20 People Just Revealed Their Wildest, Most Memorable Run-Ins With A Stranger, And Some Are Deeplyyy Unsettling

    "It still gives me chills thinking about it."

    Reddit user u/BlossomAdorn posed the question: "What's the most bizarre encounter you've had with a stranger?" and the replies quickly filled with an array of unsettling and surprising interactions. Here's what people shared:

    1. "When I was a kid, this guy in his late 30s or so passed by me and asked for directions someplace. I told him, he said thanks, crossed the street, and I continued on my way. A few seconds later, I heard a noise, like something whizzing past me. I turned around, and he was shooting at me with a BB gun from across the street."


    2. "I was working a service counter in retail in 1998 and expecting my first baby. A young man, very skinny and dressed in brown, came in, stood several feet back from the counter, and looked at me. I greeted him a few times, and he didn't react. After several minutes, he came forward and said very quickly: 'You're six months pregnant and you're going to have a boy. The dad's not around, but that's okay; you've got this. The baby's coming very soon, early, but don't worry, he'll do good.' Before I could say anything, he left the store. He was right about everything."


    Pregnant person cradling their belly with both hands, wearing a beige top and black pants

    3. "When I was 15, I used to ride the bus for 5 hours and 35 miles every Friday so that I could practice with my band. It was actually four different bus changes, so I ran into a lot of colorful characters (it was a city bus in a major metropolitan area). Well, one time, this older, homeless, eccentric-looking gentlemen boarded the bus with a bottle of wine in a brown paper bag. His lips were stained. He was clearly drunk, but not to the point of being a problem or anything. He sat across the aisle from me, and I was thinking, 'Oh great, here we go,' but he was calm, and eventually we started conversing. I was uncomfortable at first, but we discussed some interesting things and shared our philosophies."

    "After a while, his stop came up. This man, who I’d never met before and who knew nothing about my background, stood up and took my hand in his, and kissed it. Now, at first, I was thinking, 'Great, this guy's a creep who’s into 15-year-old boys,' but then I looked into his eyes and realized he wasn’t being creepy at all. There was no devious intention. He looked at me and said, 'I know the pain you are feeling. You lost your mother. Do not despair; she is with you.' Then, he exclaimed, 'I am a Seraphim of the highest order!' and did a sort of theatrical curtsy and walked off the bus. I was left dumbfounded. The thing is, my mother had passed away from cancer less than a year before that, and I was feeling completely lost without her. It was the darkest time in my life. How this random homeless man knew this about me, I’ll never know. He was like a character from the movie Dogma. Maybe he really was a Seraphim of the highest order. It still gives me chills thinking about it."


    4. "I was 14 at a Metallica/Guns N' Roses joint concert. Metallica had already done their show, and we were waiting for GNR to come on. It was a bit of a wait because, well, GNR. So, the crowd was getting restless, and people were throwing rolls of toilet paper, cups, beers, trash, whatever they could get their hands on. I was standing there feeling alright because my section didn't seem too rowdy. Suddenly, I'm grabbed from behind. The guy behind me throws one arm across my upper body and pulls me right up into his chest. With his other arm, he pulled the back of his jacket up so it was like a hood over both of us."

    "A second later, someone's nachos with gooey cheese sauce comes raining down on us. Then, he let me go. I check it out, and there's not a drop of cheese sauce on me. I was just so amazed that this guy, in a split second, decided to save a total stranger from suffering the rest of the concert covered in nacho cheese. Thank you, kind stranger, if you're out there."


    A basket of tortilla chips covered in melted cheese

    5. "I was in a grocery store in Cape May, New Jersey with my ex-MIL. I am adopted, and I was born in Atlantic City, New Jersey. I heard this older lady call out a name. It wasn't my name, so I really didn't pay much attention. Welp, that didn't work. The older lady came up, grabbed my arm, and said, 'Kelly, aren't you going to speak to your grandmother?' I looked at this lady and she goes, 'OMG, you're not Kelly! You look just like Kelly, but she has blue eyes!' Now this was 1988, so she pulled out her wallet and showed me Kelly's picture. It was ME with blue eyes. I mean, it was like a picture of me, but with blue eyes. Even my ex-MIL was like, 'WTH?!' The lady apologized and walked away before I could even think! All these years I've wondered, am I twin? Do I have a sibling that I didn't know about?"


    6. "I was on a downtown A train in NYC one quiet afternoon, and a young woman in her 30s got on when it stopped at 34th street. She looked at me and said, 'You’re a Virgo. Am I right?' Before I could answer, she added, 'Of course I’m right. I’m never wrong.' She just smiled and got off at West 4th street. I am a Virgo."


    Empty subway car interior with a view of city buildings through the window

    7. "I went to visit Roanoke, Virginia once. I went into this little restaurant, and the staff was all super friendly — 'How you been?', 'So nice you dropped by!', and so on. We were seated, and this little lady swooped up to the table and said, 'You want your usual?' and I was like, 'Lady, I've never been here before,' and then everyone working there got all indignant, like I was playing a joke on them, or being rude. I told them they had me mixed up with someone else, really! They served us, and we left, but the whole time we were there, the staff was staring and whispering, and the vibe was incredibly disquieting. Never went back, and never had an experience like that again."


    8. "This person knocked on the cubicle door of the toilet I was using at a Starbucks on a motorway somewhere. I didn't reply. They knocked again. I shouted that I'd be five minutes. They then said, 'No rush, but please don't flush the toilet after you're done.'"


    Unisex bathroom sign with symbols for all genders and accessibility feature

    9. "Some disheveled guy popped out of a hole at the foot of a large tree and chased us down the mountain while wielding a shovel. We thought it was funny at the time, but it could've been bad if he caught up to us."


    10. "I used to work in a food truck called 'Dem Boys Seafood.' I'd been working with them for about two years. I met many bizarre customers during my time working there. There was this one time this guy and his two kids didn't have any money on them. I felt bad for them, so I paid for his food, and the dad was grateful for me. He told me he'd pay me back somehow, and I told him it was fine. A few days later, this guy came back and gave me a box full of pants. It was weird at first, but I took it anyway. I didn't want to be mean or anything, so I took it."

    "Anyway, when I got home, I checked out the pants. Some were my size, so I wanted to clean them before I wore them. Before I put them in the washer, I checked the pockets, just in case there was anything in them. The most bizarre thing to ever happen to me: There were $100 bills in every single pocket in these pants. I'm not joking. IN EVERY SINGLE POKET. NO JOKE. It was about $1,000. A lucky day in my life. I never saw the guy and his kids ever again. I think of them sometimes, and I hope they're doing alright out there somewhere."


    A neatly stacked pile of various shades of blue denim jeans

    11. "I once delivered food to a dude's house. The door was slightly ajar, so I knocked, and he popped his head out and asked: 'You here for the orgy?' I said no, I was just delivering food, and then asked why his door was open. He said, 'The Irish.' Didn't even elaborate, but I gave him his food. All it was was a $5 piece of garlic bread and I screwed off. I'm forever stuck with that memory."


    12. "My friends and I went to a gas station to buy cigarettes around 3:00 a.m. on a weekday when we were around 19. One of them went inside, and the rest remained in the gas-filling zone. Suddenly, a car parked, and a guy comes out of it crying for help. He was saying that his girlfriend was possessed and pointed to the car. In the passenger seat was this girl who was trembling and seemed to be in a trance. We tried to ignore him, then he went over to her and screamed 'Please come back!' and other things like that. He asked us for help again. Us and the gas station guy were speechless. One of our friends told him, 'Look, it's not our problem, and there is nothing we can do.' The guy kept screaming, jumped in his car, and left at full speed to go god knows where."


    A night scene at a gas station with illuminated canopy and two vehicles parked at the pumps

    13. "A short, bald man with a skateboard at a 7-Eleven at 3:00 a.m. slid up behind me, tapped my shoulder, and handed me a green envelope that said: 'You have just met a leprechaun.'"


    14. "I was 45, in the parking lot of a Midwest grocery store, putting my purchases into my car. A handsome man about my age approached, and he was speaking English with a thick Italian accent. 'Excuse me,' he said. 'Are you married?' 'Yes!' I lied. 'Oh I'm sorry,' he said. 'Your face is my favorite.'"


    Empty shopping cart left unattended in a parking lot

    15. "I was the designated driver for a group of buddies at my leadership school while I was in the Army. We run up to Baltimore and hit a dance club. I sit/stand around waiting for my group to go. A lady slides up to me, notices I'm a bit bored, proceeds to bite my chest, and states, 'Now you ain't bored!' WEIRDO."


    16. "I met the self-proclaimed devil once. I was going through some stuff, and there he was at the mall. He knew my name and the name of the guy I was with. I shook his hand, and it felt electric. I strongly believe it was actually him."


    Plastic trident with red prongs and black handle, resembling a prop for a costume

    17. "Around 20 years ago, my friends and I were hanging out at one of our friends' apartments in a small town in Maine. It was in the middle of a very cold winter. A few friends and I left our mutual friends' place at around midnight to go to my roommate's car to start getting people home. Anyway, on the way to the car, I rounded the corner of a Chinese restaurant, and on the sidewalk, there was a man standing perfectly still. He had a tall, 'dunce cap'-shaped hat on, but it was purple and had reflective gold stars painted on it like a wizard hat or something. I remember stopping as soon as I saw him, as he was, like, five feet in front of me where I rounded the corner. I can't remember what I said, but he never moved an inch, nor said a word. So, we just walked by and went to the car."

    "We dropped a couple people off, hung around at their apartment for a couple hours, then took off to bring ourselves home. We had to drive back through town where this individual had been standing on the sidewalk, and wouldn't you know it, that dude was still standing there, perfectly still, in the freezing cold, in the same spot he had been a couple hours earlier. We coined him the time wizard, theorizing that he hadn't moved because he was phasing out of our time, and his transition from our time to another time just took a long time. IDK, it was bizarre."


    18. "I was in a grocery store parking lot when a random guy came up to me, gave me five $100 bills, then ran away yelling, 'I just bought your soul!' I went in and bought groceries with the cash."


    A person holding various US dollar bills

    19. "When I was 19, a lady cornered me in the Walmart near the house I grew up in and tried to recruit me to her church because it was 'fate' that we passed each other twice while I was looking for the ice cream toppings. Noped out of that one pretty fast."


    20. Finally, this one that made me cry: "I was at work, and a friend of mine called the work phone and told me a mutual friend had been in a car accident and was dead. A customer heard the conversation. The customer came back into the store a few minutes later with a condolence card. I was touched by their compassion."


    Have you ever had a bizarre encounter with a stranger that left a lasting impression on you? Tell us in the comments!

    Note: Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.