Going abroad is not an automatic pass to misbehave.
In fact, if anything, you need to keep an extra eye out. Customs and laws vary nation to nation, and if you're in violation, you can and will be held accountable. But....it makes for a fun story.
Redditor Jasper-Collins asked:
Here are some of the stories.
Rented a scooter in Cambodia, got pulled for having the headlight on before 6pm. I got taken in to a room and was told why I was there, they then asked for my international driving license (which you don't catually need for a scooter) I lied and told him I lost it in Australia.
He started shaking his head and telling me this wasn't good...first the headlight issue and now no license...
This is when he asked if I wanted to do things the easy way or hard way, i said easy and he gave me a little speech about lights in Cambodia and then proceeded to ask me how much I thought the info about light in Cambodia was worth.
I paid him 10 bucks and went on my way.
When I landed in Nepal this German guy accused me of plotting to kill him while on the airplane. I was sitting a few rows behind him reading from a tablet. He told the police I had a laser pointer and insisted I was an assassin. He was hysterical. I was scared in this new country and was put in a room while the police searched my bags for a laser pointer. I had none. The guy turned out to be very mentally unstable and was sent away.
The airport police chief gave me his own phone number and told me to call him if I needed tourist recommendations.
All For A Hedgehog
Imagine being a forienger in Tanzania in the dark kneeling in the dirt in a circle of armed police officers.
I was in Tanzania doing research on the Maasai language. I was working in the city of Arusha, and my first trip I didn't have time to do anything fun like go out to any parks to see wildlife. I was alone, so I'd just talk to everyone. One night, I was coming back from the bar that had reliable internet, when a young man struck up a conversation with me. We were walking down the road talking, when I saw a hedgehog run across the road. I ran after it to get a picture--the only wildlife I'd seen (except a monkey from the train) was a hedgehog in a ditch. It was the one time I'd forgotten my camera, and I was determined to get a picture of one before leaving. Confused, the young man caught up with me standing disappointed by a black plastic bag that had blown across the street. I told him that I just wanted to get a picture of a hedgehog. He told me to meet him the next night (they're nocturnal)--he'd find out where they are commonly seen.
I assumed he didn't mean it (though in Tanazania if someone says they'll call you, they call. If they say you should come meet my family sometime, you go meet their family (even if you were strangers before you sat down at the same coffee stall). The next night I was returning from the bar, and my new friend was waiting.
He took me a bit south of the city to an abandoned or rundown school. We squeezed through the gate, but then a dog chased us out. Did we give up? No. He led me down a dusty street. We peered through dusty grass in the light of my dim phone flashlight.
Suddenly we were illuminated in the blinding light of seven or eight armed police officers with powerful flashlights. In the dark I hadn't realized we were trespassing in people's yards. Wide-eyed I explained in my best Swahili that I was just trying to take a picture of a hedgehog. One guy with an intimidating rifle screamed at me. It took me a second to translate, "I just saw one!" as he ran down the road and dove under a car. He shook his head--it was gone. The police talked briefly too quickly for me to understand and then they were all fanning out with their flashlights. Some crawled on their hands and knees through the bushes and shrubs.
And damn if they didn't find one. Picture me on my knees in the dark in the dust surrounded by a semicircle of armed police officers. They used their feet to herd the hedgehog toward me so I could snap a picture. They realized their lights were scaring it, so they turned them off. My flash kept scaring it, so I never did get a good picture.
In the 1980s, my father and 2 of his friends decided they'd go on a road trip through some US states. This was the first time my father had gone on holiday to another country, so he was pretty excited. One night, they stop at a bar near the Utah/Nevada border, and get talking to this guy, as one does. The guy (an older gentleman who my father later assumed had served in Vietnam) invited my Dad and his friends to his house for moonshine. The trio took him up on the offer. My Dad and one of his friend's (who we'll call John) get in their car, while the other friend (Harry) got in the car with the guy, the pretense being they'd follow them to his house.
So, as they are following this dude, he crashes his car into the side of a bridge. My Dad said had the guy missed it the car, and Harry, would be at the bottom of a canyon, and probably dead. So, Harry leaps out, jumps in the other car and they speed of into the night, because they'd be stuffed if the police saw how drunk they all were.
They camped in the desert that night, and in the morning, while my father was eating his second hard-boiled egg (something that, due to this incident, my father still has trouble eating), a lot of police cars pull up, and place them all under arrest. So they all get shoved into a police car and taken to the local police station. They are then told that "a guy is coming down from Salt Lake City to interview you guys."
The 'guy' turns out to be FBI Special Agent Joseph 'Joe' Cwik (that was apparently his real name, my father still has his business card, which he recently found and showed me). Imagine what you think a FBI special agent looks like. My Dad said he looked exactly like you imagine a FBI man to look like, with the sunglasses and everything (I imagine him looking like Hudson from CoD: Black Ops). So naturally, my father and his friend's were pretty scared that an FBI special agent was going to be interviewing them separately.
Joe Cwik asked the standard questions, who are you, what are you doing here, where are you going, etc. He then left the room, and came back holding a pillowcase with something inside it. He showed the thing to me father.
That thing, my dad later realised, was a machine gun.
Joe asked my dad if he knew what this was. My dad said no, and agent Cwik explained that the person they had had drinks with the night before was known to have a lot of guns in his possession. And, as it turned out, was a bit unstable.
My dad suddenly realised, Oh my God, this dude was taking me and my friends to his house to kill us, and no one would know, and thought that he was being interviewed as an eyewitness or something.
No, he was being interviewed as a suspect. For, you see, this person also sold guns, and apparently had been under surveillance by the FBI. And my dad and his friends were heading west, towards California. Know what was happening in Los Angeles at the time?
The 1984 Summer Olympics.
The FBI saw these three, 20-something, fit, Northern Irish men talking to a man known to sell guns while heading towards LA, and assumed they were a Paramilitary hit squad, going to attack the LA Olympics.
My father and his friends, of course, denied everything. They had never been affiliated with any paramilitary organisation, especially ones that would have the need or resources to hit the Olympics. Afterwards, as they were all waiting outside the station, Joe Cwik came up to them, lit a cigarette, and pointed it to them individually.
"Harry, you can go. John, you can go. Andy (my father)... you need to stay."
My dad said he made a noise he could only describe as like a parrot being hit by a car.
"Just kidding," said FBI special agent Joe Cwik. And with that, they were free to go. They drove all the way to Las Vegas in utter silence. One of the worst days of his life.
To this day, my father is still anxious when going to the United States, as it probably says under his name, "Investigated by the FBI for links to terrorism."
I like to think he and his friends were the most talked about people in the Western intelligence community that day, as Joe Cwik probably called his HQ in Salt Lake City to see if they knew any of the names, who then asked the CIA, who then asked MI5/MI6, before coming back with, "We don't have these names on any of our files."
In Trouble With Whom?
On our school trip to Germany, our teacher made us sign letters saying we wouldn't drink as we were all below 21 but above Germany's legal drinking age of 16. So of course, immediately when we got there my friends and I started sneaking off to bars after we were done sightseeing. We started off small: like one beer each at a bar very far from our hotel. We probably would've been fine if we stopped there, but we kept upping the ante. Eventually we ended up with bottles of absinthe and Jägermeister in our hotel, along with a bunch of kids we met from Texas who were even crazier than we were. Naturally we got caught and had to make the very awkward "Hey, I'm a terrible son" calls to our parents.
Looking back though it's a hard thing to regret.
I was travelling across Kazakhstan for work. One thing I failed to notice on my visa / landing card was that after x number of days in-country, I had to go check in with immigration. Whoops.
So when I went to leave the country, the passport control official noted that there was no appropriate stamp, pointed this out to me, and eyeballed me like his life depended on it. While I was being coldly stared at, I was shitting bricks, and I thought "oh, I'm going to spend a few nights in the cells before being fined and deported".
THANKFULLY he said "In future, when you visit our country, you must comply with the law" and let me go. I apologised profusely and got on my flight out.
I haven't been back, but certainly wouldn't rule it out. Just don't go during winter - Kazakhstan is pretty damned cold in November.
I was visiting Montenegro a few years ago with my girlfriend (at the time) and another couple. We stayed in this awesome villa in the mountains, our own private pool/garden and not another soul for miles. It was bliss, and we had the best vacation I had ever had.
We were flying home from Dubrovnik in Croatia, however the journey was only a short taxi ride from Montenegro over the border. Our taxi driver wasn't an "official" licensed cab, but the brother in law of the guy we rented the villa from. It was slightly dodgy, but he offered to do the trip for about 50 Euros less than the other cab company so we agreed. We had met him a couple of times during our holiday and whilst he spoke virtually no English, he seemed fine.
The other couple were flying home from another airport, so it was just me and my girlfriend in his cab. It's about a 45 minute journey, basically in silence just looking at the breathtaking scenery out of the window. When he gets in the airport and we're taking our luggage out of the trunk, he indicates to me (in very broken English) that his wallet is missing. I was sat in the front seat next to him, so he obviously thought I had taken it from the dashboard or something. I explain to him that I hadn't stolen his wallet, had actually just paid him 20 Euros more than he asked for as a tip, and even helped him search his car for his wallet for a good 10 minutes.
Eventually I got tired and said "look, sorry you lost your wallet but we have a flight to catch. Good luck." As we walked off, he started getting angrier and angrier, and actually followed us into the airport terminal. He grabbed a Croatian police officer who was just standing around, and started talking to him in their local dialect, so we had no idea what they were saying.
The police officer pulls me into a room with my luggage and asks me to open my case. I do as he says, he takes a VERY quick peek and says "okay, you're free to go." I was like "Umm...there's about four other compartments you haven't looked in. I can unzip them if you want to look properly?" He just smiled and said "no, I know you're not a thief. That guy is an idiot, don't worry. Have a safe flight."
We thought that was the end of the matter, so we check in and we're waiting in the departure gate. The same police officer comes over to us and says "Sorry, I wanted to let you go...but the guy has made an official complaint so I need to bring you in. Sorry, it's gone above my head now."
Now, I'm slightly panicking because I don't know if this is some sort of scam and we're going to be asked for some ludicrous amount of money to make this problem "go away". After what felt like an eternity (probably about an hour, in real time), he brings me and my girlfriend in to see his boss.
My preconceptions about being scammed were totally unfounded. They couldn't have been nicer. They spoke good English and handled the whole thing very professionally. They did a more thorough search of our bags, cracked a couple of jokes and then escorted us to our flight home which we made with about 4 minutes to spare.
With the ordeal finally over, just as we were stepping onto the plane, the original police officer called my name with a serious sounding tone. I turned around thinking "Christ, what now???" and he just looked at me and said: "You have Facebook?"
He never added me as a friend, sadly, but I'll forever be grateful that we didn't get thrown into a Croatian prison for no reason at all.
How Did They Know
Back in 2010, when I was 18, me and 4 of my friends went on our first all-inclusive vacation to Cancun.
We stayed at Oasis Cancun, which at the time was one of the known spring break/party hotels.
We met a local dude who we befriended hooked up an ounce of pot for a ridiculously good price.
After about 30 minutes, there's a knock on the door. We open it and 3 of the hotel's security guards barge in. The first thing they see is all of that pot sitting on the table in plain sight.
I was nearly s****ing my pants. One of my friends told them we got it from a taxi driver and he said it was legal in Mexico - quick thinking.
The security guards took half the weed and left. That was the end of it.
We're honestly extremely lucky. They didn't extort us (besides taking like 40$ worth of pot), or call the cops.
Some other friends who were there at the same time also got caught smoking pot in their room and each had to give the security guard 200$ for him to let them off, so we are very very lucky.
Not me but someone we were travelling with. Our school based in Australia had a high school trip across Europe as part of a history/art tour. The jock of the group bought his father some unique gifts, one of which included a replica flintlock pistol. We all told him that this idea was completely and utterly stupid, but gosh damn he wanted it and buying it for his fathers birthday was his perfect excuse.
He seemed to get away with it through the airport and eventually we boarded our plane back to Australia (departing from Rome) Eventually we are waiting for an extended period of time after some announcements I didn't pay attention to, and I look out the window as I see a few members of the police, a customs representative, a baggage handler and the guy from our group. They literally unpacked his bag on the apron just because of his stupid cemented pistol. To this day I don't know how it came to be confiscated at the last possible second, but I'll never forget him standing there looking like an idiot in front of a whole 747 of delayed passengers.
A Shtetl Iz A Heidelberg
Visiting Heidelberg Germany taking the bus into town after getting off the plane with a few friends. Inside was my passport, laptop, charger, wallet and several other valuables which I so conveniently and dull headed of me decided to take off my back as it was sore. I lay it infront of my seat on a small platform, and when the time came for me to get off, yes, I hopped right off with my bag still on that bus. It must have been an hour after I arrived at our hotel and unpacked when I realized shit. I don't have my bag with me.
Lucky for me my friends relatives live in Heidelberg and managed to call up the public transport company in hopes of getting my valuables back. At this point I was wondering how I was to possibly find a Korean embassy to make a new passport let alone replacing the rest of the things I had lost. But around 2 hours later the driver let me know the bag was there and that he would drop it off to be collected if I waited by the same stop, which is how I managed to get everything back. How lucky I was that someone didn't happen to just take it, or perhaps it speaks of how nice people there are.
Getting By, Thanks Google
Two weeks into a seven month backpacking trip around South America, my girlfriend got a severe ear infection when we were in Puerto Madryn in Argentina. The pain was so bad she could barely stand and said it felt like her head was about to explode.
Obviously I knew I needed to get a doctor involved ASAP in case her eardrum ruptured, but I'd only been learning Spanish for two weeks at this point. I could about handle formal greetings, but hadn't yet covered medical emergencies.
I sprinted from clinic to clinic, and using the Google Translate app eventually was able to find one that would take her in. After basically carrying here there, the doctor and I basically communicated using Google Translate, passing my phone back and forward as he asked questions and I answered them. It was weird at first but it worked well, the doctor was pretty cool about it (especially considering he was about to leave for the day when we rocked up).
He gave her a STRONG painkiller and a prescription for antibiotics and sent us on our way. My girlfriend was high as a kite and went straight to sleep. I went into the kitchen and drank a bottle of wine.
I was a research assistant in an ecology lab when I was 20. My lab group was flying from Seattle to our research site in the remote Canadian arctic, with a stop in Edmonton to change planes. I'd driven across the Canadian border multiple times and just used my drivers license as id. It never incurred to me that I'd need a passport when flying in. The immigration agent gave me this incredulous look and I could feel the shame rising to smother me. He just stared me down for several seconds, then hands my drivers license back and says "You do realize Canada is an independent country, right?" and let me continue. He seemed so defeated by my thoughtless American arrogance.
On the way home,a grad student volunteered at American customs inspection that she'd collected samples of an arctic poppy species that wasn't on her import permit. Like they would ever have known otherwise. She had to leave her samples behind.
The 90s were a more innocent time.
It's All About The Cash
Not me but I was traveling through Mexico with some guys last week and one of them got pulled over for not having his seatbelt on. The officer that pulled him over wanted him to go down to the station (idk what he called it but that's basically what it was) and pay the fine. But we were already on a time crunch so he just paid the officer $40 in cash and he was let go.
I was 18 visiting Spain from the US. I was with my Spanish friend who was only 17. I wanted to drink alcohol because it was legal for me but not for my friend. I bought us some bottles of beer and we started drinking them out on the street when suddenly the police showed up. They got in our faces but i couldn't really understand what was going on so my friend had to translate.
They said something to the extent that i could be arrested or deported but instead of translating directly, my friend was telling me what was actually going to happen which was that they were going to make us pour them out and maybe write me a ticket that I'd never have to pay. So I'm just nodding dismissing everything and the police started yelling at him. So he turns to me and said, "they want me to make sure you know this is really serious and you can go to jail"
I still wasn't getting it so my friend then adds, "so look scared." I then made this face like i was afraid I'd get in trouble and started acting really apologetic. The police got this satisfied look and kinda stared me down as i poured out our beers. They then finally left us alone.
Side note: my Spanish friend first said to them in English, "I'm American" and for whatever reason tried to do it with a pitiful sounding southern accent (hilarious to me). And it actually might have worked since he had a US drivers license, but when the cops searched his wallet they found his actual Spanish ID card so the jig was up. They said they were sending him a citation in the mail. I guess that was the most stressful part since his parents would have been pretty pissed. Luckily the cops apparently never followed through with it!
Issues At The Gate
I went once to Russia from Nice(France) by train with my then girlfriend. Obviously, there were frontier controls at Belarus, so we showed our passports with our transit visas (funny enough, we didn't need visas for Russia, but we did need them for Belarus). As none of the guards spoke any language other than Russian, they just gestured that everything was ok, and that was that.
We spent 2 weeks and a half in Moscow and St. Petersburg, using AirBnB. It was pretty good and I genuinely enjoyed the trip.
Then, when we were going back to France (by train again), we stopped again at belarus for exit control, and it was like 2am. We were in a 4 people cabin, and with us was a russian lady and her daughter, she was very kind and we sorta chatted a bit (and then we realized that she had an awful experience with our country, won't give many details here). The thing is, when the guards saw our passports, asked for something in russian again. The lady translated our "check-in documents" or something like that. It turns out that, when you're a foreigner in Russia, you have this sheet of paper that you should give to your hotel to be filled and then hand it back when exiting the country. Nobody told us that, and we were puzzled. The guard say "We're going to take your passports. I am going to talk with my superior".
Then, we spent a tense hour. The lady called her husband, who, as it turned out, worked with some russian ministry and had something to do with migrations. She then grimly explained that the guards could detain us and send us back to Moscow in the middle of the night for not having the required documents. In that moment, we were livid, we had a flight to catch in France in 4 days or so (and the trip by train takes 2 days), we didn't have much money for a last minute flight and the prospect of being detained in Belarus wasn't a pretty one (later I discovered that Belarus is called "the last european dictatorship", so, there's that). I was already worried, my ex was very chill until I kinda explained the situation for her, and then she started to worry as well.
The guard came finally and handled our passports back. The lady asked "What happened? Is everything ok?" and the guy said "Well, my supervisor and I had a great day today, we're in a cheerful mood, so, we won't bother you. You're free to exit the country, have a nice night". We were relieved...
Months later, I found a colleague from Belarus who explained to me "well, next time you slip a 20 Euros note in your passports, and problem solved". The more you know.
So I was in the US on Holiday, visiting my girlfriend at the time. I was using her parent's car when I got pulled over by the police as I drifted out of my lane as it was the first time I had driven on the other side of the road.
So in Australia, your car registration is all electronic and tied to the number plate, so it can be checked by the police on their computer and insurance isn't required so of course no need for an insurance certificate or proof of it.
Cops walks upto the window, asked me why did they think I was pulled over and for licence, registration and insurance and I freeze, then quickly said to him "Let me just have a look" and without thinking about the fact he might be worried about guns because 'murica, I whack open the centre console...to be greeted by my girlfriend's mum's handgun which she had neglected to tell me about.
Well this is where sh-t went downhill, I instantly hear the sound of the policeman's getting whipped out and him yelling at me to put my hands up, of course I comply because holy f-ck what else do I do.
He calls for someone else and orders me out of the car, handcuffs me and sits me down on the curb while we wait for them to arrive. As I'm sitting there he asks me where my wallet is and grabs it from me, grabs my license only to notice that it's an Australian license and suddenly changes his tone.
Anyway while we are waiting for the other cop to arrive, he asks me about why I'm visiting, what am I doing driving alone etc etc then asks for the vehicle owners phone number and such to call them.
Thankfully after a 15 minute call with my girlfriend's mum they straightened out things with the fact that there was a gun they had forgot to mention to me and just told me to pay a bit more attention while driving in the US so that I don't drift outside of the lane.
When I was in Germany I got the Police called on me for using fake Euro Notes that I had on my person. I had gotten them as change in a local store. After a brief exchange with several language difficulties before someone offered to translate and they just took the fake notes of me. After writing a statement and them taking my thumbprint.
I was in Russia, in one of their two main cities, doing my studies. I was a college age male, and American. One day, I'm walking around without my documents, but its like, late September and the police like to hang around the subway stations stopping young adult males and making sure they're not avoiding conscription. So I get stopped, and I speak a bit of Russian because I had been studying it for almost two years at that point, but that was my second mistake of the day! Despite my heavy american accent, the lack of passport plus my penis, age, and fact I knew Russian got me a trip downtown to the local military recruiter's office. I assume I'm about to be conscripted into the military in mere moments, so I pay the guy a bribe and make a phone call to my flatmate and beg him to bring my passport down to the station. He shows up, they see my visa, I get released. That was fun...
A friend and I were visiting Krakow about a decade ago. We checked into our hostel (which was really nice) just around dinner time. The host at the hostel, Norbert gave us some food recommendations and a map that wasn't the best (had probably been photo copied hundreds of times), but we figured we could manage. We go and have a great meal/pint and decide to head back to the hostel to rest up for the next day.
By this time, it was dark out and the streets were not very well lit, making the shoddy map even more difficult to read. I noticed what I think was a lit bus map not far down the street and suggested we check that out and at the very least use the light to read the one we had. So, we go over to it, at this point obviously lost tourists when two guys approached us. They were speaking what I'm assuming was Polish. I was pointing at the map and saying the name of the hostel in hopes they would be able to help us when all of a sudden one of the guys tackled my friend and a street brawl ensued. It didn't seem like they wanted anything other than a scrap, but it was still scary looking back. When the fight was over neither my friend or I (or them I think) were seriously injured. I had a split eyebrow and my friend had a small chip in his tooth.
When we got to our feet, we just looked at each other like did that just happen? Some other local (I'm assuming) people came over and were able to speak a bit of English and asked if we were ok and I tried to explained the situation. They apologized and walked us to our hostel and said we'd be better off not contacting the police. We thanked them and parted ways.
There are few things more satisfying than a crisp $20 bill. Well, maybe a crisp $100 bill.
But twenty big ones can get you pretty far nonetheless.
Whether it's tucked firmly in a birthday card, passing from hand to hand after a knee-jerk sports bet, or going toward a useful tool, the old twenty dollar bill has been used for countless purposes.
Breaking Even<p>"I got a jacket and a pair of jeans at goodwill for about $20. My first time wearing the jacket I found a tiny zipper inside a pocket."</p><p>"There was a secret inner pocket with a twenty in it."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lvu5aq/whats_the_best_20_you_ever_spent/gpdv70q?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">TheBrontosaurus</a></p>
Keeps On Giving<p>"23 Years ago I was in the US for some work and was not prepared for the cold of Chicago. Went to wal-mart and bought myself a cheap, warm jacket."</p><p>"I'm wearing that jacket right now - still looks fine, still keeps me warm."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lvu5aq/whats_the_best_20_you_ever_spent/gpe41xv?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">TastyEnd</a></p>
As Good As They Come<p>"Wool pinstripe double breasted suit from Goodwill, fit perfectly and was brand new. Ended up wearing it to get married the next year." -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lvu5aq/whats_the_best_20_you_ever_spent/gpdw6mx?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">verminiusrex</a></p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"God I love Goodwill!!" -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lvu5aq/whats_the_best_20_you_ever_spent/gpe5aee?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">Neverthelilacqueen</a></p>
The Socks She Needed<p>"I work at a thrift shop. A homeless lady came in and asked us where the socks were. We only sell new socks, so I directed her towards the new socks and she was... shocked and disappointed by the price tag, surely."<br></p><p>"I gave her a moment as she looked, and she moved to some kids' socks and picked them up, and I... just couldn't let that happen. I told her that I would help her, and told her to get herself some socks and a jacket."</p><p>"She kind of just... held out the children's socks, so I took them, put them back, and grabbed the extra fluffy socks that were hanging."</p><p>"She grabs a jacket and some pants, and I pay for it. My coworker looks the other way since we're not supposed to purchase anything while on the clock. The lady is in tears as she walks out."</p><p>"I notice that she's still outside a minute later putting them on, and ask her if they fit her or if she needed something else; and she told me they were perfect and proceeded to cry. I cried in return."</p><p>"It was a good day."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lvu5aq/whats_the_best_20_you_ever_spent/gpen3w1?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">Snowodin</a></p>
Not Forgotten<p>"A guy came into my work when I managed a mom and pop Pizza Place. He said he was stranded with no phone, and no money, but that the people at the Verizon store next door to us said they could get him a cheap phone with some minutes on it for 20 bucks."</p><p>"He offered to do dishes for a few hours to make some money so he could get this phone. I told him not to worry about it and gave him a 20 from my wallet. He thanked me, asked me for my name, and then he left and I never saw him again."</p><p>"Skip forward about 5 months, and when I get into work the owner was there and said she had gotten a letter addressed to me. 'Weird,' I thought."</p><p>"But when I opened it there was a 50 dollar bill and a short note from the guy I gave 20 dollars to thanking me for my kindness and for not turning him away."</p><p>"Turns out he was in a bad way (addicted to hard drugs and homeless) and really was stranded there. He was trying to get a phone so he could contact his parents (who lived in another state) for help."</p><p>"From what it sounded like, he seemed to really turn his life around. He was clean and working a stable job while still living with his parents."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lvu5aq/whats_the_best_20_you_ever_spent/gpem2xc?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">Mixmaster-McGuire</a></p>
The Best Finale<p>"It was the day before payday. My wife came to see me at work. My break was in an hour, so I asked for her to wait a bit, so we could enjoy it together. She did."</p><p>"I bought her some lunch, because it was what I could afford. I bought her a ham and cheese sub sandwich and two iced teas. These were her favorite. I bought gas with the rest of the twenty so she could get home. She dropped me back off at work."</p><p>"That night, she passed away. It brings me comfort to know that I bought her favorite sandwich and drink for her that afternoon. It was likely the last thing she ate, since it was near dinner. I'll never forget it. Best $20 I ever spent, because it was for her."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lvu5aq/whats_the_best_20_you_ever_spent/gpe9c6d?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">LollipopDreamscape</a></p>
Leaning Into the Nerdery<p>"It was my ninth or tenth birthday. My grandparents gave me $20. The first $20 bill I ever held in my hand! I knew exactly what I wanted to do with it."</p><p>"A week later, we went into the city and Toys R Us. I went straight to the Transformers aisle. And there he was. My favourite Transformer. The one I always wanted...Soundwave."</p><p>"He's the one who turned into a Walkman and he could eject cassettes that turned into robot animals. The price tag said $19.99. It was meant to be."</p><p>"I took Soundwave to the clerk and gave her my $20 bill. "And here's your change!" she said, as she gave me a single penny."</p><p>"Ah, Soundwave. The best friend a lonely little nerd could have."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lvu5aq/whats_the_best_20_you_ever_spent/gpdzzxe?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">originalchaosinabox</a></p>
Different Time<p>"I went to a Rush concert in 1982. The ticket was $9.50 and the t-shirt was $10." -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lvu5aq/whats_the_best_20_you_ever_spent/gpdyr0k?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">PaulsRedditUsername</a></p>
Motivational Spending<p>"My then six year old niece had a loose tooth she loved to show off and had resisted pulling out for two weeks. We were all at my parents and I was getting ready to leave, I pulled out a $20 and said 'I'll give you this right now if you pull out your tooth.' "</p><p>"She was already crying because her little sister had did something so when she ran into the bathroom none of us had no idea in what she was about to do."</p><p>"So she comes out crying still, but a little bit of blood I'm her mouth because of course, she pulled out her tooth. But the now removed tooth fell down the drain to the sink and she was crying because she lost her proof!"</p><p>"After she calmed down she was happy as a clam with a brand new $20 and everyone was quite proud of her. My sister told me she spent it on candy and shared with her little sister."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lvu5aq/whats_the_best_20_you_ever_spent/gpdxi4k?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">themasimumdorkus</a></p>
For the Story<p>"It was actually to a scammer in Rome. There was this guy right outside of Colosseum who started tying strings around my wrist and told me to make a wish. I knew it was going to cost but I thought what the hell, last day in Rome so might as well go with it. </p><p>"My wish was to find love."</p><p>"I spent rest of the day getting lost in the city and stumbled across two weddings and one baptism ceremony. So I did find love, just not for myself."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lvu5aq/whats_the_best_20_you_ever_spent/gpe7b2w?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">FatalFinn</a></p>
I realize that school safety has been severely compromised and has been under dire scrutiny over the past decade and of course, it should be. And when I was a student, my safety was one of my greatest priorities but, some implemented rules under the guise of "safety" were and are... just plain ludicrous. Like who thinks up some of these ideas?Redditor u/Animeking1108 wanted to discuss how the education system has ideas that sometimes are just more a pain in the butt than a daily enhancement... What was the dumbest rule your school enforced?
Don't Peek<img lazy-loadable="true" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yNTcxNDc4OS9vcmlnaW4uZ2lmIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYzNDE0Mzc2OH0.Y1Lzy1MTqxyVqOCe9xjeHTRZsKnbyVjYzdb4-Heldyo/img.gif?width=980" id="78b19" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="e14a90be026b734830e7661f776ba4a8" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" data-width="475" data-height="475" />schitts creek wtf GIF by CBCGiphy<p>Took all the doors off the men's room bathroom stalls because of vandalism for 2 months.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lwjlif/what_was_the_dumbest_rule_your_school_enforced/gphrfce?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank"> Endless_Vanity</a><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Endless_Vanity/" target="_blank"></a></p>
Scanned<p>School added thumb print scanners at gates of school which counted as registration - needless to say I would just walk to school scan my thumb and walk back home with them none the wiser. Was a great few months until they noticed. </p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lwjlif/what_was_the_dumbest_rule_your_school_enforced/gpidnou?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">richpianofan5</a></p>
Age of Empires...<p>Conservative Christian College. A group of us played Age of Empires one weekend. They didn't like it and called a meeting. Everyone involved got misdemeanors on their records. There was nothing in the handbook about it being against the rules. The only person that didn't get any punishment was the son of the president even though he was just as involved as the rest of us. <span></span></p>
"Genius"<p>In my freshman year of high school we had a terrible vandalism problem, the bathrooms would be broken in various ways almost constantly. In a stroke of pure genius, the staff decided that any bathroom that was vandalized would be closed for the week on first offense, the quarter for second, and permanently on the third offense.</p><p>They took back the rule after closing every bathroom on day one. </p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lwjlif/what_was_the_dumbest_rule_your_school_enforced/gpi77co?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank"> Samus388</a><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Samus388/" target="_blank"></a></p>
Is this Footloose?<img lazy-loadable="true" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yNTcxNDc5Ny9vcmlnaW4uZ2lmIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTYzMzg0MjU2M30.PeBUt-YWZeeRStaD_RZlGPQzo29E9t733yqZbIiJlYs/img.gif?width=980" id="3a5bd" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="102730e3b1b90ba9cb393561c702c9af" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" data-width="500" data-height="500" />kevin bacon dancing GIF by STARZGiphy<p>Prom was a mandatory lockdown for the night in order to avoid students going to parties after prom.</p><p>Prom was held at various house parties across town instead. </p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lwjlif/what_was_the_dumbest_rule_your_school_enforced/gpi37x7?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">Coffee-spree</a></p>
HOLDEN FOREVER!!!<p>My high school mascot was Daniel Boone holding a musket. A kid wore a Guns 'n Roses shirt to school and was told he had to change shirts because of the pistols on the shirt. He pointed out the hypocrisy of the school mascot and they changed EVERYTHING. The mascot was switched to holding a flag pole instead. <span></span></p>
No Dots<p>You couldn't wear ANY kind of head items that were "gang colours" (red or blue) - this No included hair bands, scrunchies, beads in your hair, ribbons - ANYTHING. I got in trouble for wearing a blue hair band with white polka dots. </p><p><span></span><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lwjlif/what_was_the_dumbest_rule_your_school_enforced/gphzpyf?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">Pleasant-Flamingo344</a></p>
Clothes Check<p>We had to wear belts. Someone snitched that people weren't wearing belts under their sweaters, and they actually checked and a bunch of people got detentions. Stupid. </p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lwjlif/what_was_the_dumbest_rule_your_school_enforced/gphz3y6?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">ooo-ooo-oooyea</a></p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lwjlif/what_was_the_dumbest_rule_your_school_enforced/gphz3y6?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer"></a>We had belt raids at my school where the dean would burst into classes, completely interrupting any education, to check that everyone was wearing a belt. </p><p><span></span><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lwjlif/what_was_the_dumbest_rule_your_school_enforced/gpia8pp?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">GuinnessMicrodose</a></p>
Chase the Flat<p>We weren't allowed to play tag football at lunch, only frisbee. When I asked the principal what the difference was, he responded with a sarcastic tone, "A football is round and a frisbee is a flat disk."</p><p>He left the school later that year, went to another school, and a few years later was brought up on charges for failing to report the abuse of a student by a teacher. </p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lwjlif/what_was_the_dumbest_rule_your_school_enforced/gpi6lh3?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">uninc4life2010</a></p>
Poke-Thief<img lazy-loadable="true" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yNTcxNDgwMy9vcmlnaW4uZ2lmIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY0ODg5MzY2Nn0.5LMPk1suou6U2SvAURKP-sHEuK7Izpkbxm0PWqvx95E/img.gif?width=980" id="b6e9f" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="92383d30e34aa92fd74cf6c1374ec294" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" data-width="480" data-height="480" />hotline bling pokemon GIFGiphy<p>Pokemon cards got banned in middle school because someone stole the vice principal's kid's cards. Yep. </p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lwjlif/what_was_the_dumbest_rule_your_school_enforced/gpiapym?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank"> Skadoosh_it</a><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Skadoosh_it/" target="_blank"></a></p>
In the Face...<p>If you were involved in a fight, you got suspended. While it sounds reasonable, context didn't matter.</p><p>I got suspended once not for throwing a single punch, kick, whatever. I got suspended because someone knocked the books out of my hand and when I reached down to grab them they punched me in the face.</p><p>I got suspended for walking down the hallway and unprovoked getting punched in the face.</p><p>Forget Brandon Valley Middle School. </p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lwjlif/what_was_the_dumbest_rule_your_school_enforced/gpicbyx?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">CLG_MianBao</a></p>
One of the golden rules of life? Doctors are merely human. They don't know everything and they make mistakes. That is why you always want to get another opinion. Things are constantly missed. That doesn't mean docs don't know what they're doing, they just aren't infallible. So make sure to ask questions, lots of them.Redditor u/Gorgon_the_Dragon wanted to hear from doctors about why it is imperative we always get second and maybe third opinions by asking... Doctors of Reddit, what was the worse thing you've seen for a patient that another Doctor overlooked?
Grandma Wins<img lazy-loadable="true" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yNTcxNDcxOC9vcmlnaW4uZ2lmIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY0OTQxNTgzOX0.n9IaFGgHwnULMlI2kg7RUftxDg6lyWvdM9CnhvptCRY/img.gif?width=980" id="a0857" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="9762f97a23c27ccf6b75974caa854361" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" data-width="480" data-height="270" />Old Lady Wine GIF by MattielGiphy<p>Not a doctor, but my grandmother saved my father's eyesight because she didn't listen to their doctor. </p>
The Mummy Appendage<p>When I was a resident, an 80yo female was admitted from the nursing home for confusion. Workup showed some mild UTI and we were giving her antibiotics. The nurse mentioned that her toe looked dark and asked me to look at it. The toe wasn't just dark, it was mummified. It looked like dry beef jerky. I touched it and pieces flaked off. So the patient from a nursing home, had a mummified toe, probably for months, that no one knew about. </p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lw2g2z/doctors_of_reddit_what_was_the_worse_thing_youve/gpg00qn?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">Dr2ray</a></p>
The CT Save<p>Here's my story:</p><p>A guy came in to our ICU and was very septic but still talking. He had visited his primary care MD with complaints of a sore throat for a couple of days. Dismissed without any intervention since he didn't appear to have strep throat or the flu. At this point he was having pretty severe abdominal discomfort, so we sent him for a CT scan. As the scan was finishing, he coded and had to be intubated, multi-organ failure, etc. </p>
Patches<p>When I was an ER nurse we got an elderly lady in for altered mental status from a nursing home, when we undressed her to put her in a gown and hook her up to the monitor, I noticed no less than 5 fentanyl patches on her, guess I discovered the cause of the AMS. </p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lw2g2z/doctors_of_reddit_what_was_the_worse_thing_youve/gpg1lml?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">ChewbaccaSlim426</a></p>
Use your Words<img lazy-loadable="true" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yNTcxNDcyMi9vcmlnaW4uZ2lmIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY1MDA1NjI0MH0.WtyCdxL1vRZwD2-jpKZXMOEakwhiBaJIkp1YPnOzlvo/img.gif?width=980" id="e45ca" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="f5b98e6a4605a587dbd97579468a51d8" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" data-width="498" data-height="367" />Communication GIF by memecandyGiphy<p>Neurologist sent patient to our ED without informing her that imaging showed a glioblastoma assuring her impending death. He didn't overlook the disease, he overlooked the communication. </p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/lw2g2z/doctors_of_reddit_what_was_the_worse_thing_youve/gpfl5t5?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">AzureSkye27</a></p>
Mad Cow Realty<p>During my residency we had this lady in her 60s who was getting progressively more forgetful, just overall declining and getting less and less able to take care of herself. She had been seeing her pcp who diagnosed her with dementia. And she saw a neurologist who agreed. She was not really able to provide an accurate history. <span></span></p>
After Birth...<p>I used to work in maternal-fetal medicine, and every single week, we would have women referred to us "because the doctor couldn't see something clearly with the baby and wanted to double check." Nope, they just didn't want to have to be the ones to tell you that your baby had a complex cardiac defect or multiple anomalies indicative of a genetic syndrome or any other of a large number of horrible things that can happen during fetal development. Still pisses me off when I think about how many women waited weeks for more information because their doctors were cowards who couldn't tell them, "There's something seriously wrong here." <span></span></p>
bad doctors<p>I'm not a doctor, but a RN. This happened to me, but isn't nearly as bad as most of the stories on here.</p><p>When I was in college, I got to where I couldn't swallow. It started with difficulty swallowing, progressed to me having to swallow bites of food multiple times/regurgitating it, and then got to where all I could swallow was broths and mashed potatoes with no chunks. I went to the doctor multiple times, and was told every time it was acid reflux and part of my anxiety disorder. <span></span></p>
The Valve...<p>He put the pacemaker lead in the subclavian artery (and across the aortic valve into the left ventricle). The proper approach is: subclavian vein to right ventricle). And then he didn't notice it for over a year. I saw the patient (a 25 yo woman who didn't need the pacemaker in the first place) when she was in congestive heart failure. <span></span><br></p>
Bitten<p>Rattlesnake bite. On a 2 year old. Patient and dad out in the fields near a small town that is several hours away from the nearest big city, where I work.</p>
When we think about learning history, our first thought is usually sitting in our high school history class (or AP World History class if you're a nerd like me) being bored out of our minds. Unless again, you're a huge freaking nerd like me. But I think we all have the memory of the moment where we realized learning about history was kinda cool. And they usually start from one weird fact.
Here are a few examples of turning points in learning about history, straight from the keyboards of the people at AskReddit.