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1. I was at Busch Gardens in Virginia, maybe 9 years old when an elderly man walked up to me and gave me a 1 million dollar bill with his face on it. I still have it
2. I was in Boston one night with friends and started to sing show me the way to go home. A girl on the other side of the street walking in the other direction sang every other verse with me for over a block and a half. We were quite loud before we ended.
3. I guess not really strange, but it's stuck in my mind for over 10 years.
I had just moved halfway across the country for work. After a couple of months there, my great grandmother passed just before her 101st birthday. I got an early morning flight back to my home state. The lady next to me was probably just near retirement age.
I wasn't crying, but just keeping to myself as one does when traveling with things on their mind. Once we were able to let our trays down, I dropped mine and laid my head and arms on the tray, and just watched the city lights out the window. For nearly the entire flight, this woman started rubbing my back and told me everything would be okay.
I normally hate being touched, and honestly don't seek comfort very often. But that was one of the most comforting things that's ever happened, and I just let it happen. So wholesome strange I guess.
4. I'm Canadian, so keep that in mind... (also pre-covid)
I bought a coffee and package of cookies and sat outside on a bench to enjoy the summer day. I sat on one end and put my things in the middle of the bench.
Another guy sat down on the other end of the bench and put his things down. Then he opened my cookies and ate one.
I was surprised.
I reached over and took a cookie and ate it. He looked at me sharply, then, keeping eye contact, he reached out and took another cookie and ate it.
I was again surprised and I'm sure it showed on my face.
I reached out and took another cookie and ate it, washing it down with coffee. He did the same.
We continued on that way, each eating a cookie and staring at the other.
When I ate the last cookie I stood up and picked up my things. That's when I saw the unopened pack of cookies under my coat.
5. In Portland OR I was walking into the Pearl District around 7:00am, I was the only one walking on my side of the street and a guy walking the other way on the other side crossed over and came *right up to me*. I took my headphones out when I saw him coming and thought 'oh this can't be good' and then he asks me very intensely,
"**DO YOU LIKE THE X-MAN WOLVERINE**?"
Took me by surprise but I answered "uh, yeah?" and he extended his hand to shake and said,
"**HI I'M WOLVERINE**."
This was a clean shaved blonde white dude, about 6'1" 150 pounds with busted up knuckles, and while he was presenting as friendly he was *not* trying to make a joke about his identity. He believed what he was saying. So I just rolled with it and said "Oh cool man, good to meet you. Yeah, I didn't recognize you without the costume." We talked for a second and then I did the I-have-to-go stutter walk thing and as I left I told him to watch out for Magneto.
6. I was in a grocery store and I happened to be in the ice cream/frozen desserts aisle. While I was walking this random dude came up to me and offered to buy a gallon of pecans and cream(or something like that) icecream for me?? I said no, but he kept insisting and then talked about how much he loved the ice cream flavor. He apparently has eaten it everyday ever since he was 20(He said he was 70) and wants to one day form a religion based around the ice cream where every Wednesday they'd gather in a circle and eat a gallon each??
7. I was around 16 (F) at the time and at the mall with my two guy friends. We split up in the food court and while I was aimlessly walking around trying to pick out food, someone bumped into me from behind. I assumed it was my friends but as I turned, I was handed a BABY from a man I’ve never met. He then backed away towards a woman and they started laughing. It looked like she was taking pictures of me with her phone. They spoke in a language I didn’t recognize and kept backing up further away while looking at me and laughing almost as if trying to make me follow them. All the while I’m holding a strange baby in the middle of the mall food court too stunned to move. After what felt like hours but was maybe a minute or so, my friends walked over to me very confused and why I had a baby. Before I could even utter a word, the man and woman ran over, took the baby and left. 11 years later I still have no explanation.
8. I was in a mostly empty locker room at a pool, a random older man walked up to me and asked, "Do you want a pickle?" I answered no, and he responded, "How about a nickel?" He proceeded to hand me a nickel. Very odd.
9. Quick background: I'm from the UK, I'm a recovering alcoholic (nearly 4 months sober now) and used to sit in this beach shelter at night after work and drink 8-10 beers. One night this guy came over holding a glass of wine and randomly started chatting to me. He said he regularly jogs past that shelter in the mornings and picks up the empty beer cans and bins them. He basically got me to admit it was me, he knew my name and where I'd bought the beers. This freaked me out at first but it turns out he'd been picking up the receipts id been leaving there which had my name and the shop location on cos of my clubcard.
Anyway, he basically went on to ask why I drank so much and if there was anything that had happened in my life to make me live that way. For some reason I told him some of the dark secrets from my past that made me turn to drink. It turns out he was a policeman, and not just any policeman, but the one who arrested Roy Whiting (the killer of sarah payne) and after a bit of a conversation he told me about himself, and what he said to me I'll never forget. He said "I have 4 kids, and you never know, you could be number 5" and that hit me hard. A random stranger just decided to talk to me and offer me a love that he somehow knew I'd never been given. Well fast forward a year or so and i no longer drink, we stay in contact on Facebook and whenever i see him around we have a hug and a catch up. He always beeps me when he drives past. Thankyou, Paul.
10. I was in a bakery in my small town USA, when the patissier was slack jaw staring at me. She told me she was from Germany and I looked like her daughter--even my glasses looked the same. She thought her daughter had come over from Germany to visit her. Sorry to disappoint and even sorrier she didn't have a pic to compare.
11. Just arrived at a music festival in the Faroe Islands back in 2005 with my friends and this girl I'd never seen before leaps around my neck, gives me a kiss on the cheek and wishes me a happy birthday before running off into the night, check my phone and its literally just struck midnight on my 21st birthday.
12. No one in my family wanted to ride the Aerosmith Rock ‘n’ Rollercoaster with me so I went solo and got seated next to a guy who didn’t speak English. I knew ahead of time that they take your picture as the ride blasts off so I made a face (rock fist, tongue out). At the end of the ride, my ride partner and I went to look at our photo and amazingly, unknown to the other, we had both made the same face and gesture. We both laughed when we saw it. He said something to me I didn’t understand, gave me a hug, and we parted ways. I still think about him 6 years later.
13. I work in a hospital on the third floor. One evening I was washing up in the coffee room the sink is next to a window. It was getting dark, and I glanced out the window, and at exactly the same time a woman on the other side of the street glanced up at my window. I decided to wave, and as I raised my hand she simultaneously raised hers. We both had a little chuckle about it and went on with our lives. The whole thing took about 5 seconds but I still think about it.
14. Was at a horror convention. My wife, and two friends we met at the con were at the after party. It was an out door event at the hotel's pool with a death metal band and Sid Haig serving people drinks with the money going to charity.
We were just laughing and joking around when out of the blue an older man entered our conversation. He started by laughing at whatever story we were talking about and we all kind of stopped to look at this dude.
This guy was dressed to the nines in all purple. A purple stripped suit, a purple cane and a purple tophat with ribbons. His white beard was dyed purple as was his mustache. He had purple gloves on, purple dress pants, and purple shoes. And this was no cheap cosplay - these were pretty damn expensive looking clothes.
Immediately we are fascinated with him. We welcomed him to the circle. He introduced himself as "Mr. Purple." and that he was "Curious to what was going on at the party." Apparently he had no idea there was a horror convention going on - that he was just somewhere nearby and saw the after party and decided to come by.
He was not odd or unpleasant. He was actually quite nice, joyous, and fun to talk to. He never got into who he was or what he did or why he was purple ; but just made small talk with all of us as we continued sharing stories. Eventually he tipped his hat and thanked us for chatting with him before heading off. We did not see him for the rest of the party.
I will never forget you Mr. Purple. Whomever you are.
15. A woman who was clearly not sound of mind in a macdonalds told me with deep and serious certainty that we are not to eat figs as they are the fruit of the devil.
I had watched a nature documentary the previous day and explained to her in great detail the anatomy of a fig (which is in fact, a flower) and the life cycle of wasps and how they use figs to their advantage.
She was very confused.
Then she turned around and went to find somebody else to hassle about not eating the devil's fruit.
16. I was in the backseat of my friend’s car, one friend driving and one in the passenger seat. At an intersection a truck pulls up next to us and in the most Southern U.S. smoker accent he says out the window, “Hey kid! What do you know?” And my friend replied “I know a lot of things, what do you know?” And this crazy dude, without missing a beat, said “two plus five equals nine and crime is only illegal if you get caught, so drunk drive safely. Have a day!” And then sped off, timing the light perfectly somehow so that it switched to green as he finished the sentence. Felt like something out of a fever dream.
17. Not sure if this is the strangest but fresh in my mind. Bought a Honda Odyssey for the family car. Had a guy stop me in a parking lot, maybe mid to late 50s, asked me if I wanted to join his odyssey club. He then proceeded to tell me it’s more of a cult and I can’t have any felonies but must be willing to commit one. He was clearly joking about that but dead serious about the club. I regret not finding out more but I was just so confused at the time.
18. A few stick in my mind, but this one I have just never understood.
I'm at a busy downtown intersection, on a sunny Saturday, waiting for the light to cross. Guy beside me starts making small talk. Very chatty. We had quite a wait for the light for ... some reason I don't remember... so it was a bit of a chat.
He made some unusual remarks asking me about my ethnicity (somewhat accurate). Then it was him telling me his life story, out of the blue.
Ok, maybe he's hyper for some reason. I'd just moved to the city from a more rural area so I was polite and didn't elbow him away. Not sure if maybe I should have. His story about himself was just a bit memorable because it involved some globetrotting and a few other random details.
I thought nothing more about it after crossing the street and we went separate ways.
Then a couple of months later I'm in a downtown mall. Same guy walks up to me, out of nowhere, and starts chatting to me again. I interrupted him and said "Yeah, I remember meeting you before," and I repeated the life story ramble that he'd done earlier. At that point he does a disappearing act.
I have no clue to this day what that was about. Just odd.
19. I was studying in a uni library when I see the guy sitting next to me turn his head to look at me for a moment too long. I turn to look at him and he sticks his arm out and offers me some cheetos. I politely turn him down and we both go back to studying, he doesn't make any attempt to interact with me again.
Fast forward a few months, I'm heading back to my home State from a completely different State 3 hours away on a bus with assigned seating. It's relatively empty other than maybe 10 others max all in random areas of the bus. I'm minding my own business when the guy in front of me gets up on his knees on the seat and turns around to face me. It is the same guy from the library. And what does he do? Stick his arm out and offer me cheetos.
20. One day I met an Indonesian guy at the airport, I was 20, I was waiting for my flight so I was reading a book (The Subtle Art Of Not Giving a F*ck) and he came to me asking what the book was talking about and ended up having a deep conversation about life, happiness, even futilities. At the end of the conversation he asked me my Facebook, we exchanged contacts and we became friends. It’s kinda sad bc he told me he would be happy to meet me in Indonesia one day, show me his culture, and watch a soccer game (cause we’re both fans of Chelsea FC), on my side I told him that I’d be happy to see him in my home country, but now 4y later we lost touch. There’s some cool guys in this world. Yeah.
21. On a two month trip to Costa Rica with one of my besties. Another friend was meeting us about 2 weeks in.
When we first arrived in San Jose, we stayed for a few days. Started going to this tiny piano bar. There was this Jamaican man there every time we went, and he would stare at us the whole time we were there. No smile, no hello, just hours long staring.
We soon set off to a different locale for almost 2 weeks and returned to San Jose to meet up with our friend. That night, we took her to the piano bar and our buddy was there. As usual.
So we had a few drinks and caught up. We were all holding hands on the table, and dude comes over, says something under his breath in a different language. He then puts his hand over ours, and says "the third witch has finally arrived" and threw some John the Conqueror root in the ashtray on out table, then left.
We came back to San Jose a couple more times before we left, and that guy always seemed to find us. 2 nights he followed us around town. Kinda freaky.
22. Was sitting in a Brooklyn McDonalds. Middle-aged white guy wanders up to my table and asks me if I’ve ever seen the TV show “Empire.” I tell him no. He tells me that it is based on his life and then immediately leaves.
23. A pleasant looking middle aged woman came up to me on a bus, sat beside me, and then told me in a whisper "my teeth are trying to kill me." And then sat out the ride in silence.
24. I've shared this story before, but one New Year's Eve, a friend of mine and I were standing outside of a liquor store. Both of us were underage, but another friend of ours was 21, so he was buying the alcohol for the night.
I was smoking a cigarette and out of the corner of my eye, I saw a man approaching. He looked homeless and I assumed he wanted a cigarette or some change. the first words out of his mouth were, "Happy New Year's gentlemen, how you doing?" We both said we were good and commented about how nice it was. Although it was mid-winter, it wasn't that cold that year in Chicago.
He laughed and said, "Yeah, me too. Y'all got any plans?" We told him we were going to meet up with some friends after our buddy came out of the store. He smiled and said, "Well, y'all be safe now. Me, I got myself a joint from the Mexicans at the car shop. I'm gonna go to my spot in the alley, smoke, put out my sign when I don't want nobody around, *Do not disturb the rat in the hole*. Then they know, this is the condominium and leave me alone."
My friend and I both looked at each other right after he said that. We were both writers and instantly recognized how beautifully weird what he had just said was. I asked if he wanted a cigarette, but he declined saying, "Nah, thanks."
Our friend came out of the store at that point and we told him we had to go. He shook our hands and the hand of our other friend and told us again to stay safe. As we were walking away, we heard him shout to us, "Happy New Year!"
He never asked for change or a cigarette and even declined my offer to have one. He just genuinely wanted to talk to us, which is rare in Chicago. He didn't want anything, but he did give me an anecdote and a phrase that has stuck with me for years; *Do not disturb the rat in the hole.*
25. Every conversation I have ever had…and I wish I was joking there…but while
In Roswell at the alien museum a lady started talking to me about Legoland after she asked if we were on vacation and I told her I was taking my son and nephews there…anyway, all of sudden she said, “You know…I’ve been abducted by aliens my entire life.”…sweet I thought, I can’t wait to hear this…she told me it all started with her mother who was abducted by the “greys”, there are three alien races btw and the only thing right about the lizard ones are the way their eyes close…anyway, her mom was abducted several times and was impregnated with this lady by one of the greys. So after she was born they started abducting her and you shouldn’t believe what the TV says because the greys are not nice aliens…so she has three trackers in her body, one behind her ear, one in her arm pit and one behind where her knee bends and she’s had them removed before, but finally stopped because she didn’t want them to abduct her again just to put a new one in. She ended it by telling me that she can’t tell me why, but she knew that I was the person she was supposed to tell this to, she just a had feeling.
26. A store cashier once blessed me for being tall, so that was interesting.
27. My family and I were traveling cross-country and stopped in this tiny rural coffee shop for lunch. The waitress came out to take our order, she took one look at me and said “Hey Kim, how’s your mom doing? I said “I’m sorry, I think you’re mistaking me for someone else, I don’t live around here and I’m not Kim.” She kept insisting that I was just joking around and teasing her. This went on for quite some time, until I had to convince her with my drivers license that I was not this person that she knew. She was blown away and said I could be a twin to this person that she knew, as I look exactly like Kim, talk like Kim, everything.
28. Two that happened to my best friend, years ago.
1. He’s walking across campus and some guy walks up to him, holding an unwrapped Twinkie. He puts it close to my friend’s face and says, “Look at it! Look at it! YOU CAN SEE THE PRESERVATIVES!”
2. He’s in the men’s room in the physics building after an astronomy seminar. Some guy comes in and stands next to him at the urinal, staring at him, and says, “The Earth is flat. You know it is.”
And one that happened to me.
I’m in a restaurant in Washington DC, a thousand miles from home. It’s my first time in the District, I’m eating alone, so I decide to sit at the bar instead of taking up a table. A man my age sits down next to me, somehow we get to talking, and long story short, my mom was one of his mom’s bridesmaids and I’m named after his grandfather.
29. Going into my hotel room. (This was a s**t hotel, I was low on money and just needed somewhere to stay for a couple of nights.)
On the phone with my husband, a guy walks up to me as I'm pulling out my key card. He gestures at himself and the door, in a 'can I come in' kind of way.
I say "No" and look at him, he keeps standing there, then he goes a few steps away. I stupidly think we're done and open the door and he moved forward to come in with me. I slam the door without entering and book it down the stairs to the front reception desk.
If I hadn't been on the phone, distracted and tired, I would never have let him get so close to me. What could have happened but didn't? Just so strange.
30. in the dollar store by the hollywood theater in portland oregon, (its like 20 miles from my house) i was buying some soda when i saw a guy in a "vietnam veteran" jacket. i, being the patriotic m**********r that i am, said that i appreciated his service. then he said "that will be $100". i thought he was joking. he was not. i did not have $100, and i said to him as much. he said "well give me anything you have." i gave him five cents, as i only carry what i need to buy stuff on me, and that was the change. he just walked away without thanking me. it was weird as all hell.