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People Explain What Happened To The Popular Kids In School

Reddit user Just_Suspect5904 asked: 'People Explain What Happened To The Popular Kids After School Ended'

A cheerleader
Glib Albovsky/Unsplash

Being in high school is such a pivotal moment in a young adolescent's life.

They discover who they are and where they want to be. They start making tough decisions about their future and forge bonds with individuals who may continue to influence them as they navigate the world post-graduation.

But as it often happens, we all drift apart due to going to different colleges or embarking on other adventures.

It's not until several years pass that we wax nostalgic about our youth and wonder about the people with whom we once roamed the halls, carrying our textbooks and fixated on inconsequential matters that seemed like a big deal then.

Curious to hear from strangers online, Redditor Just_Suspect5904 asked:

"What happened to the most popular kids in your school?"

The following Redditors opened up about acquaintances that left an indelible mark on their memory.

The Parents Were Wrong About Him

"One of my best friends was from the wrong side of the tracks, poor, had a mullet and wore Metallica shirts way before they broke into mainstream."

"He was extremely popular because he was crazy smart, very talented and driven. Everyone wanted to be his friend and he was very open about being nice to everyone."

"Many many parents were like 'don’t hang out with that John Smith boy, he’s on drugs and a bad influence' (He absolutely was not, it was the Satanic scare of the late 80s and 90s and he liked Metal Music)"

"He worked his as off all his life and is now pretty damn wealthy with a house, wife and kids in California."

"When we chat it up on the phone he is the exact same person I grew up with. Crazy funny and extremely kind."

– Vitaminpartydrums

No Chance For Goodbyes

"Most popular kid in our school was a guy named Josh. Insanely outgoing and friendly, he could befriend anyone he talked to within five seconds, and always did. Active athlete, was on the football team. Straight A student. Very devout church-goer. I didn't meet him until later in high school, where he was part of a Dungeons and Dragons game I joined. Always put on a great time role playing. While we didn't get close, we had a couple extraordinarily memorable times during our senior year of high school, very fun and meaningful times that stood out strongly to me then during a shitty part of my life and are still remembered fondly by me twenty years later. Josh was going places, and he'd make a difference somewhere."

"We lost touch after high school. Three years later he fell asleep behind the wheel of his truck and hit a tree. Died on impact. Found out through another friend who'd kept up with him, and we went to his funeral. I'd never seen a church so packed full of people for something like this, hundreds and hundreds of people. From our school, from his church, from all over life, the church was legitimately full."

"To this day, one of my few true lifelong regrets is letting my anxiety get the better of me when Josh's pastor asked people to come up to the mic and say something about Josh. I should've told everyone of our ludicrous all-nighter digging his truck out of the mud in a forest he'd gone mudding in after an evening school performance where we were all still in khakis and polos, finishing at three AM and somehow ending our bedraggled a**es at IHOP after getting it out."

"I should've told everyone how we found out our DnD GM was moving away on short notice, and we high-tailed it to his place after school and literally ran out of gas in that f**king truck getting there, then flooded the engine refilling it from a Jerry can, stuck with our GM who didn't want anyone coming to say goodbye and ending up late in the evening laying in that truck bed talking about science and philosophy and religion, three teenage dudes waiting for that goddamn f'king truck to get to a drivable condition so we could say goodbye to our friend properly before he disappeared from our lives."

"I'm nearing forty, and I still regret not saying how great of a guy he was to a short, scrawny, long-haired metalhead weirdo like I was in high school. Because he was. He was going to make a difference. I suppose, given all the people at his funeral, he still did."

– token_bastard

Some failed to make much of an impression enough to stand out.

However, a discourse on cliques was started in the thread.

Unpopular Majority

"My HS graduating class was 952 people, I do not even know who the most popular people were, lol."

– CorruptDictator

"My class was about that size and I remember always thinking that many of the high school stereotypes you would see on TV and film didn't seem to apply at a school that huge. People who might have been the school bully in a smaller school are properly segregated, and people who might have been an outcast in a smaller school could always find a clique of similarly minded weirdos. Popularity was never a school-wide thing because the orchestra people, the jocks, and goths, the potheads, etc. all had their own separate leaders. Also as a result we would often have a lot of cross-clique friendships and mixed parties where most people tended to be generally cool with each other."

– soretti

The Thing About Bullies

"Apparently the cliques happen in medium size schools because my exceptional small school only ever had one kid that could represent each kind of classic clique. I think the school bully trope is strange because from my experience people are a d*ck to different people in different ways that might be considered bullying. Like orchestra kids might have been a group but perhaps there was a bully within that group that picked on other orchestra kids"

– Mediocre_Scott

New York City Does High School Different

"Same. it was 850 kids in my class. NYC. so no 'campus' just a single secure building (one of my schools was actually inside a sky scraper), kids didnt leave to get lunch (without cutting class), nobody drove and there was no parking lot to hang out in, there was no Football team, and just none of the tropes you see in the media. A lot of us worked after school. 80-something languages were spoken. everyone was from somewhere else, so there was no 'new kid in town' tropes. we didn't even have lockers!

"We also don't all go to our 'local'; schools, so the kids you went to school with in Elementary school are a different set of kids than from your Jr High, and are a different set of kids from your High School. And on top of that, you also had your own set of friends from your 'hood/block, so its not like you ALWAYS were with the same kids all the time all through childhood."

"Like on TV, the kids you are in class with, are also from your neighborhood and you hung out with them outside of school, and they were also the same kids you played on sports teams with. in my world, those were always different sets of kids."

"Extremely different from all the Suburban High School TV and Movie sh*t."

– super-antinatalist

People closely examined more about the differences between popular/unpopular demographics.


"Small town."

"There are always exceptions, but most kids who were 'popular' were friendly, outgoing, well dressed, and emotionally stable. That happened because they came from families with more money and better educated parents."

"Those parents often provided better mentoring, ensured they went to college, and as a result the kids ended up professionals who did reasonably well for themselves."

– BeKindAndWorkHard


"This is a very unpopular and underreported reality, as the unpopular kids desperately want to believe the popular guys end up working at the local gas station or Walmart once their days as sports stars or heartthrobs are gone. While the nerds go on to become rich and successful exactly because of reasons that made them unpopular in school."

"Unfortunately for them, popularity is often based on social status and people skills. Two key assets in life at any age."

– Kalle_79

Study Shows

"I remember reading a study that says high school bullies were more likely to be successful than the average student from their class. Once again because outgoing people who are willing to have that aggressive personality are likely to be able to succeed more than a passive timid person. If that bully grows out of being a bully they're still going to have that outgoing aggressive personality."

– Tritium10


"They're doing fine. Contrary to what Reddit would have you believe, most of the popular kids in schools weren't bullies in my experience. They were kids who for the most part were nice, had a stable home life, and maybe happened to be fairly athletic."

– GoldenFrog14

I managed to keep in touch with a handful of people from high school; therefore, I didn't think about anyone else from my class year.

That's why I never considered going to my high school reunion.

It's because I realized there was never a time when I wondered about how the popular students at my school were doing these days.

Have you?

Movie Twists That Caught Audiences Completely Off-Guard

Reddit user -HornyCorny- asked: 'What’s a movie twist that caught you completely off guard?'

There's nothing like leaving a movie theater having just seen an excellent movie.

Particularly one that took you by surprise.

Perhaps it was deeper and more meaningful than it purported itself to be, or on the flip side, had much more warmth and humor that you would have expected.

Or, the film took an unexpected twist that you never saw coming.

Resulting in your needing to bite your tongue until the rest of your friends and family see the film, and not spoil the surprise for them.

Redditor HornyCorny was curious to hear which plot twists left viewers utterly speechless, leading them to ask:

"What’s a movie twist that caught you completely off guard?"

He Didn't See It Coming Either!

"Brad Pitt in 'Burn After Reading'."

"So surprising and downright freaking hilarious."- thefirehairman

If The Shoe Fits...

"'The Shawshank Redemption'."

"Come on."

"It's not always a man notices another man's shoes."- FUBARspecimenT-89

Lucky For Some, Not For All...

"'Lucky Number Slevin'."

"Huge twist and very satisfying."- kvlr954

angry josh hartnett GIFGiphy

Rosie O'Donnell Would Agree...

"Fight Club."- BuchseeI

"once watched it with a friend who had never even heard of it, and she called the twist like, a half hour in."

"She said it as a joke and didn't realize she was right until the actual reveal, but still I was shook."- yugosaki

I See You Keyser Söze

"The ending of 'The Usual Suspects'."- Schwarzes__Loch

Definitive Shyamalan

''The Sixth Sense'."

'I love movies with plot twists, but I never imagined this one. It caught me completely off guard."- lucasduka

Haley Joel Osment Movie GIFGiphy

The Title Is Also Misleading...

"The second half of 'Parasite'."- iwontrememberthat4

Appropriately, They Really Toyed With Your Cognition

"'The Game'."- DudeHeadAwesome

"Good one!'

"I spent the entire movie going 'is it a game? Is it real?'"- fastpixels

There Were Definitely Ghosts...

"'The Others'."

"Unsuspected end."- NeckComprehensive743

scared horror film GIF by FilmStruckGiphy

One Unforgettable Opening Scene


"The Drew Barrymore role."- LivingTheLife53

The Real Reason Everyone Is Terrified Of Bees...

"When I was a kid, I wanted to feel good and happy."

"So at the video store, I decided to rent a movie with two happy laughing kids on the DVD cover, thinking it would be a feel-good playful story."

"That movie was 'My Girl'."

"Eff that movie."


'The DVD cover lies."

"IT LIES."- buckyhermit

You THOUGHT you knew who the villains were...

"'From Dusk to Dawn' — midway point."

"Didn’t know at all what I was walking into when saw it in the theatre decades ago — just, you know, Salma Hayek. Good enough."

"Quentin Tarantino slurping tequila from her foot after it ran down the entire length of her leg — that was already a 'Holy WTF' moment."

"But then, well.. . you know."

"And if you don’t know — quick, go watch it. "

"No trailer, no synopsis, no summary."

"Find it and load it 'blind' and fasten your seatbelt."

"You’re in for a wild ride."- canada11235813

George Clooney Tarantino GIF by MIRAMAXGiphy

It's Title Is More Than Accurate!

"'Crazy Stupid Love'."

"The scene when the whole movie goes apesh*t in the yard is one of my all time favorite movie scenes."- Fimbulvintern

Trifecta Of Twists

"'The Others'."

"The end of 'The Mist'."

"'The Prestige' (though, I ALMOST had it figured out, but not quite)."- Krinks1

There's nothing better than when a movie surprises you.

Even if it does make talking about said movie with people who haven't seen it a bit more challenging.

Case in point, people who saw The Sixth Sense and The Usual Suspects after their endings were spoiled for them, don't seem to like those movies as much as those who went in blind.

Every family has its secrets.

It's up to every new generation to unearth it all.

Don't we all want to know if we're related to famous people?

Or what if we have a familial stake in lands and businesses?

Also, this is a good way to NOT end up dating blood relatives.

The more you know, the less awkward later.

As much as there is a lot of trauma there could be a lot of cool facts to to discuss at parties.

Redditor ForthrightPedant wanted to hear some interesting family histories, so they asked:

"What is a historical fact about your family that you think is kinda neat?"

I don't have any family history.

Of course I've done no investigating.

Maybe I do.

I should look!

Super Talent

Excited Happy Hour GIF by Boomerang OfficialGiphy

"Great-grandpa created the Flintstones. Dan Gordon. Drew lots of Hannah-Barbara cartoons, and directed the first three animated Superman films at the beginning of WW2 as well as several seasons of Popeye, Scooby Doo, Smurfs, Yogi Bear, Huckleberry Hound."


Bad Voyage

"My grandfather disliked America and wanted to return to Ireland. He booked passage on the Titanic’s return voyage. If it wouldn’t have sunk, no of us would be here."


"My great-grandmother was a Titanic survivor. She was a steerage-class Lebanese immigrant in an arranged marriage. Her husband went down with the ship but she managed to make it to a lifeboat and made it to the Carpathia. Then she remarried in a Lebanese neighborhood in Virginia. Had it not been for the iceberg that struck and sank the Titanic My family lineage would be different and I wouldn't be here. My family's official toast is 'to the iceberg.'"



"My husband's grandfather was one of the 'forgotten soldiers' in Canada. He was a Canadian-born Chinese man who asked the Canadian government to fight for his right to vote and a passport. Even tho he was born in Canada in the 20’s since he was Chinese he was not considered Canadian."

H"e was dropped into the Burma jungle and was told he would likely never return. He was in the 10% that did return. He was given the right to vote, to a passport, and to University."

"His wife is still alive today and my son is named after him."


​Can you imagine?

"My great-grandmother had 13 kids, so she was pregnant for literally a decade. There’s two hundred of us now, all because of this one woman."


"My great grandma had 14 kids. My grandma was the youngest. She died giving birth to my grandma. The oldest child who was like 22 years old raised my grandma. My great-grandfather remarried a woman who had 10 kids of her own. My grandma would tell me stories of them all living together. Can u imagine? 😦."


Long Ago

american wtf GIF by unimpressionismGiphy

"The land my dad was raised on and my cousins still live on was deeded to the family by George Washington as compensation for service during the Revolution. There was a document with his signature on it at the courthouse until a fire destroyed the records a few decades ago."


So much land and fortune and HISTORY has been lost due to fire.

Thank God we keep more than paper records now.

Over the Moon

Michael Jackson Dancing GIFGiphy

"My second cousin is David Scott who walked on the Moon and drove the moon buggy. My mom does. He was so busy during the time when I was young that he even said later in life that he wished she’d gotten to know more of his family."


The Union

"Great-great-great grandfather on my mom's side was working his field in the part of Virginia that split off and became a new state because they didn't want to secede from The Union. Union soldiers came along looking for conscripts and he was a young, able-bodied man so they told him to come with them. He informed them he was a Quaker and thus a pacifist. According to family lore, that discussion went on for a bit but he would not give in. So they shot him and left him there. Good thing he had a couple of kids well before that day."



"My great-grandfather was offered a chance to invest in a new invention by a guy by the name of Alexander Graham Bell. He declined, saying at most there would be one telephone per town."


"That is apparently my family too."

"One uncle apparently built a version of a hot water heater and then sold the design to GE for a good sum back then."

"Another uncle was asked if he wanted to be in a photo during his military service. He said no so they raised the flag on Iwo Jima without him in it."

"No idea if any of these are true, at best they are enhanced truths, but for me, I really hope they are true."



"I have a relative who worked for the Underground Railroad and had a price on her head in the South."


"My uncle was a carpenter. And was doing restoration work on old houses in Yellow Springs, Ohio. Many of those old, historical homes had underground railroad passageways and hidden walls. He got to see and restore many of them. He had photos of some of the work he was doing and I got to see those as a kid. Living in Southern Ohio, we have a lot of rich underground railroad history here."


​Family Empire

blood discussion GIFGiphy

"My great-grandfather was the town police chief in the 1920s. His brother was the Mayor. Their cousins ran the casino."

"My family was a smaller version of Boardwalk Empire."


Wouldn't we all love a show based on our families?

Then that's even more neat family history.

Rolls Royce hood ornament
Matheus Bardemaker on Unsplash

The super wealthy aren't like most people.

How can they be?

They live in a world of rarefied air most people will never even glimpse.

That privilege inevitably warps perspectives.

Keep reading...Show less
Burger and fries on plate
Photo by Haseeb Jamil on Unsplash

A lot of things have gone downhill since the pandemic, and it's made the whole process of bouncing back from those two to three years that much harder.

One thing we can all agree on is the quality of the food that we now find in restaurants, especially the fast-food joints we used to frequent and hit the drive-thru for on the drive home.

Curious what other people thought, Redditor Soy_tu_papi asked:

"What's the worst fast food restaurant?"

Eat... Expensive, Not Fresh

"Subway. The ingredients don't taste fresh. They don't give you enough meat or cheese. The bread tastes sweet. It's not even that cheap anymore."

- Brilliant-Mango-4

There for the Nostalgia

"Tim Hortons. We’re nostalgic for a time when they made fresh donuts and great soup and sandwiches. But that was more than 20 years ago and now everything is just heated from frozen garbage with garbage dish water coffee."

"The only reason they’re around is nostalgia and convenience. Americans for the most part didn’t fall for their crap when they expanded south because they didn’t have one on every corner, and they don’t have the nostalgia, and they already have a s**tty coffee and donut place called Dunkin."

- Strain128

Microwaved Soup

"Really, we all going to pretend like Panera is not fast food?"

- WelderNo6075

"It’s not fast. It's always a 20-minute wait."

- Greedy-Time-3637

"For microwaved soup."

- InsertBlueScreenHere

Hospital Food. Gourmet Prices

"Panera. For when you want hospital food, but you can’t afford the $127,209.00 hospital bill."

- BarnacleMcBarndoor

"Yeah, it’s only $126,208 for Panera."

- sherlock----75

"There is a similar yet worse than Panera hospital food restaurant called Atlanta Bread Company. How these two hell holes stay in business, I have no idea."

- GrandUnhappy9211

New Horizons

"I think KFC abandoned the American market and put all its resources into the Asian market, because omg KFC in Korea is something else. The chicken is breaded perfectly, with no mouth-destroying rock-hard breading and the ratio of breading to actual chicken meat is perfectly balanced."

"Also, the sauce selection; they have so many good sauces. The fries were great too."

- LolitasDaniel

RIP, Potato Wedges

"In my opinion, KFC. They got rid of their beloved potato wedges. The only thing I got there anymore was those and the mashed potatoes."

- dirtymoney

"Wendy’s breakfast potatoes almost fill that hole in my heart."

- Karsa69246

Those Darn Screens

"Any of them that have replaced their menu boards with TV screens that change every 15 seconds so I can't find the price of anything."

- xkulp8

"I hate the TVs. Maybe I'm just a bitter old guy, but they really don't seem to be an improvement. There's just too much going on, and it's too bright. Sure, it's probably more convenient for menu/price changes. But when you add in the cost and electronic waste, it doesn't feel like a net gain."

- BumpyMcBumps

No Longer Affordable

"McDonald’s. They’ve forgotten their role as the place I eat at because I’m broke, probably drunk, and want to fill up for a few bucks. Have you seen their prices lately!?"

- Jlace001

"A quarter pounder meal is over $10. $4 More bucks and you can get a chills old-timer and fries. And they always park you, so not very 'fast,' unless you are talking about the stomach cramps you get after."

- Eric12345678

Define 'Pizza'

"Little Caesars Hot-N-Ready is for when your manager promises you a pizza party when you exceed your sales goal and buys enough for one piece a person, but he's been talking up this party he's going to throw for you all week, so you come in on your day off and see two Hot-N-Ready boxes sitting there and some Dixie cups for water. Sometimes nothing is better, STEVE."

- cold08

"The secret technique for Lil Caesars is to give it another few minutes in the oven/under the broiler at home until it's to your liking."

- KaRabbit

The Great Pizza of the Past

"It hurts me to say this, but Pizza Hut."

"Back in the 80s and early 90s, Pizza Hut was amazing! It's somehow worse than Dominos now. It's a f**king travesty."

- Ocku2

"Their marinara sauce with breadsticks is watery now..."

"My friend and I used to ride our bikes there and play Pac-Man in eighth grade. Their breadsticks and sauce were amazing."

- KkdBaby

Small and Stale

"Whataburger is very hit or miss depending on the individual location. It was also better before it sold out and went national."

- HoovesCarveCrater

"It used to be so good, but it's so bad now. Earlier in the year, I went, and I got a stale bun with a tiny piece of meat they called a hamburger. Then I stupidly went again months later, and got the chicken sandwich. Both the bread and chicken were somehow stale. Never again, it's not worth it."

- user_base56

Belly Bombers, Indeed

"White Castle. I ate there once, and I now know what it feels like to reject an organ."

- flyzapper

"I have a stomach of steel when it comes to fast food. Not even Taco Bell gives me an above-average s**t. But when it comes to White Castle, some things just can't be saved."

- STILETTO_exists

A Rise in Poor Management

"Sonic used to be good."

"I feel for the two workers running the whole place. There used to be a lot of staff to handle the load."

"But now I feel bad going there simply because it's unfair to the workers. Which means corners get cut, things aren't clean, people aren't happy and workers end up catching the blame because there aren't enough of them."

"They really need to get it together. And treat their customers and employees right. It's going to kill their business."

- That_90s_Kid_

"The only Sonic near me stopped serving onion rings, which to me is their best side. And they take for-f**king-ever now to get you food, and half the time it's wrong or half-a**ed. I used to love Sonic, and I still want to and will go there, but every time it's a let-down in some form."

- SweetCosmicPope

"Sonic used to give their managers minority ownership as part of their compensation package. The result was highly motivated managers. Unfortunately, they had to work 80 to 90 hours a week. I thought about getting onboard with them but after using two weeks of vacation from my current job to work there, unpaid, I quickly decided smelling like French fries 24 hours a day, seven days a week was a very bad idea."

- the_beeve

A Series of Failures

"A bad KFC is tough to top, but there are still some amazing ones out there. The key is that it’s busy enough to have fresh chicken and a few employees that aren’t strung out. Not all. Just some."

"Burger King increasingly tastes like the burgers from my elementary school that sat in that weird burger water after being boiled in its own juices. I like their nuggets though."

"What even is Jack in the Box? It’s just some random assortment of food you take kids who can’t agree on what hot garbage they want to eat so you go here and make everyone unhappy."

"I’ve been to Whataburger once and it was bad, but since it’s crazy popular, I assume maybe it was just a bad experience and it was in AZ vs TX."

"I feel like I’m left with Little Caesars at this point, as the person buying those godawful hot and ready things is the epitome of a desperate person just trying to fill their children’s with ‘pizza’, thus the reason why there are any in existence."

- bowindine

So Real for This Answer

"Basically, every single one since the pandemic."

- MythicalMango123

"Dine-in prices for dollar store flavors."

- WannaBeTraveler87

"This is the answer. They are all awful now."

- chris1out

Especially for those of us who had the pleasure of experiencing these food places in the 80s, 90s, and maybe the very earls 2000s, it's terrible to think of how much these places have declined now.

As some Redditors have said, it's almost not worth going to these places anymore. We'd rather preserve the happy memories of going there with our families and friends rather than go for an unhappy meal now.