the family had bought a mausoleum and that's why she was being transferred. So far that's the only really intact body that I've come across at work, people are usually dirt or bones by the time they can be disinterred.
Ok. I'm already grabbing for my vodka. I mean... helping someone with no face, from a blade propeller? I don't even know where to start. And I really don't want to. I'm taking a deep breath and then I'll try to continue...
On the Inside
Infected coronary bypass wound which ate through the sternum and rib cage, the patient had a hole in her chest and the whole heart, part of the lungs were visible. Disgusting and interesting at the same time.
Do Not Operate
A safety instruction video from where my cousin used to work. it was about how NOT to operate heavy machines. It was a security footage. A guy came up to the machine, he tripped and fell right into it. It started spinning him around, after a few seconds it ripped his legs and arms off, the floor was covered with his organs.
Happened last week. We were at a bar sitting on the patio. Hear a loud screech and then a thump. Someone drunk a-hole had hit a pedestrian going ~50 mph in this tiny, pedestrian friendly street. What makes it really messed up is that the victims legs came flying off. Like all the way off.
Didn't even land near the dude. Cops and ambulance were there real quick and we saw them loading the guy up quite clearly missing important body parts. I keep checking the news and there's been no word about his status.
I used to fix computers back in the 90s. Y'all have no idea how much messed up crap people download. Holy crap the amount of horrific violence I came across is absolutely insane, and a lot of times the stuff wasn't even hidden, they'd save to their desktop or something.
I called the cops every time I saw stuff that was actually illegal, of course, but you can't unsee that horror. It was horrible. It really messed me up.
On the Cam
That one dashcam video where a family are driving along and a pole or a plank of wood or something falls off a wagon in front of them, comes right through the windscreen impaling the mum, instantly killing her. You don't actually see anything though, it's the audio that gets you.
Edit: It was a brick.
I'm glad that's over. I can't continue on the Reddit thread and I wish you all well if you choose to. But I really hope we're all getting therapy. After reading all of that, it's proof all humans need it.
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We often find ourselves having to guess how to make things work and make things fit--in our lives, but also just in our possessions. Will these pants fit me? These shoes?
Will this screw fit my table? Will this charger fit my phone?
If everything was somehow standard, wouldn't it all be so much easier?
Here were some of those answers.
No More Vanity Sizes
Sizes for clothing.
Especially for shoes. How hard would it be to just list the sizes in centimeters (or inches if you're American)?
WHY DO WE USE STANDARD MEASUREMENTS FOR OUR CLOTHES, BUT THEY ARE DIFFERENT SIZES IN DIFFERENT BRANDS???
Calvin Klein's men's slacks: 32'' waist
Bar III men's slacks: 32'' waist
Perry Ellis slacks: 32'' waist
THEY ARE ALL DIFFERENT WAIST SIZES. WHYY?!?!?!?!
Ah Yes, Three Chilis
There's a standard for chili heat levels (the Scoville scale), but food manufacturers never use it. Instead, they use a varying number of chili icons which mean nothing at all.
It's always fun going to like a Thai restaurant in Canada and trying to figure out whether the chili icon means Thai spicy or Canadian spicy.
Ah Yes, This Could Kill Me
Household electrical voltages and sockets.
Interestingly enough, there was an attempt: since 1986, there is an international standard socket, IEC 60906-1. However, only South Africa has implemented it so far.
And it is unlikely it will ever be implemented in other countries, as the EU is even advising against it since 2017:
REFIT found that "the harmonisation of plug and socket outlet systems in Europe, by introducing changes in national wiring legislations (would have) important transitional periods (above 75 years)", and that the cost to "replace the old socket-outlets (and the corresponding plugs of the appliances being used)" was estimated at 100 billion Euro, "generating a huge environmental impact, producing some 700 000 tons of electrical waste". REFIT does not recommend harmonising the plugs and socket-outlet systems in Europe.
Can we just get a little consistency here? Please?!
After working in a grocery store, can diameters should only come in a maybe 4 sizes. And they should all stack.
But they don't. They never do.
I feel your pain. I hate those narrow jars and cans that are slightly narrower than 3 wires of the shelf so they tip over if you don't place them perfectly.
A Computer Mouse, Not A Little Baby Mouse
Modern rechargable batteries.
We spent years with standard size batteries. We are now stuck with proprietary batteries which aren't designed to be user replaceable and often dictate the life of the device.
Yes absolutely. I found this fact especially annoying when looking for a mouse. Most of the more expensive mice come with rechargeable batteries, and it seems that modern tech reviewers are claiming this is better than some standard double A.
All Standard, Yet None Standard
I worked in a hardware store long enough to learn that apparently everything is standardized.
"I need window screens."
Okay, what are your dimensions?
"It's a standard size window."
"I'm looking for a replacement ceiling fan."
Okay, do you want small blades, large blades? A modest 30" span or a robust 56"?
"Just standard size."
"Do you think this large, bulky, cumbersome commodity will fit in my vehicle?"
I don't know. How big your truck?
"It's a standard one."
protip: it's a sedan. it's always a sedan.
Welp, Here's Your Problem
Based on years of helping my Dad in his shop, doing bodywork on vehicles - fastenings. Bolts, screws. rivets, clips... the sheer amount of specialized fastenings and required tools is insane. Even the variety of types in single vehicles is excessive.
Not to mention many of them are so cheaply made that there is no reusing them.
So Many Sign Languages
Not necessarily something that should be standardised because it would affect many cultures negatively, but I've always wondered what it would be like if every country just spoke one language. Sign language should probably be standardised, but re-learning sign language for people who use it may be difficult and time-consuming
Perhaps We Need To Rethink Policing
Police responses to missing persons across the nation, and the information requirements for police reports to be filled out with specific and complete information at the first point of contact by the person reporting the missing person, regardless of the age, status, or suspected reason for disappearing.
Police should NEVER be allowed to decide a case isn't valid at the first point of contact.
A Recipe For A Lint Fire
The laundry exhaust receptacle in homes should be centered exactly eighteen inches (45.7cm) from the floor with eighteen inches (or 45.7 cm) of clearance on both sides.
The exhaust duct of a clothes dryer should be in the middle of the back of the machine, and centered eighteen inches/45.7 cm from the floor. The dryer should have adjustable feet to allow for slight errors in measurement.
Once this is done, a laundry dryer can be pushed into the wall and we won't need to craft a length of ducting to connect the two.
Just a little bit of sameness and consistency could really go a long way here.
Some things ought not be tried again.
Sure, they made sense the first time. It may have held charm, at least some sense of purpose on the second go around. But eventually, surely, an essential truth became clear: never again.
Reddit is apparently crawling with people carrying around that permanent grudge towards some thing they've done in the past.
Lucky for us, we can learn from their mistakes.
senorllama57 asked, "What is something you will never do again?"
There were, of course, plenty of people who discussed horrible jobs they've held in the past. They may have had little choice at the time, but now that it's all in the past they feel free to share how they really felt.
The Customer Always Seems To Be Wrong
"Work retail. I think every kid fresh out of high school should work a retail job for a year. It builds character." -- ProfessionalTheme415
"How did you get out!?! Lol. It's like a black hole where I work. Everyone that tries to leave comes back." -- threebillion6
A Lot Going On
"Work in a nursing home. The sights, screams and pleas Will haunt me forever." -- M_Lamora
"Honestly working in a nursing home was one of the most weird jobs I ever had. I've never been threatened so many times in my life. I once had a memory care resident ask me if I would help her jump a caregiver."
One After Another
"Work in a call center." -- Evilsmurfkiller
"Sucked the soul right out of me within a year." -- Bandana-mal
"I was at one for 2 and half years and it was not until I left I realized I had work-related depression. I was overeating, not eating, sleep deprived, slept all the time, I had such rage that would come out at times...
"I did not care what happened to me, I left because they were gonna fire me over something dumb because they just fire people for being there long. I left over a year ago, and I have not been this happy to wake up every day in years, my life is so much better now." -- UnusualLight0
Others discussed past struggles they've encountered within the romantic realm. Unfortunately, these lessons came with plenty of emotional struggle.
"Get married. It'll be 19 years this August and my marriage is my marriage. I reserve the right to have a girlfriend at some point if she passes away before I do, but she's the one and only wife, end of story."
"Ignore red flags when talking to someone I want to date. I've done it twice now, and both times sucked" -- YareYareYandere
"Listen to your gut. If something feels off, you're probably not imagining it." -- SurealGod
Don't Forget About You
"Okay first off I'm sorry if this might sound cringe :D . . . That would be hmm become too attached/codependent on a person. Whether it may be of a lover, friend, or just acquaintance."
"Idk if it's coincidence but they either end up gone one day or become total di**s when you least expect it and I'm forced to cut ties."
And some people chose to recall the things they were so certain would be fun and enjoyable, but turned out to be so not.
A Bad Ratio
"I made a super elaborate meal once. It was ... okay. Certainly not worth the effort involved." -- Astramancer_
"Take an hour to make something, only takes 15 minutes to eat. It's bullsh**." -- SurealGod
Hours and Hours
"Times Square on New Years' Eve. It was fun once, never need to do it again." -- AnswerGuy301
"I was going to answer the same thing. It seemed like it would be so much fun but now that I know what it entails — never again" -- hi_its_me
"I have never been and never understood the attraction of waiting for hours and hours in the shivering weather." -- amrodd
Think of Grease Splatters
"Prepare steaks when drunk" -- Kiaulunne
"Not for your reason, but same here. Cooked one at 2am after half a bottle of rum. Quickly ate and passed out after. Woke up around 8am dying for water and realised I left the gas stove on... So glad nothing burned down..." -- schofield101
"I will never get drunk again. Tipsy, buzzed, sure. Thats fine."
"But when I was in front of that toilet for an hour, being so weak I couldn't even sit up, having people constantly come in to check on me, worrying that I might have alcohol poisoning, that is exactly not a fun time"
So take some notes! Or maybe there were some true horrors you went through that this list seems to be lacking.
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