Professionals Share Their Best 'It Doesn't Actually Work Like That Though' Experiences
ThisisEngineering RAEng on Unsplash

A lot of people seem to have a lot of assumptions about the way the world works, and a lot of us don't have any experience to back up those assumptions.

Whether it's assuming that there absolutely must be another box of Cinnamon Toast Crunch in the back of the store that they can have if they can only convince the poor teenager stocking shelves, or that a photo editor will be able to magically make your blurry, pixellated photo look amazing, there's a lot of things people seem to think are true about different fields that just aren't.

Redditor Enguzelharf asked:

"What's your profession's myth that you regularly need to explain 'it doesn't work like that' to people?"


"I work in a hardware store and apparently people think we have a huge underground storage big enough to hide every product in existence."

"No, I can't just go and fetch a part for your 20-year-old fireplace or power tool from the backroom."

- Mjarf88

"Also- an extension cord with two sets of male ends isn’t needed for Christmas light installation. No, you didn’t but one last year. Yes, I know this. I worked here last year. We didn’t have them then either. There is a use for those cords but it’s not Christmas lights."

- pherring

"Retail. If an employee tells you they're sold out of that hot sale item. They're sold out. They're not hoarding them in the backroom, because f**k you. They know they're sold out, because you're the 10th person to ask about it, in the last 20 minutes."

- RagingHolly

Pain Meds

"Your terminally ill grandmother isn't 'becoming addicted' to her pain medication. She's dying in as much comfort and with as much dignity as we can provide."

- Aggressivecleaning

"As an add-on to this, the pain medication isn't going to kill them faster."

- fiducia42

"Honestly, I needed someone to remind me of this when we were at the morphine phase with my mom. They explain how they’ll stop all treatment and make her comfortable with the morphine, and somehow it just felt like we’d be killing her. The doctor took her time to explain that was not what was happening. I am a relatively smart person but in this situation I just really needed to hear this."

- Scullyxmulder1013


"Antibiotics don't work on viral diseases."

- The_Max_V

Conservation Of Energy

"As an engineer, I have to explain a lot of time that the law of energy and mass conservation can't be broken."

- Bobraie

"Are you telling me that my childhood invention of a solar-powered car with a big lamp on it pointing at the solar panels *wouldn't* be able to run forever? I don't believe you.

- JayGold

"One time the HVAC went out in my office and my boss brought in a portable air conditioner. I asked where we were going to vent the hot air, and he was like 'What heat? It's an A/C, it just makes cold.' It took 20 minutes on a whiteboard to explain that you can't 'make cold,' you're just transferring the heat somewhere else."

- KickFacemouth


"When someone finds out you're an accountant 90% of the time they will say "great, so you can help with my taxes haha" . There are loads of accountants who may never see taxes in their day-to-day and have minimal knowledge from their certification only."

- dahliafluffy

"So much this, and no I’m not busy in April because it’s tax season, it’s because the quarter just ended."

- jaaaaagggggg

Video Editing

"Video production. Your only options in the edit are what the camera captured."

- JhymnMusic

"Dude this. I have clients sometimes ask me to add slow motion to certain shots. 'Make it look slick and smooth.'"

"Well, you shot everything at 24fps so, no. It’s gonna look like sh*t."

- try_by

"'Just fix it in post' I will end you."

- DefinitelynotDanger


"There aren’t just buckets of grant money available for your wacky idea. You have to have a track record, an organization, a plan and a budget. It’s highly competitive."

- Soobobaloula

"I’m a professional grant writer too. The number of times I have to explain that the 'airport grant' cannot be used to replace East Main Street is too damn high."

- PrideofPicktown

"I tried to explain this to an interim administrator at the school where I worked. I had asked to meet and discuss ideas for grant projects, as writing grants had previously been part of my job. Wouldn’t accept that I couldn’t just say 'it’s for a school' and that would be that."

- Sheepeys

scrooge mcduck 80s GIFGiphy


"Putting an angled back cut when felling a tree against the lean does absolutely nothing and will result in a tree falling on your house. Just pay us to do the job"

- spjnr

"Learned this the hard way when my landlord came over to take down a tree in the back yard by lassoing it with a rope tied to a water skiing handle and cutting a notch into the tree with a chainsaw. Turns out trees are heavy, who knew? Granted it was his house but my family living in it. We moved into our own place a little later and I’ve hired arborists ever since."

- Top_Chef

"Yep. Every good redneck knows to pull the tree down with a buddy's pickup."

"Preferably a buddy you don't like with a pickup that's not worth much."

- imdatingaMk46

Ordering In A Bar

"I work in a bar. People frequently ask for drinks to be “extra strong”, but when I explain that they can just order a double, but we can’t add extra alcohol to their drink for free, they look at me like I’m speaking a language they’ve never heard before."

- Fabulous_Piccolo_178

"For a strong drink you either have to tip very well every time you are in, or be friends with the bartender outside of work."

- Idrinktears92

"Pretty much yeah. But if I’m not behind the bar, I can’t ask whoever’s bartending to f**k up their inventory by just giving away liquor—it’s like people don’t understand that we keep track of how much is in each bottle and when the sales reports don’t match the inventory, it’s a problem. Like if you work retail and somebody asks if they can just add an extra item to their purchase without ringing it up or paying for it you’re going to look at them like they’re insane."

- Fabulous_Piccolo_178

Photo Editing

"Photo editing. It's amazing how many people think they can give me a tiny, blurry, digital image of the back of their daughter sitting on a park bench, with uneven lighting in the shade, and think I can magically and quickly turn that into a banner of her standing next to the Eiffel Tower, smiling in the sun, facing the camera. Neither Photoshop nor I have any idea what your daughter's face looks like. I can't just 'turn her around'. I literally have to work with exactly what you are seeing in the photo you hand me or email me. Now if you give me several photos, some containing her face, some with her standing, etc., then yes, I can do some quite magical things."

- nollaf126


- whateverathrowaway00

Super Troopers Reaction GIF by Searchlight PicturesGiphy

The moral of the story is: if someone who is an expert in a field tells you that something is a certain way, it's probably best to believe them.