A story about a shower curtain
June 19, 2018 6:17 AM   Subscribe

On Ask Reddit, a user asked "What really happened in real life that if you saw it in a movie you would say "that's totally unrealistic"?". The top scoring result is a story that presented a baffling mystery to one group of people, a Lovecraftian horror to another, and grand hilarity to everyone else.
posted by the duck by the oboe (57 comments total) 99 users marked this as a favorite
 
When we had a drain snaked, they used a fancy version with a camera feeding through fiber optics. I'd love to see video of this event from the perspective of the drain snake with freeze frame of the look on the housekeeper's face.
posted by exogenous at 6:31 AM on June 19, 2018 [13 favorites]


Junji Ito would have had the claw grab the housekeeper and pull her through the drains.
posted by Quindar Beep at 6:46 AM on June 19, 2018 [35 favorites]


Something something swamps of Dagobah reddit something. (nope, not linking it, click at your stomach's own risk)
posted by RolandOfEld at 6:53 AM on June 19, 2018 [1 favorite]


Ok, I shouldn’t have read this at work because I’m now making unbecoming snorting noises.
posted by PussKillian at 6:55 AM on June 19, 2018 [14 favorites]


The claw!
posted by uncleozzy at 7:02 AM on June 19, 2018 [3 favorites]


Well now how can I ever sit on a toilet again? Thanks.
posted by 256 at 7:05 AM on June 19, 2018 [4 favorites]


I'm just now recovering from an attack of smothered, snorting, gasping quietly for breath so I don't disturb my office mates laughter.

Wow. That was better than some sex I've had.
posted by sotonohito at 7:07 AM on June 19, 2018 [14 favorites]


Omg I'm like 10 page-downs in this thread and there's a good deal of choked snort-laughing going on at my desk ... this one about the guy who almost fell off a cliff peeing isn't that funny in and of itself, but my god, the response poems
posted by alleycat01 at 7:16 AM on June 19, 2018 [4 favorites]


... also I just realized that "choked snort-laughing" would have been better replaced by CHORTLING. I've discovered etymology, folks.
posted by alleycat01 at 7:18 AM on June 19, 2018 [49 favorites]


OMG this was the wrong thing to read as the day long professional seminar I’m in just gets started. I’m repressing snort-laughter to the bewildered looks of my tablemates
posted by nubs at 7:39 AM on June 19, 2018 [4 favorites]


From the comments about the guy who nearly fell off a cliff peeing:

You should read Deaths in the Grand Canyon. Almost half of the deaths are men trying to pee off the rim and falling to their deaths.

I completely believe this and wonder how in the hell our stupid species survived this long. Also that book sounds like a fun read.
posted by emjaybee at 7:42 AM on June 19, 2018 [18 favorites]


I just shared this with a friend who does snake work. He noted it's more likely that it exploded the toilet rather than snake gracefully up out of the bowl.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 7:43 AM on June 19, 2018 [8 favorites]


The only thing that could have made it more bizarre is if Janet Leigh had been taking a shower at the time.
posted by TedW at 7:44 AM on June 19, 2018 [2 favorites]


I like this wallaby story for the mental image of the resigned coworker getting up from lunch, knowing she had the only "baby kangaroo" in the town.
posted by Squeak Attack at 7:46 AM on June 19, 2018 [3 favorites]


Crying! This is a B-grade horror movie I would watch.

but my god, the response poems
These are gold, and kind of relevant to the FPP about obits a bit further down.

Here lies Tim
He wanted to peek
down the cliff where he was taking a leak
All his friends were quite bereaved
As for himself, he was much relieved.
posted by womb of things to be and tomb of things that were at 7:50 AM on June 19, 2018 [14 favorites]


He noted it's more likely that it exploded the toilet

Oh well good thing exploding toilets aren't commonly regarded as hilarious as well.
posted by 7segment at 7:53 AM on June 19, 2018 [27 favorites]


I found this myself browsing reddit before storytime with the kids. I shared it with them and all 4 of us were in tears.
posted by CaseyB at 7:54 AM on June 19, 2018


That was the best thing I've ever read in my life. Thank you. I was thinking maybe I should read Ulysees based on another thread here, but now I don't even see the point.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 8:04 AM on June 19, 2018 [11 favorites]




When I was a kid I had this intense fear of a spider crawling onto my butt while I sat on the toilet. I diligently checked the underside of the seat and the rim of the toilet bowl before sitting, every time.

Eventually I grew complacent, and stopped checking regularly. That's when the spider came.

I thought that was bad. This is worse.
posted by duffell at 8:38 AM on June 19, 2018 [27 favorites]


He noted it's more likely that it exploded the toilet

Oh well good thing exploding toilets aren't commonly regarded as hilarious as well.


Agreed! This was not an attempt to dead goat the thread!
posted by paper chromatographologist at 8:38 AM on June 19, 2018


I read the description and clicked through from the front page honestly thinking how good could this possibly be? Uh, pretty fucking good, as it turns out.
posted by kate blank at 8:42 AM on June 19, 2018 [8 favorites]


I love that story, but for me the story of the guy kicking his way out of the tailgunner pod of a flaming bomber in WWII only to fall over a thousand feet without a parachute and crash through the skylight of a train station and land alive at the feet of a bunch of German army officers is probably the story that's is the most cinematic and unlikely I've ever heard. Although a similar story that starts with a man in the asbestos lined smoking room of a hydrogen filled airship is also crazy.
posted by BrotherCaine at 8:43 AM on June 19, 2018 [13 favorites]


You should read Deaths in the Grand Canyon. Almost half of the deaths are men trying to pee off the rim and falling to their deaths.

I completely believe this and wonder how in the hell our stupid species survived this long.


On one hand, I absolutely see what you're saying. On the other hand, one of my favorite hiking memories involves cliff-peeing in northern Minnesota.
posted by the phlegmatic king at 8:47 AM on June 19, 2018 [1 favorite]


Oh, and the Oaxacan woman Inés Ramírez Pérez who successfully gave herself a C section in 2000 with no medical training.
posted by BrotherCaine at 8:49 AM on June 19, 2018 [4 favorites]


There have to be, statistically speaking, gems on reddit just based on the sheer number of people that use it. And like real gems, I'm glad I got to experience this one without actually doing the work of finding it.
posted by lilies.lilies at 8:54 AM on June 19, 2018 [15 favorites]


Anyone filming the toilet story totally needs to do a Wes Anderson style cutaway building, where you can see the auger go in one toilet, then across to the mirrored bathroom's toilet.
posted by fings at 9:02 AM on June 19, 2018 [9 favorites]


Two of my best friends (and the parents of my godson) are both actors. They were together for about fifteen years and met while doing a play. This is not terribly unusual for actors, but he was Romeo and she was Juliet. If I saw that in a romcom, I would think it forced and hokey, but there it is.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 9:05 AM on June 19, 2018 [12 favorites]


Regarding the toilet snake, a similar thing happened to me when I was living in an apartment building in Cambridge, Mass. I came home one day and went into the bathroom to find a snake had burst through somewhere along the sink's drain pipe and snagged the cord of my electric shaver, pulling it partway back into the pipe. Took me a few minutes to piece that one together.
posted by schoolgirl report at 9:27 AM on June 19, 2018 [17 favorites]


I laughed. I don't believe a word of it, but I laughed.
posted by Splunge at 9:28 AM on June 19, 2018 [3 favorites]


this reminded me of the time I was on a busy highway in the far left lane. At a right curve the car in front of me lost traction in its rear wheels and started spinning, it did a 90 degree turn clockwise and then the tires caught traction again and it launched straight across the 4 lane highway and t-boned a car in the far right lane. It was straight out of an action movie and I would never believe it if I didn't saw it myself.
posted by numaner at 9:46 AM on June 19, 2018 [1 favorite]


cliff-peeing in northern Minnesota

A lesser-known sequel to Trout Fishing in America
posted by nebulawindphone at 10:13 AM on June 19, 2018 [15 favorites]


Well, that made my day much better.
posted by minsies at 11:09 AM on June 19, 2018


I sent that to my coworker, and they already said in a meeting that a project would be "less work than dragging a shower curtain through a toilet pipe".
posted by Etrigan at 11:11 AM on June 19, 2018 [12 favorites]


I just shared this with a friend who does snake work. He noted it's more likely that it exploded the toilet rather than snake gracefully up out of the bowl.

Youtube rabbit hole time!

A search for "drain auger accident" yields a few porcelain gems, including this one:

Plumber Snake Breaks Through Toilet

"Staaaaaahp!"

I realize he's probably yelling at whoever is operating the auger, but it sounds like he's trying to plaintively reason with the drain snake itself.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 11:18 AM on June 19, 2018 [12 favorites]


Reminds me of this excerpt from some long-ago Joe Frank radio monologue:
Death is a hand reaching up out of the toilet
and grabbing you by the large intestine.
posted by Rash at 11:28 AM on June 19, 2018 [2 favorites]


WOW lovecraftian and hysterical!!!
posted by supermedusa at 11:30 AM on June 19, 2018 [2 favorites]


Not me, but my mom.

She got home from school as a kid, saw a big white dog on her porch, and went to ask my grandma if she could pet it.

It wasn't a dog, it was an arctic wolf that escaped from the zoo.


cowabunga!!!
posted by supermedusa at 11:41 AM on June 19, 2018 [3 favorites]


You should read Deaths in the Grand Canyon. Almost half of the deaths are men trying to pee off the rim and falling to their deaths.

There are annual -- ANNUAL -- publications about how climbers & hikers die called "Accidents in North American Mountaineering" and "Accidents in North American Climbing" that you should check out. Very prgamatic and clinical, but also kind of chilling.
posted by wenestvedt at 12:04 PM on June 19, 2018 [9 favorites]


When I was a wee baby raver, I literally jumped into the MOVING CAR of the man who stole my phone from my actual hand so I could a) retrieve said phone and b) PUNCH his ugly phone thief FACE. I left my bff, agape and appalled, by herself on the curb in the sort of semi-abandoned Detroit neighborhood you might imagine could host a large noisy dance party with no police presence; she later told me she was trying to think of the best way to tell my parents that I hadn't been entirely kidnapped.

In spite of my vigorous application of face punches and swear-laden threats, the dude would not give me my phone back AND he just continued driving me ever further from the only witness to my (probable) demise. Because I was no fool - despite being a teenage girl fighting a crime guy in his own moving car, ignore that part - I had prevented my door from full closing by jamming my leg in it as he took off. With one last face punch/swear combo, I gave up on my precious, beautiful Nokia brick, shoved the door open, and then threw myself from, again, a MOVING CAR, rolling on the glass-covered sidewalk to break my fall. My friend recovered from her catatonic horror state to meet me halfway and listen to my deranged ranting for the next hour while riding an adrenaline (and other-miscellaneous) high.

That Monday, I wore my honor student and quiz bowl team captain drag, as though I weren't Billy Bad-Ass, which suggests the drama club did the right thing in making me its president.
posted by palindromic at 12:25 PM on June 19, 2018 [72 favorites]


Great. Now I can't sit on a hotel toilet without fear of the claw grabbing me.

Can't poop. Claw will eat me.
Can't poop. Claw will eat me.
Can't poop. Claw will eat me.
Can't poop. Claw will eat me.
Can't poop. Claw will eat me.
Can't poop. Claw will eat me.
Can't poop. Claw will eat me.
posted by klanawa at 12:34 PM on June 19, 2018 [16 favorites]


Very prgamatic and clinical, but also kind of chilling.

Climbers are compulsive about analyzing accidents, ostensibly to understand the mistakes/oversights/whatever and avoid them in the future. Sadly it's often more about figuring out where to point fingers for many people. Those reports, though, are the real deal.
posted by that's candlepin at 12:50 PM on June 19, 2018 [5 favorites]


Eventually I grew complacent, and stopped checking regularly. That's when the spider came.

One day at age 10, I had a GIANT GRASSHOPPER crawl up the drain and into the sink while I was washing my face, with my mouth half open.

I still shudder at the memory.
posted by theBigRedKittyPurrs at 1:54 PM on June 19, 2018 [3 favorites]


Great, now I have to expand the types of toilet snakes I'm afraid of.
posted by zoetrope at 2:25 PM on June 19, 2018 [15 favorites]


When we had a drain snaked...

I can't stop reading this as "When we had a snake drained."
posted by mudpuppie at 2:45 PM on June 19, 2018 [3 favorites]


One day at age 10, I had a GIANT GRASSHOPPER crawl up the drain and into the sink while I was washing my face, with my mouth half open.

Picture of the incident in question.
posted by Chrysostom at 2:48 PM on June 19, 2018 [7 favorites]


Death is a hand reaching up out of the toilet and grabbing you by the large intestine.

Isn't that how Elvis went?
posted by radwolf76 at 2:54 PM on June 19, 2018 [1 favorite]


When the plumber came to snake the drain in the kitchen sink in my apartment he busted the snake straight through the pipe underneath and made a big mess. It was sadly not as funny as this story.
posted by interplanetjanet at 3:58 PM on June 19, 2018 [1 favorite]


Great. Now I can't sit on a hotel toilet without fear of the claw grabbing me.

I live in Florida. Claw is at the bottom of a list that includes snakes, rats, giant flying cockroaches and small crocodiles.
posted by Splunge at 4:29 PM on June 19, 2018 [4 favorites]


I know of some kids who caused a terrible thing to happen at a resort in the Poconos many years ago with a plastic hotel drink cup and a bidet.
posted by lagomorphius at 5:15 PM on June 19, 2018


It's true what they say:

It eats you, starting with your bottom.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 6:16 PM on June 19, 2018 [10 favorites]


How do you defend against the claw? you just push it away.
posted by vrakatar at 6:22 PM on June 19, 2018


That's hilarious.
posted by rmd1023 at 7:17 PM on June 19, 2018


How do you defend against the claw? you just push it away.

Also, rubber bands.
posted by tobascodagama at 7:21 PM on June 19, 2018 [5 favorites]


Posting here because it's reddit: Ken Jennings did an AMA recently is it was pretty good.
posted by exogenous at 8:50 AM on June 20, 2018 [1 favorite]


I had an hour-long commute for years in the Mississippi hinterlands and I saw some things on those drives, I'll tell you. The one that I barely believe even as I'm telling it from memory is the morning a speeding pickup passed me, with the driver losing control soon after. The truck fishtailed in ever-wider arcs until he finally flipped it. It tumbled two, three, maybe even four times, finally ending on its side. As I pulled to a stop in the middle of the highway to avoid the mayhem, the dude just sort of burst jauntily through the now-glassless windshield of the still-rocking pickup as if he were Kramer at Jerry Seinfeld's front door. I can't imagine the violence done to his body as he was tumbled around, but he freaking stuck the landing.
posted by thebrokedown at 6:32 PM on June 20, 2018 [2 favorites]


In the version I tell it ends with the housekeeper hysterical on the phone saying "I was going to put out fresh towels and there is a naked man sitting on the toilet AND HE IS SWALLOWING THE SHOWER CURTAIN!"
posted by turbid dahlia at 6:32 PM on June 21, 2018 [2 favorites]


« Older The law would “destroy the internet as we know it”...   |   Time for Detroit renewal Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments