People Narrate The Time Someone Didn't Know They Were An Expert At A Task
50. I Volunteered To Compete The Pool Hustler
“A traveling pool hustler came to our little town looking for rubes and marks. I happened to be in the town’s best pool bar waiting for a friend, so I was casually practicing some shots and having a beer. The hustler strolled up and complimented my game. (a common hustler ruse) Then he asked, ‘Y’all ever play for some bank?’
I replied with another common hustler’s line, ‘Maybe just little something to keep it honest, but not too much.’
We agreed on a low-stakes game for $2 a round.
He won the toss but did not run the table. It’s bad form for hustlers to run out from the gate. That scares the mark and prevents higher stakes later.
If you’re outside of the pool community, you might not know how we feel about ‘hustlers.’ We think they are liars and grifters because they hide their skill to ‘hustle’ funds from poor rubes. He followed the classic dishonest hustler’s agenda.
So, I got my shot and ran out.
With the break now in my possession, I ran two more racks. He paid up every time cheerfully, as all good hustlers do. Then he popped the inevitable question, ‘How about we make it a little more interesting?’
‘OK,’ I say smiling like the dumbest rube on Earth. ‘How much?’
‘You already have six of my dollars.’ (again, a very common hustler strategy) ‘Five a game shouldn’t be too bad huh?’
Like other gamblers, Hustlers know betting strategies to ensnare less informed amateurs.
This ‘almost double when you’re ahead’ gambit is a common trick that has led many marks to financial ruin.
‘Sure, so long as I still have the break.’
‘Oh yeah! It’s your table!’
So, I broke the rack, started to run, but got into trouble on a bad cluster. I tried to make the shot I called, but by accident (wink) left the cue-ball in a terrible position for him.
The ‘follow into a pack’ safety is one of the easiest to do, and it also disguises skill since so many amateurs do it by mistake so often. He was not suspicious, so I continued running two more racks after that game.
He flubbed, and I am sure it was not for lack of trying! It’s hard to shoot at your only available ball, near the center of an end rail, when the cue is stuck inside a cluster of opponent’s balls.
So, he let me out. We played two more $5 games of 8-ball after that.
Then he claimed he was running out of time and would like a chance to win some of his 21 bucks back. ‘OK. Do I still have the break?’
‘Sure. But this time for $20 a rack.’
So, I ran three more racks. No mistakes. No ‘unintentional’ safeties. He must have been suspicious by then.
His quiet fierce expression on his face said, ‘This guy is either the luckiest idiot in the world, or is really that good.’
The psychological ploy for hustlers in this position requires they make a bold play that rattles the rube’s nerves. He had no way of knowing I had just returned from another state championship where I defeated Earl ‘The Pearl’ Strickland in 9 balls. This was before pool tournaments were widely televised on cable TV and neither my face nor my name was well known.
As expected, he played his trump card…
‘Listen, ol’ friend, I know you shoot a mean stick. I’ve seen a stroke like that before. Let’s cut the horseplay and get to business.’
‘Uh, OK. What do you propose?’
‘You see that man over there?’
Then he motioned to the man who walked over. He wore a business suit and sunglasses. I suspected he was traveling with the hustler by the way he kept intently watching our games.
The hustler introduced him as ‘Steve, my personal backer.’
The idea was to intimidate me by the fact he has someone willing to pay for his pool gambling. That’s supposed to indicate he is so good that you poor local punks have no chance. This ruse has been used on so many rubes that amateur hustlers often find a buddy to act like backers, even when they are just friends.
They got nervous when someone did this to them. They think it will work on others too.
By the challenging tone of voice and heated glare in his eyes, I saw this guy and his ‘backer’ were the type of men who are prone to anger, rash actions, and potentially dangerous bar fights. When you tend bar for decades, you acquire an instinct about these people and can read body language.
These were not the kind of customers the owner (my friend) or the manager (me) wanted around.
Steve was a stout fellow; a trifle shorter than me but significantly stronger judging by his four-square build. As I shook his hand, I felt it could also be an iron fist when necessary. Steve had that ‘hard’ look. His weathered tan skin seemed tough enough that you could roller-skate on it.
I’d guess he was a bricklayer or carpenter.
‘So, what are we talking about here?’ I asked.
‘Race to three, nine-ball, $500 for the set. Valley rules. One time, winner takes all.’
‘Hmmm… sounds like you know what you are doing! But, I just got paid yesterday and all my bills are done. Do I still get the break, or do you want to lag for it?’
‘This here is real money, Son.
We gotta lag for it.’
I grew up in a big city. I know when someone uses the term ‘Son’ to demean or intimidate. But having been through this exercise dozens of times, I was cool. Permafrost cold.
‘Sure why not? Just one thing, we should follow good pool etiquette here and give the funds to a third party to hold.’
They both agreed. I got out five hundred, so did ‘Steve,’ the hustler’s backer.
Then I called over ‘Tiny.’
Tiny is our bar’s friendly gay black bouncer, an off-duty police officer who makes spare cash on weekends checking IDs at the door. He looks great in his clean pressed uniform, is soft-spoken, and very polite: usually quite gentle too. He had been working for me at this place since we opened that year. He is 6’4’’ and built like the proverbial brick house.
He doesn’t carry a gun inside our bar. He doesn’t need to.
They were obviously a little nervous seeing a cop hold the funds since gambling is ‘illegal’ in our state. I explained that Tiny does this kind of thing all the time. No worries.
Tiny pocketed the grand and stood table-side to watch.
So, the only thing left was to determine who got the break. We lagged. I won.
I confess I conned my way on this lag just a little. Since I was shooting left-handed and had the right side of the table on the lag, I took advantage of a small divot near my corner.
Amateurs don’t know how to properly execute ‘jump shots.’ They think they are supposed to scoop the ball up from underneath to jump. That is how these awful divots are pounded into bar tables.
I knew all the tables because I brushed them every night and was intimately familiar with every little bump.
Since I knew about the divot and had practiced this shot many times on that particular table, speed control was easy. It did not require great precision. A smooth stroke and slow speed get you there almost every time. Then the divot ‘captures’ the ball like a little pothole.
This divot grabbed the ball and held it an eighth-inch from the rail.
So, he racked. And I got ready to break: right-handed.
The hustler noticed this, laughed a little nervous laugh, and said, ‘I thought you were a shootin’, left-handed Son!’
I turned to look him straight in the eye and said, ‘Yeah. I was. But for five-bills a game, I like to shoot the way I usually do.’
I can only describe the appearance of those two guys like this: They looked like a Dali painting; as if they were wilting and melting over their chairs.
The hustler looked down at the floor with his stupid mouth open and pitiful eyebrows raised. Steve The Backer face-palmed and shook his head.
I broke and ran three. It didn’t take long. Nine-ball games are fast anyway, but now I was in my element and shooting at a normal pace.
Bar-sized pool tables are smaller than tournament tables because bar owners are usually short on floor area and need to squeeze every cent of profit from their limited real estate.
Contrary to amateur players’ opinions, smaller tables are MUCH harder to run out on, because there is less room to maneuver.
A professional has good cue-ball control. That means I can put the cue ball where I want on almost any shot, and I always put the cue ball in places that lead to a complete run-out, or an unstoppable safety.
With only nine balls out for the game of ‘nine-ball’, it is actually much easier to get the cue ball where you want, because there is more room.
The table isn’t crowded and cluster screwed. So, I was more relaxed. I could afford to shoot at my normal faster pace, not slowly and deliberately as when I practice left-handed.
As the utterly out-hustled hustler and his tough-looking backer tacitly packed to leave, I noticed he had a book in his fancy expensive cue case: ‘Advanced Technique in Pool and Billiards’ by Robert Byrne.
I complimented him on his choice of pool-instruction books, then introduced myself with my full name.
‘Yeah, Bobby and I go back ways. He put four of my shots in this book.’ I picked up the book and showed him the two pages with my name, the name of our city, and the shots Byrne made of my special advanced ‘tricks.’
Tiny handed me the grand. I handed back a hundred-dollar bill to Tiny for his ‘commission’ then I offered to buy those two guys a round of drinks on the house. They refused and left quietly without saying so much as ‘goodbye.'”
49. Girl Thinks She's Smarter Than Everyone
“In college, we had to do a group project. Well, my group had this one girl in it, and she was THE jerkiest control freak I have ever met. ‘Omg, like, I’m a psychology major so I’m a scientist and that makes me smarter than you. So this is how we’re going to do it’ sort of attitude. Well, I was a physics major. No one ever asked, so I never told anyone.
I just let her take more and more rope through the course of this project and dig her hole deeper and deeper.
Then I couldn’t take it anymore. I was presenting my research to the group. She trashed all of it.
‘Where did you get this from?’
‘(insert publication here)’
‘Well, did you use (Insert whatever nonsense library database she was asking about here) to find it?’
‘Well, then how do you know it’s legitimate.’
‘Because it’s a well-respected publication in the field…
Why are we doing this?’
‘Well, what about your other sources?’
‘I got this one from (insert textbook here).’
‘OH MY GOD, YOU CAN’T USE A TEXTBOOK AS A RESOURCE! What are you thinking! I am a psychology major! You should have done it how I said because I do research projects like twice a semester! This is how it’s done in science! You can’t use these!’
‘Oh? Because I’m a Physics major in my senior year.
I can promise you that I spend more time in the library over the course of two days than you do in a semester. For God’s sake, I practically live there between 8 am and 8 pm. I have had to design an entire semester worth of labs on a topic I knew nothing about from scratch. I have taken classes with no required textbook because, and I quote the professor here: ‘The library will be your textbook for this class.’ So please.
Just shut up.’
The rest of the group got this sly smile and she was dead silent for about the next ten minutes. It was probably one of the most amazing moments I’ve ever had.
I refrained from adding ‘You can tell me how to do research when you start studying a real science’ to the end of that because I really do respect psychology as a field. But man, it would’ve been sweet to twist that knife just a little more.”
48. He Tried To Argue With An Ichthyologist
“As a fish biologist who used to work on recreational fishing issues, I was challenged constantly. The best example I can remember was when I was off the clock and enjoying being outside when I ran across a group of guys fishing.
I was out walking my dog along the Sacramento River near Clarksburg (also a prime sturgeon fishing spot) and noticed a guy fighting a big fish, likely a sturgeon.
Since I’m a fish nerd I casually walk over and watch the guy wrestle in this big fish, which I eventually see is a sturgeon. After about 15 minutes, he gets it close enough to shore to tail rope it. This immediately set an alarm off for me to potentially intervene (because I felt compelled to let the guy know that he could be breaking the law by roping that fish).
A little background: California does have two species of sturgeon, the green and the white. White sturgeon may be legally fished for, with a maximum of 3 fish per year kept between 40 and 60 inches long, with no more than one fish in possession at a time. Green sturgeon are a federally threatened species and must be immediately released.
I noticed this guy never measured his fish to see if it’s legal, nor did he apply one of the 3 tags you’re given to legally claim your fish.
Giving him the benefit of the doubt I casually walk over to talk to him to advise him on making sure he’s compliant with the regs.
‘Hey bud, you should measure that fish quickly to ensure it’s within the slot limit, some guy got fined last week for catching an undersized fish.’
He thanks me and acts as if he totally forgot about that (in his defense he was really excited he caught this fish).
I offered to go help him because trying to measure a 4ft+ fish is not easy.
I get down to the water and immediately realize he caught a green sturgeon. Confirmed by the two scutes behind the dorsal fin (whereas the white sturgeon have none). The scutes are the small boney projections running down the length of the fish.
‘Hey man, I hate to break this to you, this is a green sturgeon, a threatened species, you need to immediately let him go.’ And I began to untie the tail rope for him when he interjected…
‘It doesn’t look green to me, and looky here 55 inches!’ And began to pull the fish up onto land. He quickly pulled out a knife with the intent of cleaning this very rare fish right in front of me.
‘Sir, I’m an ichthyologist for the state, I have been working on sport fishing issues for some time, you…we should release this fish now, what you’re about to do is a federal crime that I will report.’ I finally told him in my very friendly demeanor.
‘You saying it’s a green sturgeon, it looks gray and white to me, you government workers just don’t want us to enjoy fishing anymore’ as he took the knife and severed the gills of the fish, causing it to bleed out.
I called one of the local wardens whose number I had been given for this very reason and told them what had just happened. Before the guy had finished cleaning the fish, a police truck arrived. The number of fines, potential jail time, and revocation of fishing and hunting privileges will never make up for the fact this guy selfishly killed a rare fish simply thinking I was out to get him as a government employee.
Lesson learned by him, just because a fish has a color in its common name, doesn’t mean it will actually be that color.”
47. Actually This Is Not My First Time Running
“I was at the gym at work and there was a fit-looking older guy running on the treadmill. There was also another guy there wandering around, not really working out but trying to talk to everyone and offer advice (what is it with guys thinking girls need help in the gym haha)… Just being a pest in general. He wanders over to the guy running and starts asking him what he’s training for.
Running guy (RG) answers ‘Ultramarathon in a few weeks.’
The annoying guy (AG) is impressed but jokingly says ‘Will you win?’
AG: Oh, hahaha, yeah, you’ve always got to be positive right?
RG: Well, I’ve won it for the last three years and the closest person to me was 50 minutes behind me, so yeah, I’m pretty positive…
I surreptitiously checked out his name on the sign-in register and went back to my desk to google him. Yep… Multiple records for ultra marathons, 24hr road and treadmill races, 48hr treadmill races…”
46. I Became A Rock-God For A Bunch Of 12-Year-Olds
“I was 30yo (around 4-5 years ago). I went to a family house party of my significant other where a bunch of her teenage cousins was playing Rockband. It was a kinda ‘if you fail the song you have to give the controller to the next person’ situation. This one kid kept being a jerk to other kids because he played on hard so he had the highest scores and never passed the guitar around.
He was annoying and didn’t let other kids play, making others feel bad because they played on easy or medium.
Anyway, at some point he said that he could beat anyone in the party, one of the younger kids said ‘I bet OP could beat you.’ (I played with him once when my significant other was babysitting him) So the annoying teen started mouthing off, and they called me over, I was sitting with the adults and faked ignorance ‘oh yeah I know this game, ‘Guitar Band’ right?’
So we had a plastic guitar rock off, if I won, he would let the younger kids have the console for the rest of the evening, the best score would win, the same song of course.
He selected ‘AC/DC – Thunderstruck’ on Hard. On my turn, I changed the difficulty to Expert. He said, ‘I think you made a mistake’ and I said ‘no I did not.’ Then proceeded to whoop his butt – score and % wise. I became a Rock-god for a bunch of 12-year-olds that day.”
45. He Didn't Know I Was A Swimming Athlete
“I had an athletic scholarship in college – I swam. BUT, after college, I went to graduate school (biochemistry) and proceeded to lose the ‘swimmer physique’, however you don’t lose technique. So… the wife and in-laws and I are at a resort in Puerto Rico one day and I swam across the pool to meet them, and some guys started talking up their friend to go challenge me to a race.
The dude came over, he was ripped – all eye candy – and challenged me to a race across the pool and back, and the loser had to buy the other group a round of drinks – there were about eight of them and four of us. It was about 30 yards or so, so nearly a 50m freestyle – and I was a sprinter. In college, I had a high 23 sec.
time in the event.
So… I agree and watch him swim and touch the other side. That’s when I turn that thing on, and underwater kick to a flip turn and then burst out beast mode on the return. I hit the wall when he was a little over halfway back. Needless to say, he bought us all a round of beers, and we actually ended up seeing them several times over the next week. He was a really cool dude but was obviously really embarrassed. Now that I think about it, I hope either he or one of his friends is here and see this.”
44. I Used My Work Experience On Him
“Was drinking with friends at a nightclub known for getting rowdy at times. Some guy and I bumped into each other. No one’s fault, just the sort of thing that happens in a crowded and dark room. We both spill a few sips of our drinks. I’m just about ready to say ‘no big deal’ and forget the entire event, but he flips off. Tells me I owe him another drink.
No, I don’t. He starts swearing at me. Telling me I need to buy him another drink or he will just take my wallet and buy it himself. Typical story from anyone who’s dealt with a wasted guy in a bar looking for a fight.
I work security in a hospital. A big hospital with a busy ER and a psych unit. We get in fights almost every other day.
At least once a month, if not more, we get into a really good fight. I’m talking, fighting some giant juice monkey on substances whose fighting like his life is on the line. We get one week (40 hours) of fairly intense self-defense training per year (counter-strikes and takedowns mostly). So, this guy doesn’t scare me. I tell him one last time to drop it and try to walk past him.
He puts one hand on my chest and tries to grab for my wallet, probably assuming I’d bail out and let him take it. I grabbed his hand, torqued it around, jammed it up to his back pretty hard, and gave him as hard a shove as I could in a crowded little room. Must have hurt his shoulder pretty good, but no actual damage would have been done. He stumbled a few steps away, and then slunk off without looking around.”
43. I Let The Arrogant Kid Win
“Not an expert by any means, but I was pretty good at Street Fighter. Not tournament standards, but I could hold my own.
Anyway, years ago I was round at this girl’s house, just hanging – it’s all good. All four of her brothers are downstairs, one older fedora-wearing idiot, sans fedora, and three little brothers that were all sonic the hedgehog fans. In a weird way.
I walked past the living room on my way upstairs to watch a film and I was called into the room. There was a ps2, and SNK vs Capcom hooked up. I am told to pick a character by the fedora man and told I am going to get destroyed, while all three of his little brothers cheer him on like some reject Alvin and the chipmunks’ chorus.
I sit down and pick Ken up.
‘Ryu is SO much better.’
He picks Ryu. I wreck him. Combo stringing. This looked pro. I wish I had it on tape. I looked around at the smaller siblings, and the look on their faces was that of Santa being beaten with jumper cables on Christmas Eve. I was dethroning their hero.
‘Naw man. That’s awful!’
‘Right, look, I am just going upstairs to-‘
A hand is planted on my shoulder and I am thrust back to the ground.
‘You’re not going anywhere!’
So… Another game and I start to get up… And same again. We played 15 games. He even switched to M.Bison and started constant psycho crushers… Nothing. I was untouchable. He was getting visibly angrier and the controller creaked in his hands. I couldn’t keep this up. I didn’t even want to watch a film now. I wanted to go home. I let him win. He must have known, I mean, I literally stopped doing anything. Just jumping. Soon as that last hit happened:
‘YES! SCREW YOU! THAT’S WHAT YOU GET!’
‘Haha, aye, good game man.’
His little brothers come up to me: ‘My brother is better than you.’ Times three. They all took their turn to say it.
It was a weird day.”
42. Carried My 9-Year-Old Teammate In A Tournament
“I entered a Halo tournament at the local mall while killing time one day. Got paired with a 9-year-old kid as a partner because I didn’t have a teammate. People were joking and making fun. Saying I should try and get my entrance fee back because I was screwed.
This was the original Halo. On the original Xbox, before Xbox live was created. Online gaming at the time was all pc based.
Counterstrike or unreal tournament. Consoles were local multi-player only.
I explained to my teammate that I played this game pretty much every day using an online service called Xbox connect. It was an online LAN program that allowed geeks like myself to play games against other people on the Internet. He didn’t understand, he was 9. I told him that I was really really really good at Halo and all he had to do was stay alive.
He agreed that ‘stay alive’ was a good plan.
Our first match was against a couple of college guys. They were talking serious smack. Going to embarrass me, going to send us both crying to mamma. Blah blah blah. We won 50-5. The highlight of the game was a double kill by my sidekick with the rocket launcher. I got both of them to follow me into a choke point and he blew them away shouted across the concourse ‘who’s crying now!’
We went on to win the tournament and both got a $150 gift certificate good at any store in the mall. The kid acted like he won the lottery.”
41. Algebra Classmate Thought He Could Beat Me In Tetris
“Christian from algebra was a real jerk. Always acting like a tough guy and pretending that he didn’t care his grades were trash. He was always making fun of me for being white. ‘Christian, you’re half white you idiot.’ Oh but that didn’t stop him. One day I had enough of his nonsense and told him that we needed to settle this like men (even though I’m a girl)…
he told me if I beat his score in Tetris he would apologize but if I won I would have to do his homework for the rest of the week, the lazy idiot.
HAH jokes on you, Christian. you see… if there were an Olympic team for Tetris, I’d be the Michael Phelps of that team, dig?
‘Fine,’ I say, smiling inwardly. he had no idea what he was unleashing.
so I open my laptop and we begin playing.
5 minutes pass and Christian is sweating. I know I’ve got him beat. He’s in desperate need of a straight line and I know the Tetris gods are smiling down at me. This is just good practice for me and they know it.
Finally, GAME OVER flashes on his screen and by now tears are streaming down his face. His friends are all in shock as they watch me sink line after line. I’m a god, they all bow down to me. I cut it short at level 22, turn to Christian, and scream ‘ARE YOU SORRY.'”
40. Guy Tries To Lie About Oxford
“Overheard someone in Pennsylvania bragging about the time they studied English at Oxford University in England. I’m from England and I know Oxford so I said, ‘where?’
They just repeated ‘Oxford University.’
I said, ‘no, I mean what college?’
They said, ‘it’s not called a college. It’s called Oxford University.’
Oh, dear. Oh deary, deary me. I believed you riiiight up until that exact point. So I asked them, ‘so, what about the Carfax?’
They said, ‘I didn’t say about used cars.
I said I went to Oxford’ (for those outside of America, CarFax is a company that sells used car history reports.)
‘Carfax Tower? It’s a main old church thing in the middle of Oxford, right on Queen Street?’
‘Do they sponsor that?’
Oh, dear. Oh deary, deary me. So then I pulled open Wikipedia on the phone.
‘St Martin’s Tower, popularly called ‘Carfax Tower’, is on the northwest corner of Carfax.
It is all that remains of the 12th-century St Martin’s Church and is now owned by the Oxford City Council. Blah blah blah, the tower is 74 feet tall, and no building in central Oxford may be built higher than it.’
The ‘carfax’ name comes from a shortened Latin word, I told him. And then I just looked at him with puppy dog eyes and stuck out my bottom lip like I was weawwy weawwy sad for him.
He called me a jerk when he saw me later. ‘How were the boat races?’ I joked. He wouldn’t know what I was talking about.”
39. Teacher Can't Believe I Beat Everyone
“So when I was younger about 15 I think I moved to a new school because I had changed houses. While growing up since I could understand board games I played chess. Chess club, chess tournaments, chess everything. You name it I know it about chess. I had gotten so professional I was almost a grandmaster.
Anyways so I go to this new school and I see there’s a chess club.
I show up at the chess club on its first day and ask to join. So they let me in because they let everyone in, it’s a school club. Apparently, that school played very competitively. On the first day of the club, it’s announced there’s going to be a tournament next week. So all the other kids are trying to help me out and show me moves they think are good.
The teacher running the club was even like no you should be doing this even though he was wrong. So the day of the tournament comes around. I’m playing my way up the ranks until I’m against the last guy. I beat the best player and everyone is pretty impressed so I ask the teacher if he wants to play a game.
Of course, the teacher being the teacher is like bah I’ll wipe the floor with you, I made it to regionals last year, I’ll let you know (I won them).
So we play and I wipe the floor with him. We play a second because he said he was going easy and there’s one point where he does a move, I do a counter move and he goes, ‘that’s wrong, do this instead,’ to which I go, ‘no it’s right.’ He goes ‘I know the guy who placed second in regionals,’ and then I look at the teacher, make my next move which puts him in checkmate and go, ‘yeah that’s the guy I beat.'”
38. Don't Think Women Can Be Scuba Instructors? Think Again
“I’m a certified SCUBA diver, have been for ages, and my family runs one of the country’s biggest dive companies. I was sitting in some wait room reading a dive magazine subscription when an older guy (I am female) comes up to me.
‘Hi, hon. Thinking of getting certified?’
‘Actually, I am certified and I’m going for my instructor’s.’
At this point, I could tell he was going in his head ‘A FEMALE instructor? No! Not possible!’
‘Are you sure? Who are you certified with? Who’s your instructor? How long have you been diving?’
‘Yes, I’m sure.
I’m certified with ____, my instructor was _____, and I’ve been diving for nearly twelve years.’ Keep in mind, the names I listed are well known, as I was certified with some relatively famous folks.
‘Oh. Well then, you probably need a refresher course!’ (Because apparently, I’m incapable of remembering how to dive)
‘No thank you.’
‘Hon, there’s no way you could go for instructor without a refresher!’
‘Yes, there is.
And if you know so much, where and when were you certified, under what company, and who’s your instructor?’
‘I was certified in the Bahamas last year with a Discover Scuba course with the resort company ______,’ (by this point I’m internally gagging – I know who he’s talking about and they are awful.) ‘I can dive to seventy-five feet and my instructor I don’t remember.’
‘Then what reason do you have to tell me what to do?’
‘You’re a woman.
The instructor said women aren’t good divers.’
I wanted to strangle him. I hate the instructors who do that. Yes, I know how to put together my equipment and I’ve got better certifications than you, and I’m not even an instructor yet! It drives me nuts, my mom almost died twenty years ago because the divemaster messed with her gear under the pretense of helping her with the Velcro on her wetsuit just as she did her entry into ten-foot swells in the North Atlantic.
He pretty much turned off her air and nearly broke her gauges and second stage and unhooked her BC, meaning she sunk as soon as she hit the water – it wasn’t her fault because he did it while she was suited up, she thought he was doing the Velcro on her suit.
‘Great. Good for you, sir, but when you nearly die underwater because you got a bad certification, call my company, _____. I don’t need a refresher – you do.'”
37. Nope, The Game Is Not Over Yet
“Somebody challenged me to play a round of Age of Empires 2 (Medieval Strategy Computer game) against him. I used to play that game on a competitive level.
So I just proceeded to play at roughly the same snail’s pace speed he did, sometimes attacking him with weak armies to make it look like I’m struggling to beat him, while in reality 90% of my troops were tucked away hidden in the back of my lands.
(it was a closed-off Arena map, that made it really easy to hide them from him.) So I continue to act like I’m struggling and slowly start to give in to his siege attacks, making it look he’s actually going to win the game.
At one point he asks in a victoriously smug voice ‘So looks like the game is over, right?’ to which I reply ‘Looks like it.’ And before he could say anything else roughly a hundred fully upgraded Elite-Teutonic Knights emerged from my side of the fog of war and proceeded to annihilate everything in their path.
His reaction was priceless. It went from complete disbelief (‘where are all those units from?!’), to denial (‘You stupid lying jerk!’) and various other emotions, while I just had a hearty laugh.”
36. IT Guy Didn't Know What He's Doing
“Just the other day, we lost power to the building, and my work computer subsequently, and it wouldn’t keep the date, said it was 2004, so I couldn’t log on to the servers or anything… time/date sync error, and the bios is locked, so I can’t set the date.
I build computers in my spare time, so I am well versed in how things work… so this is an easy fix, replace the CMOS battery…
but we have an IT department and the computers are locked with padlocks that I don’t have a key to (I work in a school). So I submit a work ticket over the phone – lost power, pc does not keep time whenever a power outage occurs.
The IT guy comes out and spends 30 minutes trying to figure out why it wouldn’t keep time, but it keeps time while he has it turned on and working…
I’m just watching with disbelief… they pay this guy more than me to fix computers… honestly… after half an hour, this guy pulls the power plug, and plugs it back in. AMAZED the clock is off by ~30 minutes… but still in 2004. So I finally tell him to replace the battery. Tells me there are no batteries on PCs anymore, they use capacitor power from PSUs to hold the time…
I am befuddled now as to how this guy got his job. I tell him, trust me, change the battery, set the time and date, unplug the power and see what happens. He finds the battery, says it’s for giving the hard drives the power to park their drive heads after power down, and reluctantly replaces it, it works fine, but he still says, it’s the capacitor, it holds a charge forever. Then unlocks the bios for me because I seem to understand computers enough to be able to set the date… in case I need to change the time again if it happens again.
I have bolt cutters here, and will open the damn tower myself next time.”
35. I Won The Tournament And Paid For My Rent
“In college, a coworker of mine hosted a hearts tournament. Buy in was like 10 bucks and the top person from each of the 8 tables were matched up to play each other in two games, and then the top two of those played in the championship game. I asked to join in since he needed people to fill the tables.
‘Do you even know how to play? It won’t be like playing on the computer, you know.’
‘I think I can manage.’
‘Ok, I can give you some pointers if you like – I’m pretty good.’
I learned how to play hearts at 4, and it’s something my family did throughout my childhood – I’ve always been able to ‘count cards’ I guess you would say, and keep track of everything that has been played.
I won the championship round with a score of 7. For those of you who don’t know, it’s like golf – when a player crosses 100 points, the player with the lowest score wins. The person with 118? Mr. ‘let me know if you need any help.’
That 320 dollars helped pay my rent. Thanks, dude.”
34. Rude Girl Asks Why I Don't Play Anymore
“I used to play trumpet in a local symphony. I gave it up because people became too competitive and jerks rather than just accepting the fact that we were making music. My friend was in the orchestra as well as a violin player. After I had quit I went to one of the concerts, and afterward, I had no trouble getting backstage because I used to be tight with the security guard back when I played.
So I met up with my friend, and he asked what I thought about things and how they sounded.
After I gave him my thoughts, he joked that they were missing a strong trumpet part. This launched me into a little critique of the brass section. Just then this girl (must’ve been fairly new because I have no idea who she was) walks up to me and says very jerk-like, ‘I overheard what you’re saying. Who on EARTH do you think you are to criticize our music like that.’ I simply said, ‘Honey, I was the principal trumpet player for 5 years.’ She then tried to make up for her rudeness and asked why I no longer played. I smiled and said, ‘Because of people like you.'”
33. Little Kid Didn't Know I Was A Guitar Hero Expert
“Some kid showed up at our house with his Dad. I can’t remember who this kid was now, but Mom was babysitting him. This was the middle of summer, so I was holed up in my room, staying out of the heat, when this kid comes into my room and holy cow was this kid conceited for a 6-year-old. This kid was more or less the real-life embodiment of the Xbox Live Kiddie.
He swore, had the WORST attitude, he saw my meager game collection and started bragging HIS game collection was a thousand times bigger than mine, and that I probably sucked at Video Games as I was an adult. Then he spotted the guitar hero guitar (Wireless PS2) I was borrowing and said that he was ‘AWESOME’ at guitar hero and bet I was terrible at it.
He challenged me to a game… Where he struggled to complete a song on Medium. One of the easiest songs, at that.
Anyway, my turn comes up, and I select my favorite song. When You Were Young, a song I could complete at 96-97% accuracy on Expert.
So I started the song and ‘accidentally’ selected Expert. The kid was like ‘You selected Expert’, I argued no I didn’t.
I selected Easy, I can only do Easy… Which made me this kid laugh. So the song loads and… I completely bombed it. I started acting confused, why was it so fast? It must be a glitch, so I restarted it. Meanwhile, the kid is laughing his butt off, berating me, calling me stupid, a moron.
And I bombed it AGAIN. Still acting confused I was like ‘Why is this so fast??? etc’.
So I restarted it ONE MORE TIME… And KILLED IT. I got the highest accuracy rating up to that point too – 99%. Then I backed out of the song and loaded Through The Fire And Flames on Medium and 100%’d that.
The kid was speechless from the moment I revealed that I actually knew what I was doing. When I was done, he just left my room, left the house, and stayed in his Dad’s truck the entire time. I heard later from my Dad who said I had made him cry.”
32. Think I Need Ski Lessons? I'll Show You
“In high school (when was around 13/14) I went on a ski trip with the school and classmates. Now I have been skiing and ski racing since I was around 7/8 so I was already pretty good and could handle most situations. So on this trip all students had to be part of a ski school in the morning (for safety or insurance or some dumb reason), anyway myself and my parents tried to explain to the teachers it wasn’t necessary and was ridiculous to make me do this but none of them listened and said rules were rules and that the top ski school class would be challenging enough for me.
So I spent the week having fun and doing basic exercises which I had been doing for years and just kinda had a relaxing ski in the ski school time slots. But at the end of the week, the ski school had set up a rough giant slalom for the kids to have fun and see how quickly they could do it. I did it rather casually because I was quite shy and didn’t particularly want to show up other classmates too badly.
On this roughly 1:30 minute course I beat every student by at least 30 seconds (in all fairness there were some other good skiers in the group too) and all the ski instructors thereby over 10 seconds. The teachers didn’t look too pleased when the results were read out lol.”
31. The Trash-Talkers Want To Learn From Me
“Mario Kart 64. This was back in college, and I didn’t actually realize how good I was; I had spent countless hours in that game just messing around in all the levels, finding the silly little tricks you can do to shave off time, practicing my banana peel aim, and perfecting the art of the upside-down question mark. Some guys in my dorm challenged me, and I was just like, ‘Sure.’ Wiped.
The. Floor. I was flabbergasted. They had been trash-talking me and each other, and at the end of the whole thing, they just stared at me like I was a monster before breaking out into ‘Holy cows.’ So they commenced in inviting their ‘champ’ over to ‘teach me a lesson.’ I just idly chatted the whole time while I lapped the guy on Rainbow Road, to his and everyone else’s dismay. I do not even know. Most useless mastery ever?”
30. Stupid Contests Prove Teens' Machoness
“Ok there I was, a 14-year-old girl, autistic, cripplingly shy, I was known as ‘the silent one.’ I had known this group of people for 3 years but I had never said more than 2 words to any of them, mostly guys. They would always get in stupid contests to prove their machoness, i.e. who can eat the hottest pepper, eat a ‘grand slam’ from Denny’s the fastest, etc.
This time it was who can chug a bottle of water the fastest. I have this weird ability to insta-drink a water bottle by crushing it flat and basically inhaling it. Without saying a word I grab a bottle of water and sit at the table with them. They were a bit weirded out, but they went with it. Everyone chugs, and by the time any of them drank an inch of water I was done. Most of them just stopped and stared with their mouths open in a mixture of awe and revulsion. It was glorious.”
29. I Won A Camping Game
“Camping in line overnight for Episode I tickets back in college. Start playing a game of Trivial Pursuit with the people next to me (not as fun as watching a ‘Matrix’ vcd on portable tv others in the line had brought out, but still pretty fun). Anyway, I get to the final phase of the game, where you have all six pie pieces but you still have to go to the center and answer one question based on the color of their choice.
When I get to the center, they choose ‘sports.’ I mean, we’re a bunch of engineering school students in line at midnight for a Star Wars movie – a safe bet, right? Well, I’m no ‘expert’ or anything, but I know my sports trivia. Dead simple question, game over. Easiest Trivial Pursuit win in my life. Turns out all it was good for was a story that no one will read 16 years later, but I’m okay with that.
Oh, and I did not even get tickets to the midnight showing! Got stuck with a 3 am ticket instead. Stupid college towns with only one screen showing it (even if it was a 900-person theater).”
28. I Showed Off My Unique Guitar Hero Pose To Them
“I was on a cruise a while back, in the ‘teen club’ area. Some guys were messing around on guitar hero 3, and this one guy was bragging about how he played on Expert to his friends, whatever. So I watch them play for a while; I am not really the ultra social type, so I hadn’t been talking to anyone. So, the guy had beat all his friends on like one of the first few songs on expert and he was like standing up and looking around to see if he hadn’t challenged anyone yet.
So he gets to me and calls me over. They’d been doing face-offs, and I told him I want to do a pro-face-off so we both play the whole song. Cue ‘ohhhhs’ from his buddies. He lets me pick the song, and I picked through the fire and flames (expert of course). They all start laughing, and I said ‘we’ll just go by whoever gets the highest score since we can’t fail.’ So we start playing, and they all start laughing and joking about how the song is ‘impossible’ and all that. They stopped laughing and started watching me when the song actually started and they heard the notes being played.
To get the intro part, I hold the guitar like a cello and hold the green button-down with my right thumb, and ‘strum’ using my left index and middle fingers. After the intro, it’s a cakewalk if you hit all the star powers.”
27. I Was The King Of Mario Kart That Day
“Mario Kart 64. Senior year of high school. I went to a private school with about 500 students. Every morning we gathered for morning assembly where we had announcements and presentations. On Friday the student government was giving away gift cards and had Mario Kart 64 hooked up to the massive projector on stage. They wanted one person from each upper class to play.
The student government person in charge called on Mike, a good-natured jock type to play for the senior class.
But the stress of 500 pairs of eyes on you and the prospect of potentially losing to a freshman made Mike defer and refuse the offer to play. No biggie, the Nintendo limelight can be too much for some people. Some friends of mine started championing my name, so I downed my kiwi-strawberry Snapple (this was 2000) and ran to the stage to represent my class.
My three opponents looked legit, small mousey kids who knew their way around a Mario kart track. I was a little nervous, but I wanted that Sam Goody gift card.
I chose Wario because we go way back; the track selected was Koopa Troopa Beach. I won’t pretend to remember every turn, shell, and banana of that race. But I do remember the crowd, all 500 kids yelling and supporting their racer.
I was merciless. It was like watching Matt Damon do math problems in a janitor’s outfit. Power drifts, shortcuts, impeccable banana dodging, and fake present placement. I secured 1st halfway through the first lap and by the time I crossed the finish line I had lapped two people. My whole class went nuts at the absolute domination I showed. It was as high as any high I had during my time playing competitive team sports. I was a King that day, I stood on the shoulder of giants (Wario) and basked in glory. I then took that Sam Goody gift card and bought the new DMX CD.”
26. Mr. "I Can Handle Anything" Can't Handle A Pepper Sauce
“Eating pepper sauce.
Now I’m not talking hot sauce here, I’m talking about pepper sauce. A guy back in college was talking about how he can handle any form of pepper. Now my family is from the west indies and have cooked with a lot of pepper since I was a baby and I have a really high tolerance for it. To me, food tastes bland without the spicy kick.
Anyways it ends up that he claims he can handle hotter pepper than me. My buddy starts laughing cause he knows just how much pepper I eat regularly. Like my mom home-makes Ghost pepper sauce and we cook with a ghost, scorpion, habanero, and other West Indian peppers that I don’t know the names of.
The next day I bring my mom’s fresh-made Ghost pepper sauce and I pour some of it on a spoon and eat it up no worries.
He says that’s nothing and that I should eat two spoons. I then proceed to eat 3 spoons. At this point, it’s hot and my mouth is on fire but I can take the burn and don’t need anything to drink.
Mr. I-can-handle-anything takes one spoon and there was a delayed reaction where you can see he contorts, and then he ran to the cafeteria to buy some chocolate milk.”
25. I Just Noticed The Poster
“When I was 23 I was at a party and I noticed a starcraft poster and made a comment on it. The game was old by that point but I just pointed it out and said something like ‘cool marine poster’ and this guy just went off. He was just bragging and bragging and would not shut up. So I asked him why he was bragging so much about the game and he said he was ranked in starcraft and that no one he had met in real life, outside of tournies, could beat him, and then said the infamous, ‘I bet even a geek like you couldn’t touch me in the game.’
I was ranked in the world at one point as well… I had made a small name for my normal account in SC whipping people for fun, actually had created pyro5050 as an alt so I could newb stomp (I was young and full of myself.)
So we fired up some computers, at this big nerd gathering, it was fun!
We decided to start with a 4 on 4…
my team wiped the floor with them, then I mentioned that was easy and he got mad and challenged me to a 1 on 1 fight. Told him to pick the map. He chose BGH (such a newb) and I took him out in about 30 min, not even worried.
So he challenged me again, I said ‘wait wait, you got two buddies here, why not the three of you vs me (this was my braggart side coming out) maybe make it a bit of a challenge.’ He was livid and went for it, 48 min in, my zerg forces wiped his two buddies out at the same time, at 58 min he was blackout.
And I… I was really really wasted…”
24. Yeah, Bowling Sounds Fun
“New Job. Company Holiday Party. The company rented out an entertainment center with a bar, a bowling alley, some go-karts, and an arcade.
I show up as the noobie and I don’t know anyone. However, I see a guy from my local office and go say hi. We start hanging out. He’s there with his wife. We sit down and eat together and start getting friendly.
His wife asks if we want to go bowling after we eat, and starts talking mad trash about how great she is at bowling.
I tell her that sounds like a lot of fun, but say nothing else. I just keep eating my pizza and salad, etc.
We get done eating and we’re about to head to the lanes. She’s telling me how bad she’s gonna beat me. So I tell her I’ll meet them at the lane, but I have to go to my car real quick. She asked why I had to go to my car, so I told her… ‘I have to go get my bag. It’s got my ball, my shoes, my glove, and all my other stuff. If we’re going to bowl, I need to have my gear.’
I’m by no means an expert bowler, but I beat every single one of my coworkers that night. It was glorious. I made a lot of friends that night.”
23. Think You're The King Of Camping? I'd Outlast You
“So I wouldn’t consider myself an expert in the field, nor would anyone else, but within my set of peers, yes. Living in the countryside a lot of my male colleagues and acquaintances over the years have been or at least have professed to be into camping/living the outdoorsy life, and occasionally try to big it up as if they’re really into survivalist or bushcraft (big difference between the two but they think of them as the same thing) lifestyle.
I don’t mention friends because, you know, friends are friends, and they’re friends because both they and you can make complete fools of yourselves in front of each other and it not be a big deal. I wouldn’t have the same reaction to a friend stretching the truth about his skills/knowledge a little as I would a complete jerk doing it is my point.
One particular jerk (has NPD, never shuts up) I had to endure working with for four years, decided to brag about how awesome he was at ‘all that survival/living in the rough crap.’ And in his mind I, the chubby 5’4″ female in the office, was the last person who would know about this stuff, so he felt safe talking a load of nonsense about it.
I put up with several hours a day of this for about a week before wading in and explaining that all that ‘crap’ was something that I’ve been into in a huge way for about twenty-eight years. And that what got me into it in the first place was that when we lived on the army base in Belize, the summer holidays were so long (3 months) that the army put on a ton of activities for us kids.
They’d range from something that lasted a few hours during the day to whole weekends or weeks living on one of the outer islands doing things like sailing, snorkeling, etc., or camping and living rough(ish) in the jungle. I went on one of the latter and got to take part in the jungle survival course taught by the Gurkha soldiers. And I’ll tell you, learning that stuff out there and from soldiers is a whole lot different from learning it from your village youth group leader or something back in the UK.
From that point forward, nothing interested me as much as survival in lots of different kinds of climates and environments.
So I got to call him on all the ‘tips’ he was giving everyone that were complete and utter nonsense (he blathered on and on about how finding shelter is the most important thing but didn’t even know that in survival terms shelter refers to a bed/something between you and the ground not a roof over you). And when he didn’t take that well and made some crass comments about me and him being in a survival situation I got to tell him ‘If you were the last man on Earth, I’d eat you. And I mean that.'”
22. Don't Think I Belong In The Gifted Class? I'll Just Have To Prove I Do
“I’m moderately to profoundly deaf in both ears. For some reason, this made the rounds when I was still in public school and many people – fellow students and faculty alike – decided that it meant that I was ‘intellectually challenged’ as well. A guidance counselor decided that, over my protestations, I belonged in a remedial English class.
This class was so remedial that the primary instructions on the board the first day were things like ‘your name belongs only and always in the upper right-hand corner of the paper’ and ‘no more than three bathroom passes will be given per semester.’ I’d stopped at the library before class to have enough books to get me through the day; the teacher quickly agreed with me that there’d been a mistake and sent me back to the guidance counselor.
This continued with him bouncing me through various remedial and regular English classes (I was supposed to be in gifted English but he didn’t want to put me in there). After the third day of this, and as many teachers, I developed a strategy of reading ahead in whatever text was being covered and raising my hand for every. Single. Question.
Since my reading speed was about ten times the speed of anyone else in the class, this turned into a running gag.
Teacher asks question, I raise my hand, everybody turns and looks. After the fourth or fifth time, people start giggling every time it happens.
I eventually got switched to yet another regular English class, where the instructor asked us to come up with adjectives for various at the time popular celebrities. For one pop star, I chose the word ‘papilionaceous’ (like unto a butterfly). The instructor stopped, stared at me, and told me ‘I don’t think that’s a word. I’m going to look it up. But if it’s not a word, it’s a darn good try.’ She looked it up – it’s a word.
I got moved to the gifted class after that. I don’t know quite what happened, but I sort of envision a Mafia-like meeting of English teachers convening on the guidance counselor and giving him a few home truths.”
21. Think You Can Beat The "Illiterate" Man At Golf? Think Again
“Years ago one of the goofiest friends of mine had a pair of those messed up teeth made by a dentist, so they looked extremely real and were extremely messed up. He would wear these and talk in a hillbilly drawl, acting pretty much functionally insane. He could keep this act up for hours. In reality, he was a scratch golfer who had a full ride to a university with a nationally ranked golf team.
He was wearing his teeth and scroungy clothes when playing a round of golf with a friend and they had to pair with a couple of older CEO-type snobs who were wanna-be Arnold Palmers. The older gentlemen decided to take advantage of my friend for some easy funds, friend accepted and then convinced them to raise the wager to a more serious amount. It did not end well for the decked-out pair of CEOs. For the record, friends kept in character the entire time, leading the men to believe they got their butts kicked by an illiterate redneck.'”
20. I Carried The Team As A Bassoonist
“Welp. I went to band camp in high school. Only bassoonist. Female. Got picked last for a pick-up kickball game. Everyone snickered when I walked over to my team, and most of them did nothing to hide their disappointment of being stuck with the bassoon girl.
I am 4 varsity letter athlete in XC, indoor track, softball, and outdoor track. I played basketball for six years but dropped it for indoor track where I was a competitive Mid D runner.
At the time I was starting the third baseman for my all-star travel softball team. I played lacrosse for two years and dropped that for softball, then did outdoor my senior year as I intended to run in college. I’ve played club versions of field hockey, ice hockey, soccer, rugby, volleyball, raced sailboats, and grew up with a father who realized his son wasn’t an athlete and made sure his daughter was one.
One boy offered to tell me the rules, and so I pretended to listen for a minute or two. They thought I would be bad at such a simple game as kickball until I pulled a triple play in the first inning by catching a line drive, tagging the runner passing me from first to second, and then pegging the kid tagging up from home to third across the diamond. It was the first of many double and triple plays against a bunch of band kids…”
19. Proud Guy Has A Lot Of Excuses
“The girl I went to high school with was super big into target and trap shooting. She started at a really young age and by the time she was 17, she was not only competitive at international tournaments but winning a few. She went to school on a scholarship for her shooting and would come home in the summers to work. It was during one of these summers we were all hanging out at a friend’s ranch and this guy who was a few years older than us was bragging about how he’d been the best shot in his unit in Iraq.
Saying stuff like how officers would request him from other units to go on patrol with them because he could ‘take down a sand people from any distance with any gun’.
Well a few of us, knowing we had a ringer that would shut this guy up, told him we bet a girl could shoot better than him. So we found a 22 and set up some targets along with fence posts about 50 to 150 yards out.
Loudmouth soldier boy hit 3 out of 4. Ringer-girl not only hit 4 out of 4, but she also did it in rapid succession, taking probably 3 seconds to shoot all 4 cans dead center.
Guy made some excuse about the light not being good or how a 22 is not a good way to show real talent, and left the party soon after, saying he was going to go ‘meet a girl’. This is the best part, as he was getting in his lifted truck, a girl ran up to him, pretended to hand him something, and says ‘here’s your nuts back, you may need them’.
Best. Party. Ever haha.”
18. I Made The Noisy Player Shut Up
“Way back in the day, I was an avid Mechwarrior 4 player. On the gaming forums, some brats began talking trash about the people I associated with, being arrogant and conceited. I told him to shut up. Things escalated until there was an eventual ‘put up or shut up’ grudge match between him and me, in-game.
Now, for those who don’t know, Mechs have four classes, and two subdivisions; light, medium, heavy, and assault.
They are either Inner Sphere (low tech, worse at most things) or Clan (High tech, better at most things). I ran a Bushwacker, which is an Inner Sphere 55-tonne Medium, using the rough equivalent of shotguns. He ran a Clan Gladiator, which at 95 tonnes is about as heavy of an Assault as you can get. I was heavily outgunned and out armored.
I ran circles around him, beating him over and over until I ran out of ammo. The only way he beat me was because I could do nothing but ram him for plink damage. The kid, needless to say, shut up.”
17. I Proved That I Rock At Limbo
“Some years ago, I went to midnight (cosmic) bowling with my wife, my best friend, and his significant other. We’re all bad bowlers, but it’s fun to drink beers and bowl unlimited games some nights.
The workers there announce a limbo competition for anyone that wants to participate. My group laughs about going up to try, and that’s when I just matter-of-factly state, ‘I rock at limbo.’ That was met with blank stares then more laughs.
With a little encouragement and beer, I agree to participate along with my friend.
Lining up, I’m easily the tallest person. I’m 6′, my friend is 5’6″ and there’s a mix of adults and teenagers. The music starts and we go through the line. People fall, we get back in line, and go again. The kids are short but lack technique. The adults are stiff and unfocused.
More fall. My friend lasts close to the end since it’s clear to him that I was not messing around. He’s short and skinny, but unbalanced. He falls.
I’ve proven my point to my friends, but now I must win. There are only a few teens left. That generation has been coddled. They’re weak and need to learn what failure is like. The bar is low, and I get lower. Feet wide, back bent, weight balanced on the balls of my feet. Slide under, head back, I’m through. Victory.
I collect my plastic trophy and head back to my group. ‘I told you. I rock at limbo.’ My back is sore for days.”
16. I Knew More About Dinosaurs Than My Teacher
“I was in 9th-grade biology class and the teacher was making a presentation about dinosaurs being cold-blooded animals. Back in high school, I spent most of my classes reading books from the library, sitting in the back of the class, and trying to just stay out of the way. But, in my mind, I picked up on the keywords in her presentation. I looked up from my book and said ‘Dinosaurs were primarily warm-blooded, Mrs.
ScienceTeacher.’ And she blatantly objected ‘Well, I’m sorry but you’re incorrect, we can talk about it after class if you’d like.’
Since I spent my childhood obsessed with dinosaurs, I really couldn’t just drop it that easily. I never like speaking out in situations like this but, when she was about to open her new discussion I said more confidently now ‘Most dinosaurs had avian hip bones.’ To which she said ‘I’m not sure what you mean, OP’ and I said ‘It means that they were predecessors of today’s birds.
Birds are warm-blooded.’
She continued into the lecture without responding after that, and I went back to my book, feeling kind of embarrassed. 10 minutes before class ends, she starts printing off 20 pages or so on her computer. She staples it and brings it over to me and says ‘I looked it up and found a lot of articles that say you’re right, OP.’ She left it that simple and waked off, but it was a really satisfying moment in my time at that school.”
15. I Spent 5 Years Playing Pool
“So I enter a round-robin pool competition in Cairns Australia.
At this point in my life, I look, well, a little scraggly. I’m also a bit more than half intoxicated, and my first match is against this very snazzily dressed bloke with slicked-back hair who proceeds to screw his very expensive cue together as I sit on the barstool nursing a jug of beer with a mate, the trashy house cue resting up against the table.
This guy has clearly watched The Color of Money a number of times, and arrogance wafts off him like so many dollar bills from an easy mark. Now, I’m not the best pool player in the known universe, but I did get my own pool table as my tenth birthday present, and I played that stupid, warped thing every single day for years. I then spent most of my life from 16 -21 playing pool in bars in New Zealand.
So, ya know, I’m alright.
So, anyway, Tom Cruise over here makes eye contact for the first time and I say hello and compliment him on his rather nice cue. He responds by saying ‘Don’t worry buddy, I’ll go easy on ya’.
Coin flip, it’s my break. I down the rest of my drink, sink two of the break and proceed to have a dream run. I’m in that wonderful place between slightly buzzed and rather annoyed where everything just feels right, and I’m sinking every shot with perfect weight and spin to bring the white into position for the next shot.
5 down, 6, 7. I am on the black and Mr. Shark over here with the ‘tude hasn’t had a shot. The shot is actually not that hard, and being one of those perfect moments, I carpe diem by lining it up and then look up at him to lock eye contact as I hit the white, watch the black drop in my peripheral vision, smile and nod.
My mate, meanwhile, is peeing himself laughing. Old mate doesn’t even shake my hand, walks out of the hall without saying a word.
Drank too much beer afterward and didn’t win the comp.”
Another User Comments:
“I am no expert, but I met a similar kind of guy.
I was on my own, just practicing. I haven’t been playing a long time but I seem pretty good at it, I am not good at too many things so I wanted to learn how to do well.
A group of guys is a bit rowdy beside me, they are playing the winners and this one guy is winning all the time. I kind of giggle at him because for his last shot in his game I see him do this unnecessary behind-the-back shot. He smiles at me and challenges me to a game.
He wins the toss and sinks three balls before missing his shot.
‘Sorry cutie, I will go easier next turn.’ He gives a smug look to his buddies.
‘Oh, thanks so much.’ Now I am not the best but I had some drinks in me and that night I was on my game. I proceed to sink every ball but the black.
I should have just ended it there but I had seen him be a jerk to his buddies for the past hour.
I tap the cue ball and roll it to him.
‘Let me go easier on you, cutie.’
His friends giggle, I can tell he is a bit flustered. He lines up the ball (and for some reason, pride I guess, he put the cue far back and proceeds to miss the shot and sinks the cue.)
Now is my chance. I put down the cue randomly, bounce off the side, sink the black.
I’ve never played so well before and haven’t since. After I beat him I realized there was a huge chance I could have made myself look like an idiot but I had just watched this guy acting like a big deal for about an hour. I think adrenaline and liquid confidence kicked in.
His buddies laughed and clapped, one said ‘Ok, I play winner!’ but I said I have to leave.
No way I was going to do that well again.
I’ve gone a lot after to practice and no matter how hard I try I can’t play a ‘perfect’ game like that. I sometimes wonder what would have happened if he made his shot, or if I missed mine after so confidently rolling that thing out and shooting from where it landed.
I went to karaoke and sang a few victory songs, I haven’t accepted a challenge again.” YaketySnacks
14. Made My 10-Year-Old Nephew Cry By Beating Him In A Game
“I made my 10-year-old nephew cry by kicking his butt in Halo.
I have not really played multiplayer much since Halo 3 (a computer game) days. But back then my friends and I would play for hours almost nightly. I was the best out of my circle of friends and I was pretty good online, certainly not great though. I played through the campaigns of the newer ones so I was at least familiar with the weapons/vehicles.
He lives with his mom who got him Halo for his birthday. He plays a lot with his friends and cousins and thinks he is a big deal. Only local games though, not online. So he bases his skill off of other kids he knows… So when he came over to his dad’s during football season he was talking like he was the greatest player around.
He was just being completely obnoxious.
My son (5) wanted to play too because the game looked fun, so my nephew gives him a controller and proceeds to just relentlessly kill him over and over and gloat how he was so much better. After about 20 minutes my son gets annoyed because he doesn’t even have a chance to learn the buttons before he dies. He gives up and the nephew keeps gloating.
So I pick up the controller… nephew starts trash talking. Beats me once. Beats me twice.
Rust officially gets knocked off.
I proceed to snipe him relentlessly. Across the map? Sure thing. Up close? No problem.
He gets so mad that I am slaughtering him that he decides to change the map, presumably to what he thought would be more favorable conditions for him.
For the next hour, I proceeded to utterly curb stomp him.
Calls me cheap with rockets, I change to Energy sword. The energy sword is suddenly unfair? Change to a shotgun.
All this without really saying anything to him. The final straw was when I would only use grenades and the pistol to kill him. He started crying from frustration and started blaming his controller. Then turns off the system and walks away.
He does not play with me anymore.”
13. No One's Too Old For A Foot Race
“I was in my mid-40s at the time, my sons’ babysitter, who was on the high school track team, challenged me to a foot race ~200 yards or so. Big mistake. I do not know why, I have never run competitively or trained in any way, but I can run. I am 64 now and have 8 kids, none of whom has ever beat me in a foot race.
They still occasionally try.”
Another User Comments:
“I have a great story to go along with this. When I was like 5-6 my Grandpa used to be exactly like you. We would always challenge him to races and he’d always go full out and beat us. He was a pretty fit guy back then, he used to go out for walks with my Grandma every morning for an hour or so and I’m sure that had a huge impact on his fitness levels.
So one day my grandparents take me to this community barbecue event where there are all these festivities. There was face painting, potato sack races, and of course regular foot races. So they have age ranges obviously, so I competed in the like 6-9 range or something, and of course, my Grandpa competed in the senior’s race. All I remember from this is that the race track was absurdly short, as the length of a rather small backyard.
So my Grandpa steps up to the line with a few other old-timers, the referee yells go, and my Grandpa takes off at least twice as fast as any other of the old guys and wins by a mile. I just remember being in absolute awe of my Grandpa that day. He’s one of those ‘men of few words’ type guys too, so it was just funny seeing him absolutely embarrass his competition in the race and have a laugh about it after.
My Grandpas is now 94 years old and still kickin’ round and isn’t showing too many signs of slowing down. He does not go for walks very often now and doesn’t run anymore, but he’s definitely the healthiest and best looking 94-year old I’ve ever seen.” Jorlung
12. Good Luck Challenging A Competitive Chess Player
“I’m a competitive chess player, and I’ve even had people challenge me despite knowing that fact. Most of the time it’s just someone who thinks it’s cool and wants to play a game, but there’s just an unreasonable amount of arrogant people who think they can give me a good game because they’re the best among their circle of friends. If they’re especially rude, I try to embarrass them.
I had an uncle do this at a family gathering before, so we start a game, and literally, the only time I spend at the board is to physically make my move.
As he’s straining and thinking, I’m off eating something or talking with my cousins or whatever. I’m not even a master-level player, and that’s not even an exaggeration of how insanely easy it is to beat someone who has never studied. The only reason I didn’t play blindfold (not literally a blindfold; blindfold chess usually is accomplished by not looking at the board and vocally announcing your moves, effectively a blindfold) against him was because he didn’t understand the common chess ‘language’ used to describe moves. He had the gall to say the game was close afterward.”
11. Arrogant Kid Got Smashed In FIFA
“I’m ranked as one of the top 20 FIFA 15 players in the world. I am also a college student and at my school playing FIFA and challenging people to play, FIFA is a pretty popular thing. So about once a week some kid will challenge me to a game and I will destroy them.
I was once at a party and this really annoying kid was talking with my friend group and me.
Eventually, FIFA came up and he was bragging about how he was ranked in the top 5 in the world (he wasn’t). My friends sort of hustled him into playing me, without telling him I was pretty good myself.
For the first 10 minutes or so I was going easy (it’s never fun for me or them if I try my hardest, as arrogant as that sounds) but he scored first and ran around the room celebrating and then started almost grinding on me to celebrate.
So I went all out and beat him like 15-1 or something. He was still talking trash and being arrogant until it was like 7-1. Then he went silent. When the game ended he just stood up and walked away, and then told his brother to kick me and my friends out and he did. So yea I’d say that being a good FIFA player is a pretty stupid and useless skill.”
10. Physics Teacher Asked Us To Do "Impossible" Tasks
“When I was in high school I was in physics and my teacher was challenging us to do ‘impossible’ tasks for a free homework pass. People kept embarrassing themselves until he gave a reaction time challenge. The challenge was to hold your fingers underneath an index card that he was holding from the top. He would then drop the index card and you had to catch it using just your thumb and index finger.
This is supposed to be impossible because human reaction time shouldn’t allow you to grab the index card before it passes the distance between his fingers in yours. A couple of people tried and failed, he then chose me to try. I play a lot of games, so maybe that plays into it, but I have a crazy fast reaction time (we tested it after this with a laser, I’m a few hundredths of a second slower than a machine) so he drops it, I catch it.
He sits there stunned for a few seconds and tries again. I catch it again. This goes on for about 10 minutes. He tries dropping it from half the height, twice the height, and a few others. Eventually, he caves and we spend the rest of class testing my reflexes.
In the end, he tells me that since I failed one of the earlier experiments he can’t give me a pass, but I was happy just knowing that I flustered him and wasted an entire class catching thrown objects and playing with laser accelerometers.”
9. He Thinks He's The Real Deal In Lifting But Actually I Am
“I used to be a NASKA competitor and regional martial arts champion when I was in high school and I got into a fight with a football player and attained massive popularity after beating up one of the biggest jerks in the school.
That’s not this story. This is about my buddy, named Harry for privacy’s sake, who bragged wildly about the martial arts skill he was learning in class.
One day, Harry, bent on showing how tough he was asked to spar.
Boy did he not know what was about to happen. Point fighting currently dominates the male MMA scene with fighters like Raymond Daniels, a much older guy than me, but basically, the whole idea of point fighting is to hit first and ask questions later. It works in free sparring, real fights, and point fighting.
How many fights have you ever seen where a guy gets kicked square in the face and still wins? None. That’s the kind of fighting I did in NASKA.
Harry is your average lifting bro. He thinks he’s a baddie and I love him. But this was my time to shine. Especially since he hit me really hard for just a sparring match. The next time we said start, I did a spinning kick and hit him straight on the forehead and knocked him into a mirror, breaking it.
10/10 best wing-man story of all time when I and harry go drinking and he mentions it.”
8. I Swam Across The Pool And Won The Bet
“As a kid, I watched Man from Atlantis a few times too much and really started working at swimming underwater. Then later on I swam competitively and kept on working on improving lung capacity. So much so that I could easily swim 150 meters underwater with a single breath by the time I left school. So a year or two later at university I’ve become this lazy idiot who does no exercise and smokes a lot every day.
So one day we’re all at the swimming pool and a bunch of health and fitness freaks have this competition to see who can do a whole swimming pool length (25meters) underwater. So eventually one of them who ALMOST made the whole length started giving me lectures about my smoking habit and how messed up my lungs must be compared to his, etc, etc.
Anyways, I bet them I could do not just one, but two full-lengths with a single breath.
So they all call me a bunch of sticks etc and things escalate. Eventually, I get them to give me crazy odds (several cases of beer against my six-pack) in a bet that I can do it.
So I saunter over, got in, and didn’t even bother to dive in to get a headstart. I just casually started swimming underwater and did not just two lengths, but just shy of four…
Needless to say, I spoiled their mood, and I and my buddies got super wasted the rest of the afternoon.”
7. Confident Street Fighter Said He Could Beat Me Up
“I was challenged to a boxing match in high school by a dude whose friends were spreading rumors that he could ‘beat me up because he was a street fighter.’
They did not know that I was ranked 4th in the world in the international black belt league and was a 2x state champ karate instructor at the age of 18.
I refused the fight as long as I could, mostly to build his false confidence and drop his guard.
Then the gloves came out in the gym where the wrestling mats were set up for a wrestling tournament later that day.
The fight was about 30 seconds long and he was on the floor. My friends were laughing and his friends were all angry that he had let them down in such an embarrassing way.
Just FYI – the people that really know how to fight usually don’t talk about it or tell anyone other than their closest friends. They certainly don’t brag about it. If someone is trying to walk away from fighting you it’s probably for your own good.”
6. Trash Talk My Dives? Show Me Yours, Then
“So I have been in the water my entire life: swimming, synchro, water polo, lifeguarding, swim lessons, but my main area is diving. I was just chilling at a pool with some friends a few years ago, and everyone was having a great time. Now, I love just getting up on the board and doing things where I’m not really showing off, but still enjoy going in like a knife with no splash, completely vertical.
One of my friend’s friends (we’ll call him Alan) sees me doing pike dives, straight dives, and just shouts, ‘Booooooring!’
I laugh it off at first, he proceeds to do a bad 1 & 1/2 somersault, legs not together, toes not pointed entered at a near parallel angle to the water, but I politely say, ‘that was pretty good man!’
He smirks at me and then says, ‘Watch this Gainer!!!’ He then jumps and again has terrible form and barely completes his rotation.
Again, I don’t really say much other than, ‘that was cool.’
He responds, ‘yeah it’s better than those ugly dives you’re doing.’
I sighed, got up on the board, and proceeded to do a pike 1 & 1/2 somersault, spectators started watching, all my friends turned their heads at this point. Alan still would not stop, ‘Psh I bet that’s all you can do. What’s next?’
Climbed up again and said, ‘oh I’m going to do a reverse 1 & 1/2 somersault with 1 & 1/2 twists’.
Did the dive and surfaced to people applauding. Swam back over to my group and Alan looked like he had lost one of the few things he thought he was good at.
One of my best friends finally told him, ‘yeah he dove for about 8 years, and coaches recreation dive teams now… he probably could have gone to the Olympics.’ I blushed at that and said I wasn’t nearly that good, and proceeded to say how I felt like my legs came apart during that dive, and my entry wasn’t great. Anyways, it was a fun day in my jammers.”
5. Random Dudes Start A Dance Battle With Me
“So it’s my friend’s bday and after having dinner at an all-you-can-eat sushi restaurant we plan to head to a local nightclub, our friend is a bartender and managed to get us a table with complimentary champagne. So there’s us, several Asians in our own little circle just trying to dance. I’m pretty much the 9th wheel in our group so I’m usually the rowdiest and outgoing.
I entertain my friends by doing a few dance moves, some good some cringe, all intentional. Cue some random dudes who force their way into our circle and start dancing. We’re all a bit confused but can’t really do anything and that’s when they try dancing with my friends’ significant others.
Being the bro that I am I say nope, none of that, and dance in between them.
That’s when our circle got bigger taking up more than half the dance floor and a huge audience. Random dudes start a dance battle with me calling me out and I eagerly oblige. They bicker among themselves deciding who gets to go first ignoring my presence, belittling me in front of everyone. I casually walk in between them and push them both aside into the rest of the crowd so I have the whole inner circle to myself. I’m used to B-boying quite a lot and have been for almost 7 years. In short, they got served.”
4. He Forgot I Was In Swimming And Water Polo Teams In High School
“Friend of mine and myself were in Cancun on vacation. He works out to build muscle and if you saw the 2 of us, I am in HORRIBLE shape by comparison. (He has a six-pack, I definitely do not.) He also has a habit of challenging people to competitions so we are hanging out at the beach and he challenges me to a race to swim to the sand bar and back.
What he forgot (and no idea how because we went to HS together) is I was on swimming and water polo teams since 5th grade all the way up to the end of HS (played in the junior Olympics for water polo).
So I tell him this won’t end well for you there is no point. But he insists and sure enough, we run out (I should mention I was also a lifeguard for the Chicago park district so I got the quick run into the water down) I beat him.
I am already heading back from the sand bar and he still hasn’t gotten there. I stop and watch him just to be sure he doesn’t exhaust himself (which he did) and drown. Luckily he had the good sense to just stop and we take it easy getting back to shore. Needless to say, I felt pretty darn good about myself the rest of the day.”
3. Random Guy Said I Was Rowing Incorrectly
“I was by no means an expert, but I rowed for 4 years in college. By the time I graduated I was pretty successful and knew a lot about the sport because I spent more time at practice than I did in class.
Anyways, I went to one of the IM buildings one morning to lift as a secondary workout. I always take about 5 minutes on the erg to warm up and fortunately the IM building had a few ergs.
About 2 minutes into my warm-up some guy with a Crossfit shirt comes up to me and tries to talk to me about rowing. I had headphones in so I couldn’t really hear him but it was something along the lines of him explaining to me why I was rowing incorrectly or some ‘secret tip’ he learned that would help me pull better than the 2:00/500m split I was pulling (I was warming up, the goal isn’t to pull a 1:35/500m split as I would in a 2k).
Anyways, I have my rowing hat on to keep my hair and sweat out of my eyes, but it’s on backward. So as this guy keeps talking I spin my hat around to show him the rowing logo. I get off the erg, grab my bag (also with a rowing logo) and say ‘thanks for your opinion’ and just walk away.
Now, I don’t have a huge problem with Crossfit people, but emerging is not rowing. The way most people erg would send them into the water if they were ever in a racing shell. That’s not the only time I’ve had people come up to me and tell me how to row.”
2. Noisy Kid Got Smashed In Multiplayer Match
“I was working at Microsoft as part of the IT infrastructure team for the original Xbox. After work, we’d meet in these big conference rooms and do ‘post-production stress testing’ of Halo I – back then Xbox live hadn’t come along yet, so aside from some experimental online systems, you could really only play Halo on a local network. So we did – we had sweet HDTV projection systems (which were pretty expensive back in the day) in the conference rooms and would play 8×8 games (1 Xbox per room, 4 Xbox linked together) against each other, every Wed night until early in the morning.
I was pretty close to a top player only because not many people could play against so many people at once – most players could only play against a total of 3 other people just because of circumstance. And of course, there was a high geek quotient at MS so the competition was somewhat above average. My group played the Bungie test team and fought a game of cap the flag instant respawn that turned into a death march – like 10 hours.
So, I’m walking through some electronic store and notice that there’s an Xbox retail display set up, and three or four middle school-age kids playing the game. I sort of stand behind them and notice one is sort of the uber-bully/shark type – much better than the rest of the kids trying the game, and wouldn’t let them forget it. After a few games of listening to the kid trash talk, I get a shot at playing him.
He was good in the sense of playing single campaign vs. people who had never played before.
He was pretty bad at the game in the sense of having played a single campaign and never having played true multiplayer before. Me, I played dumb. ‘What do you call this game again?’ ‘Oh, ok, so this stick moves and this stick rotates… which button fires again?’…Then we start playing.
‘Oh, is this a sniper rifle? Cool!’ Headshot across the map. Headshot, switch to pistol (which is the most powerful weapon in the game IMO), and hammer him down with three to the head. ‘Oh, look, these grenades stick to people’. Stick. Boom. Stick. Boom… ‘Oh, you can use the rifle butt and knock the other guy down. Who knew?’ Melee kills, circle strafe melee kills, and so on while he’s trying and failing to touch me with the shotgun.
Meanwhile, his former victims are behind me cheering me on. The kid got really really upset, to the point where his mom had to take him away. I guess that was the moment to dispense some justice and/or beat up on a wee tween video game hustler. So I got that going for me. Which is nice.”
1. Uncle Knew What I Was Thinking
“So I went down to a pool hall back when I was a teenager, and thought my skills were mad. This one guy sees me and challenges me, and I thought ‘Oh yeah you’re gonna lose.’ So… I um… bet my car. I know, stupid me. Well, I was hustled. I tried to win it back, lost $500 (Fool me once, right?) My uncle caught wind of it, and boy was he angry.
He went straight to the pool hall to find the guy and decided to challenge him. I had never once seen my uncle play pool, and this other guy was good, so I tried to warn my uncle. No dice. My uncle said he was gonna do it. And boy, did he get his butt whooped.
I think my Uncle only made 1-2 shots in before the other guy sunk the 8.
Now, great minds think alike, so my uncle decides to bet more. Right before he is about to start, he opens his jacket and pulls two halves of a pool stick out of his pants. It’s a really nice, expensive-looking pool stick. Oh man I knew things were about to go down. He broke and sunk 2 right off the bat. He was killing it. Fast forward ~5 minutes, and the car is ours.”