We all have that one oblivious friend—you know, the one with tunnel vision who can’t answer a question while they’re playing with their phone, or the one who stopped going to the gym a year ago but is still paying for it every month... However inattentive these friends may be, there is always a more blissfully ignorant fish in the proverbial sea. Pay close attention, as we discern what went undetected by these unaware people that left us thinking, “How didn’t they notice?”
Yesterday, my girlfriend and I were driving and I mentioned culturing bacteria in a petri dish. She said, "You mean, peach-tree dish." She was flabbergasted when I proved to her this wasn't correct. She's still upset. Even though last week we went through this same ordeal with windchill vs. “windshield” factor.
One day, my sister mentioned in front of my dad that she’d been helping me rearrange furniture at my house. She mentioned my boyfriend. My dad is all surprised, “You and your boyfriend sleep in the same room?!” By that point, we’d been living together for six years. It was my boyfriend’s house. My parents had been over DOZENS of times. Where did they think I slept? His reply was hilarious.
He said: “Oh, we assumed you slept in the guest room. By yourself.”
When I was about 13 years old, I shaved my little brother's eyebrow off. I don't know why. I panicked and drew it back on with a marker with little hope that I would get away with it and avoid my mom's anger. Somehow, I got through the first day, then the first week, every day getting ready for school and re-drawing his eyebrow on with a marker to hide it from my mom.
After a couple of weeks, it had largely grown back and I realized that by some miracle I got away with it. Years later, I came clean to my mom and she still refuses to believe that she didn't notice.
Cue me and the boys playing Hide n' Seek Senior Year. It's nighttime. Dark. It had previously rained. The only light is from streetlights and my friend's garage. Friend A counts to 20 in the garage; we all scattered around the outside of his house and a bit further to some other houses. I decide to hide not ten feet away, in the shadow of an AC unit right outside the garage. I was wearing full black, and I pulled my hood down to cover my entire face. I was in a crouched fetal position.
I heard Friend A walk past me about five times, from both directions. I peeked once and he even glanced directly my way. I was in plain sight. I felt like a ninja.
I was the one who didn't notice. My now-husband, way back in the early days of our dating, replaced our giant, bulky, old CRT TV with a nice, new flat screen with his Christmas bonus. He did not tell me any of this. I came home from work one day, wandered past the TV and him playing video games, into the bedroom, back past the TV, then the kitchen. Took me a good 45 minutes before I went, "Wait, something is different and I don't know what."
He still had to point out to me that what was different was the old TV was missing!
A few years ago, my friends and I were drunk as heck stumbling down the street to a McDonald’s. My best friend starts peeing and walking at the same time. While this is happening, a cop passes by and gets stuck at the light about 10 yards away from us. Literally all he had to do was look to his left and he would have seen three teenagers who can’t even walk straight laughing their butts off because one is walking and peeing.
Very grateful he didn’t look. My life would be a LOT different if he had caught us.
When I moved into my apartment out of college, I forgot that shower curtains were even a thing. I spent about a month cursing how wet the floor would get when I took a shower and then dutifully wiping it up with paper towels to prevent mold. This happened every morning. I went to a Bed Bath and Beyond and asked a cashier if they had anything to prevent water from getting on the floor for showers.
She thought I was talking about bath mats and pointed me to the bath section, where I rediscovered shower curtains.
My parents are very strict and don't allow me or my siblings to have electronics in our bedrooms, but we all ignore that rule and continue doing whatever we do online at night. One morning, my mother came into my room to wake me up before school started and opened my curtains which are on the window next to my bed. I nearly had a heart attack.
On the window sill behind the curtains is where I keep my laptop, Nintendo Switch lite, Phone, and sometimes iPad. She proceeded to rip my covers off and say, “Get up!” before leaving my room. I had never felt utter panic before then.
When I was 10 years old, I took a poop inside the ruins of a medieval fortress. My grandpa walked by while I was doing my thing. Fortunately for me, he was too absorbed in his thoughts and didn't notice me, even though there were no doors.
When I was in high school, my family decided to paint the dining room red when it had been a dark hunter green. We finished one wall as a surprise while my mom was out of town on business. She came in, opened her suitcase right next to the brand-new red wall and started going through her bag to find something.
We were throwing out hints, “Got anything RED in there?” “Oh, I hope it’s RED!” ...nothing. Finally, one of us said, “Mom, do you see anything different about the room?” She looked for a few seconds and said, “Oh my gosh, the wall is red!”
In eighth grade, we were doing a dissection of a lamb heart for an assignment. To say kids enjoyed it was an understatement. As the class quickly devolved to kids shanking and stabbing them, the prize winner was when a student decided to throw a chunk of lamb heart up into the air. It turns out they stick to the roof.
It was there until the end of class and the teacher was so unobservant that he didn't even realize it had happened. There was a stain left there for the next year or two...
I got glasses when I was 32 years old. I’d never had them before, and I thought it would be a fun surprise for my family members at a family gathering. There was one thing I didn’t predict: no one noticed, except for one aunt who asked if I had bought new glasses because she thought I had a different pair before.
My husband, in the family for 13 years now, has had glasses since his childhood, though he often wears contacts. But apparently nobody noticed that either, because another aunt went to him and asked him, "Since when you do have glasses? I've never seen you with glasses before!" So… how didn't they notice that my husband has worn glasses for the 13 years they knew him and that I never had glasses in the 32 years they knew me?
Still no clue.
When I was about 15 years old, my dad bought me Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2. I got back to my mum’s and she kicked off because I wasn’t 18 and I couldn’t play such a game; she demanded it was returned. I came up with an ingenious plan. The next week, I came back again with the exact same game after photocopying the cover and changing it to a 15 rating.
My mum completely bought it as though they made a version for younger players. To this day, whenever I tell her about it, she refuses to believe it was still the 18+ copy despite how horrific the copied cover was.
I was at a wild Halloween party a few years back. One of my good friends puked himself into a coma and fell asleep on the couch. Obviously, we took this opportunity to draw a massive dong on the right side of his face. The next morning, we were all chilling in the basement when my friend comes downstairs and we all bust out laughing at his face.
He asks what's so funny and we try to play it off like we were just laughing about something else, but he wasn't fooled. He assumes something is on his face so he goes up to a mirror and checks only the left side of his face before saying, "Alright, you guys are good." For whatever reason, he didn't check the right side of his face, which was almost entirely covered with a rather impressive dong.
Being the good friends that we are, we didn't tell him until after we went out for breakfast.
My brother and I are constantly rearranging our mom’s decorations and making bets to see how long it will be before she notices. She has this gigantic collage picture frame hanging on a wall behind her favorite chair in the living room. One night, I printed out a bunch of pictures of Mark Wahlberg and his wife—she says she hates to see pictures of him with his wife because “that’s my husband and she’s just his side girl”—and replaced all our family pictures with those.
My dad noticed it the next day, but never said anything because he always takes part in our pranks against my mom. It took a little over a year before she finally noticed it and she wasn’t even the one who noticed it. Her best friend was sitting in the living room with her and suddenly cracked up laughing about the fact that there was a whole picture frame dedicated to Mark Wahlberg.
My mom proceeded to then leave it like that for several more months before finally changing it back. I’ve since snuck a couple of pictures of Emily Blunt (my dad’s celebrity crush) in the frame, but she’s yet to notice that.
I was in weight lifting class at school in 10th grade. We had this one machine that had a cord on it that was broken all year, so nobody was ever able to use it. One day, it was magically fixed, the cord was secured back in place. The coach was taking roll. This means the entire class was pretty silent except for whispers between friend groups.
For some reason, I held onto the cord on the machine to help me stand up, and it snapped off and crashed onto the floor along with the metal piece that was supposed to keep it attached. It was SO loud. But...nobody said anything or even looked in my direction. The only people who noticed were my three friends in that class who sat next to me.
I had a sociology professor who began the semester by saying "You pay to be here. That means I want you to pay attention, so I have a strict no-phone policy. If your phone goes off, you'll leave class for that day. If it goes off a second time, you fail my class." Well, I sat in the front row. One day, I forgot to turn my phone off. Thankfully, I keep it on vibrate.
A group chat I was in decided to explode that hour, so in the middle of his lecture, I was just sitting in the front row casually stuffing gloves and other soft objects into my pocket to try and dampen the vibration noise. In the end, I got 60+ messages in that hour and a half, some of which were sent in times of dead silence, and he still managed to not hear a thing. To this day I am amazed.
I had to climb through my bathroom window to get into my house because I had forgotten my key, this meant somehow climbing onto the roof. I used the fence and clung to it as the neighbor came out of his house to move something and then return inside—without ever noticing the teenaged girl hanging off the roof and kneeling on his fence.
In university, I lived with two of my friends in a dorm. One night we had a party which got a bit out of control. We completely destroyed our kitchen ceiling, punching holes in it and putting the legs of stools through it. We woke up the next day with little memory until I went into the kitchen and saw our idiotic handiwork. We went home for the weekend sweating about how we were going deal with this.
When they caught us, we'd likely be in deep trouble with the university and liable for the damages. Of course, the next week comes around and we see that they are doing random checks on the student houses. They start at the other side of the estate. One of my friends runs to his room, comes out with a stack of A4 paper from his printer and starts gluing it over the holes in the roof.
Like the entire roof, doubling and tripling up because you can still see kind of dark holes through the paper. Then when we were finished, in what can only be described as a stroke of genius, he kicks the bin over, spilling rubbish all over the floor—then takes a can of beans from the fridge and spills it on the floor by the sink.
Myself and my other mate stare at him in horror. I was thinking, "Is he just deciding to go down swinging here?" It's too late to do anything though because the administrator for the student housing is at the door. He goes out and lets her in. She checks the bedrooms, the bathroom. She was looking at us suspiciously. There was a nervous atmosphere and silence. She knew something was up.
She goes into the kitchen and is horrified by the trash everywhere. There are beans all over the floor and she yells at us about what pigs we are for five minutes. Tells us to clean the place up, AND LEAVES! Never once did she look at the ceiling covered in haphazardly glued printer paper. We moved out a couple of weeks later, paper still in place, and never got caught.
I often wonder if somebody after us ever discovered why that kitchen was so bloody cold.
When we were preteens and teens, mom and dad used to leave us home on our own when they went out in the evening. We lived in a small Midwestern town in a rural area. We’d have orders to be in bed on time, but of course, we wouldn’t be. Then, in the quiet night, we’d hear their car turn the corner two blocks away. It was quiet enough, with almost no other cars, especially at night, that we could recognize the engine noise.
We’d scramble around, turning off all the lights first and then throwing ourselves into bed. They never caught us. One night they almost did, because we didn’t hear the car quite as soon, but for some reason, they stopped to continue their conversation over the trunk of the car out in the driveway. I used to wonder how they never noticed.
Fast-forward several decades. My kids are in their bedroom and they are supposed to be asleep. I hear them talking and think, I should go in there and scold them, but they are having a nice bonding moment and I also don’t want to go through the work of disciplining them. So, they’ll be a little tired tomorrow; they’ll live. And then I thought, hold up.
I called my mom, and she confirmed; they’d turn the corner onto our street in that small, quiet, dark Iowa town and watch as the rectangles of light that spilled across our lawn from the windows went out one by one. How had I never noticed or realized that they had HAD to know we were still up?
Dinner with guests one night. We had pizza and decided to sit around for a bit at the table and chat. My dog was sitting patiently behind my mom looking at me and waiting for scraps. I decide to toss him a bit of the crust, which would travel through the air, across the table, over my mother's shoulder and into his mouth.
Just as I toss it, she looks to the side to say something to a guest sitting next to her, just long enough to completely miss the flying pizza crust which my dog caught perfectly. She turns back and the whole table erupts into laughter as she's sitting there looking confused and asking what happened. It took me a bit to calm down enough to explain.
I’m in the military. Back in 2018, my unit went to Louisiana for a training event that lasted 30 days. Fast forward to around our second week there. We were simulating being ambushed and everyone started panicking and we all ended up leaving the area. When we got somewhere safe, we did a headcount and everyone was supposedly there.
I did my own personal headcount and realize we were missing one person. I was about to bring this up to one of the higher-ups, but then we got split up into groups. Towards the end of the training, I hear it took everyone else two days to figure out they left someone behind in the middle of nowhere. The poor kid only had enough food to last one day and I don’t even know if he had any water with him.
I felt really sick in class after lunch in fifth grade; I knew I was going to throw up and calmly opened my empty lunchbox on my desk and vomited all inside it and over my hands. No one noticed even though I was sitting next to people in the middle of the room, so I just got up with the bag, requested to go to the bathroom, and washed everything out before sitting back down again.
I was playing hide and seek at a friend's place with her younger nieces. I was a teenager and not super committed to playing games with a couple of eight-year-olds, and as a joke, I put myself in a corner between a wall and a bookshelf, picked up a pillow off the bed, and held it in front of my face. I was immediately visible once you cleared the doorway—I'm not a small person, and from the chest down I was just a person standing, completely unobstructed.
The kids came through, looked right at me, and kept searching with growing confusion. The friend, who is my age, came in behind them thinking I'd gone somewhere in the closet, and I had to actually wave to catch her attention. That wasn’t even the funniest part. Her dad even came through to join the hunt, and I had to clear my throat to get him to notice me.
Nobody was able to spot me on their own. I was just standing in plain sight holding a pillow in front of my face, but nobody noticed. Once everybody figured it out, they were in hysterics—no one believed I'd just been standing there the entire time; they were certain that I had been hiding elsewhere in the house and then got caught after I'd moved.
Nope. Y'all just can't see!
I was on a flight to Scotland for the start of a mountain biking tour. The rest of the team had driven up and I was meeting them there—we were making our way back south in a truck. At the airport, I set off the scanner and realized that I had my Gerber multi-tool on my belt. Pliers, two big blades, with single-handed operation... and a knife.
I said something like, “Oops” and took it out of the pouch. The guard gave me a look of resignation, so I put it in a little black tray on top of the bag scanner, sad to have lost it. He ignored me. I went back through the scanner. This time it was fine. The knife was right there sitting on top of the scanner still, so when I collected my bag, I just picked it back up and put it back into my belt.
This was all post-2001. They even made me throw away a small bottle of mouthwash because it was not in a plastic bag, but let me fly with a knife!
I had been living with two roommates at the time who were just generally self-involved people. I was spending hours of every day scouring the far reaches of the internet looking for the perfect ring to propose to my girlfriend with. I was honestly pretty stressed about it considering I was just recently out of college and on a tight budget, plus I wanted to find something perfect.
I eventually needed to vent a little—plus this was going to be a big upcoming change for my living situation, so I figured it was the right time to let the roomies know. When I told them, I was a bit shocked to not get much of a reaction at all. I tried venting about the search too, and they couldn't be bothered to give half a darn.
I eventually found the perfect ring and had it shipped to where we were living. DHL, in their infinite wisdom, plainly wrote "RING" on the side of the shipping box. It got home before me, and the roommates got weird about it. They inquired on the box—I thought they were trying to be funny—and I jokingly replied: “It's nothing, stay out of my life!"
A month goes by, I proposed, and my roommates were floored. Apparently, they didn't notice my ring shopping, venting, or directly spilling the beans to them. They couldn't be bothered to pull their attention away from their third time watching through The Office to listen to anything I was doing or talking about. They thought that the "RING" box was an adult toy from China and that I was genuinely being weird about it arriving.
Years later, I'm happily married and those roommates were not at the wedding. I honestly wouldn't be surprised if they were watching The Office through for the 12th time. They really didn't watch the greatest of shows and they weren't the greatest of friends.
A couple of years ago I was doing no-shave November, so I had built up a decent growth of beard, and on the last day of the month, I decided to shave just half my face and keep it for 24 hours before I took the rest off. So, for one day I went around campus with a beard only on the left half of my face, and you could tell that at least 80% of people's brains just extrapolated the second half of my beard because they didn't blink, while the remaining fraction would turn their heads as I walked by.
I was talking about it with some friends outside my class while waiting for my professor at one point, and when she arrived my friends tried to show her my face, and it took a full 30 seconds and her putting her face a foot away from mine and peering before she suddenly jumped back and exclaimed, "Oh my gosh!" At some point halfway through class, she even stopped her lecture to tell me, "I really see it now and your face is very distracting."
This happened back in the day when the original Xbox first came out. I walked into a game stop and immediately noticed a giant display of Xbox boxes. Originally, I thought they were empty boxes that you’d have to take up to the front to exchange for the real merchandise. But no... upon closer inspection, I found out that the boxes in the display were the real deal.
After a few minutes, I notice this one young guy awkwardly glancing between the Xboxes, the workers, and the door. Dude must have stood there doing it for a solid 1-2 minutes. Conspicuous as heck. Then, the guy just picked up one of the boxes, held it out in front of him, and calmly walked out the front door with it. I’m like 98% sure I’m the only one who noticed, yet he could not have made it more obvious that he was about to steal something.
This was not the body language of someone taking something they already paid for.
While living in college dorms, my friend who had heavy stubble dried off after a shower with a new blue fuzzy towel. He got blue fuzz stuck all over his stubble—it looked like he had a blue fuzzy beard. Not one of us said anything, we assumed he knew and was playing a prank, because how could he not notice. When he got back from class, he was very unhappy that no one had told him and he had gone to class with a blue fuzzy beard.
Since then, I always tell people when they have something embarrassing on them.
I work downtown in a relatively large city, and in between some of the buildings is a large plaza/courtyard area. Sometime before everyone got to work this morning, somebody apparently decided to take a massive dump in the middle of the plaza. This pile was way bigger than any dog could make, and it was too well-packed together to reasonably be an animal.
Anyway, as everyone is walking to their respective buildings to start the day, they all notice it and steer clear with no real difficulty. However, about an hour later, I was outside on a smoke break when it happened. The entire plaza is practically devoid of anyone else and some guy starts walking across it while looking at his phone.
It kind of looked like he was on a trajectory to hit the steaming mass—which is no longer steaming at this point—so I pay a bit more attention. He keeps walking, keeps looking at his phone, and of course steps in the poo. That would be bad enough, but what really makes this thing take the cake is the fact that he still didn't notice!
His first step or two tracked a brown spot or two, but then the bottom of his shoe was mostly cleaned off, I guess. This dump was piled so high that there is still quite a large amount on the sides and top of his shoe, which he never noticed. I watched him continue his trek across the plaza and enter a different building, so who knows if he ever discovered that he had inadvertently stepped in that "present" some random stranger left all of us...
I drove my girlfriend to her home, from college, for a long weekend to Long Island. The plan was that I was going to stay with them for a couple of days and then we were going to go to New York City for a couple of days. My girlfriend told me they knew about this plan. When we arrived, they made me sleep in the basement guest room, and I thought it was a little strict—but fine, no big deal.
But then I noticed we couldn't be left behind in the house alone and I thought it was a little strict, but no big deal still. Then I mentioned I had booked a hotel room for us in New York City and a huge fight broke out about how we were going to be in the same room, overnight. I tried to be serious but at this point, I still have no idea what they thought was happening between their daughter and myself.
I also never went back there.
Two nights ago, I leaned in to kiss my wife and noticed that she had developed freckles on her nose, seemingly from nowhere. When I pointed it out, she told me that she has had them her whole life. Now not only have we been together for three years, but before that, we attended the same school for a number of years as well. At no point have I noticed these freckles.
Her family and friends backed her on this so I must have somehow missed these freckles for over a decade.
I bought a $900 leather recliner without ever sitting in it. When I finally got it at my house, I removed it from the box and put it in the living room. This particular style of chair didn't have the handle on the side of the chair; you had to just grab the armrests and push your back into the chair and the footrest would pop out. Seeing as how it was new, it was quite tight and had to be broken in.
After a couple of months of it still being very difficult to get the footrest out, I decided something was wrong with it. I didn't have the receipt for the chair and I didn't feel like fighting to return/exchange it so I just lived with it. Whenever I wanted to recline, I'd just stand up, grab the footrest by hand, and give it a quick jerk to pull it out. It was a bit annoying but it worked well enough.
Fast forward two years. I'm looking for the TV remote and can't find it anywhere. I reach in between the armrest and the seat cushion of the chair and find what feels like a carabiner. I grab that carabiner and pull it out (apparently pretty hard) and the footrest flies out and smashes into my shins. I lose my mind at this point and can't freaking believe it.
I'm so excited. I'm shouting at my wife to come and watch me work my chair. I'm the happiest idiot in the world at this point. It took me two years to learn how to use my $900 recliner, and it still made me happy.
So, we play this game in our town called car hide and seek. Basically, one car goes and hides and the others have to come and find it. Seekers get clues every five minutes and if they don’t find it after 15 minutes, they lose. So, I come up with the idea of parking my car in a car dealership on the side of the road next to these parked cars.
I get a scrap of paper, write a really bad price sign, and put it in the windscreen. The seekers got really obvious clues to where we were but just kept driving past multiple times and we ended up winning. I have no idea how because all of the cars parked next to the road are all Fords and it was a Ford dealership. I drive a Volkswagen Golf and my car was filthy compared to these shiny Fords.
They were kicking themselves.
I work in a food manufacturing plant, so candy isn't allowed on the production line for sanitation reasons. Only once in my five years of working here have I chewed gum on the floor and had my supervisor catch me. He was talking to a coworker and I, while I kept chewing. He did a double-take and said, "...Are you chewing gum?"
Moving as quickly as possible, I tucked it under my tongue and said, "No, I have a bad habit of chewing on my lips and cheek when I'm thinking, see." And I freaking showed him the inside of my mouth, where I had actually chewed a small hole in my cheek. I honestly don't know how he didn't call me on it.
I work in retail management and do the deliveries weekly. We get a lot of stuff on the truck, all sorted onto pallets that we bring into the back room. One day I got so fed up with the job that I threw a small screwdriver into the ceiling. It stuck right into the drywall. The thing is still hanging like 5 inches out of the ceiling. Plain as day, a black screwdriver sticking out of a white ceiling, you'd think someone would see it?
Nope. It's been five years. I haven't had a single person say anything about it. No one out of a 20-person staff has noticed.
Me and my sister were roughhousing when I kicked her off of me and she hit her mouth on the metal bed frame, chipping her front tooth. I filed it smooth and we never told mom. Another time she was putting books under the TV stand when she bent down her hair dipped into a candle, lighting it on fire. We put her out and never told Mom.
Mom came in and said, "Smells like something’s burning!" I quickly replied, "Oh, we just blew out that candle..." She said: "Oh, okay." Then weeks later, she was doing my sister’s hair and noticed a patch that was way shorter and was like, "Did you cut your hair?!" My sister replied, "No!" then I chimed in with, "Must be that new hairdresser you took her to."
I told her years later and she thought it was hilarious.
In high school, every student got a daily organizer and calendar book for the year. At the beginning of each month, there was a photo usually depicting an activity that corresponded with the season. One of the winter months had a picture looking down a snowy mountain between a skier's legs, and at the top—the skier's fully erect member sticking out his suit.
Nobody pointed it out to anybody. I showed it to one other person to confirm it. Nobody else ever mentioned it to anybody. Thousands of students walking around with that picture in their backpack...
This happened when I was still living with my hyper-religious, and peculiar mother. Because she doesn't understand technology at all, I was able to get away with a lot. I played Skyrim in secret and she was used to me playing games, so she just ignored me for the most part if I was gaming in my room. If she knew I was playing Skyrim with its dragons, mages, and vampires, she probably would have taken my PS3 and burned it, grounded me for months, and slung hours of bible guilt trips at me.
Anyway, I had been playing for a bit, probably 30-50 hours into my first playthrough. It was my first time encountering a Draugr—a zombie-type creature for the uninitiated. You know, the ones that “Fus Ro Dah” you across the room. I was (foolishly, naively) playing without headphones when I got blasted across the room four times in rapid succession.
Suddenly I hear footsteps and pause the game just before my mother bursts into my room, looking from me to the TV screen with the sort of horrified, suspicious look anyone raised by hyper Christian parents is familiar with. When I had paused the game, it was just the journal screen which is translucent and you can see gameplay behind it. I happened to be face to face with a Draugr just then and had the Mace of Molag Bal equipped. I thought for sure my life was over.
She asks, "What are you playing?!? It sounds like a war game like Call of Duty or something! I heard explosions and missiles!"
I told her no, I wouldn't play such a game because I know she doesn't like them and I've seen the gameplay. Regardless, it's not my cup of tea. Her face brightened. "Oh okay! Sorry to interrupt you!" And flounces out. I heaved a sigh of desperate relief and started shopping for headphones.
My boyfriend and I initially started dating in high school. Our friend group was me and a bunch of guys; I was relatively new to the group and worried I’d become “his girlfriend” if we went public too quickly, so we kept it quiet. We later stopped caring, but it was too far in to make an announcement without seeming weird, so we decided to just admit everything if anyone ever asked, but not bring it up ourselves.
Well, we weren’t the couple that was all over each other in public, but we were fairly affectionate, always sitting next to each other, talking somewhat privately, playfully poking and all that. We would also hold hands on our way out of school when we didn’t see anyone around. That last one is what nearly caused problems the most.
Regularly someone would come up behind us and say hi, and we’d quickly drop our hands. They never seemed to notice, shockingly—our friends were really oblivious. We figured that they were probably noticing, but not saying anything. Until one day...somehow a conversation arose about how some people are closer in our group than others. Both of our names are mentioned, and they all say that we seem like close friends.
Somehow, they all noticed we were close but never put two and two together. I know this because of the shock they experienced when they finally properly found out. We’re still together, by the way.
I was working at a family-owned taco restaurant and I was working the closing shift one night. We start closing up, and I was working on the backroom where our walk-in fridge, fryers, and a couple of prep tables are. My boss was right outside having a smoke. I had to move a giant tub of taco meat (at least 20+ pounds of ground beef) off the prep table and into the fridge before I could finish cleaning the tables.
I grabbed the microwave-sized tub and walked over to the fridge, but because I forgot to open the walk-in door prior to grabbing the meat, I dropped the tub face down on the ground. So, suddenly 30% of the floor in this room was covered in taco meat, and my boss was about to come back in after her smoke, so I had to move quickly. I grabbed a broom and dustpan and just started shoveling meat into the trashcan and then started sweeping up the small bits.
I had gotten most of the meat off the ground and into the can but the floor was still visibly greasy, and that's when my boss came back in. She coughed, then spat into the trashcan (which was full of taco meat) and then walked back into the front end without even looking at me or saying anything. Then I finished sweeping, mopped as fast as I could, and took out the trash.
No one had any idea the incident took place.
In boot camp when it was lights out, many of the other recruits wouldn't sleep and would try to monologue to us about whatever. I wanted to sleep since we always wake up at 5 am, and they kept us awake until midnight with their debates. At the top of my freaking lungs, I yelled, "SHUT THE HECK UP!” This went on for a while. Then I started doing it earlier and earlier, and towards the end, I didn’t even wait for lights out.
No one besides my rack mates knew it was me, no one else ever figured out my voice or where it was coming from. My rack mates got a huge kick from it—and they kept it real because we needed our 4 to 6 hours of sleep.
This happened a few years ago. My cousin, four years old at the time, came inside holding what she called a "wet rope." Her mother and sister just looked at her and told her not to put it in her mouth. I looked over and my blood ran cold. I was the only one that rushed over and gingerly took it from her. The "wet rope" was a snake. To this day, they believe that I grabbed a snake from the doorframe and not from my cousin's hand.
The same 4-year-old cousin (months after the snake incident) disappeared for about two hours but would respond with "I'm here" whenever we walked in or out of the kitchen. She was sitting in the fridge, eating broccoli, and no one knew how/when she got in there. I went in that fridge for beers twice in that time and didn't see her. It only registered to me that she was in there when I picked her up and her clothes were cold.
I became acquainted with an Asian girl through my work, and we got to be friends of a sort. She was trans, although it was not even slightly obvious. She'd had a number of boyfriends. We spoke of the subject one day, and I asked how her parents had taken her "transition." She said her mom was okay with it, but her father didn't know!
I said, "But don't they live together?!" She replied, "Oh, yeah. But he was born in China and he's kind of old-fashioned." I asked, "So how do you keep it from him?" She told me: "When I go over, I don't wear a bra, put on a baggy shirt, and tuck my hair under a ball cap. He doesn't notice." Apparently, it was beyond his comprehension. One day, she recounted, she was at her parents when some movers were making a delivery.
Papa introduced her as, "My son, Tom." and they did double-takes. They weren't fooled at all, but Papa remained blithely ignorant that his son had long ago become his daughter. That's got to hold the record, for me, as far as "how didn't they notice?" goes.
It was the first night I stayed over at my boyfriend’s house last year. His grandpa is a jerk, and even though we’re in college, he refuses to let me be alone in my boyfriend’s bedroom with him. He barely likes me in the house at all actually. Anyway, his grandpa was in the hospital and his whole family went there as well, so my boyfriend thought that night would be good to get me in the house so we could spend the night together.
There was one thing we didn’t count on. His aunt was at the house. My boyfriend thought she’d be at her own house just around the corner already, but nope. I had to hide in his room for a few hours. She never came in there. The only times I could have been caught by her then was when I first came in and when I ran out of the room to use the bathroom while my boyfriend blocked the hall from her view.
She left around 1 AM and we finally had the house to ourselves, and very much enjoyed it. The next morning, I wake up early before my boyfriend does. I’m lying there happy and content with my life. He cuddles up to me while still half asleep, and I begin to relax when I hear some noise in the house. At first, I thought it was the place just settling.
It seemed kind of old, and I figured it would make noises. No big deal. I relaxed again. A few minutes later I heard footsteps. I sat up slightly and nudged my boyfriend and said, “Is someone in the house?” He shot up out of bed and stared at his door listening for noise. He put his hand on my shoulder to signal for me to lay back down, and he moved a pillow to block where I would have been seen.
Next thing we know his aunt throws open his bedroom door. I pull the covers over me, and my boyfriend lays the pillow on top of me, leans on it, and slightly moves in front of where my head would be. Apparently, he had left the plates from the pizza we had that night in the sink, and she thought it was suspicious.
Next thing I know, my boyfriend’s three dogs run into the room. This is where it got sketchy. They all instantly jumped on the bed and started sniffing around me. I’ve got three dogs basically telling his aunt I was there, yet she didn’t notice a thing. My boyfriend admitted he had me over that night, but made it seem like I had left after eating with him.
She told him she wouldn’t tell his grandpa as long as he cleaned the plates before they got home, which was in about an hour. I had my bag over to the side, three dogs sniffing around me, and proof in the sink that there was another person in the house. His aunt seemed to have no clue whatsoever that I was still there, despite the obvious signs.
The rest of his family never found out, and to their knowledge, I had never stepped foot inside that house until months later. I goofed a few times while alone with them while my boyfriend was at work because I showed proof of knowing the house well since I could navigate it on my own. They never guessed anything though.
Looking back, there is a slight chance his aunt knew I was still there. She’s a good woman though and wants what’s best for my boyfriend. She approves of me.
I went for a job interview when I was six months pregnant. I wore a fitted pencil skirt and a fitted short blazer over the top. To my eyes the pregnancy was obvious; I was very slim and I had a belly that poked out at the front, well defined by the fitted outfit I wore. They didn’t ask anything about it during the interview, so I assumed they were okay with it and I didn’t volunteer this information.
I got the job and on the first day, at orientation, I got introduced to two other women who had been hired the same day for other roles in the admin office I was in (one was an accounting assistant, one was an admin coordinator, and I was admin assistant/receptionist). The two other women were also pregnant (one looked enormously so) and as it turned out we were all due within the same week.
The woman who hired us said to me happily that they were very excited to have us all start, and I would be getting trained by the new admin coordinator so I could take over some of her responsibilities when she went on maternity leave. I had to tell them that I was also very pregnant as well and would be needing to go on leave at the same time as the other two girls.
The organization was stunned and didn’t know what they were going to do when we all went on leave. Fortunately, they were very comfortable with me coming back to work and bring my baby with me after two months off. It worked out great and I stayed working there for around eight years. Incidentally, all three of us gave birth within a day of each other...
I was at work and needed to go #2. Now for my work, I clean the toilets, so I know when they are and aren't busy. With that knowledge, I choose whichever bathroom I please, men's or women's. I had recently just gone into the men’s for some cleaning preparation and had seen how awful it was. So, with my knowledge of the current toilet traffic and not wanting to sit on pee-covered toilet seats, I decide to use the lady's room.
Now, these bathrooms consist of a small room with a sink and shower, and then in the corner of the room is a stall with a single toilet. The problem is that the lock for the bathroom itself was broken so I had only the stall lock to stop people from entering the toilet itself, but they could still enter the bathroom. I wasn't too phased and figured if anyone did come in, they would see the stall being used and just go somewhere else.
So, here's where I get myself in some trouble. I'm sitting on the toilet chilling on my phone when I head a lady enter; now the plan was to stay quiet and just let her leave after she’s realized it's occupied. But I dumbly blurted out in the manliest voice ever, "Uh, someone's in here.” Instantly, the woman starts raging saying how it’s a women’s bathroom and I shouldn't be in here.
I tell her I’ve never been here before and that I just walked into the wrong bathroom. She couldn't stand me and says she going off to find the manager of the place and have me taken out. I'm pooping myself (literally). Not only am I in the women’s toilet, I'm also dirtying it while I'm meant to be cleaning it. Oh, and also, I'm on the clock too, I'm getting paid for this right now, so I'm definitely getting fired if my boss knows what happened.
Never before have I wiped my butt so quickly. I pull up my pants and prepare for the shame of exiting the bathroom and having the manager waiting for me. To my surprise, I walk out and no one is there. I'm thinking sweet no one will ever know... When about 30 meters to my left I see the woman with the manager pointing to me.
I turn around and begin heading the other way, but not before I notice them walking towards me. Now again for context; between me and them was a room in the middle of the place that you could loop around through. I begin to go around it and about halfway there I stop and think they'll be going the other way to cut me off.
So, I double back and sprint to the cleaning supply room with gallons of sweat dripping from my face. And well, they never noticed, and I was never caught. I occasionally still poo in there from time to time. The only difference is I’ve been practicing my girl voice.
A larger lady came into my ER for abdominal pain. She had a look on her face that I'd seen before, but I couldn't quite place it...until I put an ultrasound probe on her belly. "Congrats," I told her, "You're going to have a baby today!" She replied: "But I'm not pregnant!" She didn't believe me until I showed her the nine-month-old baby head trying to push its way out of her on the sonogram.
Her husband nearly passed out due to hyperventilation.
I got lost driving in upstate New York by myself once, at 1 AM. I took a wrong turn trying to get to Route 17, and wound up in a little town that clearly wasn’t where I wanted to be. It was a bit foggy and my phone (EVO) was constantly rebooting—I didn’t have a GPS. Nothing was open. Streets are completely vacant. No signs of life at all. It was a bit creepy.
It got even creepier when I was driving around trying to find a way back to the highway. I noticed that there were tuxedo shops everywhere. It seemed like every other shop was a tuxedo shop. Why would a town need so many tuxedo shops? It got to the point where I was in a near panic state. I started driving faster through this little town, counting tuxedo shops.
I stopped counting at 15 and concluded I was the protagonist in a Twilight Zone episode. Panic set in. I drove. Anywhere. Anywhere where there wasn't a tuxedo shop. I turn around and just keep going. Finally, I see the highway. I drive the wrong way up the ramp, cross over the median and get the heck out of there. Traffic rules would not stop me; I was not going to be trapped in some odd little town seemingly in the middle of nowhere that consisted of only tuxedo shops.
I was picturing every person coming out wearing tuxedos trying to get me to stay. Forever. I finally escaped and got to my destination. I didn't tell a soul about it for about a year. One day my wife and I are driving the same route and I tell her about the strange little town where all the shops were tuxedo shops. That’s when I found out the truth.
Turns out I was driving through Tuxedo, NY.
We were having satellite TV installed in our house. The installer decided to run a cable from one bedroom to the next, then use a splitter. He drilled a hole in the wall that he thought was between the two rooms. He completely missed the entire full bathroom in between. The hole in the wall was behind the bathtub, right where the plumbing would be.
He's lucky he didn't damage anything. And I had to make sure that he patched the hole back up.
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