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Recently, u/ViolatingBadgers (we do not control these usernames!) asked the good people of Ask Reddit: "what, due to experience, do you know not to fuck with?" Here are some of the most interesting responses...
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"Ladders. I worked in an ED at a major trauma center, and the number of otherwise healthy people who came in paralyzed or soon-to-be-dead from falling off ladders was eye-opening."
"My ex's dad fell off a ladder and basically ping-ponged his skull the whole way down. He suffered brain damage instantly, which affected him for eight months before his passing. This made me and ex look up ladder injuries, and my takeaway is this – if you're not being paid to be on a ladder, pay someone to be on a ladder for you."
"Water. Rivers. Current. I'm a fairly good swimmer, and I wanted to swim in a river where the current seemed really tame. Boy, was I wrong! A small moving body of water dragged my poor body like a leaf in the wind."
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"Never, ever trust a trench or a hole that's deep enough to go over your shoulders. You will die a horrible death. Yes, at the beach too."
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"Drowsy driving. Back in 2015, I had an incident where I fell asleep behind the wheel. It was in mid-August, and I had fallen asleep on my way home from work after a 16-hour night shift. All I remember is that I was driving, then I was waking up in a hospital four hours away from home.
No clue where I was or what happened. I had suffered a major TBI and have been mentally different ever since. Everyone at the hospital was saying I was lucky to have survived. There were witnesses who saw the whole wreck... my car rolled 6.5 times and landed wheels up. I was partially ejected (laying half in and half out of the car through the window), and my seatbelt buckle had broken as the car was coming to rest."
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"Heat. Your sanity is the first thing to go in heat stroke. You aren't even aware anything is wrong, you just know you're pissed. Then there's a weird buzzing sensation in your head/chest and the world doesn't feel right. Soon enough, you're a zombie looking for anything to cool off with, and shortly after that, you're unconscious.
It escalated too quickly for half a dozen rational adults to even notice before exhaustion set in. Heat will kill you quicker than you think."
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"Not immediately washing and disinfecting an open wound."
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"Vibrating logs in the forest. Don't investigate. Don't kick it. Don't throw things at it. It is always hornets."
"Dogs, absolutely dogs. Don't get me wrong; dogs are incredible and they have the capacity for so much love and so much good. But a sick, scared, injured, or mentally unstable dog can do a huge amount of damage with its teeth.
I work with lots of dogs and I got a level 4 bite from a normally well behaved dog once. She got sick, and another dog hit one of the areas that was more tender, and the next thing you know she's latching onto the closest thing to her with those teeth, which happened to be my leg. This seemingly perfect dog left me with bite scars that will last the rest of my life.
Anyways, don't mess with dogs. Don't mess with strange dogs. Don't mess with sick dogs. Don't mess with fearful dogs. Don't mess with injured dogs. Take every precaution you can if you are rescuing a dog like this. Better safe than sorry."
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"Meth. Ruined my life for a while and I had to fight tooth and nail to get it back. 18 months clean! For real, when you hear not to try meth, not even once, heed that warning."
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"Intuition. If something feels wrong, stop. It doesn't matter if it's stepping out onto a snow-covered slope, pulling up to a sketchy gas station, or putting too small of a piece of wood in a table router, listen when your brain tells you, 'this is a bad idea.'"
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"Aggressive drivers. Just let them go."
"When someone follows you in traffic and/or antagonizes you for whatever (stupid) reason, don't think you can handle it on your own and don't wait for them to leave you alone. Call the police and let them handle it. And for the love of all that is holy, don't do anything back to piss them off even more."
"I don't know if the guy tailgating me just caught his wife cheating on him with the gardener and is on his way to kill them both, but I'd rather not find out."
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"If someone at work is bad-mouthing someone else and they ask you what you think of that person, JUST KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT."
"Garage door springs – pay a professional to mess with that shit."
"Had one snap a few years ago and my home office is above the garage… I jumped out of my chair so hard. It was louder than a large caliber gunshot and rang in my ears for about an hour."
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"Cows. Grew up on a cattle farm. They can run faster than you think and can hit you so hard that you fly out of your shoes."
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"Being careless in the shower. A few years ago, I was showering and I forgot the new bottle of conditioner sitting in the counter. I slipped on some shampoo residue in a rush to get out of the shower and I slammed my ribs against the porcelain tub.
Completely knocked the wind out of me, but I somehow managed to crawl out of the shower and genuinely thought I would have to call an ambulance to take my naked ass to the hospital. Thankfully, that wasn't necessary as I laid down and caught my breath, but I had pretty bad rib pain for at least a month after. After that experience, I could absolutely see how falling in the shower can kill a person."
"Dudes with cauliflower ears."
"Former high school wrestlers, or those who brag at how good they were at wrestling. They can be super old or out of shape looking, but as soon as you start messing with them, you're on your back and disabled. See a cauliflower ear, step away."
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"Cat bites. I love cats, but got bit by one once. Spent three days in the hospital and there were talks of amputating two of my fingers and maybe half of another finger. I had intense IV antibiotics and came out fine, but was scary for a couple days."
"A neighbor cat bit me once and I could see my actual vein or whatever it is in your wrist. It was pretty cool to see so I stared at it for a while, that is until the pain set in! I went to the doctor and said I felt silly, but I wasn't sure what to do with it. He proceeded to talk about how often cat bites can get gnarly infections. I'm still a bit timid around that cat!"
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"Cop here and I say motorcycles. I'm not pulling them over, chasing them, or riding them. Too many dead bodies. Let them go and stay away from them."
"No experience with it outside of stuff around the house, but I DO NOT fuck with electricity."
"While working at a hydroelectric dam, I witnessed a main power line detach from the generator and arc across the floor for about 10 seconds, withering like a snake. It gouged and melted a deep trench in solid concrete."
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"Blood pressure. If it's high, it will prematurely age your organs silently without any clue until it's too late. I'm not quite 50, but I have kidneys that may not last my life time."
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"Canada geese. They will fuck you up."
"DO NOT FIGHT A GOOSE."
Note: Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity. Additional thumbnail credit: Mike Roach/Zuffa LLC.
H/T to u/ViolatingBadgers and Ask Reddit for having this discussion.