Sometimes, those who grow up rich or sheltered have no idea how the real world works. Sometimes they’re willfully ignorant, and other times, they genuinely have no clue. Whatever the circumstances, these Redditors tell stories of when they met people who needed a real wake-up call.
1. Gimme My Privacy
My father is a bit of a coin collector, a hobby inspired by his Hungarian immigrant grandfather who firmly believed that banks were out to steal everyone's money. As such, my dad wanted a plan B in case that happened.
It's not exactly far-fetched; many folks prefer self-sufficiency out of a certain mistrust in the government and economy. But, things got a little odd when Dad had to roll his coins.
You see, he has to buy his coin rolls online; he refuses to get them from the bank fearing they'll know he's hiding money. No, really—he believes that! So, he ordered a bunch of coin rolls, waited a month, and started to wonder where they were.
While he was at work, he asked Mom to look into the delivery details. It led to this amusing chat: “The tracking information says that your package arrived in town two weeks ago but was returned because there wasn't a delivery address”.
My dad rebutted, “Of course, why would I provide that? I don't want them to know where we live, they might spread the word”.
2. All The Free Food!
As a youngster, I used to be part of a swimming team at an upscale sports club even though we were a bit less well-off. The club sported a grill where folks would walk up to, flash their membership card and return with a plateful of food. A little curious, I asked them what the drill was.
They said something like, "Just swing your membership card at the grill and they'll give you food." In my little head, I concluded the food was free of charge. This led me to indulging myself in all the food and snack goodies the grill had to offer: FroYo, Slurpees, chicken fingers, cheesy fries, smoothies, and many more.
Fast forward to the month's end when my parents received the club's monthly bill. I happened to walk into the room just when they were contemplating over the skyrocketing charges on the bill attributed to food costs. When they asked me about it, I innocently responded, "But I thought the food was on the house?"
To my dismay, they clarified that the food wasn't complimentary. This puzzled me, as my friends at the club had always assured me that they "never have to pay". As it turned out, those pals of mine came from wealthy families who paid their bills with little regard for how high it had piled up.
That’s when it really hit me, how much that money class barrier separated us.
3. Book Smarts
Back in college, I had this incredibly smart professor specializing in Middle Eastern politics, focusing particularly on the Israel-Palestine dispute. His memory was a steel trap for detailed history spanning millennia, and he seemed to grasp the intricate nuances of the conflict like no one else. His lectures could have been captivating, honestly.
If only he knew how to operate his cell phone. He absolutely struggled to mute his phone or even power it off or on. Initially, he relied on his teaching assistant (TA) for help. But after leaving with his phone off a couple of times and not being able to switch it back on until the next day, he decided to just keep it on.
And it seemed like he was the prime choice for every telemarketer, given that his phone would ring loudly at least five times every hour. He'd just continue speaking as if nothing was happening around him.
Moreover, he never responded to his emails, as he seemed clueless about owning an email account or its uses. One time he had forgotten his water jug and had the gall to send his TA to fetch a bottle from the vending machine mid-lecture.
When she returned with the bottle, he struggled to open it, turned beet-red, and then handed it back, concluding something was wrong with it.
She managed to open it effortlessly – turned out he had been trying to twist the cap the wrong direction. Classic Professor John!
We're moving from paying our non-exempt coworkers twice a month to doing so every two weeks. The paycheck amounts will be a bit smaller because of this. To help those relying heavily on each paycheck, we're offering an advance on the extra paycheck that's coming in the future three-paycheck month.
This could help those individuals manage their bills and any other payments during the transition. You'll need to let the payroll department know if you want to benefit from this advance. There was one manager who found it hard to comprehend that some people live from paycheck to paycheck.
His lack of understanding was pretty shocking. He made comments like, "Can't they earn more? Shouldn't they save?"Such an easy solution, right? Here's where it gets ironic: his nanny is resigning because she's not earning enough, given the high cost of living in this area.
5. First-World Problems
I work in London assisting American students—a job that often introduces me to some of the wealthiest and most privileged young Americans, given the high costs of both college and this international program.
On one occasion, our Wi-Fi connection failed, and their reaction was as if I'd told them there was no more drinking water in all of the U.K!
Around 40 students were banging on my door in outrage, threatening me with their powerful 'daddies'. They made statements like, "My father is a lawyer, don't think you'll get paid for housing me when there's no Wi-Fi”.
I tried to reassure them, telling them that the Wi-Fi would be up and running within a couple of hours. That's when I heard the most shocking comment from one of them: "You can't fault us for being upset, we're 'FIRST WORLD' kids". I was astounded.
She spoke about being from the 'first world' like it was a badge of honor. And the crux of her argument was that “My life has always been effortless and flawless... how dare you disrupt even the slightest convenience for a few hours?!”
6. Drive Thru Trouble
When I was 15, I had a job at McDonald's where I'd find myself stationed at the back window, the place where customers pay. One day, a car zoomed right past our speaker box where they're supposed to place their order.
This wasn't uncommon so I just brushed it off as a simple error. The customer finally reaches my window and to my surprise, there's a friendly elderly lady behind the wheel.
She beams at me, holding up a shopping bag that contains frozen chicken and a pair of two-liter sodas. She then extends a $20 bill towards me and innocently inquires, "What's the total for the chicken and soda?"
In my inexperienced 15-year-old self, I was completely taken aback, unable to process this strange situation. I stared at her, speechless, until I finally managed to utter, "Um, I think there's a misunderstanding here." She abruptly drove away, her car scraping across the curb as she left.
7. Counting The Cents
Just about three years back, I was serving a girl in her early 20s at the café where I work. She grabbed a beverage and a baked good, bringing her total to around $6.
She then pulled out a single greenback and 6 quarters. I accepted the money and waited for the rest, but she simply stayed put, looking straight at me. I made it clear to her that the cost came to $6.87.
She responded with, "Yes, I've given you seven." I countered, "Actually, this is $2.25." She retrieved the cash from me and counted each piece, treating me like I was the one who was confused, with each item valued at $1. I clarified, pointing at the quarters: "Those are quarters, not dollars."
It's important to note that she was clearly from the States. She spoke without any hint of a foreign accent and seemed totally American.
Her retort was, "Of course, these are quarters, but they are also dollars." She held up a quarter and pointed to the word "dollar" imprinted below George Washington's bust. At this point, I was thinking she was either the most clueless person I'd ever met, or this was a seriously weak attempt at trickery.
But she wouldn't back down. She insisted on a manager. So, I fetched the manager, and he told her the same. She seemed now to be on the verge of tears, possibly feeling embarrassed.
8. What Hippies Are Hiding
As a jeweler and metalsmith, selling my work at festivals and street markets is pretty routine for my husband and I. So one sunny day last summer, we're chilling under our stall when this seemingly harmless woman saunters in.
She was just my kind of eccentric with her voluminous 10-yard skirt, vibrant multicolored scarves, and neglected waves of brown-gray hair bound with a makeshift leather tie. My initial thought? Just a sweet, earthy old woman embracing her inner hippie.
However, contradicting my initial judgment, her next few words caught me completely off-guard. She began harmlessly enough, chiming about her own crafts, fancied a few of ours, even tried them on. Then she saw my baby bump—and that's when things took a bizarre turn.
She started warning me about an upcoming blood moon and the series of catastrophic events she believed could, or would, ensue. She advised me to stay indoors, fearing that the "power" of the blood moon could result in pre-term labor, or worse, a stillbirth.
But it didn't stop there. She proceeded, insisting that the forthcoming blood moon was synonymous with the apocalypse, the return of Jesus, and the ascension of the righteous to heaven.
Chillingly, she suggested that if Jesus returned before my little one was born, I would just wake up one day to find my pregnant belly gone. She believed he would kindly claim my unborn child and ensure it tasted glory. And then, as casually as if she were discussing the weather, she stated, "You know, of course, this is all our doing as humans, not God's.”
As her dramatic monologue carried on, I glanced at my husband, our desperate smiles were giving way to subtle expressions of astonishment. As she finally wrapped up her apocalyptic prophecy and left, I managed a shaky, "Okay, thank you!" Now, I can't help but be a bit skeptical every time I meet a seemingly harmless, sweet old hippie-type lady.
9. IT Troubleshooting
While working as a field engineer on some pretty swanky projects at High Point University, we built luxury dorms. They were decked out with features like a three-story waterfall, a sports bar, a steak house, an arcade, and even a free movie theater. All in all, it was a pretty fancy student living space.
We had a small crew that stuck around for the first student move in to assist with any issues. These students sure do live the high life, but there was one instance that still boggles my mind.
There was a girl who called for help because none of her electronics were working in her dorm room. Our team rushed over to see what the problem was and we discovered that none of her items were plugged in! We had to explain to her that devices need to be plugged into an outlet to function.
Her response caught us off guard. Apparently, where she came from, her maid always took care of plugging in appliances. She genuinely didn't know how to do it. Even after we demonstrated to her how to plug something in, she remained still, waiting for us to do all the plugging for her!
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10. Absolutely Innocent
Back in the day, while I was working at a fast food joint, the rival joint down the street was being vandalized repeatedly. As a counter measure, they installed cameras. As luck would have it, they managed to catch the troublemakers red-handed during their act and called the cops. Turns out, the miscreants were a pair of tween age siblings.
When the parents were presented with the footage evidence, they retorted, "This recording is doctored! Our children are innocent!" As though making believable forgeries of early 90s surveillance videos was a piece of cake...
The last thing I heard was that the parents were gearing up for a legal fight against false allegations. I'm certain the judge put that right to rest.
11. I Would Never!
My childhood was spent living near some run-down apartment buildings. My pal back then was from a wealthy family, enjoying weekly dinners that could cost over $300, vacation timeshares everywhere, and regular outings on the skiing slopes.
But something she said really put me off: "Why on earth would anyone choose to live in these flats? I'd never do that". I explained to her that the people living there often didn't have a choice.
12. Working From Home
Recently, my colleague's daughter, who is 17, had her first job interview at a cinema. As soon as she returned, her mother asked about her experience. The young girl shared a response that made me facepalm: "I informed them that I'm specifically looking for a work from home job. This way, I can enjoy my snacks anytime I want”.
I wished I could have seen the expression on the interviewer's face when she said that.
13. A Clean Wipe
I recall a time when I came across a story about a guy who wouldn't clean his backside after doing his business, all because he had this peculiar notion that no man should allow anything to touch him in that area...
I remember clearly scratching my head, wondering "Just how disconnected from reality do you need to be to think that way?" To this day, the thought of that odd stranger continues to pop into my mind every now and again.
14. The Family Business
I used to be employed in a family-run machine shop, where every member of the owner's family also worked. To be honest, they were some of the most entitled, world-weary people I've come across.
The owners themselves lived in a rather fancy house. They'd let one of their offspring and his family stay with them. Their previously owned domicile was gifted to another child and her relatives. They even bought a third property for their last kid's family.
All these houses' expenses, as well as the three siblings' salaries and benefits, averaging around $40,000, were taken care of by the parents. Not just that, but everyone, including spouses, got new company cars every alternate year.
Makes you wonder who needs a company car while working from an office? And if they all carpool, why are some cars left behind each day?
The parents were generous and kind folks. However, their children and their families were downright unpleasant. Everyday, like clockwork, the grandkids would show up post-school and create havoc—meddling with stuff and getting into mischief.
This, mind you, in a shop filled with heavy machinery operating non-stop! I mean, how can anyone let children have a Nerf gun fight around a functional hydraulic press?
I recall this one lunchtime incident. Two of the in-laws and one of the owner's offspring were ranting and raving at the owner. The reason? He didn't wish to splurge on NFL season tickets three rows nearer to the field than their existing ones.
You can't get more jaded and spoiled than that! Meanwhile, us non-family staff were barely making ends meet, with no hope of a raise in sight.
15. Just Buy A House!
A couple of years ago, I was actively participating in a women's nonprofit org in my previous city. My ex-boyfriend lived in a well-off part of the state where the average income was around $31k per year.
I heard a teacher share that more than 500 children in her school lacked a stable home. These were kids who, at times, grouped together to pool cash just to afford a transient stay in a hotel.
I still recall sharing this heart-wrenching story with my ex, stressing the unimaginable plight of these 17-year olds sharing a hotel room with nearly a dozen others. However, his response shocked me into silence.
He branded them as "foolish" for not investing in a house to gain equity, suggesting their hotel stay was a wastage resulting in zero returns.
He was thoroughly convinced that these 17-year olds, essentially homeless and without a permanent address, had the capability of securing and managing a mortgage, even though they were underage.
I was irate and did express my anger, as his out-of-touch viewpoints needed to be contested. As time passed, he even admitted that his condescending remarks about others stem from his belief that he is superior to everyone else.
16. Library Lessons
One evening during college, my friend was utterly stunned when a few buddies and I brought out our public library cards from our hometowns. The idea that our families would have regularly visited the library during our childhood was alien to her. This baffles her as it's a shared experience for many people.
Intrigued, I asked her what she did when she felt like reading books during her childhood. Her response made me raise my eyebrow: "Simple, my family always bought the books for me".
17. You’re Not Them!
On the first day of the Marketing Research course at Wharton, the teacher hands out a survey to everyone. It asks various questions like, how many US parents serve their children hot dogs at least once a week, or what portion of beer sold in stores is craft beer, and so on.
The students didn't do so well, providing answers like 2% for things that are in reality closer to 90%. The deliberate lesson behind this exercise was straightforward: You don't reflect the average American.
Unless your marketing targets are similar to top-tier MBA students, your gut feelings often lead you astray, even more so when you try to account for your own biases. You need to learn how to carry out and comprehend marketing research, otherwise, you might want to consider changing your major to finance.
18. Continental Drift
When I was 16 and taking my Driver's Ed class, our instructor gave us a bonus question. He asked, "Why do we have interstates in Hawaii when you can't drive to it from any other state?” A classmate of mine raised her hand and queried, "Could it be because they were constructed before Hawaii drifted apart?"
She actually believed that there was a chance Hawaii had separated and floated away to the centre of the Pacific Ocean within the past half-century. The real explanation, however, is that any highway funded by the U.S. federal government is simply referred to as an interstate.
19. Time For The Talk
When my mother was around 18 or 19 years old, she enlisted in the military. As soon as she was permitted, she shifted from the military base to a small, inexpensive apartment. She shared this space with a girl of her own age whom she had befriended during basic training.
One day while she was tidying up their apartment, she noticed an odd smell wafting from her roommate's bedroom. Assuming it might be from old dishes or food, she decided to investigate.
Even though the room was immaculate, the strange odor was still present. Brows furrowed, my mom explored the room in an attempt to find the source of the offending scent. Eventually, she glanced under the bed and discovered a box filled with numerous bloodstained underwear.
Evidently, her roommate wasn't aware of the existence of sanitary products such as pads or tampons, and her mother had never informed her about them. This left her to merely change her soiled underwear and discard them under the bed. My mom then found herself in a position where she had to discuss this issue with her.
20. Living The Life
So there's this dude I know who won a whopping 150 million from Powerball when he was just 19. With that money, he bought a cozy little house by the river and now spends his time going fishing and chilling with a drink in hand, every day.
He totally cut off from the world—no phone, no internet, doesn't invite the mailman, and remains oblivious to all happenings around him. It gets crazier...After his girlfriend dumped him and the government lost track of him, the IRS sent someone over when they had a doubt about his house.
Both his parents passed away two years ago, followed by his sister who couldn't make it through a major operation last year, leaving him without any family, friends, or a job in sight.
His only companions are his dog, any occasional visitor who drops by his place, and the folks at the local gas station from where he picks up his drinks and fishing bait. He is so cool about things that he leaves heaps of cash lying around his house simply because he couldn't care less.
Honestly, with all that he's got, there's absolutely nothing he'd ever need. The way he sits out there under the sun all day, I fear he might end up with skin cancer in the next 10 years or so.
21. Back To School
There were six of us, gathered around a table, dining and talking. Our chatter drifted towards employment and work life. One friend, a privileged individual who quite literally had everything handed to him—including a position at his mother's tech enterprise—proposed a perspective that confused him:
If a person cannot secure a job, why don't they return to school, earn a degree, and then resume their job search?
Two things baffled him. Firstly, he did not grasp that the majority of households could not financially support a non-working adult as they pursue a degree. And secondly, and rather astonishingly, he believed all colleges globally were cost-free.
His justification? High school graduates transition into college students—and since they're not exactly rolling in dough, in his mind, there was no other way they could afford education costs. This revelation was from a 27-year-old U.S. citizen!
So, we enlightened him: education, particularly at a university level, comes with financial responsibilities.
22. Losing The Plot
My former close friend got engaged to a mutual friend we both knew well before they became a couple. While he was away, he was unfaithful to her with another woman and ended their engagement, which really shattered her.
I can't say for sure whether she had bipolar disorder before this mess, but she fell into a really dark place, started having serious bad thoughts, and just didn't seem herself anymore.
She even stopped taking her medication and would carry out these massive, emotional outbursts on Facebook about how they were meant to spend their lives together.
She'd take photos of presents he'd once given her and continually post them. Even years after they broke up, she always put pictures of them as her profile photo.
And here's where things get even more intense—by this point, the guy had moved on, got married, and had a few kids. But even then, she would lash out at anyone who suggested she should do the same.
Day after day, she'd unleash these emotional tirades on Facebook, maybe 10, 15, or 20 times. This was usually followed by more pictures of them as a couple. She was aware that we were friends on Facebook and would persistently request me to relay messages to him, which I firmly declined.
The situation worsened so much that I reconnected with a group of girls who attended school with her, and we decided to contact her parents. They acknowledged that she had bipolar disorder and wasn't on her medication, but in a nutshell, told us, "We have everything under control, you all can back off now".
A few days later, she vanished from Facebook and I haven't heard from her since. I truly hope she's doing okay now.
23. My Precious Child
My folks own a 60lb Portuguese Water Dog that's developed a worrying habit of biting people—about five times to this date. Despite this issue, they're unwilling to acknowledge the dog's aggressive behavior. They likewise lack the necessary skill or discipline to curb this problem.
The whole situation has put a severe strain on us as a family because everyone fears the dog, and it's impossible to get through to my parents about it.
The most distressing aspect is the dog's intense dislike for kids. It freaks out upon seeing one, and alarmingly, it recently bit a five-year-old. Seeing my parents this way is infuriating. They've essentially replaced their own children with the dog. Instead of treating it as a pet, they behave as if it's their new child.
I've strongly thought about involving the authorities, but I don't want to cause a rift in my family. Nonetheless, the whole scenario is deeply upsetting.
24. Do You Know Who I Am?!
I happened to be leaving a popular vacation spot for the rich and famous, traveling on my friend's shiny new Bombardier Global 6000 jet. As we came into the boarding section, we chanced upon his flight crew in a fierce scuffle with four other people.
Turns out, a celebrity had turned up too early for her chartered flight at the airport. Mistaking my friend's plane for being from the same charter service, she decided to hitch a ride on it. Her aides and bodyguards attempted to clear out our luggage as she climbed aboard and decided not to budge.
About half an hour after we got there, we were finally able to make her team realize they were acting outside of the law, and they withdrew their takeover attempt. However, the drama didn't end there—the starlet remained on the plane, stubbornly insisting my friend shuttle her and her team of eight to their destination before taking us to ours.
They seemed convinced that the celebrity's fame would compel my friend into complying with her requests. It took another 20 minutes of cajoling to get her off his aircraft.
When it was our turn to board, we were greeted by a barrage of crude words and taunts from the celebrity and her cronies for being "nobodies." They felt her time was more important than ours.
A week after this encounter, my friend—the plane's owner, received a letter from a notoriously argumentative celebrity lawyer. The missive threatened a lawsuit should any record of this episode find its way into gossip columns.
25. Extreme Views
A few weeks back, my father— a HVAC trade worker— was sent out to repair the air conditioning for a charming elderly woman. She greeted warmly, offered him homemade cookies, and even shared stories about her grandchildren. Overall, she was truly a delightful company, until the topic shifted to current affairs.
"Could you ensure the system is well-secured? I wouldn't want the African-American community to steal it. They've been quite unpredictable recently," she said. Seemingly taken aback, my father reassured her, "Rest assured, ma'am, no one is running off with the unit. It's completely secure."
But, she wouldn't let it pass. "Don't underestimate! An African-American even made it to the presidency! Did you know, I once saw him selling his own Presidential desk online!"
All my dad could do was let her voice her thoughts and continue working. She rambled on with a similar narrative for some time afterwards. When he completed his task, she thanked him and as he was making an exit, she handed him a quirky advice, "Remember to pay the 'Jewish tax'! They may call it PST (provincial sales tax), but it's not!"
Quite an eccentric perspective, indeed.
26. The Middle Of The Party
I was attending a New Year's Eve party—nothing wild, but there was this guy who seemed really engrossed in his own world. He had started following the laser light patterns, something quite usual for such parties. But then, he went from tracing the lasers on a table to the floor.
Just as he was getting back on his feet, he did the oddest thing—he started to rub my belly. He didn't see my face, but from his reactions, I could tell he perceived my belly as a fluffy, warm wall. He was utterly divorced from reality. Then, he finally looked up and our eyes locked.
We held this intense eye contact for about five seconds before he flashed me a peaceful smile and retreated. It was during that staredown that I recognized that he really believed he was interacting with a wall rather than a person!
27. Starting The Dream Job
I'm currently an overseas resident in Sri Lanka. Despite adoring the country and its inhabitants, I've noticed that some folks here can be a bit flexible when it comes to following rules—a characteristic not uncommon in emerging nations.
There's this guy who operates a food stand near my place. Nice guy, very articulate, but something about him seemed peculiar. During one of our talks, he revealed his belief that every Westerner has government-controlled brain implants used for surveillance.
The next time we met, he dropped the bombshell that he planned to shut his food stand. He shared his entrepreneurial epiphany with such seriousness: he'd become a doctor. "What profession can ensure good income?" he impulsively retorted, "Being a doctor!"
So, he made up his mind to launch a clinic and provide medical consults for half the usual amount, despite having zero medical knowledge, because he believed it was more lucrative than running a food stand.
Of course, he actually went through with it. Within a week, his former food stand was outfitted with a large red medical cross. He began offering services to less fortunate patients, diagnosing unknown conditions, and scribbling prescription notes on scrap paper. To his astonishment, his clinic was shut down just a few weeks later.
28. I’m A Star!
So, I have this friend who once met a girl whilst invloved in a local theater production. The girl was pretty tall, with blonde hair and almost good-looking. It was clear she really wanted to be viewed as attractive, but there was just something amiss about her appearance.
Furthermore, she had ambitious dreams of becoming a renowned actor or model and was convinced she had potential. There was this unreleased reality TV show about a swimsuit competition she'd been on, it was supposed to feature the world's most sensuous women, but frankly, it was just a crowd of slightly above average girls, all with similar aspirations.
Yet, due to her involvement in this unseen show, she sees herself as a lesser-known celebrity. She frequents events, takes photos with famous individuals, and then brags about these encounters online. And she's even more obnoxious than that.
She "recommends" products on Instagram, where the majority of her 5,000 followers are artificial. The automated followers regularly leave generic comments on her posts like "sweet!" or "cool!".
She's all about snapping selfies and even films selfie videos for her so-called "fans". One memorable clip had her announcing a contest with a hoverboard for the prize. She also believes she's a singer, despite lacking the appropriate skills. It doesn't stop her from sharing off-key singing videos, though.
Then there's a tune she released on iTunes, so heavily autotuned it barely resembles her real voice, and still, it's hard to listen to.
She's also a "writer", and I use that term quite loosely. She wrote a self-biography that you can snap up on Amazon for a cool thirty dollars. Plus, you'll find quotes she ascribes to herself on her Instagram posts.
She credits herself on IMDB for films where she had no role, or at best was an extra, to inflate her success. It's as fascinating as watching a slow-motion car crash. She's the epitome of delusional. I was sceptical when my friend first told me about her, but meeting her proved him absolutely righ.
29. What Am I Doing Wrong…?
About 12 years back, when I was in high school, I remember this incident from my gym class in the weight room. There was this classmate of mine who was pretty buff, not overweight at all, but had the stamina of a walrus. After witnessing his struggle to complete a mile run, I suggested to him that maybe cutting down on his daily box of cigarettes could help.
Surprisingly, he hadn't even made the connection that his smoking habit could harm his lungs or affect his cardio. Even though we'd all been through mandatory health education classes, he seemed blissfully unaware of this fact. It was a real lightbulb moment for him—to think it took till his junior or senior year for someone to point it out.
30. But I Don’t Get It
Last semester, while studying overseas, I made friends from across the US. I hit it off with two wonderful folks from Virginia. But, when they learned I was Jewish, they were totally shocked.
They'd never known, or even been friends with a Jewish person before. At first, I found it odd. But then, considering she's from a rural area in Virginia and studies in the South—where Jewish folk are quite rare—it made sense.
I also suspected she might have indeed met a Jewish person before, but didn't realize it or remember, given that we don't declare our faith every time we meet someone new. One comment from these girls, though, took me by surprise.
Responding to my astonishment that none of their friends are Jewish, one asked, "So, do you celebrate Christmas?" I replied, "No. While some Jewish people celebrate both holidays, my family sticks to Jewish celebrations only. So, no Easter, no Lent, et cetera". Not quite getting it, she asked again, "But, you've never celebrated Christmas?"
I tried to clarify my stance saying, "Don't get me wrong, I love the Christmas season. My ex celebrated it and I joined in the merriment, but we don’t participate in mass or have a Christmas tree”.
Yet, she insisted, "So, you don't celebrate it?" Patiently, I repeated, "Not in my home". She pressed again asking "But it's Christmas, why don't you celebrate it?" I thought it was pretty clear when I replied, "Well, Jewish people generally don't subscribe to the belief that Jesus was the Messiah”. But that didn’t stop the questions.
It was practically a looping record. "But, you don't celebrate Christmas?" "No, not in my house." "So, there’s no Christmas tree, and you don't attend mass?" This bewildering exchange lasted a good ten minutes. I vividly remembered, standing outside the Tower of London, thinking it was an odd conversation.
I'm always open to discussing Judaism—our beliefs, how they're distinctive—but it seemed she just couldn’t grasp the idea that Christmas wasn't on my calendar.
Try as she did, she just couldn't fathom Christmas being celebrated everywhere, except at my place.
31. What Hard Work Gets
I was raised in Silicon Valley. Back in high school days, fellow students were getting fancy cars like Audis, brand new Jeeps, and hand-me-down BMWs from their fathers. Meanwhile, I built up my savings by mowing lawns, cutting firewood, and putting in six-day-a-week shifts at the local hardware store.
I did all of this to achieve my goal—owning a truck at the mere age of 16. When I finally made the purchase, my friends were genuinely shocked. They couldn't believe I didn't have any financial help from my dad.
Despite only costing around $5k, I truly believe I was the only one among my peers who bought his own set of wheels. It's funny, because the other day I was driving past my old high school and I spotted two Teslas and a couple of Range Rovers parked in the student area.
32. Any Last Words?
My sister was really upset when my parents announced they were drafting their wills. Her reaction was totally uncalled for—it included tears and accusations that they were "preparing to leave us." The situation was already tense since my dad just retired and funds are a bit more strained now.
Yet, if I’m not mistaken, many Americans typically prepare their wills around the time they marry, buy a home, or start a family. While it's not usually suggested to wait until later in life to draft a will, it's not unheard of.
At this point, my parents are in their sixties, I'm 22 and my sister is 25. My sister's reaction finally led me to dial up mom and ask her to explain the purpose of a will to my sister.
33. The Super Spoiled
In my experience, some girls I've known were quite spoiled—they had credit cards that their fathers foot the bill for. To them, it was like free cash. They'd shop all they wanted without ever worrying about the bill since it went directly to their dads.
Growing up with a never-ending flow of money and having things like car insurance, utility bills, and even vehicle maintenance costs taken care of for them, they just assumed it was free and easy. They didn't realize that someone else was actually shouldering these responsibilities for them.
The 2008 financial crisis had some of these girls' parents losing a lot, and it was a shock for the girls, now aged 26 to 30, to realize they had to start fending for themselves. Some of them were fortunate to marry into wealth, but a few are still living with their parents as they approach 30, simply because they lack the skills to cope in the real world.
It's unfortunate, but seeing their constant Facebook updates makes it more poignant. They're still able to take multiple yearly vacations, flaunt expensive fashion accessories, and show off their high-end cocktails.
And it's clear they're only able to fund these luxuries because they don't have any familiar, housing, or car obligations, but hold decent secretarial jobs.
34. To Believe Or Not To Believe
I can't help but feel a bit frustrated when people victimize me for using a wheelchair despite still having the ability to walk. It's true, I can use my legs, but imagine the incredible pain I go through after standing or walking for too long! I'm all open for questions if people are genuinely trying to understand my situation.
I realize it's not something everyone grasps easily, so I don't really expect them to. Just a word of caution—don't gawk at me with a self-righteous look, forming snap judgements about what you perceive. Also, forget the whole "it's all in your mind" theory.
Sure, Lucinda, I deal with mental health issues, but my physical incapacity is far from being a figment of my imagination! I remember this instance where a so-called "friend" looked straight at me and denied the fact that I was ill. Well, thank you for your support, buddy.
35. Please Understand
My partner is a doctor, and I work as an engineer. I come from a working-class background and we're currently saddled with significant student debt. Before we can really enjoy our decent income, we have to get that debt paid down.
One of our friends, also a doctor, recently brought up a conversation about the nice new house she purchased. She kept inquiring when we'd be leaving our less-than-stellar apartment for a spacious townhome. She struggles to get that, unlike her, our folks aren't wealthy. They can't just buy a house for us in cash, and then let us slowly pay them back without any interest.
Don't get me wrong, I have the utmost love and affection for her. She's a solid friend we've known for ages, and she has provided us with immense emotional support. But then again, her mom was a prosperous surgeon, and her father wrapped up his career early after selling his lucrative business.
36. You’re Just Like Me!
Back in college, I studied German alongside this guy who seemed pretty cool. One day, while we were out grabbing drinks with some others from our major, he launched into this whole spiel about how he reckoned the solution to the racial issues in the US was to divide the country and segregate all the different races.
He didn't even bat an eyelid, saying stuff like, "It’s no biggie; it would be totally fair". But that's not what really shook me. I was more taken aback when I realized that some of the others were actually nodding along with this guy. Suddenly, I felt like I'd wandered into a bizarre scene straight out of the Twilight Zone.
This guy really considered himself a deep thinker. That conversation marked the end of any interaction between us. Later on, a lady friend of mine who'd been on a date with him informed me that he had a picture of Adolf Hitler proudly displayed above his bed.
I'm a tall, typically Scandinavian-looking guy, so I suppose he assumed I would back his ridiculous ideas. But he was very much mistaken.
37. A True Scientist
There was this missionary who lectured at my college in the courtyard. He mentioned he had undergraduate degree in computer science and spent loads of time on postgrad studies. Therefore, he believed he was the most eligible to discuss all science-related topics.
According to him, the famous E=MC2 equation by Einstein proved two things—that the speed of light isn't constant but varies over time, and that energy from sunlight and starlight transforms into mass when it reaches earth.
So, in his view, as the speed of light fluctuates, the Earth's size also changes—it either expands or contracts. This, he argued, gives the illusion of Plate Tectonics.
He stated that the last time Earth constricted was during Noah's flood. He claimed to have written and had many papers published in high-profile scientific magazines.
We inquired about which magazines published his work and he brushed us off saying we wouldn't comprehend it anyway. We asked where he earned his degree and he retorted that he was too significant to have to justify himself to us, college students.
Regarding who analyzed his papers, he said it was none other than God. Truly, it’s hard to imagine someone more detached from reality.
38. The Twilight Zone
In high school and for a brief period in college, I had a close friend. She was on track to be a swimming star, smashing record after record. Sadly, she injured her foot in a bad way during her sophomore high school year, putting an end to her swimming career. Soon after, she became convinced she'd been "bitten" by a vampire, a belief she still holds today.
In college, I jokingly asked her to prove it—like sprinting quickly, sparkling, actually drinking someone's blood, or transforming into a bat. Her defensive reaction had me shaking my head in disbelief. She later blocked me on social media. But, I later came to know she joined a real vampire group and manages a blog on her vampire lifestyle.
However, shortly after I started discussing it, she sent me a text message insisting I correct myself—she now identifies as a Pixie, not a vampire, due to her Native American heritage.
39. Jamaican Ploy
My mom fell victim to swindlers from Jamaica. My sister and I urgently intervened when mom had dad arrested. Dad discovered she'd handed over thousands, under the impression that she'd won their lottery, which explained the $5000 cash stashed in her dresser.
She tried to keep dad away from the money and the bedroom, but when he insisted on entering, she ended up getting the cops involved and dad got hauled off.
The following day, my sister and I paid a visit. The con artists were persistent, dialing their home every 10 minutes. Mom pleaded with them to give her the promised winnings because nobody would believe her. She was profoundly convinced it was legit.
Her frustration flared because we refused to buy into her fantasy, having verbally confronted the scammers on multiple phone calls.
Mom was stubbornly determined to further fund these fraudsters. She was hooked – an addict of sorts. She had managed to send another $1500 before we arrived. We ended up confiscating the remaining $3500, her purse, keys, and all phones.
We arranged for a trusted person to stay with her until we could limit her access to her bank accounts and after dad was free.
40. Pulling His Weight
My stepdad never stops grumbling, always saying things like "Nobody does their fair share here, people have to grow up!" At least, that's the main idea of his complaints. He keeps insisting that we need to find "proper jobs." This is in spite of the fact that I'm a computer programmer and my younger brother is just starting out working part-time at a restaurant, with plans for the future.
But here's the twisted part—my stepdad doesn't have a job himself. His last gig was washing dishes for minimum wage, from which he was let go nearly two years ago for consistently showing up wasted.
His only contribution to our household is doing the dishes a couple times a week, and from the way he raves about once throwing out some old soup, you'd think he'd done an epic task.
Once, when my brother mistakenly handed over his half of the rent to my stepdad, I had to step in and cover their rent because my stepdad promptly spent the money on booze the very next day.
41. Complete Addiction
I have a close friend who seems to struggle with video game addiction, and this has been a part of his life for quite some time. We're both now in our mid to late twenties.
For a few years now, his game of choice has been DOTA 2, which, if you're unfamiliar, is considered to host the biggest e-sports prize money in history (we're talking seven digit figures). There's a part of him believing he could potentially become a professional at this game.
However, the odds of going pro are incredibly narrow for anyone, let alone him. For starters, his rank is just around the top 70-percent of players in the game's online ranking system. Moreover, he mainly sticks to playing one character out of the available 150+.
It's critical to be proficient with most of the characters, as you really can't stick with the same one every time. His drive to achieve this dream has taken over his life to such an extent that his relationships are suffering. He reacts negatively to friends who question his abilities or goals and is gradually isolating himself.
He's not accepting any responsibility for this pattern and instead blames others around him. His dedication to DOTA is such that he's postponed finishing his education to play the game; he has deferred his final semester, and honestly, I wouldn't be surprised if he doesn't go back at all.
His work life is only barely enough to cover his minimal share of the rent between himself and his four roommates. The entire scenario is simply beyond belief.
42. My Birthday Battle
On Batman vs. Superman's debut night, even before we all realized it wasn't so great, my friends and I had chosen to make it my birthday bash. We'd picked up premium IMAX tickets ahead of time for some pretty solid seats, made our way into the theater with popcorn and drinks, and comfortably settled down.
With a bit of spare time left until showtime, we were deep in conversation. But then a lady, with a small boy by her side, broke into our chat. From her tone, I sensed a brewing tension.
"Could you swap places with my six-year-old? He struggles to crick his neck up that high," she asked. Here's the thing, these were tickets I had purchased two weeks prior for my birthday celebration. So, I faced her and her son and firmly replied, "No." She shot back calling me selfish and entitled.
"Look, I picked these seats two weeks in advance, specifically for my birthday. Him being six doesn't give him a claim on them," I reasoned.
Shortly thereafter, I saw her complaining to an usher and pointing my way. The usher simply shrugged.
43. Missed Opportunities
In our second year at university, myself and three pals came together to create a game. It was initially an end-of-year project, but it quickly picked up steam, particularly for a student game.
We decided to submit our game to an international student games contest, and to our surprise, we made the cut. We were one of the top three teams globally, which earned us a nomination for BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television) Games award!
Not long after, we got the chance to present our game at the Leftfield Collection at EGX, a massive gaming event in the UK. Over 80,000 gaming enthusiasts attended that year, and our game was selected as one of 20 representatives from over 200 submissions.
We even got a special feature in PC Gamer magazine—a magazine I used to furtively scan through in my brother's room when I was a kid.
Seeing our game, nestled a page away from a preview of XCOM 2, was a surreal experience. We got attention from several publishing houses interested in financing our project.
One of them asked, via Skype, how much it would cost to bring the vision to life without offering any stipulations or gaining input into the development of the game. They simply inquired, "How much do you want?"
After all the effort and risk we'd put into the game, it seemed our investment was about to pay off big time. It was like a fast pass to our dream careers. We could establish our own fully-funded studio.
Suddenly, our education seemed less important than our real-world achievements. Our contacts had hinted as much—that the proof was in the pudding.
And then we stopped. The team decided they simply didn't find the process enjoyable anymore. They chose to shift their focus to their own projects, and just like that, the game came to a halt.
It's been a year of living with the ghost of our abandoned project, my team members and I doing our best to move on. About a month ago, at a friend's birthday bash outside a local pub, one of my former team members and I found ourselves in conversation. It had been a while since we'd spoken.
He said, "it was only ever meant to be a student project."
44. Right In The Face
During my holiday in Aruba, I happened upon a group of children casually tossing a football about. In a twist of events, a stray ball smashed right into a gentleman's face. The child responsible for the throw rushed over to reclaim the ball but then started to sneak off without offering an apology.
In disbelief, the man started to rage. "Shouldn't you apologize? You could have shattered my teeth!"
Without missing a beat, the child retorted, "My dad's an orthodontist—if I damaged your teeth, he'd fix them." With that, the kid just sauntered off.
45. A Sudden Trip
Back when I was a kid, I used to think my mom, who I no longer talk to, was one of the most rational and empathetic people I knew. During my teenage years, the two of us struggled to find our own place to live, leaving behind her brother's house. Our lives unfolded on the east coast.
However, everything changed unexpectedly. My mom arrived home from work one day and shared a solemn revelation. She said Jesus had communicated with her, indicating that we needed to relocate to the west coast. The departure was to occur specifically on December 15th of that year.
Though I'm not a religious person, I always respected my mom's faith and never felt the need to question it. But what she suggested got me thinking.
She wanted me to pack up my entire life, shove my belongings into a storage unit, load my emotional support dog into her SUV, and embark on a sudden, cross-country journey with no financial cushion or premeditated plan.
After agreeing to this initially, the following two years found me homeless and even resulted in the loss of my beloved dog amid the chaos. My mom was always adamant that everything going wrong was my responsibility, and insisted that God wouldn't deceive her. Years later, we have stopped communicating.
In time, I managed to move north with my best friend and began the process of starting my life from scratch as I entered adulthood. Ironically, my mom wound up back in her brother's house, right where we had begun our journey.
46. Isn’t This The Best?
My husband's buddy was adamant about treating us at the 'finest, most genuine' Chinese place in town. Here's the kicker—I'm Chinese, and he's a Jewish fella who's never set foot in a Chinese-speaking area. Needless to say, the meal was neither tasty nor traditional.
And the smug grin on his face as he waited for me to compliment him was pretty unforgettable—in a bad way. Spoiler alert, I didn't. The silver lining? They're no longer close, so I can finally stop pretending that crab rangoons are the pinnacle of Chinese delicacies.
47. High Art
My former partner is studying photography, but to be honest, his work is pretty average. There was this one day when he was venting to me, really frustrated about the people in his city being too harsh, in his opinion.
He gave me the details saying, “I was out photographing some homeless people, and they got really upset with me for no apparent reason!
I introduced myself as a photography student, but they didn't stop—they kept demanding I delete the photos and questioned my motives for taking them! From my perspective, it was simply visually intriguing, and their reactions seemed overly dramatic!!!”
What's more, he strangely found beauty in the concept of poverty, even mentioning wanting to “experience homelessness and hitching a ride on freight trains,” yet in the same conversation, he's whining about the car purchased exclusively for him, or how his study in Japan might be delayed...
Honestly, looking back, that guy irks me so much.
48. A Baseless Breakdown
My sister attended an upscale private high school surrounded by pretty wealthy kids. One day, she spotted one of her pals in tears. Immediately, my sister hurried over to her, asking what had upset her. Her friend, crying hard, managed to stutter, "Everything’s just so messed up, I can't believe my life!"
You could see my sister was worried since the girl seemed on the brink of a breakdown. Once she'd comforted her a little and calmed her down, my sister gently pressed the question again, wondering if perhaps there had been some incident or maybe her parents were splitting up. I couldn't believe her reasoning.
At this, the friend, still crying, said, "Well, both me and my sister's birthdays are approaching, and, my parents are giving us both spanking new range rovers, and since she's older, she's getting the black one, but that's the color I wanted!" All my sister could do was offer a sympathetic, "I'm genuinely sorry for you," and step back.
To this day, we can't help but feel a little sorry for her... She’s so oblivious.
49. The Smallest Thing
My grandma was taking her dog for a stroll when she had a chance encounter with a lady from the neighborhood. When her dog relieved himself on the fringe of the lady's property, the woman dramatically demanded that my grandma clean up the pee. My grandma simply promised to bring some paper towels the next time before heading home.
This incident seemed to provoke the lady to such an extent that she refused to interact with my grandparents for weeks, even though they had been neighbors for close to a decade. She insisted my grandma should apologize.
One day, out of the blue, she even informed my grandpa that his lawn mowing services were no longer required. They intended to hire another person for the job. Ironically, they had never compensated my grandpa for the mowing services he had selflessly provided for a couple years.
50. A Real Emergency
I work as a 911 dispatcher, and I once got a call from a gent whose hotel Wi-Fi had stopped working. I tried to explain that this wasn't an urgent situation, emphasizing he should speak with the hotel staff and/or simply wait for the system reboot. His reaction was less than pleased. He retorted, "Is this not a crisis? Isn't it criminal if I were to disconnect a life support device?"