"I'm So Embarrassed To Know You"

January 7, 2024 | A.V. Land

"I'm So Embarrassed To Know You"


Our friends and family usually want the best for us, but sometimes, for a range of reasons, their outrageous outbursts, tantrums, tears, and bizarre behavior are enough to make anyone wish the earth would open up and swallow them whole. 


1. Sir, This Is An Applebee’s

My dad had this low, rumbling voice that could easily pass for a bass tone. To make matters more interesting, he also had a peculiar way of referring to food that no one else really got. So, instead of asking for biscuits and gravy as normal people would, he'd prefer to say "slop and rocks". That’s my dad for you.

One time, we found ourselves at Applebee’s, my mom's favorite spot. A young, nice waiter came over to get our orders—a moment that would be ingrained in my memory for a long time to come.

“BEEFEATER ROCKS,” boomed my dad. The waiter looked confused.

“Excuse me?” he asked, perplexed.

Unfazed, my dad repeated, “BEEFEATER ROCKS,” this time a bit louder. 

The poor guy looked terrified. He was simply clueless of what my dad was asking for and my dad, losing patience bit by bit, was looking more and more irritated. I mean, how often do you find Applebee’s customers ordering a gin on the rocks as though they're recreating a scene from an old gangster movie?

“BEEFEATER ROCKS!” dad roared for the third time. And, thankfully, a kind soul intervened, translating my dad’s special lingo to the thoroughly spooked waiter.

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2. He’s No President Snow

I've got this uncle who's always been the brash type—stubbornly uninformed and a maste at using his temper and nasty attitude to manipulate situations to his favor all his life. It's like he's the antagonist right out of a poorly written teen novel. His absolute worst moment, though, was after our grandparents passed. 

He attempted to snatch everything from his brothers and sisters. As brave as my mother was, she confronted him, only to be threatened. Honestly, I frequently wish there had been some confusion at the hospital when he was born and that we aren't blood-related after all.

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3. A Real-Life Cousin Eddie

My mom and I embarked on a road trip from Florida to Virginia, making several pit stops to pick up my grandma, uncle, and cousins, who, for some reason, weren’t too keen on flying to my cousin's wedding. Naturally, as you can imagine, this made for a rather daunting journey. 

Once we met up in Virginia, we planned on a pre-wedding celebration dinner at a sophisticated Italian restaurant. During our lengthy drive, uncle Jack and grandma were pretty strict on their meal stops, proclaiming only "real food" would suffice. Their definition of “real food," surprisingly, was fast-food burgers, more precisely, McDonald’s. 

Mom and I were simply taken aback by this. Eventually, we made it to the Italian restaurant where, based on the earlier ride, I was already bracing for the worst. Uncle Jack didn’t waste time expressing his thoughts on our "un-American" choice of dining at an Italian place. 

He seemed baffled by our disregard for good old American eateries where, according to him, food tasted so much better. Meanwhile, having endured the car ride, my cousin had found solace in getting pretty high as soon as we checked into the hotel.

While my mom, the cousin about to tie the knot, his better half, and my grandma chose to ignore my uncle's rants, I, along with my mildly intoxicated cousin, listened on, feeling more uncomfortable by the minute. The situation got worse when the waitress arrived to take orders.

His exact words to her were truly startling, “Well, woman, since you don’t serve anything AMERICAN here, and I can barely fathom the remainder of this menu, I guess I’ll stick to ‘spaghetti and meatballs,' that’s about the only thing I can make sense of. Sheesh". I was left utterly aghast, and my amusement at the whole situation had completely evaporated.

As horrified as I already was by his antics, I then noticed something that tipped me over the edge. He had been casually flossing his teeth at the table, leaving a revolting heap of used floss picks on his plate. At this point, all I could do was run to the restroom to regain my composure. 

Never have I felt so embarrassed and uncomfortable in public due to someone's behavior. I can only hope to never experience something like this ever again.

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4. Lucky Escape

I'd been seeing this lady for around two months and we had planned to hit a bar for some football. She was cheering for the Packers and I was standing by the Bears. I had on my Justin Fields jersey and she began berating me for it. She stated, "I'm upset you didn't think about my sentiments before choosing to wear that".

Weird, but alright. I initially thought she was pulling my leg. Turns out, she was dead serious. She continued, "It's really self-centered of you to not think about how I'd feel standing next to you dressed like that". Well, fine then. I decided it was best to keep my mouth shut. But that wasn't even the most bizarre part. 

We hadn't even made it into the bar yet, we were still in the parking lot when her mom rings her up. She immediately starts grumbling to her mom. She said to her mom, "You totally neglected my feelings by not picking up chips for me". Excuse me? Who talks like that? She then proceeded to have an outburst like a little kid. 

She kept going on about how everyone was selfish for not thinking about her feelings and even accused her mom of not loving her because she failed to bring home some chips. I was utterly astounded as she spontaneously combusted right in front of me in the parking lot. 

I hastily explained to her that this arrangement was not going to work and hightailed it out of there in my car. That day, I discovered that a) her folks still do her grocery shopping, and b) for all my shortcomings, I would never throw a fit like that.

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5. The Gift That Kept On Giving

My dad can be a real nightmare to dine out with considering his attitude towards restaurant staff. I remember on one occasion, while a waitress was listing out the specials, my dad abruptly turned to my boyfriend, calling out loudly, "IS SHE MUMBLING?" Mind you, my dad doesn't have any hearing issues. 

My boyfriend, who over time became my husband, never forgot that incident and imitates it at least once a week. Incidentally, we're now 28 years into our marriage.

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6. No Wonder He Has Issues

There was an instance when my brother bravely opened up to our family about his struggles with anxiety, and even voiced his suspicion of possibly having OCD. He was only 16 at that point, but it was clear that he wasn't talking out of ignorance. I could sense he had a firm grasp on the subject. 

However, as he tried explaining, he began to stutter—a reaction I attribute to our family's poor understanding and acceptance of mental health issues. Eventually, he was able to share what he had been feeling. But the response from our parents and grandparents was far from supportive. 

They began laughing, telling him he didn't know what he was talking about. This reaction boiled my blood. Later, his suspicions were confirmed after a formal diagnosis of both OCD and anxiety. This experience, while fostering fear in me about expressing my own feelings, also made me feel deep embarrassment by the insensitive way our family reacted. 

It was disheartening to see my brother made to feel so small for expressing his struggles.

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7. A Meal To Remember

Once upon a Mother's Day, my family and I were having dinner at my Nana's house. Even though she was living with dementia, she was managing to stay in her own house. However, her capacity to remember recent events was nearly non-existent. 

We were all gathered around the dining table when my mother casually referred to my sister as a lesbian. Nana, having forgotten that my sister had come out as gay, assumed that my mom was jokingly referring to my sister as a lesbian for no reason.

Nana immediately admonished my mom for uttering such a statement. The scene was so comedic for my sister that she burst into laughter so hard that she had tears running into her soup.

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8. How Do You Say “Karen” In Japanese?

When I was studying in Japan, I had a British neighbor in my dorm who was extremely homesick. She was on her own in Asia for the first time and was pretty shaken up about it. Her homesickness was so intense that I could hear her sobbing loudly from my room across the hall. 

In our first week of school, I decided to take her to the local market, but I soon wished I hadn't. At the market, she ended up having a full-blown temper tantrum, like a kid would. It was hugely embarrassing. Her extreme homesickness, coupled with the unfamiliarity of the Japanese food and currency, sent her spiraling. 

I felt compelled to distance myself from her public breakdown, not wanting to be linked with her behavior. After that incident, I found myself avoiding her, although it made me feel guilty. After a while, I decided to have a heart-to-heart with her. 

I explained that I wanted to maintain our friendship, but her negative behavior made it difficult to be around her. To her credit, she took my words to heart and made a concerted effort to be more upbeat and less dramatic around me. I developed a deep respect for her after that—so, all's well that ends well!

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9. A New Way To Snack

I remember a relative of mine who, somehow, preferred to stash food in her bag. And I don't mean just munchies—no, she'd stuff it with pasta and microwaveable dishes, and would nibble on them all day long. 

When I was in high school, some folks would pop over and share their latest sightings of her pulling out all sorts of nasty food from her bag. Honestly, it was a tad mortifying.

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10. Someone Needs A Chill Pill

So, my partner and I have been together for a stretch of years, and throughout our journey, I've shared countless stories about what my father was like during my childhood. He grappled with drinking and often had outbursts towards the family without any apparent trigger. In his defense, though, he calmed down significantly after retiring.

Our home is approximately 1,600 kilometers (1,000 miles) away from my parents', so our opportunities to visit are somewhat limited. We were at their place, however, and helping them prepare for an upcoming family gathering. 

I made the possibly ill-advised decision to ask my father if I should move the plants blocking the door in the sunroom so guests could freely transition to the patio... The response was shocking, to say the least. 

He launched into a rant about not wanting that door used, and he hadn't even wanted the door installed there, but my stepmom had insisted upon it, so on and so forth. He ranted about the door for an intense 10 minutes until I finally interrupted, "Okay, Dad, understood. We won't touch the door". 

I promptly took my husband by the arm and guided him outside. Once we had distanced ourselves from the house, my husband, a look of bewilderment in his eyes, asked, “What just happened?" 

I could only chuckle and say, “That's my dad for you. Congratulations, you've finally had the honor of meeting the man I've been regaling you with tales about for so long”.

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11. A Crying Shame

I was lining up at Walgreens when an older woman ahead of me was gearing up to complain to the store manager. When asked about the issue, she announced in a booming voice that she'd just sampled the worst candy ever. She then lifted a large, transparent candy cane packed with colorful little balls.

The manager regarded her, trying to keep a straight face—his response was priceless. He calmly informed her, “Madam, you've mistaken bath salts as candy”. Without uttering a single word, the woman swiftly turned around and exited the store. As soon as she had gone, the store echoed with laughter from those who had overheard the exchange.

It was as if someone hit the play button again. I had to hang onto the counter to keep from doubling over with laughter. The woman standing behind me was even shedding tears of amusement! The icing on the cake was, the elderly lady left her “candy” cane, otherwise known as bath salts, abandoned on the counter.

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12. Worse Than Rain On Your Wedding Day

Here’s a story from when I was a bridesmaid at my cousin’s wedding. Some quick context for you: Our culture involves multiple celebrations for a wedding. This particular tale involves the reception and the homecoming.

My cousin and her groom were circling the room, saying "hello" to all the guests during the reception when the announcement came—the food was about to be served. A bit later, my cousin sat down at our table, sobbing. She told us that she and the groom had been nudged to move things along quickly so dinner could start. 

This meant they didn't get equal time with each guest. Some of our older relatives felt slighted and called her out: “How could you ignore us? Is there something wrong with us?” Fast forward a couple of days to the homecoming. It was a lengthy celebration, even by homecoming standards. 

I'd been off twirling on the dance floor with some of the groom's family, but finally needed a break. I was beat and my feet were hurting from the heels I’d worn. I excused myself from the group and took a breather in my chair. 

After resting a bit, I was chatting with my cousin, who was also a bridesmaid, and a pair of our male cousins when a visibly drunk uncle, who I later discovered was the brother of the groom’s father, staggered over. He started shouting, grabbed the wrist of my bridesmaid cousin and tried to grab mine. 

I instinctively pulled back. He tried again, but I resisted. He didn’t give up and tried a third time. I jerked my arm away so forcefully that he accidentally smacked himself in the nose. He yelled, “What good are you as bridesmaids if you’re not dancing? You’re useless at this wedding! Why even come?" 

I put my male cousin between us for some buffer. The uncle then spat in my cousin's face. We all just froze in shock until the uncle’s wife led him away. Later, we told the bride and groom about what happened. The groom felt awful and offered sincere apologies. Apparently, the same uncle had caused a stir at the reception too. 

I’d never been in such an awful situation like this at an event meant to be full of happiness. Overall, it was a terrible experience.

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13. The Mysterious Hunting Stand

Once, my cousin and her kid were on a casual walk through the woodland near their house, when they came across a hunting stand just a few hundred feet away from their place. Oddly enough, the stand was oriented towards their house rather than the forest. 

When my cousin climbed up and settled in, she discovered a pair of binoculars hanging silently. Picking them up, she saw something alarming... She was looking straight into her own bedroom. Yep, we definitely had a voyeur on our hands. 

She quickly alerted me and my brother about the situation, and motivated by a sense of moral duty, we ripped the hunting stand apart. It was nothing but an ancient piece of trash anyways, and we wound up binding it around a tree using just pure muscle. 

The very next day, I received a phone call from none other than my mother, asking if I was the one who tore it down. I enthusiastically confirmed, “Absolutely!” But her response sent chills down my spine. “Well, that belonged to your uncle,” she said. 

This wasn't my cousin’s father but another uncle of ours, and sadly, he seemed to be a total creep. To make matters worse, my mom followed up by saying, “You owe him an apology and you should pay for it". Ha! As if that's happening. Best of luck trying to convince me.

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14. The Lowest Of The Low

I have a disability that affects my walking and my dad has always been unsupportive about it. He's even accused me of pretending to be disabled to spite him. Frankly, he has a long record of being a difficult person. For the past few years, he insists that he needs a wheelchair, and he becomes aggressive if anyone questions him about it.

During a rare family trip, we went to watch a international sports game featuring our local team. We arrived late. Once we reached the stadium and were searching for the wheelchair-accessible area, the game began. Out of nowhere, my dad jumped up from his wheelchair and ran to the closest entry point, which was about 130 feet away. 

He did this just so he wouldn't miss anything. This happened not just in front of our family, but also in the presence of many individuals with genuine disabilities. Afterwards, he tried to cover up by criticizing us for pushing him around in the wheelchair. 

I sincerely apologized to everyone present and chose to sit with my fellow disabled individuals. I never went out with him again after that incident. In fact, I hardly see him anymore. That was the final straw for me.

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15. Can’t Take Her Anywhere

My stepmom has a knack for making a scene out of simple situations. An example that springs to mind is when we were shopping at Goodwill. As we prepared to join the line behind another customer, a lady standing between two clothing racks politely corrected us, saying, "Excuse me ma'am, the line starts over here".

Even with the lady's polite tone, my stepmom clearly was not thrilled about being corrected. She retorted, “Well, the line should be over here, by the cash register. Silly thing". She nudged me in the ribs as if to insist that I approve of her viewpoint, so I responded with a quiet nod. 

The lady simply shook her head and replied, “Well, I believe everyone is lining up here to keep the walkway clear". This time, my stepmom lost her cool. She lashed out at the woman with a string of unpleasant names. In the end, however, she had to comply and join the correct queue, disgruntledly mumbling about being “fed up with people being pushovers”. 

As we exited the store, I whispered an apology to the lady. It's become a habit of mine to apologise on behalf of my stepmom, which ultimately means I'm constantly apologizing to myself as well.

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16. A Slight At The Museum

Granted, academics isn't everyone's cup of tea, but my personal belief is that everyone should have a baseline of education to fall back on. We were welcomed by the veterans when we arrived at the museum and they asked us if we had any questions. My girlfriend then inquired, "Hi, which war were you in?" The two men seemed taken aback.

The veteran corrected her gently, "Young lady, this is a WWII museum. We fought in WWII". Unfortunately, her questions only spiraled from there. She then pushed, "Did you guys win?" The veterans now appeared both bewildered and slightly offended. "Of course we won!" they exclaimed. My girlfriend kept going, though, 

"Which side were you on? Like, who really won?" I felt like sinking into the ground at that point. I swiftly cut her off, apologized to the veterans, and redirected the conversation towards more insightful questions related to our school projects.

From that day forward, I became her unofficial tutor, helping her with history, English, and biology until we eventually parted ways the following year.

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17. Smarty Pants

When I was just 12 years old, I found myself waiting for my parents to pick me up from school. Standing a little distance away from the staircase, I noticed a couple of my schoolmates in front of the school custodian’s room. The door was wide open, giving everyone a clear view of a large picture of the custodian's infant child that was hanging on the wall. 

My classmates, who were about the same age as me, were certainly taken by the picture and started to talk about how many kids they desired to have. “I’d love to have four kids,” said one. “Well, I’d want 10,” stated the other emphatically. 

Throughout all this, I was just standing quietly, hearing their conversation and thinking to myself... Do they even have the slightest clue how babies come into the world? It didn’t seem like they did. Should I enlighten them? I could no longer hold back—curiosity got the better of me. I decided to confront them.

Sneaking behind them, I asked, “Do you both really understand how babies are conceived?” They confidently responded, "Absolutely!" Then, they began to explain their fuzzy idea of conception. As per their argument, if the father places his hand on the mother’s stomach and they both pray sincerely, God would bless them with a child. 

I was greatly amused by their naïve beliefs. Making it my mission to correct their misunderstanding, I explained that’s not how babies are conceived—NOT AT ALL. That day, they learnt a pretty comprehensive biology lesson. Their reactions were shock and disbelief. 

They absolutely refused to accept this truth and went as far as accusing me of being dishonest. Fortunately, thanks to the power of the internet, I had all the scientific proof I needed to substantiate my claim. As surprising as it might sound, that was the day our friendship truly began.

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18. A Real Head-Scratcher

So, I had an interesting day today...My mom attempted to use an Arby’s coupon at McDonald’s. She's been able to do this before, but today was the exception as they didn't accept the coupon as they usually would. My mom wasn't pleased about it and began confronting the manager at the drive-through.

In her bid to have the coupon accepted, my mom referenced a previous instance where a worker had allowed her to use a similar coupon. Furthermore, she escalated the situation by referencing her family situation: She mentioned we're a family of eight kids (although three of us have moved out) and that her husband, my dad, is in the hospital (true, but unrelated). Her intention was probably to evoke sympathy.

When she didn't back down and continued arguing, I had to take a step back. I just couldn't watch it, so I got out of the car and walked home. All this drama over paying $2 instead of $1 for a shake. And believe it or not, this wasn't a single incident. There was this one time she got upset because Long John Silver’s didn't accept an expired coupon from 2003. 

She acted oblivious about the expiration, even though she was fully aware of it.

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19. Let’s Not Taco ’Bout Jesus

Once, we popped into a Mexican eatery and our waiter's name happened to be Jesus. Each time things went in favor of my brother, he'd loudly exclaim, "Thank heavens for Jesus!" For example, he'd say something like, "Thank heavens for Jesus, these tacos are amazing!" or "Praise Jesus, the pico de gallo tastes ultra fresh this time". 

Honestly, I was a whisker away from giving him a good clout.

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20. Who Do You Think You Are? Road Trip Edition

My spouse recently had an ancestry test done, and it confirmed what he always thought—that his family roots were mainly Latino. Soon after this, during a road trip he was driving on, he shared his fascinating ancestry findings with my mother. 

In response, my mom said, "Well, that adds up. I've always thought you were part of a powerful shamanic lineage". Following that unexpected remark, we had to spend another 15 long hours together in the car.

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21. Someone Has To Be The Crazy Aunt

I have an aunt whose life is affected by mental health issues. She's drawn to each man she encounters and once she nearly sold all her belongings to relocate to Sweden and wed a man she had met online. This man promised her a life that seemed straight out of a romance novel. Apparently, he was a high-earning doctor who also owned a horse farm.

However, the grim reality unveiled itself in due course. She was tricked by a scammer who had been using glossy images from a brochure to win her over. Whenever I attempt to communicate with her via text, she returns my message with a call as she's under the impression that her phone is being tapped.

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22. Unforgettable Vacation Memories

The last time our family gathered at a holiday home, my mom prepared spaghetti with marinara sauce. She left out the meat since my husband is a vegetarian. My dad lost his cool over the meatless dish, dumped his whole plate in the sink and stormed out of the house.

He vanished without mentioning where he was heading or when he'd be back. Both my husband and mom were taken aback by his erratic behavior; my mom, though embarrassed, seemed used to it. She didn't excuse my dad's actions. Instead, she poured herself some Merlot and assertively hinted at keeping the house if they ever got divorced.

Hours later, Dad reappeared. My husband and I kept away, staying quiet in our room. Mild whispers seeped through the walls; words were shared but not loud enough for us to catch. We aren't sure what exactly transpired between them, but my brother and I now have an ongoing wager on how soon mom will file for divorce. 

That night marked the loss of any leftover respect I had for my father.

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23. Science Vs. Old Wives’ Tale

My childhood best friend met a girl right after graduating from high school and pretty soon, she was pregnant. She was someone who loved changing her hair color even before the pregnancy, and she had dyed her hair a few times during her pregnancy. Now, my mom, reacting to this bold information, told me without hesitation, "Well, that baby's hair is going to look crazy when it’s born".

I was taken aback but I wanted to see where she was going with this. I just couldn't believe what she had just said. So I asked her, "Mom, why do you think the baby's hair will look crazy?" She replied, “Well, your friend is pregnant and she dyes her hair often. That’s bound to affect the baby's hair color". 

This made me burst out laughing. "Mom, that's not how these things work," I said. But she was adamant, she insisted it does and I just had to sigh. Then, I tried to correct her misconception. 

I said, "Sure, the parents do pass down features like their eye color, height, and yes, hair color to their children. But your understanding of the process is skewed. Dying hair isn't going to change her DNA. So given that both the parents have brown hair, there's a very high chance that the baby will be born with brown hair". 

And would you believe it, nine months later, the baby was born with beautiful brown hair!

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24. The Unhappiest Place On Earth

I had a trip to Disney with my spouse’s family and it was pretty chaotic. We were undeniably the stereotypical dysfunctional family throughout. My spouse's brother and his wife don't get along at all, constantly squabbling. My mother-in-law, a true drama-magnet, struggled to stick to any plan, leading to a lot of misunderstandings and additional disagreements.

And as if that wasn't enough, my brother-in-law lost his cool at my husband right in the heart of Disney, within hearing range of my child. My husband was simply trying to organize a ride on Space Mountain for them. The entire experience was so uncomfortable and embarrassing, I wished I could have just disappeared right there and then. 

These days, I try to keep my interactions with them to an absolute minimum.

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25. Mean People Suck

My dear friend's brother took his own life this year. He was suffering from bipolar disorder and had stopped taking his medication. I knew him reasonably well from our shared early childhood, but I hadn't had much contact with him later in life. My parents are still good friends with his parents and after his death, I overheard a conversation between them about it.

My dad's comment, "I'm not surprised. He probably deserved it," shook me to my core, especially when I saw my mom nodding in agreement. What in the world? I was rooted to the spot, my stomach lurching. I have a deep love for my parents who've generally treated me well, but I also have bipolar depression and I often struggle with dark thoughts. This comment hit me like a freight train.

Am I then to think that they would say the same about me if I were to take my own life? Later, I shared with my mom that I never, ever want to hear such a statement again as long as I remain part of the family.

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26. Who Got The Dog, Though?

A friend of mine, who I've known for a long time, started dating a woman. For a number of years, everything seemed great. They went as far as purchasing a house together and even getting a dog. But then, the relationship ended and he came to me for support. 

Naturally, I asked him what had gone wrong. His explanation left me surprised. He revealed he had told her she needed to lose weight. Stunned, I asked if she had ever voiced any worries or desires to lose weight herself, and he responded in the negative. That really threw me. 

I started wondering how I'd feel if my partner made such a decision about me. He then stated that she wasn't trying to shed any extra pounds, so he thought withholding physical affection could inspire her to do so. Honestly, his confession floored me. I had thought I understood this guy. 

I responded by telling him he should really speak with a therapist since it was evident that his so-called 'helpful' action was more about him, not her. Moreover, he confessed to me his concern about people's opinions. I advised him as an adult, other people's thoughts shouldn't hold such weight.

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27. Too Soon

Around 15 years ago, I was watching a 9/11 documentary with my roommate and her boyfriend. It wasn't that long after 9/11 then, and the documentary depicted the tragic scenes of people jumping out of the building windows in desperate attempts to escape. As I was watching, I was shocked when her boyfriend started laughing out loud.

While he was laughing, he said something that made my blood run cold, "How silly must one be to jump from such a high building?" I was amazed he found humor in this desperate act of survival. The last thing I knew about them, she had become pregnant, so they decided to tie the knot. All I can say is, I wish her all the best.

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28. Watch Your Language

I was spending time with my buddy and cousin when the former suddenly announced, "Guess what, I rank amongst the top 5% Duolingo users". To this, my cousin exclaimed, "Wow, interesting! My sister manages to be part of the top 3%". 

Falling into silence for a moment, my friend blurted out, "I should have kids with her just to boost my Duolingo ratings". Taken aback, my cousin retorted, "Man, she's just 15. What's wrong with you?"

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29. It’s The Most Stressful Time Of The Year

My mom and I were at the TJ Maxx checkout lane when the cashier asked my mom if she was interested in getting a TJ Maxx credit card. My mom declined, but the cashier offered some additional information about the savings it could offer us. 

Suddenly, my mom retorted, "Excuse me, but I know what's best for my family," and proceeded to hand the cashier her regular debit card. While it wasn't the wildest incident ever, it was certainly disrespectful, uncalled for, and belittling. 

It was during the holidays, and I knew the cashier was probably under pressure from her manager to get more customers to apply for the store's credit card. I was left in disbelief at my mom's behavior, and had to apologize to the cashier myself.

It was out of character for my mom, who is generally kind and empathetic. She has a background in retail and has always taught me and my siblings to have respect for store staff, acknowledging their humanity. Yet on that day, she lashed out at this poor cashier just for doing her job.

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30. Fashion Statement

At Christmas dinner back in 2019, my wife's cousin—a college freshman—showed up wearing a "Free Alex Jones" tee. His uncle, a bit confused, asked him who Alex Jones was. The response was, "Just a misunderstood genius". 

I found myself launching into a lengthy discourse about how Jones propagates baseless claims about Sandy Hook, which unfortunately resulted in harassment of the victims' families. After my spiel, his uncle promptly tapped him on the head, advising him to go and change clothes. 

Later, an aunt curiously inquired if he had a girlfriend at university. My wife promptly intervened saying, "Not if he continues to sport shirts like those, he won't".

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31. What’s Your Age Again?

Last Christmas, my grandpa and I decided to play a game of chess. I'm not a pro, but I'd gotten some practice with my boyfriend, who had encouraged me to start playing a few weeks before. My grandpa was thrilled about the idea. He was the one who originally taught me how to play, and he'd always expressed a desire for a chess partner.

I'm the kind of player who needs time to think through my moves. I visualize the whole board, consider all potential maneuvers, and plan my strategy carefully. Questions I ask myself include: Where should I direct my attacks? How can I win exchanges? Or how can I get that tricky knight into a strategic position? 

My mom and sister were watching us play, grumbling when I took too long for my turns. It disrupted my concentration a bit. Visualization and focus are crucial to me when playing chess. I highlight essential squares and potential moves mentally, but this mental model crumbles if I get interrupted. 

My grandpa, on the other hand, was quick to make his moves, perhaps because he had the chance to ponder when I was considering mine. So, comparing our pace isn't really fair in my opinion. I didn't take too long, maybe just a minute per turn or so. 

My grandpa, gracious as ever, didn't complain, although he didn't allow me to reverse a move I almost immediately regretted, causing me to lose a piece. His game wasn't very strong, though; I had my queen in the centre of the board for most of the game, and I was leading in the exchanges.

Towards the end, he had his king and a bishop left, while I still possessed a rook and my queen. Usually, this would have been the point where an experienced player would concede. Instead, my grandpa began to move his king around wildly, breaching the unwritten codes of chess decorum.

Even though I was moving quicker now, I didn't want to lose my pieces to his remaining bishop. To my disbelief, he even suggested we call it a draw. My mom and sister, having been drawn to the chess board by the recent hit series, The Queen's Gambit, were starting to lose interest. Nevertheless, mom stayed put.

The game finally drew to a close when my grandpa moved his king onto one of my guarded spaces; a move that clearly contravenes the rules of chess. I was drained at that point, and pointed out the allowable moves he could have made. Either option would have led him straight into my trap, as I had already set up my rook and queen for checkmate.

When he attempted to retract his move, my mom backed me up. She pointed out, the same rule had been applied to me earlier. He huffed and puffed, complained about not being aware that the square was under my control, but eventually conceded and shook my hand.

The rest of the evening was a bit tense; he sulked, accused me of winning unjustly, and even refused to help pack away the chessboard. My grandpa, who had been so excited about playing chess with me, seemed unable to swallow his defeat gracefully. Since that incident, he hasn't shown any interest in playing chess with me again.

Spoiled RottenShutterstock

32. With Friends Like This…

I had a dinner outing with a pal at a cozy restaurant. When we arrived, a staff member had just finished cleaning a table, so we asked if we could occupy it, which she graciously allowed. We got settled and proceeded to place our orders. Judging by how promptly we had taken our seats right after she cleaned up, she must've forgotten to hand us our cutlery.

This minor hitch didn't phase me, but our meals arrived and we still hadn't been provided any utensils. I flagged down a server, intending to make a polite request. But before I could utter a word, my friend bluntly interrupted. Her remarks were so curt and inappropriate, they left me flabbergasted. 

"I'm not sure if you genuinely expect us to consume this with bare hands, or if it's due to sheer ignorance," she disparaged, with an unsettling lack of humor. Without wasting time, I apologized to the waiter on her behalf, politely sidestepping the display of disgrace. 

The night dragged on and the final bill took its sweet time to come by due to the restaurant being quite busy. We thus decided to swing by the cashier's desk to settle the tab. As we waited to pay, my friend turned towards the cashier, and I felt a familiar sinking wave of dread. My concerns weren't baseless.

With an air of audacity, she remarked, "It's surprising how you manage to attract such a crowd despite being incapable of handling the workload efficiently. Maybe you should consider increasing the workforce or downsizing". Her snide comment was the final straw for me. 

I tersely asked her to wait outside while I sorted out the payment. I gave my apologies to the cashier for her rude behavior and decided right then and there that I would cut ties with her.

Parent As Bad As Student FactsShutterstock

33. Not Loving It

My family practices Islam, which means our diet consists mainly of halal food. Once, during a family road trip, we started to feel the munchies, so we asked my father to steer us to a fast-food outlet en route. As we all filed into the restaurant, my father led the way to place our orders. 

Reaching the counter, he asked the clerk, "Do you have a hamburger that doesn't contain ham?" Talk about a facepalm moment.

Drive-thru workersShutterstock

34. Next Time I’m Not Coming

My uncle and aunt had a peculiar habit, and it was absolutely embarrassing. Every time we'd dine out as a family, they'd spot significant problems with the food or the service, leading them to insist on a refund. This happened way before the term 'Karen' became widespread, but my aunt perfectly embodied the Karen stereotype. 

This situation repeated itself like clockwork at least three times every year. Often, these regrettable episodes began with the waiter or waitress making an innocent error. That's when my aunt got ready to pounce. And once she began, she was relentless. 

She would create a fuss, not by being overtly loud but by adopting an assertive tone that undoubtedly caused discomfort for anyone within earshot. This in itself was enough to make anyone cringe... However, the awkwardness didn't stop here. 

Onlookers would start to focus on our table, curiosity piqued by the unfolding drama. I detested the situation. After her reprimand of the service staff, my aunt, along with the rest of us, would attempt to eat our meal, only for my aunt to eventually demand the manager's presence, intending to ask for a refund.

This scenario led to all of us huddling around the front section of the restaurant, trying our best not to disturb other customers as my aunt and uncle methodically negotiated their refund. Needless to say, the whole experience was invariably chaotic.

Related To A Karen factsShutterstock

35. A Roller Coaster Of Emotions

I was completely taken aback when I found out that my buddy opted to pee in bottles at night as he didn't want to disturb his parents with the sound of flushing. Even worse, he stored all these bottlefuls of urine underneath his bed. Now, he's my closest friend, but when I initially discovered this, I was a bit baffled and found it bizarre, gross, and honestly, hilarious.

Horrible datesShutterstock

36. Glad I Don’t Live With Her

One of my housemates decided to buy some masks from an Etsy store at the onset of the global pandemic. Unfortunately, the shop ran out of her chosen color and as a replacement, shipped her a mask in a different color. They even included an apology note along with it. 

Coincidentally, that different color was green—the color she detested the most. As a response to their well-intentioned action, she lost her cool and threw a massive tantrum that went on the whole evening.

She was so peeved that she continued ranting about how she planned to rate the store one star, and she would have given zero if that was an option. At first, all of us found her behavior amusing. However, she switched modes and subjected us to a two-hour Disney song concert while trying her hand at a Disney-themed board game. 

Such uncharacteristic behavior was humorous, considering she was the oldest member of our household, at 28 years of age.

The Dumbest People EverUnsplash

37. Two, Two, Two Insults In One

My mother-in-law questioned me. She wanted to know why I invested a lot in my education just to become, in her words, a "highly paid childminder". She's referring to my job as a teacher.

Teachers Unforgettable MomentsShutterstock

38. Someone Needs A Jab

In the middle of the pandemic, my mother was quite vocal with anyone who would lend an ear, about her choice not to get vaccinated. She would express herself with sentences such as, “Absolutely not! I will not be getting THAT," quite audibly and in public places. 

She also held the belief that “they” were pushing everyone to get vaccinated. It was disconcerting being around her, as it felt unnecessary for her to share her views about the vaccine publicly. It was really embarrassing.

Cringe: I’m So Embarrassed To Know YouShutterstock

39. So Many Levels…

Once, quite unexpectedly, my aunt asked a lady, "Aren't you a bit too mature to be expecting?" The poor woman was in her 40s and absolutely NOT with child.

Worst Co-workers FactsShutterstock

40. You Won’t Break My Soul

A few years back, my folks were giving my boyfriend and me a lift to an anniversary celebration. We'd been a pair for half a dozen years then, so he was well-aware that my parents had a knack for being unpredictably blunt, perhaps a bit blinkered, and not quite open to differing opinions. 

They won't accept this, though, and any attempt from my side to broach this subject of concern would agitate them. Upon hopping into the car, my mum quipped, "I saw your neighbors displaying a Black Lives Matter sign and a rainbow flag on their window. What are your thoughts on that?" 

As she often baits me with such questions, I simply retorted, “Yes, and…?" She continued saying, “Well, I just noticed”. Further into our journey, she took a sudden detour in our conversation, swiveling around to ask, “Have you noticed how much Beyonce’s backside has expanded lately?"

Earlier, we were discussing local enterprises—a totally unrelated discussion. Her random comment left me astounded. A glance shared with my boyfriend communicated our silent pact to avoid car rides with my parents from then on. 

When I questioned my mom's unusual focus on someone else's physique, she casually brushed it off, saying, “Well, I'm just pointing it out. It’s ridiculous”.

Carol Channing factsWikipedia

41. Next Time Save It As “Hidden”

We were dining out at a restaurant when my grandfather decided to share a photo of the newest addition to the family with the waiter. Instead of showing off a picture of the adorable new baby, though, he unfortunately ended up sharing an image of his hot dog.

Never Want To Meet Again factsShutterstock

42. Data > Opinions

I remember a time when a relative asserted that climate change was a hoax. That may not seem so unusual, right? But the curious thing was that this family member was debating with my brother—the very same brother who has advanced degrees in meteorology and oceanography.

Work DramaShutterstock

43. Oh, What A Night

Almost two decades back, I was having dinner with an old friend at a restaurant located in a region popular as a safe sanctuary for the LGBT+ community. It's worth pointing out that this former friend was battling bipolar disorder and potentially had narcissistic tendencies. 

As the evening progressed, she began engaging in political conversations with a lone elder gentleman seated at the neighboring table. Personally, I wasn't much into politics at that time, and her constant ignoring of my presence started annoying me. 

Seeing an opportunity, she invited the gentleman to join our table, and to my dismay, he agreed. His overall demeanor struck me as quite unsettling, so I chose to refrain from their conversation. Meanwhile, a group of four people seated across from us, consisting of three gay men and a woman, noticed my discomfort and boredom.

Sensing my situation, they invited me over to their table, seeing that my friend was barely acknowledging my existence. As I cheerfully expressed my gratitude and prepared to switch tables, my friend gave an enthusiastic response, "Oh my God, awesome! We can merge our tables, and it will be one big dinner party!"

The lady from the other group adamantly but politely explained, "No. We only invited your friend because you've been disregarding her all night". In response, my friend stood up and announced way too loudly, "Well, I'll have you know that my friend would never associate with GAY people". 

The ridiculousness of her comment astounded me, especially because she knew my high school prom date was openly gay. Naturally, the group didn't respond well to her offensive remark, and the manager requested that we leave the premises. 

After ensuring my friend reached her car safely, I headed back to the restaurant to clarify that her views on the LGBT+ community were not my own. They understood my position. My relationship with that friend ended for about 10 years thereafter. I attempted to reestablish connection after a decade only to find her condition had deteriorated.

Worst Co-workers FactsShutterstock

44. Wish You Were Here

Way back, my mom tried to take a few snaps with a throwaway camera just as we were heading out of the federal prison after visiting my brother. Suddenly, cars came whizzing after us and we were stopped still on the spot, hadn't even properly exited the grounds. The cops nabbed the camera and had a go at her.

What was she thinking, right? Why would my brother want a peek at the sights he's missing from behind bars? Unless...she was just pretending to be clueless and they were secretly plotting an escape I wasn't clued in on. That's a thought. I was still in my teens and I remember wishing I could somehow melt into my seat and vanish.

Paranormal emergencyShutterstock

45. Wait For It…

My best friend's mom has quite a reputation in our predominantly white, small-town Indiana community—she's considered the local loudmouth. To put this into perspective, she's even lost two jobs due to allegations of discrimination, all proudly regaled by her to anyone who will listen.

When the school board arranged a meeting via video link due to coronavirus safety protocols, parents were encouraged to participate online. However, only people selected to present in person were allowed to address the board, allotted either a five or ten minute time slot. 

My family and I watched in disbelief from our living-room as my friend's mom took her turn. Abruptly, she began to rant about critical race theory, even though the main agenda item was managing COVID's impact on the upcoming school year. 

She then moved on to grumble about an assertion that our education system was teaching kids that being white is something negative. The situation escalated to a point where the board had to mute her microphone. I phoned my friend straight away, but before I could voice my shock, she simply replied, "I know".

This kind of outrageous behavior was routine for her mom. But the cherry on top? Her children don't even attend the town’s schools. They commute 45 minutes daily to a private school, avoiding the very subjects she flagged in her rant. Clearly, she's not in the loop about our local school affairs.

Woman shouting close-up portrait.Getty Images

46. Yikes!

When I was around 16 years old, I attended a Fourth of July neighborhood gathering. Given it was July and we had water balloon fights, I was decked out in shorts and a bikini top. During one instance, I was sitting with my dad and cousins at a picnic table when my dad blurted out loudly, "Your chest is showing too much". The crowd immediately fell silent.

I was shocked and distressed. From the way he said it, one might have expected a wardrobe malfunction or something equally embarrassing, but nothing of that sort had happened. I was still just a teenager and hardly a huge-chested woman. I guess he was just uneasy about me wearing a bikini top or he observed my cousins glancing at me differently. 

Nonetheless, his way of dealing was to make me feel embarrassed and oh boy, I was utterly humiliated. This event took place more than two decades ago and it continues to bother me. I recognize now how inappropriate it was on his part to say that and how unfairly I was shamed. 

Although I've ceased contact with him due to other issues, there are moments when I feel sorry that my children don't get to see their grandpa. However, my daughter is now entering puberty and I believe I made the right choice in protecting her from such experiences.

My father’s two sisters had teenage pregnancies, so he was typically really careful about my interactions with boys. However, his overprotective tendency never justified his occasional crude jokes made in front of my buddies. 

Back in high school, he once commented he was looking forward to my hosting sleepovers so he could "assess the nighttime attire," which was just unpleasant and cringe-worthy.

Secret Families ExposedUnslash, Thanos Pal

47. Time To Move Out

My folks were kind enough to let my girlfriend move in with us for a while after her parents had her leave. However, my dad can sometimes be pretty challenging. The atmosphere had gotten strained (it's a lengthy tale), and one day, my girlfriend returned from her job to discover a dish of hair that my dad had pulled from our shower drain and left on her pillow. 

It was seriously gross.

Revenge too farShutterstock

48. Bad Boys For Life?

In what might have been a scene straight out of Bad Boys II, my dad decided to put on a show for my boyfriend on our first date. In his mind, he was going to be this intimidating figure to scare my boyfriend. His prop choice? A Jack Daniel's bottle, filled to the brim with tea. 

As the doorbell rang, he answered it and proceeded to down the entire contents of the bottle, all while staring my boyfriend down. It was almost funny, but then he took it a step too far. He attempted to shatter the bottle on his own head. Emphasis on "attempted".

Needless to say, the date was canceled due to a sudden trip to the hospital with dad in tow. From then on, I was tagged as the girl with the crazy dad. Once I managed to land another date, our inside joke was, "Don't knock yourself out this time".

I'm Embarrassed To Know YouBad Boys II, Sony Pictures Releasing

49. Time For the Nursing Home?

While out on a stroll with my family, including my grandma and sister, we bumped into one of my pals who, like me, uses a wheelchair. This friend had experienced a terrible hit-and-run incident a little while back, which resulted in them being paralyzed from the waist down. Just as we started to catch up, my grandmother rudely interrupted.

She stared at my friend and blurted, "I can't believe how audacious some people are, faking sickness just to get to sit in a wheelchair! They seriously need to find a better pastime". Then, disregarding that I was engaged in a conversation, she tried to shove me away. To say the least, it was a moment of sheer embarrassment. 

From then on, I decided not to interact with her ever again.

Adult Temper TantrumsShutterstock

50. What A Wild Ride

My dad has a sister, my aunt, who I'm frankly ashamed to be related to. She's a qualified vocational nurse who, quite shockingly, pretended last year that she was deployed to Afghanistan to aid with COVID relief there. She even resorted to Photoshopping images from old news stories, posting them on Facebook and pretending she was featured in them.

Moreover, she wasn’t shy about boasting to the entire family about her "missions," attributing her selection to being the only one “slim enough” to fit in a helicopter. After a supposed two-week deployment, she returned home. However, the truth eventually tumbled out. She had actually spent that time in a hotel, engaging in an extramarital affair.

This very same aunt also went to Mexico with a cousin of mine for a gastric bypass procedure. However, she outrightly denied having undergone surgery, insisting it was merely her great willpower that brought about her weight loss. Ironically, she wasn't even overweight to start with. 

The cousin who accompanied her revealed the truth about the trip. We, as a family, were naturally worried since she fell seriously ill because of the procedure. Her condition was so dire that she had to be admitted to the hospital. Once discharged, she persisted in denying having had a gastric bypass. 

Although the operation didn’t matter to us, her denial was rather strange. But that's not the worst part. In the past, she’s staged having cancer on several occasions, voiced dangerous thoughts about taking her own life, and currently is harassing a man's ex-wife, with whom she was discovered having an affair.

She's been bombarding this woman, who was formerly a family friend, with numerous threats via different disposable phones, pretending to be my dad's various siblings. The intention is to intimidate this woman and make her feel outnumbered. 

Apparently, my aunt doesn’t want her in our midst out of the fear that she may disclose details about the affair to us all.

The Kids of Helicopter ParentsUnsplash, engin akyurt

Source: 


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