Things That Matter

People Are Talking About The Most Uncomfortable Christmas Moments Their Families Have Experienced

Ah Christmas! A time for family celebrations, holiday cheer, giving and love. The season which brings so much joy can also bring so much panic, terror and at its peak worst: horror. 

According to a 2018 report by the  National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), Christmas remains the leading holiday for home fires. In fact, NFPA states that Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are the ” two of the three highest fire risk days of the year.”  To highlight all of the drama (and danger) that includes the Christmas season and put a fun twist on it, we rounded up someone of the most bizarre and uncomfortable Christmas stories from Reddit

The year swine flu came to place.

@theKayGee / Twitter

“2008: I came down with swine flu and had to wear a surgical mask. My deadbeat dad went to jail. And on Christmas morning I found my beloved pet parakeet dead on the bottom of his cage. My neighbors looked out their back window that day to see a sobbing 17-year-old in a pink bathrobe and SARS mask saying a funeral for a dead bird in the middle of a blizzard.”– user unidentified.  

The notch on the bedpost carved by teeth.

Pinterest.com

“9 year old me ran into my mum & dad’s room excited to open presents. Unfortunately, as I was running in, I tripped over a rug and smashed my teeth against my parent’s bed post. Blood was everywhere. I lost one tooth (luckily a baby tooth) and fractured my adult incisor. I had to wait 6 hours in hospital for a specialist to arrive. Didn’t get to open any of my presents, and had to drink my Christmas dinner through a straw! We still have the bed post, with 3 clear distinct teeth marks.” – Josh7534

The mouse that ate Christmas.

Pinterest.com

“Not my story, but my parents told me that when they were first married, they handmade a popcorn string to go around the tree. Over the next week, they kept noticing that pieces of the popcorn string were missing, but they weren’t sure what was doing it because they didn’t own any pets. Finally one night they heard a noise out in the living room so they went to go investigate, and it turns out there was a mouse coming out to eat the popcorn string every night!I would love to see your finished article when you’re done! I love the idea! I’ll definitely let you know if I think of any others!” user codelee wrote.

When the little brother who ruined dessert.

@defusemail / Pinterest

“Well, this happened just last year. We had food set out on the table, and we were all sitting on chairs around it. Out of nowhere, my brother’s chair snaps and he tries to grab onto the table but can only grab the cloth, and as he falls to the floor, he pulls the cloth with him a bit. The only thing that fell was a massive chocolate cake, but it splattered everywhere. Everyone couldn’t stop laughing for the night,” Old_and_Moistshared.

When the tree comes, the cats come out to destroy it.

@fugitiveink / Instagram

“While I wasn’t yet born at the time, (I was born in ’96 and this happened around about ’94 or ’95), Mum and Dad had put the then-brand new six-foot-tall Christmas tree up and had finished decorating it, when the cat decided to climb into the tree and start clambering his way up. As expected, gravity prevailed, and the whole thing fell down, destroying almost all the delicate glass baubles that hung around the tree’s midsection. When I was a kid, I always thought that the glass baubles were put up high so I couldn’t clumsily knock them off while helping decorate. While we had another kitten enter the household when I was just 1, apparently he loved climbing the tree just as much as his predecessor did, hence the tradition of having all the glass decorations well out of reach of a mischievous feline! This story never fails to give me a chuckle, and it reminds me of Archie, the cat who grew up alongside me, and stayed by my side even in his final few years,” explained ChristmasGodzilla96.  

That time the dad couldn’t control his temper and threw the tree through the window.

@Skentelbery / Instagram

“My family only ever got one real tree. This being my parents first buying experience they didn’t know that you can get a slanted trunk that won’t stay up. My dad realized that after attempting to get it to stay up multiple times. This was back when he had less control over anger. My mom leaves the room for a bit and comes back to find he had chucked the tree off the balcony of the apartment. We’ve had the same fake tree my whole life.” — Rekcikssa23

That year this family member wasn’t so forgotten they didn’t get one present.

Pinterest.com

“My younger cousin snuck my present from the tree at my grandparents’, and held it hostage for about a month or so. We were all bewildered and freaked out, and my grandpa took their lab to the vet’s office to make sure he didn’t eat it.

I remember crying, because I was the only kid who didn’t get a present, out of 8-9 cousins. My aunt eventually found it in his room. So always make sure that all gifts are accounted for and there for Christmas, and that nothing is missing. It’s the difference between a happy christmas, and the christmas of a whining screaming child, while all of my cousins lost faith in their belief of Santa Claus,” said chokingonlego.

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Twitter’s AIs Prefer Ted Cruz With Boobs And White Skin Over Black

Things That Matter

Twitter’s AIs Prefer Ted Cruz With Boobs And White Skin Over Black

Ever notice how on some social platforms like Twitter or Instagram that you yourself are mysteriously unable to crop your display images on your own? That’s because Twitter prefers to let their algorithms make the decision. Over the weekend users on Twitter discovered the surprising dangers of letting algorithms crop your own images.

Education tech researcher Colin Madland drew attention to the issue while speaking out about how the video-calling program Zoom, often crops the head out of his black person coworker while on calls.

It didn’t take long for Madland and other users to discover that Twitter’s AIs use discriminatory equations to prioritize certain faces as well. In short, the social platform’s AIs prefer white faces over Black ones.

In response to the discoveries, a Twitter spokesperson acknowledged that the company was looking into the issue “Our team did test for bias before shipping the model and did not find evidence of racial or gender bias in our testing. But it’s clear from these examples that we’ve got more analysis to do. We’re looking into this and will continue to share what we learn and what actions we take,” they stated.

Of course, Madland’s discovery is nothing new. In 2019, test results from the National Institute of Standards and Technology revealed that some of the strongest algorithms online were much more likely to confuse the faces of Black women than those of white women, or Black or white men. “The NIST test challenged algorithms to verify that two photos showed the same face, similar to how a border agent would check passports,” Wired points out. “At sensitivity settings where Idemia’s algorithms falsely matched different white women’s faces at a rate of one in 10,000, it falsely matched black women’s faces about once in 1,000—10 times more frequently. A one in 10,000 false match rate is often used to evaluate facial recognition systems.”

Still, it didn’t take long for users on the platform to ask what other physical preferences Twitter has.

Turns out the AIs prefer Ted Cruz with large anime breasts over a normal-looking Ted Cruz.

(To better understand this Tweet, click the link above)

The user who tested the image of Cruz, found that Twitter’s algorithm on the back end selected what part of the picture it would showcase in the preview and ultimately chose both images of Cruz with a large anime chest.

It’s nothing new that Twitter has its massive problems.

For a platform that so controls and oversees so much of what we consume and how we now operate, it’s scary to know how Twitter chooses to display people with different skin tones. The round of jokes and Twitter experiments by users has only revived concerns on how “learning” computer algorithms fuel real-world biases like racism and sexism.

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Study Says 95% Of Women Don’t Regret Having Abortions

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Study Says 95% Of Women Don’t Regret Having Abortions

Mario Tama / Getty Images

Across the country, many states require a woman seeking an abortion to undergo waiting periods and counseling. The assumption behind the regulation is that ultimately women looking to have an abortion will regret their decision in the long term. A study published this past January in Social Science & Medicine, however, found that over 95 percent of the women who took place in a UC San Francisco study revealed that they had no regrets about their decision five years later.

The finding not only completely debunks the notion that most women who have abortions suffer from regret and guilt over their decision even if the decision was a hard one to make.

Out of interest, we researched online forums like Reddit to see what women had to say about their decision to terminate their pregnancies.

“I’ve had… more than one abortion. It was never a thought. Immediately after finding out I was pregnant, I bee-lined to the clinic. BEST decision I have ever made. No regrets at ALL! I’ve been called names, “baby killer”, etc. but I laugh at these people. I’m open about it, not that I had the choice because my ex SIL went around town telling everyone (thanks, stupid fuckhead ex-husband). The people that give me a hard time about it are parents themselves and are probably just bitter and jealous, anyways.” – Reddit user

“I had one when I was 21 (almost 39 now). Not once, for a single second, have I ever regretted that decision. I was dating a complete shitshow of an excuse for a human being (a heroin dealer, which I didn’t find out until later) who was abusive and promiscuous, and I knew the second I found out I was pregnant that I wasn’t keeping it. In addition to already knowing I was childfree for life, there was no way would I have brought an unwanted child into that kind of situation. So my very supportive mom took me to the PP appointment, where the staff was wonderful and only gave me a brief counseling session in which they made sure I was making the right decision for myself. The rest was pretty cloudy for me, because they gave me a Valium beforehand, but I do remember that when they did the ultrasound, they couldn’t find a heartbeat but still wanted to do the procedure because the pregnancy test was positive. After that, mom drove me back home, and the guy I was dating didn’t even seem to care about much of anything. We broke up just over a year later, and I heard through the grapevine that he was in jail for grand theft auto a few months after that. Today, I’m super well-adjusted and in a happy relationship with a really awesome guy who is as childfree as I am!” –Shanashy

“I’ve told people when it has come up in conversation.”

“I had an abortion recently. Mid-20s, stable relationship and good income. IUD failure. I’ve told people when it has come up in conversation. We don’t want children so we won’t have one. No regrets here.” –meinkampfyjumper

“When I was 17, I had an abortion. I’m 30, and have never once regretted it, nor ever felt guilty either. I knew, even after telling my parents and grandma about it I was certain. The guy was a nice guy, we talked about keeping it (because he was almost aborted himself when his mom got pregnant with him), but in the end he was already in the process of joining the Army. I would have been alone, a senior in high school, with my family’s help. That was not how i wanted it to happen, if at all, amd neither did he. He helped pay for half the procedure and when he took me home, my mom was supportive. I was scared yes, but relieved. She was amazing (still is). My grandma called me cold hearted for not thinking of the baby, when in my head(and heart), thats all I was doing. I learned later that my mom, grandma and great grandma had all had an abortion, but still had kids later. And its been great for them. Im on my second IUD now and have no plans for kids. Every so often I would get back in contact with the guy, and every time he brings up the kid we could have had (I was the one that got away). I would have had a 12 year old by now. And I breath a sigh of releif every time that I dont. I can barely take care of myself, hanging on by a thread and know I’m happier and better off. To some it may be cold, but I did the best thing for me, and made sure it never happened again, but also know i have the option and support in whatever i decide. And when i go for a check up or any Drs visit and its asked, i have no shame, no guilt, no regret in my decision. (Bracing myself each time for backlash, tho it never comes, true pros). Im happy other women have the same relief. There should be no negativity for our choices, but when it comes, bottom line, we know we did the right thing. And its not up to them for shaming us. Edit: my dad even told my brother and I years later ‘thank you for not making me a grandpa before I was 45.’ And gave me a pointed look. It was a small weight lifted I didnt know I carried. Especially after his reaction after i told him I was pregnant. (Explosive).” –bubblymayden

“I would have an 8 year old son right now if I hadn’t gotten an abortion. The thought of having a kid, a son, creeps me out. I have 0 regrets.” –Jens0485

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