Image by Robin Higgins from Pixabay

Stopping and asking yourself whether you're dealing with a cult isn't anyone's idea of a good time, but that was what Redditor mykewamb placed on everyone's mind when they asked: "What was your 'Wait... is this a cult?' moment?"


"So that's how..."

I dated a girl in who was a total freak sexually, so when she pressured me into going to church with her, it was hard to say no.

First red flag was when they called me "brother braniel" as an introduction.

Second red flag was when everyone started yelling gibberish and jumping around.

Third red flag was when they brought out the snakes.

I actually got some pretty harsh looks because I didn't start talking gibberish and jumping around. It was definitely a case of "you're here, this is what you do" peer pressure.

So that's how I visited a snake handling holiness Alabama backwater church.

Team_Braniel

"I went to a church service..."

I went to a church service like that once. The guy in front of me started making those looney toon like shaking your lips with your finger noises as his speaking in tongues.

They also don't appreciate if you laugh.

falconinthedive

"Posted this earlier..."

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I went to my 20th reunion 5 years ago, and the woman who organized it I've known since 3rd grade. Very nice, smart, charismatic, etc. and she told me about her self help/life coaching company. I said that sounds cool and maybe I could benefit so she said she would hook it up later. I live in LA and when I got back I had an email introducing me to her colleague whose email domain was esplosangeles.com which sounded weird. A quick trip to their web page and a google search and I find out she os trying to get me to join NXIVM which is now all over the news. I noped right outta there, and glad I did as a bunch of them are going to jail now.

Curleysound

"The first night I got there..."

"Therapeutic" boarding school. The first night I got there, everyone told me how I'd "get used to everything". And I did, I fell into their trap. I didn't realize how messed up it was until the school got shut down by the FBI and the owner got charged with child endangerment and molesting a student.

ravioli63

"My school's..."

My school's National Honor Society induction involved all of the inductees crowding in a dark room and chanting the National Honor Society pledge while holding lit candles

blufrost007

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"My life was looking for business connections..."

Got invited to a "business meeting" for a life insurance company. My wife was looking for business connections, trying to get referrals to her company, so we went.

It was an MLM life insurance company. It was such a creepy, culty place. Everyone with fake serial-killer smiles, constantly talking about how much money they're making.

The worst part was the other "guests" around us nodding their heads in agreement, taking in the bullshit hook, line, and sinker. My wife and I just looked at each other, left, and stopped answering that guy's phone calls.

We had actually signed up for some insurance through them when we thought it was a normal company. We immediately canceled, and signed up with a real, big-name insurance company.

Veritas3333

"I realized it was a cult..."

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My now ex bf said he signed up for a professional and personal development course. I realized it was a cult when he came back with no personality and a whole new set of esoteric jargon. And any questions I had about it were rebuffed with "do you think it's a cult or something?? You know Apple is considered a cult too."

ddonaldk

"I went to a small women's college..."

I went to a small women's college in Virginia. I only stayed a semester because the group mentality. They would constant rituals that were not "mandatory" but you were weird if you didn't go. One alone wasn't weird but collectively it was too much. Example: One founders day, everyone wore white. We went to the chapel for the ceremony and then walked 2 miles to the graveyard, where the founders were buried. We all had to lay roses on the graves and sing the school's song. Four girls in my class tried to commit suicide in the first semester.

My class only had 64 girls. If you discussed transferring the dean of students and the school's counselor would threaten to have you put in a mental hospital for 72 hours. I transferred in secret so no one would find out. I didn't even tell my friends. I would wake up at 4am and transfer stuff from my dorm room to be shipped home.

its_meme

"I was looking into franchise businesses..."

I was looking into franchise businesses a while back and one place offered me the chance to buy in and become a "business coach." They had me take aptitude tests, went over my work history and said that I'd be perfect with my business background.

I went to meet them with a group of other potential franchisees at a presentation in a hotel (common for almost all franchise businesses) and was like "WTF? This is an MLM" The other people there had next to no business experience, and all they were telling us was that we had to find our clients to coach, and then read them a script off on iPad app.

What's scary is that they're an actual registered franchise business. I'm not going to say that the script they had didn't have useful things that actually could have helped a small business, mainly because I would have had to pony up around $100k just to see it.

Every other franchise I spoke to and turned down (like a food or educational chain) was extremely polite and said "Best of luck to you." These guy just cut off all contact with me, and I heard later through my franchise broker that they were PISSED.

hotdoug1

Image by tookapic from Pixabay

Can you see Harry Potter at a football game in the Midwest? Chowing on a corn dog, throwing back some good ole Pepsi-Cola? Or can you picture the Harry universe living and loving in the great U. S of A? What would casting look like against the backdrop of the great harvest plains? I have so many thoughts and ideas. The first thought, the change would never work. Keep the story alive on British soil.

But, for fun, let's chat about the idea.

Redditor u/Cuish wanted all the Potter heads out there to share what American tweeks would occur in the Potterverse within America, by asking:

If Harry Potter was set in the United States, how would the story change?
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Luke van Zyl/Unsplash

Life isn't as simple as one may think. It's not always easy to take a step back and look at the big picture, but when there's over seven billion people on the planet, there's no way things are as cut and dry as they seem.

Everyone's experiences are different going through life. We may not be able to see the complexities it if we haven't lived it ourselves.

So we went to Reddit because we wanted to see what's not as simple as people think it is.

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RobinHiggins/Pixabay

Double standards are something we all live with and, quite likely, find extremely annoying. Things like men being expected to hide their emotions—or not have them at all—or women being expected to stay home and support a couple's children, everyone is generally harmed by double standards.

This is especially true when the double standard isn't clear until someone violates it and then has to deal with anger, ridicule, or sometimes even violence as a result.

Content Note: this article mentions suicide and sexual assault, reader discretion advised.

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Image by jacqueline macou from Pixabay

They say one man's trash is another man's treasure - and sometimes that saying is pretty literal.

Lots of people build entire businesses picking up cool stuff on bulk-pickup trash day, and upcycling it into something even better that people are willing to pay for.

Sometimes, you might even end up with something pristine and usable right away.

Reddit user JampackedAlborn1976 asked:

What is the most valuable item that you have seen somebody throw away or have found in the garbage?

And for real ... some of these people scored BIG TIME. Like big time. Like really big.

Like Refrigerator Big

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"Our current refrigerator is a double-door one with exterior ice and water dispensers. We got it for free, with absolutely no problems whatsoever. It's just a few years old."

"How we got it? My dad (civil engineer) was doing some work on someone's apartment when they said they had bought a new modern French door refrigerator and that they were just going to discard their current refrigerator."

"My dad simply asked if he could have it.. and they said yes." - SauloJr

Immigrants In Action

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"I immigrated to the US from Brazil when I was 12. And every Saturday, my mom, stepdad, sister and I would go out at night to upper middle class neighborhoods the day before trash pickup to rummage through the garbage they were putting out."

"We found perfectly good TVs, VCRs, microwaves, couches, lazy boys, tables, books and comics, etc."

"I couldn't believe these Americans were throwing out like that. We furnished our entire house with that stuff. The entire Brazilian immigrant community in my town did it. We were flabbergasted." - PhillipLlerenas

With A Note

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"My wife yelled at me that someone put a big TV outside with a note on it. Walked across the street and it was a brand new Samsung 37 inch HDTV."

"They were actually renovating the apartment building and got an upgraded TV. Even had the remote taped to it with batteries, I guess I have really nice neighbors here in NYC." - MadLintElf

Life Hack!

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"If you want high end stuff out of the garbage for free, follow these steps:"

"Pick a city with a large university in it. If it's a school well known for its law programs, or medical, or engineering, all the better."

"Search for luxury apartment complexes that market themselves towards students. Look for things like included shuttle service, pools, fitness centers, etc. The more expensive and swanky the better."

"Figure out when finals week is at the end of Spring semester."

"Dumpster dive at those luxury apartment complexes during that week and the following weekend."

"Very wealthy international students will arrive in the US, fully outfit an apartment with nice furniture, big TVs, audio systems, gaming consoles, you name it, and when the semester ends they just junk it all because they aren't going to fly it back to wherever, and it's too much effort to spend the time selling when they do not care about the money."

"It's a smaller scale phenomenon a little like all the luxury cars abandoned at the airport in Dubai." - whattothewhonow

Literal Gold Treasure

valley of the boom david kim stanley GIF by National Geographic Channel Giphy

"I found a gold coin at goodwill for 5 bucks. It was in a case with someone's name and company name."

"It was their gift from the company for retiring. I assume the family threw it out when he died not knowing it was solid gold. It was in a in a thick solid plastic case that had to be cracked opened."

"It literally said 1 oz fine gold on it. I figured 5 bucks was worth the risk it not being real."

"It was a South African KRUGERRAND 1 oz coin. Everyone was just too busy to read it lol."

"Bought it and took it too a pawn shop and sold it for a couple grand." - streetmitch

The Best Day Of My Life

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"When I was a kid, I grew up right outside the Los Angeles area in the suburbs. My stepdad was a garbage truck driver for the city of Beverly Hills."

"I swear in the late 80s and early 90s we'd have so much basically brand new stuff (still in boxes) brought home on a regular basis."

"I'll never forget one day in particular. My stepdad came home and was like 'get ready, come to the car, I'll need your help.' So I go down there and in back seat of his car he had a few large black garbage bags."

"We haul them up to our apartment and he's like 'go ahead, open them.' Inside was what I could only describe as an 80s kids trove of treasures."

"One bag contained just about every Ghostbusters and GI joe toy you can imagine, they were played with but had every little accessory, there was a bunch the playsets and everything."

"In the other bag was pretty much every LEGO of the early 80s sets, still in their original boxes. I was a big LEGO nerd but was totally thrown off by the old school space ones because they looked nothing like the 90s space sets. I think they even said "NASA" the minifig's chests."

"That was like a random day in July, it felt like Christmas. I was 9 years old and it was basically like the best day of my life up to that point." - Zombgief

Who Throws Away Money?

spongebob squarepants money GIF Giphy

"A jar full of quarters."

"Annual spring cleaning projects happen in a lot of towns where anyone can put almost anything on the curb and it's taken away for free. It's to stop open dumping or stuff being dumped in ditches."

"Sometimes people deal with estates from winter by just dumping all their grandfather's stuff on the curb for the cleanup to get the house empty immediately. Most often they don't even bother to look at what they are throwing away."

"In 2012 on north road in Akwesasne I found an estate pile that I shuttled back and forth with my bike trailer getting lots of older tools like a scythe, hammers, saws, screwdrivers and wrenches, a 22 rifle with 100 round of ammo, a bunch of ar15 magazines, cast iron cookware, oil lamps, a hand crank food mill with all kinds of accessories, a black raven axe head (worth $100 easily since they are a collectable), and a quart size mason jar full of change mostly quarters."

"That was spring and the sheriffs office did a gun buyback in the fall where I took the mags and got $20 each for them (30 round mags suddenly illegal under the safe act of fall 2012. The buyback was a local political move). I still got the 22 and picked off a lot of woodchuck with it in my gardens." - Bogtrotterso1980

Filing Fever

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"I own a small company which is located directly in front of a state funded program facility. The state decided to have this office shred all of their files as they were going to switch to electronic data (exclusively)."

"We found two of these old rotary filing cabinets outside of their office. They're worth almost $3k each!"

"They just placed them there and we saw them and asked what they planned on doing with them. They said, 'Hmmm.....either donate them or trash them.' The state told them simply to get rid of them."

"We jumped at this and took the two into our already tiny office because there was no way in hell that we were going to let these gems go. (We do use paper files, unfortunately)."

"They wanted to give us two smaller ones but seriously, our office is very small. I made some phone calls and they were picked up immediately by other office workers/friends." - GlitzBlitz

This Sucks - In A Good Way!

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"In the 1990s my moms work had a really nice high end Hoover that stopped working. They threw it out."

"My mom took it home because my dad tinkers and repairs things easily. Turns out since it was a bagged vacuum all the dummies had to do is REPLACE THE BAG."

"Like it never occurred to them to do the most easy and basic step. My parents were excited to have a really upgraded vacuum. Maybe like $500ish." - schweddyboobs

Tiffany's Trash

Audrey Hepburn Movie GIF by The Good Films Giphy

"My dad found an old stained glass window laying out by someone's trash. He thought it would look cool hanging in our cabin, so he stopped and grabbed it."

"It sat in our garage for a few years before he looked at it more closely and found "Tiffany and Co." branding on it. He got in touch with some stained glass window dude who figured it was worth about $40k fully restored, so my dad sold it to him for somewhere around $30k." - throwaway_stopdrink

Have you had any awesomely trashtastic treasures? Let us know!