"My husband asked me why that tire company Michelin gives out stars to restaurants.
I laughed and told him it was cute how he actually thought the tire company and the restaurant rating people were the same company. For about a week I kept rubbing it in his face - my husband, the poor fool.
One night, he got fed up and googled the thing. A minute later, he was holding the phone in my face: it is the same company, and I'm the ignorant one after all.
He rubs it in my face at least once a week."
"When I was about 9 years old, we had a project at school to write a story. It was kind of a big deal, and I worked super hard on it; I had just passed my 'I want to be a paleontologist when I grow up' stage, and I was firmly in my 'I want to be a writer' stage, so I put a lot of effort in.
This thing was pages and pages long. I was staying up until way past my bedtime for a week before it was due, just to get this thing finished. I poured my little heart and soul into it, because in my mind it was only a matter of time before it caught the eye of some passing book publisher - shut up, it could happen - and jetted me to fame and fortune and literary celebrity status, all before my age was in the double-digits.
We had to hand it in over the Christmas break, and when we got back in January, I found out that my teacher had lost it. Worse than that, she was accusing me of not handing it in, even though I very clearly had, and decided to call me out in front of the whole class for being lazy and not doing the work. I ended up spending most of the next class crying in the bathroom because I was so upset.
Eventually, it 'turned up after all' - no duh it did - and she still only gave me a middling grade for it, as a result of it being handed in late. Which it wasn't.
The 'Who's laughing now?' moment? Now I write books for a living and I'm happy as a clam doing it - so screw you, Mrs. Harding."
"I got fired because I was 'rude to the client.' In reality, I shut down a troublesome employee of the client who had been harassing my team for months over something that, by his own admission, he had no stake in, and who had been warned multiple times by the client themselves to leave us alone. Also in reality, the company was trying to find an excuse to fire me, probably because they couldn't skim money off my contract the way they could with the fresh hires.
The client snapped me up without even an interview the moment a position opened up. It was the same people I had been working with before, in a very similar workplace. The same systems, and basically the same job. I got a $13,000 raise. My ex-company tried to sue for breach of contract, but I had made sure all my bases were legally covered.
Oh, and my old company lost all their work with this client: hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of contracts.
I haven't stopped laughing since they fired me."
"I grew up doing construction with my dad, who would yell anytime I wasn't actively moving my body to work. He'd always say, 'You don't get paid to watch other people work!'
Well, now I'm grown up and make a living as a director of 'home renovation' reality shows. I literally get paid to watch other people work. Take that, Dad!"
"My mom's boyfriend died when I was 14. It was my first experience with death, and I had a hard time dealing with it. I had very realistic dreams where I would get up in the morning and he would be sitting at the table, drinking his coffee just like always. Part of me knew completely that this was a dream, but part of me wanted to believe that he was visiting me in my dreams.
I made the mistake of telling a 'friend,' and unfortunately news got around the school that I was seeing ghosts everywhere. My girlfriend's friend was absolutely the worst about this and further pushed the rumor that I saw him in a can of Pepsi.
Shortly after this rumor started going around, my girlfriend and I were having lunch when her awful friend came by drinking a Pepsi and sat down next to us. My girlfriend was also sort of mean to me, and I noticed in my peripheral vision that her friend was looking in her Pepsi can, and she was laughing. I turned fully to look, and she was making a ghost sound and waving the can around. As I got up to leave, she took a sip of her soda and immediately started screaming - and ran to the nurse's office.
It turns out as she was mocking me, a wasp had flown onto her can, and as she raised it to her dumb face, the wasp stung her on the bottom lip.
She never made fun of me again."
"Not me, but one of my best friends from high school. We had this awful physics teacher who was constantly telling us (my friend, me, and a couple of others specifically) about how terrible we were at the subject and how we should give up on science and opt for commerce instead.
Fast forward through a year of barely passing the subject, and we're writing our final exam in the 12th grade. What's interesting about this exam is that the papers get sent to India for grading rather than being marked by a teacher, as it's a standardized exam. It turns out that my friend, who had been barely passing thanks to my teacher sabotaging his grades, had the top score in our grade in the physics exam and this same teacher had to give him a certificate and prize for that at a ceremony.
I went along just to see his face and it was totally worth it."
"So, our high school had a dodgeball tournament to close out the year. I had always been in the nerdy group at school and always made a team with a bunch of my band buddies.
We were the 'Pokémen,' if that gives you an idea of our nerdiness.
Well, we went and did pretty well in this tournament. In fact, we made it to the championship round. We were going against members of the football team, including the guy that had bullied me from grades 2-8 (nobody really bullied me after that, since I grew to be 6'6).
Anyway, the game starts. I immediately ran and grabbed a ball and start back-pedaling. I threw the ball as hard as I could and it hit my bully in the face. He fell backward a bit, regained his composure, and started laughing at me as headshots don't count.
While he was busy laughing, I threw another ball and hit him straight in the crotch.
It was like out of a movie.
Except I was so excited that I stopped paying attention, got hit in the gut, and we lost the championship."
"A guy I used to work with decided to switch companies after hearing that the one we were working at (that I had invested years in) was on the market.
Almost every day since he left, he would come in with a smug look asking, 'how's the company going? My company isn't going to sell, so it's going great for me. Have you found another place to work yet?'
Well, it turns out, the people who stood ground at my company prevented it from being taken over and it actually combined forces with another parent company, still keeping its name, policies, and so on.
The one he switched to immediately sold and changed completely around. He didn't stay long. I don't rub it in his face because I saw what happens when you do that."
"There was this kid in my grade school, named Miguel, who would bully me all the time about being poor, a nerd, and a bit overweight. This kid was really cruel and could make me feel down even when I felt great. Like when I got my first pair of brand new sneakers that were mine (all of them before were either from the thrift store or hand-me-downs from my cousins). I was so excited to wear them to the school, and when I did, he came up to me and said, 'Nice new, old shoes. I had a pair of those last year,' and then he laughed. Made me feel like crap the rest of the day.
Fast forward to almost 15 years later. I'm working a pretty great office job in downtown Chicago. I stop by a McDonald's and I see him behind the counter. He doesn't recognize me because I lost weight and have a beard now, but I definitely recognized him. I feel a bit guilty saying it, but it was incredibly satisfying seeing someone that tormented me for years working the register at McDonald's, while I had a much brighter future ahead."
"It was the final year of little league baseball, the championship game, and I'm playing catcher. We're up by one.
A girl known to be kind of a jerk, who often picked on me specifically, is on 3rd base with no runners behind her.
The ball is hit to the outfield. I take off my mask and stand with a foot on either side of home plate, leaving plenty of room for her to slide. We are about the same size - I wasn't one of those bigger catchers.
The relay gets the ball to me. The ball hits my glove and I have a great grip on it. I look up and notice that she appears to have put her shoulder down and is going to run into me.
I widen my stance, lower my center of gravity and put my shoulder down. She summersaults head over heels over me when we collide. I fall over but retain the ball. The umpire calls her out.
I get up and see her mom running onto the field to her (she is lying beside the plate). She has a concussion and a broken collarbone.
Who's laughing now, jerk?"
"I had been paired with the same group partner in Art History three times in a row in college, and she NEVER meets with me to work on our presentations. She always had crappy excuses about being busy with sorority events. I had to do ALL the work (I am very ambitious, so I do my work well) while she got the exact same A+ grade.
I got tired of her crap, so on presentation day, I memorized the notes for our presentation and only had quotes and pictures in the slideshow. A huge grin crawled across my face when I watched her sputter with a deer-in-headlights expression, trying to explain what was on the slide and failing.
My professor looked so irritated and I later found out her grade was docked almost 10 points, while my grade stayed the same. It was awesome."
"I was in the military doing my national service duty when we went into the woods for training for the first time. It was the 5th week of training, so we were setting up a camp, doing patrols, keeping fire-watch, digging positions, etc.
We were away from the main camp for an exercise in guarding a railway bridge. A fellow recruit was gathering some wood for our fireplaces when one of our higher-ups (I can't think of his rank, somewhere around sergeant) saw him cut down a small tree. The sergeant tried to be a smart guy because it was his idea of being funny.
Sergeant: 'What do you think you're doing?!'
Recruit: 'Gathering wood as ordered, sir?'
'Per orders, huh? So who told you to cut down live trees? You're supposed to gather dead wood!'
'Sir, this tree IS dead...'
'How would you know?!'
'Because I am a trained landscape gardener, sir.'
The Sergeant went red in the face, and just went, 'Very well! carry on then!'
The Sergeant left, and we laughed our butts off - after he was sufficiently far away. The sergeant was a pretty nice guy actually, he just took some getting used to, and had a super weird but kinda great sense of humor!"
"About eight years ago, I started working in in a corporate call center. About a year in, I switched teams as part of a yearly thing. For no apparent reason, my new supervisor absolutely hated me. Basically, he was a bully at work, blaming everything on me, and making fun of me to my face. I went from being a leading representative to the lowest performer on my team as a result of it.
In a weekly meeting with this supervisor, he said I was not cut out for the job, that he thought I wasn't very smart, that he had no idea how I got hired (while literally laughing in my face) and I should quit before I got fired. One week later, and after I took several unscheduled sick days off, the department thankfully changed our teams again. I got on a team with a wonderful new supervisor who actually coached me, always had my back, never bullied me, wouldn't let me give up, and challenged me daily. In two weeks, I went from having the lowest scores on the team to the highest in the entire department. A year later, she encouraged me to apply for internal promotions as she felt my talents would go to waste there, and I had no more room to grow.
I did apply, and within three years I had earned three promotions and moved departments twice.
I've now worked in a different area than that terrible supervisor for three and a half years and hadn't seen him or heard anything about him. Six months ago, he walked into a training I was giving for a project I had completed. He walked up to me and smugly said, 'Oh wow, I didn't know you still worked here. Are you still on the phones, or do they have you cleaning toilets?' (I give kudos to anyone that does because both are hard jobs.)
Since I was at work, rather than punch him in the face, I decided to keep my job and pointed out that it was my name on the slides for the project, and that I was the Project Manager over it.
He immediately went red-faced and wouldn't look at me or acknowledge me during the entire training; even when I called on him to answer a question, as everyone had to answer one by one.
After it was over, I walked over to him and asked him if he still enjoyed being a supervisor. He ignored my question and asked me how I became a project manager. I explained that after his team, I went on to three different jobs within the last three years. He scoffed and said I was just helping out on the project and to stop inflating my title. I sent him an email with my signature and invited him to look me up in the directory as I left the room.
I talked to a colleague and found out that in the past three years, he had been demoted twice because he had the lowest leadership survey scores in the entire center.
So, who's laughing now, Mr. Dawson?"
"My photography teacher didn't pass me and wrote me a note that I needed to really step up my game if I wanted to major in it. Part of this problem stemmed from me being a little too advanced for the beginner class (looking back on it now) and not wanting to submit a photo I didn't like, and she and I liking different shots.
So before this, I had tried to submit one of my photos to the student art show. I took it while on vacation in San Diego, a photo of a beautiful hummingbird at a trumpet flower. I went to the head of the department (Steve) and asked him if I could submit it, even though it wasn't taken for class. He said yup, fine with him!
So I submitted it and my photography teacher promptly rejected it, on the basis of, 'The student art show is not to show what students can do, but to show what the school has to offer.'
Screw you, Mrs. Freeman. You enjoy your photography teaching job while I do photography for a living over here!
Apparently, my Dad (who still lives in the area) had a blast telling her how well I was doing and what I was up to. Yay Dad! It made me so happy when he told me."
"At my last job, it was a mixed bag of being respected and admired for being a hard worker and delivering results, but also occasionally being laughed at for holding the lowest position in the store. I officially held the lowest position, but my responsibilities were closer to that of a manager and supervisor because my supervisors saw I was capable of much more. There were a few other co-workers that would audibly complain about wanting to quit or how much they hated their job, but I generally kept my mouth shut. If I did complain, I did it at home to make sure no one really knew how I felt about my job.
Time passed and despite being promised a raise and a promotion, I still held that low-level position with a lot of responsibilities. The jokes even started to become more personal, and I knew something wasn't right. The jokes went from light jabs about my position to straight up insults, brought on by the fact that my co-workers found out I didn't have a girlfriend and they started to insinuate that I was gay.
Eventually, I just got tired of being overworked and underpaid, I quit when they least expected it. Former co-workers and my supervisors previously laughed at me, but they were now screwed because they didn't have anyone to fill in the huge gap I had just left.
It's been nearly a year since I left, and as far as I know, I'm still regularly missed - not only because of how well I used to work but also because the people that were brought in to replace me have been unable to fully replace me."
"I had an extremely toxic relationship with my ex-wife, who had been cheating on me while I was gone for the military. She actually told me she was leaving me as soon as we got home from a vacation I paid for. She left and took everything with her, and even came after my truck that I had paid off before even meeting her.
Since then, I've moved up the corporate ladder, making really good money for myself, and live with my girlfriend who is genuinely the sweetest girl ever (it also helps that she is out of my league, completely).
Anyways, the ex-wife reached out to me a month or so ago, looking for sympathy, and is now living out of her car. She has been essentially disowned by all her friends and family for sleeping around and stabbing them in the back. I didn't reply - not that I didn't want to let her know that she deserved everything she got, but you see, I was on vacation in the mountains, and service is just so terrible at the resorts."
"It was my ex-boyfriend in college. He had high ambitions and okay intelligence, but no drive. He initially asked me for help, and I encouraged him to study and get involved in his courses and labs (he majored in geology at the time). The problem was, he would get so furious at me when I'd help or make him study - although he'd be happy when he did well on tests.
'I can do just fine without you nagging at me like some whiny parent!' (He had major issues.)
We broke up halfway through the semester - he had As and Bs around then. After finals, he had failed all but one class, in which he got a D.
I laughed pretty darn hard. He graduated with a degree in criminal justice and became a realtor, which was his worst fear when he was 21. It was the family business. He was given a minimized role because his family doesn't trust him, and he hasn't held a steady job anywhere since, likely for similar reasons to why he did poorly in college."
"English was my second language, but I love literature and writing in general. My teacher recommended me for ESL (English as a Second Language), which is a more basic version where they teach you vocabulary and grammar instead of a normal English course. I argued with him and got the recommendation changed so that I could stay in the normal English stream. He said, 'You do what you want, but enjoy getting that F.'
I not only got A, I also placed first in an under-18 creative writing competition as a 15-year-old, and got a scholarship to college."