We’ve all been there. Pulling the door when the sign says “push,” accidentally wearing a shirt inside-out, realizing that you forgot your wallet right as you get to the register. Stupid, eh? Yeah, but it’s nothing compared to the self-inflicted embarrassment and humiliation that these people put themselves through. Scroll through these stories of stupidity and feel a little better about yourself today.
My dumbest moment? Using my thumb to wipe the hair off my razor in the shower. Ouch.
I hit a golf ball onto a recently drained lake and decided eh, it's not so bad. I bet I can still keep playing if I just walk onto the mud and take a swing. Nope. I was so wrong. On my third step onto the lake, I sank up to my chest in mud. It took a chain of three people to pull me out, and oh my God the smell. Should've taken the penalty!
When I was a kid, my parents were watching a show where some explorers were finding gems and gold inside of rocks. I obviously wanted to find some gold too, so I went outside, found a giant rock, and threw it on the ground as hard as I could, hoping it would crack open. It did not. Instead, it bounced into our glass sliding doors and shattered the entire thing. Nailed it!
When I was four years old, I made a spider out of pipe cleaners then when I saw it in my hand, I got scared of it and cried.
I was baking bread and had a Pyrex dish with water in the bottom of the oven for moisture. I checked the oven, and the water was gone, so I decided I needed to pour more water in. A split-second flash of what would happen goes through my brain but I do it anyway. Cool tap water, plus hot Pyrex and BOOOOM! The dish explodes everywhere.
I've been finding random bits of Pyrex in my kitchen for years now.
I forgot my own phone number while I was leaving a voicemail asking someone to call me back. And this wasn't just a regular, casual message. This was a message for a high profile client that my workplace really wanted to sign a contract with. As you can imagine, the client passed on our offer. Honestly, I can't blame him.
I went into a gas station to buy a jerry can, but I had no idea what they were called. It dawned on me just as I started asking the lady: "Hello. Do you have a... oh... hmm... wait... You know, those things, you put petrol in? For the car? It's red?" All this while pretending to carry one in my hand. Absolutely excruciating.
I drunkenly ate two Carolina Reapers, the hottest peppers in the world. Next thing I know, I'm hunched over the toilet puking up what felt like lava.
I once hit myself in the eye with a mop just to know how it feels. If that wasn’t enough, I wanted to know if I could jump high enough to headbutt the roof (around 80 cm vertical jump). I gave it a try one night and experienced...mixed results. I made it (woo!) but I smashed my head and in fact, still have a scar on my forehead. Nevertheless, I was proud of that jump and that I didn't get a concussion. That's enough of a win for me.
Had a friend pepper spray me in the face once 'cause I wanted to know what it felt like.
I saw a tube of superglue that said "bonds skin instantly" on the label. I was wondering what "instantly" meant, exactly. Was it in a few seconds or did they mean right then? So I glued my fingers together, the thumb and first two fingers on my right hand. They stayed that way for two hours until my mother came home because I didn't know that acetone dissolves superglue.
And, before you ask, I was 17.
I was 4 or 5 years old and my little brothers and I were jumping on our parents' waterbed with Q-tips in our ears cause we thought it looked funny. I was jealous that my brothers both had Q-tips that were bent in silly shapes in their ears while mine were perfectly straight. I jumped off the top of the headrest and landed ear-first on the bed in an attempt to bend my Q-tip more than theirs to assert dominance as the eldest brother.
Q-tip pierced through my eardrum and went all the way inside my ear. Looking back, I don't think I've ever heard of anyone doing anything stupider than that in my entire life.
We hosted a party at a girl's house. She went to the same school as us, but I’d never met her before. So on the night of the party, the place got pretty trashed. As the girl went to drive a friend home, she asked if we’d clean the place a bit. I’m still pretty lit at this point and see these half-full cups all over the living room and kitchen.
The kitchen sink was full, so I figured the "best" thing to do was vacuum out the liquid and dump the cups. It made the funniest gurgling, slurping sound I’ve ever heard so I go about sucking up about 100 ounces of liquid into this vacuum. The girl comes home while I’m about 90 percent through all the glasses and stops right in her tracks.
I turn around and look at the vacuum, which is one of those old ones with a fabric bag on it, and it’s a deluge of jungle juice pouring into the carpet. I turn back to her, completely deadpan as the concept of what’s happening is only now dawning on my foggy brain, and say, “Your vacuum cleaner’s messed up.” She promptly kicked us out and I never saw the poor girl again.
I broke the window of the principal’s office, although not on purpose. I was throwing a stone at a tree but my aim was so bad that it somehow took a 90-degree turn and went right into his window.
We were teasing a pretty girl in our class by holding her shoe out the window of our second-floor classroom. I went to grab it but accidentally pushed the guy holding the shoe and he dropped it. The school's windows were the kind that tilted outward and the lower-floor class also had its window open. The shoe went straight through the window and landed right in the full classroom.
The vice principal was at our classroom within about a minute, and we were picking up garbage on campus shortly after.
When I was broke, I decided to spend my last $500 on the dumbest thing. I got a bartending lesson/certification so I could make some money at the local pub. Flash forward a few years, I haven’t tended a bar once in my entire life, or even really tried to be honest. Such a waste.
I brought a BB pistol to school to trade with my friend for his Playstation. Sadly though, the BB looked like the real thing and this was just after Columbine and I went to school in Colorado. A student saw it and reported it, and even though I was only in the fifth grade, I got expelled because of it. It was such a big deal that it even made the local newspaper.
Lost my phone in my bedroom. To help locate it, I tried calling it...using my phone.
When I was fourteen I was starting to get these pains in my stomach. After about a week they were crippling. I realized that I hadn’t used a toilet in a while and that I was extremely constipated. I took laxatives but they didn’t do anything. Eventually, I go to the hospital and they’re trying to figure out why I can’t go.
I’m laying in the bed in excruciating pain and the doctor asks me to try and remember the last time I had a bowel movement. I thought and thought and thought and then it dawned on me. The last time I went was on February 14, Valentine’s Day. This turned out to be significant because that was the day my teacher brought in a bunch of muffins for the class.
Being 14 years old, one of my friends dared me to eat the muffin wrapper... which I did. I told this story to the doctor. The doctor said it was probably obstructing my intestines and they would try a water suppository to flush it out. I was a very smart kid, but I remember my dad looking at me like I was a complete moron.
I called local law enforcement on myself because I thought I saw a ghost. I was working a midnight shift at an old movie theater. After the last person left, I confused the shadow of my torso reflecting onto the empty movie screen for a disembodied ghost. I ran and told the manager, and because I had planted the "ghost" idea in his mind, he went in, saw his shadow and decided there was, in fact, a ghost, and called the cops.
They arrived, and we told one of the officers what we thought we saw, he rolled his eyes at us and went into the theater. We had planted the idea in his mind already too, and he came out with his hand on his weapon and a pale face. He called in reinforcements. A second officer arrived, went into the theater, realized we had seen our shadows and came out laughing at all three of us.
The manager and I were embarrassed, but that poor first cop. Eventually, there were 10 of them there and some were laughing so hard at him, that they had to support themselves on the sides of their squad cars. Between bouts of laughter, one made a spooky ghost sound, and another mimed putting him in handcuffs as they both laughed even harder, and that made all the rest of them completely lose it.
I once tried to eat my phone while wearing a mask because I simultaneously forgot that I had the mask on and also forgot which hand was carrying my phone and which was carrying the cookie I was eating.
A couple of years ago, the Fourth of July was a few days away, so all of the stores had decorations and clothes with stars or red, white, and blue. In a busy clothing store I, with no hesitation, picked up a shirt with a blue star on it and across the clothing section I asked my mom, “Mom, when is the Fourth of July?” You can imagine how embarrassing that was when everyone turned and looked at me. I can only think of what was going through their minds.
When I was little I decided I wanted to throw a pair of shoes up onto some telephone wires. So I went to my mom’s closet to find some shoes. For some reason, I thought she’d be less likely to notice if I didn’t take a complete pair, so I tied two random shoes together with the laces from a different shoe. Then threw them on the telephone wire IN FRONT OF MY OWN HOUSE.
I worked in a medical office when I was 18. One time, while I was on a shift, I asked an elderly lady with a cane and sunglasses if she wanted something to read while she waited. She said no thank you, and it took a few hours before I realized just how stupid I was. The lady's cane and glasses were because she was blind. I was mortified.
I went to a coffee shop with my family and ordered an iced hot chocolate. My mom proclaims, “Uh, that’s just chocolate milk.” As I’m about to argue the barista chimes in and says, “Yeah, that actually is just chocolate milk.” But I still ordered it anyway and drank my “iced hot chocolate” in shame because it is indeed just chocolate milk.
We were hiding in a basement with my cousins at their house, burning styrofoam with a lighter. We decided to pour a cup or so of gasoline on it. It inevitably exploded onto us all, we all rushed out of the basement while on fire and ran straight to the grown-ups upstairs. Luckily they stopped the fire from spreading in the basement, and unluckily we got the whooping of a lifetime.
When I was a kid, I decided to walk across a frozen lake just to see what it felt like. Welp, turns out that "frozen" lake wasn’t frozen enough. After about twenty steps, the ice started cracking and I fell through. The current almost sucked me under the ice, but luckily, I got my hands around the top before I actually went under.
When I was in college, about 19-20 years old, my friend and I were standing outside a gas station at about 2 a.m. waiting for someone of-age to come along and buy us beer. Eventually, a few slightly older guys that we'd never seen before came by and said they had some back at their place and would we like to go hang out with them?
We thought that was an A+ idea. They then said the best way to get to their place was a shortcut through the woods behind the gas station. After zero thought whatsoever, we said, "Lead the way!" Remember this was in the middle of the night. This was also pre-cell phones. So, off we go into the woods with these strange men.
There's not much more to the story other than we made it out of there a few hours later without getting Law & Order SVU-ed. And interestingly both my friend and I went on to date two of the guys for a while. But seriously, people: DON'T FOLLOW STRANGE MEN INTO THE WOODS IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT!
I let a friend move in with me and my girlfriend because his depression was worsening due to living with his mom at 26. Little did I know, this was a huge mistake. He gradually began badmouthing me behind my back to my girlfriend. Soon enough, she started going to him with things she didn't like about our relationship. Then, during the Christmas holidays no less, she dumped me and kicked me out of my own house so she could get together with my friend.
Four friends and I were at another friend’s house with a pool. They were all pretty wasted and I was stone-cold sober due to being tired from not sleeping all week. One of my friends, for whatever reason, had these really big clear bags. These bags were very large, large enough to fit a person. Do you see where I'm going with this?
So they all roll the bags down over their whole body and it looks like four big walking condoms, and one of them suggests "Hey, we should jump in the pool with the bags on." So without hesitation all four of them jump into the pool wearing these big, thick poly bags, and I'll never forget the horror on their faces when they emerged from the water.
The bags were vacuum-sealed to their bodies and all of their mouths were wide open trying to catch a breath. A little back story about me is I can't swim but I jumped in without hesitation, went to each one, poked a hole in the plastic, and then got them to the shallow end and out of the pool. It was funny a few years later one of my friends said something about going swimming and I said I can't swim.
He said what about when you pulled us out of the pool? I chalked it up to divine intervention because to this day I cannot swim.
I pretended to be blind while trick-or-treating so I'd get more candy.
I was 13. This was before widespread internet access. I found two copies of an adult magazine outside a convenience store's dumpster. One copy became my greatest treasure at the time. The other copy? I cut out every single picture and littered them all around the school, yet in discrete places that weren't immediately visible, for absolutely nothing else than giggles and to create a shock. I was never caught.
Many parents and teachers were shocked when "discoveries" started to pile up and the pictures that didn't get swiped or confiscated by teachers or parents became a secret school treasure/commodity within certain circles for the rest of the year.
I filled up a spent CO2 cartridge with gunpowder, stuck a fuse in it, lit it, then stood there holding it in a vice grip till it went off. I was lucky I didn't put enough gunpowder in it for it to fragment when it blew up. The next time, I made sure I did put in enough gunpowder, but I ran and hid after lighting it. Later on, I learned what this creation is called: a pipebomb.
After closing the pool for the day, I allowed my fellow lifeguard to strap me onto a backboard and send me down the large water slide. As I was sliding down, I somehow flipped over to be face down and started drowning in the water. No one was at the bottom of the slide. I could not leave the backboard or flip over. My boss had to sprint over and save me.
In my high school band, there was a small metal sign that said “Moxie” above the doorway. On our way out to practice or to go to a parade or something, we would hit it for good luck. The entire time I was there I thought it would be funny if someone hit it with their head. In my senior year, I decided to try it. I decided to jump up and tilt my head forward to tap it. Well, things didn't go according to plan.
I decided to do a practice jump. Instead of jumping up and tilting my head after, I jumped straight into the metal door frame at a diagonal trajectory. My head was bleeding a lot and I probably had a concussion, but luckily one of my friends had recently done a first aid course to become a lifeguard and was able to help. It was stupid and it hurt but it is one of my favorite memories from high school.
I once stood at the door of my apartment for about 90 seconds pressing the unlock button on my car keys wondering why I couldn't get in.
I went sailing by myself at night, looking over at San Francisco. Just me and my beloved boat cruising along living life. The sails were perfectly set. I needed a pee, so I went to the back and took care of business. At that exact moment, the sail swung around to the other side unexpectedly, making me lose balance and go straight over the back of the boat. Somehow I grabbed on to the lifeline with one hand, but I was thiiiis close to watching the boat sail away into the night as I treaded water in the bay.
Went on a 20-plus kilometer hike in 45C weather in Arizona in August by myself on two hours of sleep, thank God I had lots of water. I got lost but thankfully after two hours, I found my way out. I have been sleeping for four hours max the last four days, and the day before the hike I slept for two hours! Dumbest thing I have done so far.
Buddy of mine and I decided to cut down some stray tree branches in his backyard with a chainsaw. He didn't have a ladder at the time but he did have a perfectly good trampoline. We jumped up and down with running chainsaws in hand, buzzing tree branches down. To this day I think about it and am grateful to still somehow have all my limbs.
I had once taped a giant fake cockroach above the teacher's chair in middle school. The teacher was a jerk and nobody in my class liked him. The other students caught onto the idea of what I was doing fairly quickly, and they even got the class tattletale to keep quiet, although how I will never know. The teacher came in, gave us our assignment, and sat at his desk.
We waited until we were about a third of the way into the assignment. We decided to then let him know that there "was a large bug on the ceiling. "He looked up, and then as if on cue, the tape lost its grip on the ceiling, causing it to fall on his face. He screamed rather loud and also quite high pitched, too. I got suspended for a week, but it was worth more than a million dollars to me.
I threw a house party for my seventeenth birthday. The idea wasn’t too stupid (in theory). The thing was, my parents were only out of the house for about three hours and I knew in advance that was all the time frame we had. I figured I could get everyone to leave before the adults returned home. I was wrong. Picture the scene of my parents walking through the front door, after a prayer group of all things, and this is what they saw:
My best friend was sitting in our empty bathtub being sick all over herself. Another friend was having chocolate sauce licked off her chest. Someone dressed as Hugh Hefner was hiding tea bags in random places around the house for my poor mum to find. I won't go into too much detail about where I was but I wasn't exactly fully clothed at the time.
They grounded me for such a long time. First and last time I ever rebelled.
I'm so accustomed to wearing my mask now, that when I coughed up some phlegm from the chest and went to spit, I forgot I was wearing one and it went all over my mouth, nose, and chin. I started laughing hysterically at being covered in my own spit. Even worse, all this happened in public. I probably looked like a psychopath.
I picked up what I thought was a peperoncino from a Papa John's pizza box. It was NOT what I thought it was. It was a friggin' habanero pepper. And it melted my face. My mouth hurt, burned, ached and blistered. And no amount of water was helping. I suffered for three hours. It was the most traumatic moment of my life.
My house was broken into years and years ago. I notified my neighbors, and we all became super vigilant. One night a couple of weeks later I came home late and realized my side gate was unlocked, on which hangs a wind chime. The gate is metal and expands in the summer, so I had to slam it to get it to close. I went inside and got ready for bed, and then I noticed something weird.
I saw a helicopter through my skylight and it is not going away. I ended up stepping outside to find it shining on me, followed by seeing a person with a flashlight bust through the fence in front of my house. I scream "GET OFF MY PROPERTY!" and realize it's the boys in blue. My neighbor's daughter thought the noise from my wind chime was the sound of a window breaking. They called local law enforcement thinking it was another break-in.
In high school, I was early for a class and I was sitting in the hall with another guy. He had the idea to try a push-up clap, which is basically a push-up, but on the way up, you push harder so you get off the ground and clap your hands while you're in the air. Well, he did it, so naturally, I wanted to give it a try. And it may have been one of the stupidest things I’ve ever done.
I ended up getting my fingers stuck together while I was in the air, then I panicked and pulled them apart, and then I fell on my face. First I laughed, then I started bleeding and went to the nurse's office. I ended up being gone most of the day to get a couple of stitches. I had a test that day though, so I went back for the last 15 minutes of the school day, aced it, and then left. That's my weird flex for the day.
A friend had a pistol in his car for self-defense purposes. We were in my driveway shooting basketball and he mentions it, and I say “show me.” He gets it out and hands it to me. I look at the barrel and say, “It’s so small, this can’t be real, it has to be a BB.” He says “No, it's real, hand it back.” That’s when for some unknown reason, I turned the safety off.
I continue handling it, waving it all over, insisting that it wasn’t real and that it must be a toy or a BB. My friend was getting angry at this point. “Dude put it back on safety and hand it back!” I aimed it at the nearby pasture and fired. That’s when I realized it was real. After I thought, why would anyone lie about something like that?
When I was in high school a couple of my friends and I decided to drive 24 hours to the Grand Canyon without telling any of our parents. We hiked 20 miles through the canyon on no sleep with only a box of Poptarts and a couple of gallons of water to nourish us. We ended up making it out, sleeping at a hotel and then driving the full 24 hours back the next day. Somehow none of our parents figured it out.
One night I was walking back to my student residence. I thought I could probably run home quicker. So I start running. And there's this gate. I think. "I'm gonna hurdle that." I jump, get my foot caught, do a flip and land on my backside. I had been partying that night so I didn’t feel any pain. I made my way home. Everything changed the next morning.
I woke up in agony. My tailbone just hurt so much. I went to the hospital. The doctor said, "Yeah, it sounds like you broke your coccyx (tailbone)." I asked what could be done. She said, "Nothing. What do you want us to do? Put a plaster cast around your butt?" And they gave me some strong painkillers and I left. I couldn't sit down properly for weeks. It still hurts from time to time.
This is a true story and I'm hoping a statute of limitations is in effect. I'm 41 and was born in 1979. Until I was seven my family and I lived in South Korea. My father worked for Westinghouse who ran a nuclear plant north of Seoul. We lived in an apartment complex where both the ex-pats and Koreans lived who worked at the nuclear plant.
This was an enclosed complex consisting of apartments, a school, a community center, and a smaller apartment building which housed all Korean workers who worked at the nuclear plant as well. My friend Damien and I were little troublemakers who were always getting into trouble for one thing or another. And we were obsessed with fire.
One day, we managed to get into the smaller apartment dormitory as it was mysteriously unlocked. This building was roughly 500 yards away from the apartments of the ex-pats that we lived in. I entered one of the units and started snooping around. I opened a drawer and found one of those huge black permanent markers and proceeded to take the cap off and light it with a lighter I nabbed from my dad, who was a smoker.
It immediately caught fire and burned my hand and wrist. I threw it in the wooden drawer where I found it and slammed the door shut. We bolted home. I remember running cold water over my hand to soothe the pain. I was 6 years old. About an hour later I hear sirens and lots of commotion outside. The small apartment where I threw that lit marker was entirely engulfed in flames.
I was sure I was gonna get in huge trouble. I denied everything. My father's boss suspected it was me but I didn't squeal. We left for the US shortly after that due to my dad's planned retirement. I lived in fear for a few years afterwards thinking Korean authorities were going to come after me.
I was trying out some lasers I bought off of eBay. They were supposed to be 20-watt diode lasers but nothing on eBay is as powerful as it claims to be. I wanted something around 5 watts for a laser cutter I built a few years ago. I was in my living room, I turned it on and aimed it at an empty cardboard box, and the box caught on fire.
Holy cow. I looked up the diode lasers on eBay and it says they are 20 watts but were really closer to 5.5. They were definitely in the 5-watt range. Awesome. My house still smells like burnt cardboard.
I nearly jumped off a 30-meter drop without the safety cable attached to me while bungee-jumping. I was just so ready to get it over with, I didn't look before I leapt and the guy on the deck with me grabbed me when he saw I was ready to jump and yelled, "Holy, I haven't attached the cable yet!" I nearly ended my life over something so stupid. My excuse is that I was 14 at the time.
When I was a kid, I had really dry eyes for a time, and I told my sister. Between us, we decided that the best course of action was to smear a bunch of my mum’s face cream into my eyes to try and stop the dryness. This, of course, went as well as you'd expect and my eyes immediately went red and swollen. Since I couldn't blink away the thick layer of cream straight away I was convinced I was blind forever.
So I panicked and went blundering out into the hallway. I made it halfway down the stairs before I tripped and fell. I like to imagine my parents hearing the commotion and seeing one child rolling down the stairs, screaming and crying with two giant lavender-scented blobs of cream for eyeballs and the other child staring in horror from the top of the stairs, desperately trying to wipe the incriminating lotion off her hands.
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