If you're anything like us, there's a good chance you've been to a theme park and found yourself lost in the wonder. At least we hope that's been your experience, but we've all seen the movies and heard the rumors about what goes on behind the scenes. Are there cool hidden gems? Is there a dark side to the magic? One reddit user got curious riding that train of thought and asked:
Theme Park employees, what are some cool secrets about your workplace?
1. Explosions At The Water Park:
I worked at a small amusement park in Maine for a summer. Basic stuff; teacups, log flume, pirate ship, antique cars, go carts, a wooden rollercoaster that was #10 in the world for a few years. Some of the jobs were horrid, others weren't so bad.
One of the worst jobs was called "Tower." If you saw your name listed next to "Tower," you knew that you were in for 8 hours sitting at the top of the log flume slide, watching people make fools of themselves. I really never minded it - they let me bring a notebook and a pen, so I would write basically all day (it was during my "productive" period).
I was assigned to tower at the beginning of a shift and was walking from the employee area to the log flume when I suddenly heard a loud BOOM. My radio lit up and everyone with one was told "Get to flume NOW!" We all went running.
Apparently, the pump for the flume had exploded, stranding people on the belt going up the slide, one cart was literally stuck at the end of the slide, and carts were backing up at the start of the belt and sinking, with people in them. It was awesome chaos. The pump was smoking, the tower swaying madly, people freaking out everywhere, children crying....
2. Cedar Point Secret Time!
Some Cedar Point "Secrets" - Some of these are from friends who have worked around the park.
You probably already knew this... but that $3.50 bottle of soda is $1.00 two steps behind an employee gate. Same goes for most of the food in the cafeteria.
On most of the larger attractions and rides, we have a system of signals and gestures to make fun of you behind your back. It keeps the long, repetitive and HOT day somewhat interesting.
Never, ever, EVER will we tell you what is wrong with a ride. Also, we'll never tell you when it's going to be up. The only differentiation we can make is if we're told its going to be a multiple hour fix. At that point.... "we anticipate a lengthy delay." Yup, we usually know what is wrong and how long it's going to take.
Employee Dorms could probably double for a gay male brothel.
Many times we're instructed to take cars off of a coaster simply because of attendance numbers. (They don't tell us that officially...) Simply no need to have 3/3 cars on the track when the park is at 50% capacity. Yep, that makes lines longer... sorry!
It's fun to watch you flash the ride cameras. We block the pictures on the monitors but can still see them behind the counter. We can also unblock them.
3. All This Disney Dirt:
I work a part time job at Disneyland as a "Gibson girl" ( person who works at the Gibson Girl ice cream shop, cokes corner, cone shop...basically any quick service place in Mainstreet) and have found out a lot of things.
The rumor about there being a basketball court inside Matterhorn Mountain is false but not entirely false. While there isn't a big basketball court, there is a basketball hoop that is downstairs that employees who performe/d maintenance on the ride sometimes use when on break.
Never get soda from the cone shop (don't ask...)
We have accidents of all sorts on a daily basis and the only time something will get on the news is when someone dies or is injured severely on a ride (on Monday, a lady had a heart attack riding its a small world..)
The rides employees hate working are Its a Small World, Pirates of the Caribbean, and Roger Rabbit. Why? Because they're rather creepy...and back in the 70's an employee died at the America Sings attraction and everyone nowadays says that it happened at "Its a Small World". She was crushed between two revolving doors that separated the backstage area from the front stage..(the doors were removed after the incident)
Someone was dragged under the tea cups once (they survived)
4. Big Head? Big Problem.
It's really hard to sign the autographs in some of the costumes.
In some of the characters you look through the mouth, but have to act like you're looking with the eyes of the character, which means most of their head is above your own. The heads can be really fricken heavy and stuffy. Lilo was the worst, plus the water parks are really humid. I almost passed out.
CPs at Disneyworld get free gatorade. It's the yellow kind...
Every Disney Prince I met was a gay man.
Getting free park entrace was the best part of working there. The pay was the worst.
If you see a character rub their eye, it means they need to go backstage because they're going to pass out, feel sick, or are having some sort of costume malfunction. I had to do this twice as Lilo because that costume was fricken terrible.
5. Wait, You Have To Push The Roller Coaster?
I used to work at a place called Camelot Theme Park, it's a modest place in the northwest of England. It was also my first job. I was rides operator, but worked in what they called "section 1" which was the part of the park with all the kids rides. Years before worked there, some employee was apparently killed after being hit by a rollercoaster during safety checks, but I'm not sure how much of that is myth.
Anyway, relating to the "how things work" bit in this question, there was a ride there that had been around since it opened in the mid-eighties known as the caterpillar/apple ride. The cart train was modeled on a giant caterpillar and it went through a big red apple halfway around the track. It was aimed at toddlers and small kids really, but by god it was the most primitive roller coaster I've ever seen. Apart from the chain that pulled it up to the top of the main dip, it ran completely on gravity, and to start the ride you released the breaks (which were clamps on the tracks, not the cart itself) and literally had to push it out of the station. If you didn't push it hard enough it would slow down and stop before the foot of the hill and you'd have to call maintenance to get the stranded people out. My first day operating the ride, the breaks were faulty. It was only meant to go round the track twice: I ended up making it go round 15 times.
Up next, apparently taller people are more intelligent?
6. Muggles, Magic and Maybe Criminal Charges?
Here are some "secrets" from The Wizarding World of Harry Potter:
The costumes worn by the Team Members were designed by Potter costume designer Jany Temime.
Some of the Hogwarts costumes worn by TMs working Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey were actually used in the films and worn by extras.
TMs working Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey are sorted into houses based on their height. Hufflepuff, Slytherin, Gryffindor then Ravenclaws are the tallest.
Universal Operations, Merchandise and Food Service TMs may usually wear their work wardrobe home. However, the Wizarding World wardrobe items are the only wardrobe items that these TMs may NOT take home. TMs caught doing so will be immediately terminated and may face criminal charges (for theft and IP theft) if they do so.
After The Three Broomsticks Restaurant was designed, the real film set was altered to more closely resemble the theme park restaurant.
The male dress robes seen in the Gladrags Wizarding Wear storefront are the same ones worn by Daniel Radcliff in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. The female dress robes are an exact replica of the ones worn by Emma Watson in the same film.
The TMs who work in that area are encouraged to act "in character" -- but they may NOT say ANYTHING that would "add to the Harry Potter story". For example, they may not say they know Harry, Dumbledore, or any of the characters -- or say what those characters may or may not like or do. For example, if you see a little girl with a stuffed cat, you can say "I like your kitty! I have a kitty like that at home!" You may not say "Oh, I'll bet Hermione would like your kitty!"
7. Busch. Gardens. Is. Not. Disney.
Busch Gardens. No, we're not owned by Disney. No, your Disney passes will not work here. No, not Universal either. Do your tickets say Busch Gardens on them? No? Then please buy a ticket. No, you may not get in for free because you have Disney passes. Also, no. Go ahead and cry all you want, I'm the one sitting in the AC.
8. Cheeky Chipmunks
I didn't work at a theme park but my high school English teacher worked for Disneyland while he was in college and told us stories a lot. He said Chip and Dale were the most disgusting guys ever and would have contests to see who could grope the most MILFs in a day.
9. Oh, Eww.
I worked for a long time at Santa's Village in Sky Forest, California. It's closed now, but it was pretty famous to southern Californians at the time.
There was a dead rat in the nacho machine (under the metal slope that holds the chips) at the Pixie Pantry for at least a year. We had dead rats pretty much everywhere, just out of sight.
The deep fryer oil in the Pixie Pantry was never changed. The insects were just scooped out with a mesh spoon.
All the burgers were cooked in the morning, and kept in a bucket of water until someone ordered one.
Most of the order fresh food vendors were clean enough.
Santa Claus was a huge chain smoker. He smelt horrible.
The bee monorail was known to catch on fire... the bobsled coaster derailed at least once, sending the riders to the hospital. We had a similar accident with the horse-drawn carriage. I don't think any ride operators were actually trained for emergencies.
Kids puke. A lot. You probably already knew that.
10. That's Got To Be A Confidence Shaker.
The auditions for characters are TOUGH. To be a face character, they line you up and analyze your bone structure before they do anything else. If your figure, height and bone structure aren't right, you don't even get to go any further in the audition. It's fun though :3 Plus the underground passages in the main park (I'm sure you know what I'm talking about) are pretty awesome, but can be creepy. They aren't all bright and colorful, it's a tunnel system, not an attraction. My childhood nearly fell to pieces when I saw a bench with my favorite characters' heads all lined up in a row on it.
Click next to find out where the life guards suck at guarding lives.
11. We Can Save Your Money, But Probably Not Your Life
I worked last summer for Valleyfair, a park in Minnesota owned by the people who own Cedar Fair. These aren't as cool as the disneyworld ones, but I have a few:
Behind the Renegade coaster is an original Edsel Ranger sitting on a grassy hill. I don't know what it's for and no one there I asked seems to know either.
Buy a season pass. As of last year parking is included, and they cost $60 at the beginning of the season. Regular admission is $48 and parking is $10.
Our lifeguards are completely incompetent. They get audited randomly throughout the season, where the company stages an emergency and the guards have to save someone. Almost all of them fail and have to go through training again.
People lose a ton of money on rides. I worked in Park Services (park cleanup) and once found $28 in a day just in bills dropped from a roller coaster.
12. EMPLOYEES CAN BUY THE CARNIVAL PRIZES!?!
Spent a summer working games at Hersheypark. Not the most exciting things to be learned but here we go:
All of the popular games have cameras installed in them. That means Ring Toss. Ring Toss as 4 cameras. It's because if the attendant gets distracted and a ring lands on the outer two ring of bottles, you have to call it in. People notoriously have little kids lean over and just place it and try and guilt the attendant into giving away big ass bears
When you play Wacky/Winding Wires, by July, all of the new employees can beat that game, does not mean we will bend the rules if we hear that annoying buzzer, but it also doesn't mean we can't tell you which game station has a smaller ring or larger ring. It can make a large difference.
Every year, 1% of all profits from Hersheypark and Hershey's chocolate goes to the Milton Hershey School, which was originally a school for orphans, but will now also help kids whose parents can't afford to send them to school. This means the school will never go bankrupt. Ever. That school is worth over a billion dollars.
If you live somewhere CLOSE to Hersheypark, make friends with the employees, they get 2 free tickets per paycheck, 15% off everything in the park, and 25% off everything in Chocolate World. This means make friends with an employee, give them your money and make them buy your chocolate for you.
Employees can BUY the prizes in the game stalls (I know you're thinking 'Who'd buy a shitty ass dolphin that costs less then a nickle to makes?') but bitches LOVE giant ass teddy bears as big as them and they make great birthday gifts. Does not mean we can buy them for GUESTS. This can get us fired.
13. No Sexytime On The Skyride
Disability passes available at guest services are free, and allow you to wait the time of a line anywhere you please. Make sure you tell them you have some form of autism, and no broken bones. You can put up to 6 people on that pass with you. Take it to the ride attendant and they'll give you a pass for x amount of minutes. Come back after those minutes, and you go straight to the front of the line.
Working the Howl-o-Scream events are more fun than you can possibly imagine, if you want to make a quick $1000 in a month and sacrifice all your weekends in October. Be prepared to have some injuries from repetitive motions, and be prepared to be cursed at, hit, and spat on.
The seats in the middle of rows 5 and 6 on Montu are meant for heavier set people.
The drivers at Rhino Rally are actually driving those trucks. No, they are not on tracks. We go through hours and hours and hours of training and observation to be able to drive those enormous rovers. Yes, sometimes the Rhinos do charge towards the trucks. It's nothing to be scared about, though.
You can get small ticket discounts for friends with a Fun Card.
If you need to eat in the theme park, go to the Zambia Smokehouse. More bang for your buck. Order your drinks without ice, you'll get double the amount.
If you come to guest services complaining about how it's raining on a day that was forecast for a hurricane, we will not be sympathetic. Please read the weather forecast before you come to a theme park.
When you are perched 200 feet up on Sheikra, waiting for that drop, you are being held up there by a small, tiny latch of metal.
If you're going to be at the park all day and you want a drink/snack, shell out for the souvenir cup/bucket. Refills are absolutely dirt cheap.
Whenever you buy anything in the park, just ask the shop/vendor, and they'll send it to guest services at the front so you can pick it up later. Free.
If you go to Jungala early enough in the morning and hang around the white tigers for a bit, you may have a chance to play tug of war with one of them.
In the mid morning on a slow-ish day, you can pay for regular parking, then just drive into the preferred parking lot to park. Noone checks. Also, if you get to the park about an hour and a half to closing, the toll booths usually aren't manned.
Half the time that you're on Montu, most of the mechanism isn't touching the track; just a couple guiding ball bearings.
Unless you're there in the summer at night, don't try to do anything stupid on the skyride; there are cameras everywhere, with no blind spots.
14. Arms Over The Chest From Now On.
Being from Orlando, I have worked all the theme parks. Since this thread is overwhelmed with disney facts, I will instead tell you something about my employment with Wet N Wild. If an attractive (large busted) woman was at the top of the slide the guy working at the bottom of the ride would give the secret "boob signal" for the lifeguard up top. This was code for the lifeguard to send her down the slide with her hands interlocked behind her head instead of her arms folded across her chest. If a persons arms are folded across the chest this method prevents wandrobe malfunctions, which is a reason why it is the policy to do so, because when the hands are interlocked behind the head it prevents the said female from covering her escaping breasts. It goes without saying that this lead to optimal boobage for the lifeguard waiting below. Oh, to reminisce on those scenes, me gawking at those helpless girls through my mirrored sunglasses as they failed to realize that their bosom was exposed for all to see. In retrospect this may have been an inappropriate use of power...
EDIT: It is also worth noting that when purchasing sunglasses for lifeguarding, the ideal pair will have dark lenses, thus allowing your eyes to wander upon the exposed breasts completely unnoticed. This was another very well known fact on the job.
15. Disney: Where No One Is Sober And The Christian Kids Get Lit.
I've seen a few Disneyland Cast Members post. I've worked in all 4 of the Disney World theme parks, and can answer any questions for them. Some cool tidbits you may or may not know.
*There is a room in Cinderella's castle that can be stayed in.
*When Tinkerbell fly's from Cinderella's castle, it's one of (when I worked there from 2004-2008) 3 different ones. One of whom is male.
*There are days when none of the cast members working the attraction you are on are sober (Depending on the attraction). INCLUDING THE COORDINATORS AND MANGERS.
*Cosmic Ray's Starlight Caf in Tomorrowland (Used to be at least) serve the most people per hour in America at any indoor fast food joint (during peak hours).
*When hurricanes and such happen, the cars you see on speedway's track are actually driven off the track and into the tunnels below magic kingdom for storage.
*Yes, the speedway cars have A.) Caught Fire B.) Jumped the track and been driven through a fence and round Toon Town. C.) Ran over people (no deaths, but one time, a kid got hit/arm ran over, the father grabbed him and ran, we had people looking for them all over the park. Eventually, he came back and demanded an ambulance (2-3 hours later!), so we did and it turns out the kid had a broken arm.) EDIT 1: I thought of a few other cool tidbits
*You can get your haircut at Magic Kingdom for a (relatively) reasonable rate! I think it's about $20 for adults and $15 for kids. Cast Members can get that done in the tunnels as well.
*Underneath Magic Kingdom is a Subway. Yes, the restaurant.
*The days when you get the worst behavior is actually Night of Joy (When the christian artists come to Disney) followed by Graduation Nights (high schools graduatation celebrations).
*Each area of the park has their own custom number codes. I think you guess which are standard and which are not :P
- 115: Jailbait
- 105: Hot person
- 104: Wheelchair party / Assistance
- 103: Break
- 102: Attraction's up
- 101: Attraction's down
*If you are fat, and can't get off Space Mountain fast enough, we'll hit a button and park the rocket you're in to the back area. There's multiple reasons we do this, First: It gives you time to get out on your own, Second: If our rockets back up and we get 4 at the unloading the station the ride trips and "E-Stops".
*Worst case of that was we had one really large guest and she got stuck. We had to have Reedy Creek (the Walt Disney World Fire Company) pull her out of the rocket using a movable crane and a large amount of Crisco.
*Disney World has it's own Fire Company, Water Works, and Power Company. Police are mostly local sheriffs.
*The town of Celebration used to be owned by Disney World. It wasn't until more recent times Disney sold it off.
There are some questions that illustrate such vulnerability, such open tragedy on the part of the asker that we fend off tears while we come up with an appropriate answer.
Sometimes the question comes from someone who's been so steeped in struggle that they need help understanding that another possible reality exists.
Sometimes it's a question that cuts right to our own core with startling efficiency.
Whatever form it takes, it stops us in our tracks and we're likely to remember it for quite awhile after.
Curious to hear the saddest examples, Redditor julylovestory asked:
"What question has someone asked you that secretly broke your heart?"
Many Redditors responded by sharing the sad questions uttered by young children.
Kids just have the knack for cutting straight through to the essence of it all.
A Tragic Conscientiousness
"As we passed the toy aisle at the store, 'I know you don't have much money right now, but maybe when you get some we could come back and get a toy?' "
"I was not doing well financially back then and my daughter brought me to tears in the middle of the store."
Puzzled and Sad
"First day of preschool for my three year old son. The first time he would ever be away from Mom & Dad at the same time."
"I brought him to the room and expected a meltdown, but instead he confidently strutted, and I do mean strutted into the classroom."
"Three hours later, I picked him up. He was ok until we got to the car when he said, in quiet sad voice 'l thought you were coming with,' followed by an even sadder quieter 'Why did you leave me?' "
" 'Can I wish for my sister?' - A 10-year-old student of mine whose big sister died 4 years ago. We were working on an activity about dreams and aspirations for their futures."
How Bad Must It Be?
"I was like 22 and it was probably 10pm or so at a Walmart. I was on my way to a party and stopped for beer. The store was fairly empty and as I was in the beer aisle, I see this kid completely by himself."
"He was about 5 and at first I thought it was kind of funny because he was trying to pick up a case of beer. I waited like 30-60 seconds, looking around for this kid's mom/dad to come get him. A couple people walked right by him like it was normal, so then I started getting worried. I picked up my two cases of beer and walked over and kindly asked him if he lost his mom or needed help."
"The kid completely ignored the question and instead was thoroughly impressed that I was strong enough to carry two cases of beer. Eventually an employee noticed and came over as well. I told her everything I knew and she took over and told him that she was going to bring him to find his mom."
"As he was walking away he kept looking back at me and I smiled and said goodbye. The kid stopped and said 'can I just come home with you? I don't like my mom.' "
"I was caught off guard so I just laughed and told him the lady was going to help him. Now I'll never know the full story, or what happened to him but the more I think about it - that kid more than likely had a pretty shi**y childhood."
"I mean, the store wasn't busy and it was late at night on a weekday. It really makes you wonder why he was there in the first place, how he got separated from his mom and why would he ask to go with a complete stranger instead of worrying about where his mom was?"
"It still makes me sad. Hope everything worked out for the little dude."
Others talked about the times when they or somebody else realized just how tragic their own circumstances were.
"My ex asked me what I liked to do with my family growing up."
"Made me realize my family never did anything together and I literally had no answer to such a basic question."
Seeing Another Version
"During college, parents took a friend and I out to dinner. Very normal dinner, chit chatted about whatever. After we left and were walking back to my car, he turns to me and says 'Is that what a normal relationship is like?' "
"We talked more after that, I had met his parents a few times and they seemed strict but never seemed to have a terrible relationship. Turned out apparently his dad had cheated on his mom multiple times, dad had zero respect for any of my friends sisters and essentially expected them to do all the housework while the men did 'guy stuff.' "
"Hunting, training for sports, school, etc. Turned out his childhood was pretty fu**ed, dad was never around and he had to essentially be the father figure in the house. As the oldest child, never really saw a normal loving relationship that he could look up to."
"My friend is a really nice guy, still has some messed up views of relationships though. I never realized how 'abnormal' my very normal family/childhood was."
A Better Place
" 'You've never beaten me or told me I couldn't do something. Is that normal?'
"My first girlfriend told me that. I have never felt such a wave of anger, sadness, and heartbreak wash over me like I did when I heard that"
And some people discussed the time a question destroyed their social confidence.
Worst Teacher Ever
"I have a stutter, when I was a kid I had to read a page of a book to the class. I stuttered, and the teacher said 'can you even read' and that fu**ing broke my 13 year old heart."
"No one takes stuttering seriously."
There's the Answer
"When I was 19, I hung out with a cute girl from my high school that I never got to hang with when we were in school. Had a great day together, and that night she asked, 'can we be like secret friends or something? I don't really hang out with people like you.' "
"Never hung out again."
Comparing and Contrasting
" 'Oh, are you the girl with the hot sister ?' " -- JustehOK
"I worked in a department with two Melissas. One day, I was sitting next to one Melissa when we overheard another coworker say to someone, 'have you seen little Melissa?' "
"The other Melissa got kind of a defeated look in her eye and said, 'oh, I'm big Melissa.' " -- EarhornJones
It's a list that's sad enough to leave one wondering about the questions they've received that struck them as particularly hopeless.
Sometimes, though, that vulnerability can be the start of accepting new realities and new possibilities.
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If you live on this earth and you're fortunate enough to form long-lasting relationships with different people, chances are you'll know the pain of heartbreak. It's an unavoidable fact of life.
We are not guaranteed to stay with one person forever, as we were reminded once Redditor disturbance of mirrors asked the online community,
"People whose long-term relationship faded, what was the final straw that made you realize it was time to call it a day?"
"The last time..."
"When she 'broke up' with me for the 12th time.
We had a long-distance relationship and whenever we had an issue or a disagreement, instead of engaging in a conversation with me about it, she would say we were done and shut me out for two or three days before coming back and manipulating me into groveling for her forgiveness. The last time, I just said no to going back and stuck to it. She freaked out and tried to drive 6 hours to my place at 2:00 a.m... I got a call from her mom saying she had left in the middle of the night as a head's up and, upon finally getting ahold of her when she was just a couple of hours away, I was able to convince her to turn back.
That relationship f***** me up for a while but, once I began dating my now fiancee, it was unbelievable to me how wonderful a real, loving relationship with healthy communication can be."
"Her brother was living with us..."
"Mine was not a slow burn like most seem to be, but a very definitive moment.
Her brother was living with us and this was right when WiFi was becoming available to the general public. We couldn't afford it cuz we were broke kids, so her brother would take my GF's MacBook (it was a gift) and sit on a nearby bus bench and leech off someone's unsecured WiFi.
Well, one day we get a call from her sister and she says we need to get home immediately. Turns out some guys came up and asked him for change for a $20 and when he told them he didn't have it they tried to snatch the Mac and jump in their car.
He knew it wasn't his so he held onto it and tried to get it back but they were too much. He had gotten dragged by the car, kicked in the head, and then had his leg run over. He was in pretty bad shape.
As we turn the corner (didn't know what had happened yet) GF sees cop cars and an ambulance and says "This better not have anything to do with my Mac. We walk in and he's visibly in bad shape and she is just immediately "Did you lose my Mac?" I'll never forget his face. He was so ashamed and felt terrible and just started crying. She however started screaming my computer! My computer! And hitting him. To the point where the cops considered arresting her. It was an instant eye-opener."
"I'd sit in my car..."
"I'd sit in my car after work playing on my phone for like an hour because I just needed a break before going inside and dealing with him."
That would do it.
"I would find any excuse..."
"I would find any excuse to work late or sometimes go sit at a bar by myself just to avoid the misery at home. We divorced."
"He was a workaholic..."
"He was a workaholic to the point that I saw him about 6 days per month."
"Somewhere between giving up on small talk and not looking forward to the weekends anymore."
That's no way to live.
"It really forced us..."
"Honestly it was the pandemic. It really forced us to actually spend time together and I realized we kind of just didn't do much together at all. I had spent years thinking it was cool that we kept our own friends and space but once those distractions were taken away it was just really clear to me that we were more roommates than a couple."
"When I realized..."
"When I realized I was needed and not wanted. Constantly trying to make someone happy who didn't want to be happy."
This one hurts. I've been there myself. (And I have also been that person––I thankfully got help.)
"We lived together..."
"We lived together but lived completely separate lives. Basically a housemate I shared a bed with. Happened twice to me so far."
"I would have moved mountains for him..."
"I knew it was over when I cared more about his wellbeing than he cared about his own wellbeing. I would have moved mountains for him if it made his life easier and he just continuously put himself in shi!ty situations. I eventually just gave up. I can't be with someone who doesn't care about themselves. Thank God that's over."
If you think you might be stuck in a pointless or unhealthy relationship, it's worth evaluating your options. And it's never worth sticking around and risking your emotional and mental health.
Have some stories of your own? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below.
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There is always that "one." There is always going to be that person.
That person who you will always remember. And when they are the one who you regret losing most... they are the ghost that will haunt you forever.
I have a few escapees. I'll never know how it would've turned out. But that is part of why I'm haunted. I need to discuss....
Redditor u/AssistantNo1733 wanted to discuss all the times we've lost in love by asking:
Who's the one who got away?
Do we even have a clue that they're the "one" that got away? How long until it sinks in? And how do we not know there isn't another "one" coming behind them? I have no answers. Just asking...
The DraftEpisode 1 Omg GIF by RuPaul's Drag RaceGiphy
"The girl who summoned up the nerve to ask me out towards the beginning of high school. I was so humiliated by the life my family was living that I stalled until she gave up."
"Betsy, if by some stroke of dumb luck you're reading this... I'm so sorry. It was 25-27 years ago, but I still hate myself for that. You were beautiful, intelligent, a good person, and if I had anything resembling a stable, presentable home I would've said yes in a heartbeat... I had a crush on you since 7th-grade 'intro to drafting.'
I Love Her
"Weird, I was just confiding in my mom about this last night. I'm late but for catharsis's sake I'm going to post. My first girlfriend is a classic case of you don't know what you have until it's gone. She's the complete package. Beautiful, intelligent, compassionate, and so kind. We started dating when I was 17 and broke up when I was 21."
"For reference I'm 30 now. I was an idiot. I wanted to play the field. I wanted to party and hook up with college girls. It was fun at first but after a while I felt this gnawing hole in my heart. The feeling of doubt crept up slowly and still, a decade later my chest feels tight thinking about it."
"I didn't realize until my later serious relationships that getting along with your SO's family is so important. Her mom and step dad genuinely treated me like a part of their family. It's not a stretch to say I literally grew up with these people. I spent some of my most formative years with them. Birthdays, Thanksgivings, Christmases, you name it. They celebrated me and my accomplishments. They genuinely cared about me. Just amazing, salt of the earth, lovely people."
"Her birthday was in March and I sent her a text and we ended up talking for a bit. She's happily married and stable with a daughter and a second on the way. I'm genuinely so happy for her. She deserves happiness. I just wish I was a part of that. Sitting at work 10 years later I'm tearing up. I numbed myself out to it for years, it's so strange to me that I've been so stuck on her lately. Is this normal?"
15 Years Later
"My very first real love. I was a teenager and I didn't really know how to be comfortable in myself or with myself. I played silly teen girl games and lost him even as a friend. Now 15 years later I still think about R from time to time. I genuinely hope he's happy in his life."
"Edit: Wow this blew up while I was sleeping. Thanks for all the sweet words and to everyone with their "one" congratulations! I suppose I hadn't looked him up on social media because I'm scared, scared he won't respond, scared he will respond, scared he'll think I'm a stalker. I'm in a happy relationship now, but what if... Etc etc etc. But I'll give it a Google."
Missed You Muchrhythm nation dance GIF by Janet JacksonGiphy
A girl I dated in high school. Went on a date one time she took me out parking and I was too stupid to realize it.
"She always talked about moving away as soon as she got finished with high school. I always thought I would stay in a little town the rest of my life. Turns out I was the one who left and move to another state. Later I heard that she had told someone that I knew that she thought that we would be married at some point. Missed it by that much."
Ok... I've been a bit blind to the light. People can be cruel, but also highly creative. Why not just lead with the truth? It'll always hurt more after lies.
Chuck E.Chuck E Cheese Wink GIFGiphy
"Ah the rare AskReddit question I can answer."
"I met a wonderful woman circa 2013-2015. We worked at what I can best describe as an upscaled Chuck E Cheese. Or ghetto Six Flags. Your choice."
"We hit it off instantly, though at the time I was rather romantically inept. Eventually, she says she's leaving to join the Air Force. I tell her I'll miss her, and wished her well. The thought of asking for her number so we could stay in contact didn't even cross my mind."
"Cue the next day, I stop for lunch on my way to work, and as I'm walking to my car I hear my name being called. I turn around, and it's her, running toward me. Universe giving me a second chance, right? Wrong. My dumb butt still didn't ask for her number. She looked a little upset, and I still think about her often. Desiree, I hope you're doing well."
"He was my first and last love. I was 16 and he was 18 when we met. We bounced around like idiots, on again off again, finally got together mid 20s. We both fell into bad habits - drugs and alcohol, more booze for me, more drugs for him. We had some bad things happen that were pretty detrimental to staying sober. We would split, reconcile, get sober, fall off the wagon, split, etc... repeat as necessary. We realized we were very bad for each other unless we could BOTH just get sober for ourselves, and split."
"Ten years later, I was sober for 7 years (still am, going on 18 years end of this month, actually! Woo, go me!) and he was beginning to come back, sober about a year. He contacted me, we met, talked about trying again. He said that once he had been totally clean for a year, we'd do it. That whole "Don't make any changes for a year" thing. I would visit him, tho, things were good."
"He woke up one morning feeling bad, thought he had the flu. (This was pre-now) I stayed around because he was sick, but neither of us thought he was drastically bad, just the flu, right? He got worse and worse, finally we called an ambulance because he got up from a nap and couldn't breathe. He died in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. Aortic dissection."
"He got away, but someday I'll see him again. I never stopped loving him, and him me. We just weren't good for each other."
Ce la vie...
"My most serious Ex."
"Don't think I truly understood love until I met her. Loved her more than I ever thought I could love anything. It eventually ended when she told me that, through no fault of my own, she had fallen out of love with me. That was 2 years ago, still hurts to think/talk about."
"Ce la vie..."
"I'm in the middle of trying to avoid that right now actually."
"It's not worth the heartache trust me. I fought to stay in a relationship for an entire year. If I would've just let her go the first time she wanted there would've been a lot less pain. We would've left on good terms. I would've lost a lot less sleep. Rip the band-aid off because once the band-aid starts peeling it's inevitable it'll fall off with time."
Sweet...Kim Tate Eye Roll GIF by EmmerdaleGiphy
Damn man why bring this up.
"My ex and I broke up over 3 years ago. Mutual breakup through a lack of communication on both ends I feel."
"Thought I was over that hill until this week she messaged just to say hey and ask an innocent question. We text for the best part of the day and it's brought up a lot of old feeling. Feeling pretty bitter sweet right now."
Love is a mess. Why even bother trying if you can't be true? It's not hard to just spell out the situation. And if you're the one needing to put together the words... look closer. The dialogue shouldn't be difficult.
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What are the odds you'd click on this link today?
What was the biggest coincidence that made you question the fabric of reality?
There's small coincidences, occurrences so minute that you wouldn't even notice them if you weren't paying attention. However, once someone makes a big deal out of them then there's no other choice but to acknowledge that what just happened was spectacular.
Each Having A Buddy Coming To Town
"My friend and I were on a road trip a few years ago and needed a place to stay. We both told each other we had a friend in the city we were going through, so we figured we'd be able to crash with one of them. Turns out our two friends were roommates and had both been telling each other that they had a friend coming to town soon."
What's That Got To Be? A 1 in 1000 Chance?
"Several years ago I was at a coffee shop with some friends and one of them had an ipad, another friend went to unlock it and asked him what his 4 digit unlock code was, so I just blurted out 4 random digits pretending like I knew it, and it actually worked. I had never unlocked it before or knew of the same numbers being used for anything else, or his phone number, etc."
Both Probably Assumed What The Best Time Was
"I passed out after receiving a flu shot when I was 28. The nurse who helped me up kept asking if I wanted my mom. It seemed like a really weird thing to offer an adult woman - the option to have her mother phoned and brought in - so I was really confused and getting progressively more annoyed at her repeatedly asking...
...until my mom walked up to me. She had the appointment after mine to get vaccinated. The nurses assumed we had come together, but neither of us knew about the other's appointment, and we lived an hour away from each other in different cities."
Living in such a big world can lead you to the conclusion that math is silly and odds are never in your favor. With over seven billion people roaming around, chances of meeting someone of significance?
Less than you think.
A Simultaneous Love Of Traveling
"This guy I went to grade school and high school with, an acquaintance at best. I've seen him in 5 different locations in different countries throughout the last 15 years.
Disney World when I was a kid.
Some beach bar in Thailand.
The Bean in Chicago.
A pub in Budapest.
A library in San Jose, Costa Rica.
We've become friends due our love of traveling, but neither of us post on social media and neither of us communicated with each other our plans to travel. We never talked outside of the random meetings. Now if I see him, its like the world wants us to have a beer together. haha"
"I Mean, The Crash, Yeah, But How Have You Been?"
"My dad lives in a national park here in Australia. It's farmland that's grandfathered in. It's the remnants of a volcano that blew itself up very violently, so it's very hilly terrain.
One day we were sitting out on the deck, when we see a hang-glider come down halfway down the valley, and it didn't look like a nice landing. "Sh-t, we better see if he's alright, they don't land anywhere near here"
So we get in the car, drive for about 10 minutes to reach the spot. We head over to the guy who is standing by a very damaged glider. The pilot is staring at us incredulously, he stammers "F-ck, Jack, is that you?".
My dad, who hasn't seen his childhood friend for 35 years shouts "F-ck, Tim, is that you?".
They both grew up in Greymouth, NZ. Found each other randomly after a glider crash in NSW, Australia."
Takes A Wedding To Bring People Together
"My wife and I were looking to hire a caterer for our wedding and when we met, my wife and her started talking about their lives a bit.
Turns out they had both literally grown up on the same street, in a city of 10 million people, on the other side of the world. Both had left the city around a decade before immigrating to our current country.
They knew the same people, had hung out at the same coffee place, attended the same church. They even used to grab mangoes off the same large tree that hung over the wall of one of the large houses in the neighbourhood.
But they had never met one another until meeting on almost the exact opposite side of the planet, in a small town of about 50,000 people."kor_hookmaster
What we can gain from these experiences is a coincidence will occur more than you think, you just have to have the eyes sharp enough to spot them.
But how would you explain these?
Position Is Key
"I dialed my mum on my mobile when I was on public transport and accidentally swapped two numbers around.
The person I called was on the same carriage."
"Go on, tell us what happened then!"
"So I was listening to my phone and at the exact moment it started the ringing sound I heard a phone start ringing and I thought it was a coincidence but then the phone answered and it wasn't mum.
All I said was "Oh, are you on the Upfield train?" and they said "Yes, who's this?" but I got shy and I hung up.
Poor guy must have been so confused."
Universal Echoes Bringing You Closer Together
"One time, me and my dad were discussing his friend while out driving at night without many other cars on the road. As we were talking, we pulled up to a red light, and the car waiting in front was my dad's friend. He didn't even live close to there."
Extremely Unlucky Odds. Go Buy A Lottery Ticket.
"A couple of years ago I was visiting my hometown and decided to sit on a bench at my favorite park. As I was sitting, I felt something land on my head. Bird poop. After heading home and washing my hair, I went back into town. While I walked around, I watched as a guy got hit with a drop of sky sh-t. As I was laughing about the apparent irritable bowel syndrome of the birds in my town, a bird flying right over me drops a fat sh-t on my head."
There's no magic at play. All of these happenstances can be explained away with simple math and rudimentary probability.
Still, it's fun to live when you're in the moment.