True Stories

16 People On The Dumbest Solution To A Problem That Actually Worked  

Ann Casano
43k votes 11.1k voters 620.6k views 16 items

List Rules Vote up the most surprisingly simple problem-solving techniques.

Apparently, you don’t need a PhD to be considered a genius. Some dumb solutions to real-life problems are totally brilliant because, in hindsight, they appear to be obvious – not unlike our collection of the 16 dumbest solutions that actually worked.

Redditors share problem-solving stories that your mind will be blown. Do you not want to pay to cancel a doctor’s appointment without proper notice? Do your cat and dog not get along? Do you need to stop the men in your life from peeing all over the toilet seat? Never fear, these Redditors got you covered.

Read about how to fix those problems and more with these supposedly true stories about problem-solving. Make your voice heard, and vote up the most brilliant life hacks in our list below. 

How To Outsmart Your Doctor

From Redditor /u/Stellapotamus:

I went to cancel a doctor's appointment and they said it was a $200 charge without a week's notice. I asked how much it was to reschedule, they said it was free.

"Okay, so I need to reschedule for two weeks out."

"Is three weeks okay?"


"Alright, you're all set for three weeks from now. Anything else I can do for you?"

"Yes, I need to cancel my appointment."

"We need a week's notice."

"My appointment is three weeks away."

"Oh. Okay. Sure."

"Thank you."

Couldn't believe it worked.

Is this surprising?
Take Two Yellow M&M'S And Call Me In The Morning

From Redditor /u/CptHammer:

My great grandmother was a nurse during the WWII. She was tending injured soldiers as they were returning home. She told me this story.

"The poor boys were in such great pain and they had all the pain medication they were allowed to have. It was really strong stuff... We couldn't even give them aspirin most times. I got a clever idea to use a new candy. The boy's thought I was giving them pills. Time for a blue one, time for two yellows, those boys would be calm for an hour or two and sometimes rest. I was their favorite nurse because I told them I wasn't supposed to give them the E pills because they were experimental. I always had a pocket full of M&Ms."

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The Bus Stop To Nowhere

From Redditor /u/Kasper-X-Hauser:

There was a [nursing] home in Germany and the patients with dementia kept wandering off.

They installed a fake bus stop in front of the nursing home so when [dementia] patients got out of the building, they would go sit at the fake bus stop and wait for the (non-existent) bus. The bus stop was clearly visible from the main offices, so whenever staff saw someone out there, they would just go and retrieve them.

Solved the problem completely.

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Like A Tripping Moth To The Flame

From Redditor /u/PaintsWithSmegma:

I was working as a paramedic at a music festival when we got called to a kid tripping on acid. The guy had climbed to the top of a portable generator stadium light. So he's 20 feet in the air, on a light pole staring into this blazing midnight sun screaming, "I'm a moth go into the flame". We had several cops, firefighters and myself standing at the base for 30 minutes discussing how to get him down... Do we get a ladder truck and try to coax him down? What if he won't go. Do we [spray] mace up there? What if he falls?

All of a sudden this greasy looking janitor walks up, turns off power to the generator, turns on his flashlight and aims it at the mothman. Dude looks at the flashlight on the ground, [scrambles] down and follows it to the medical [tent] like a puppy about to get a snack. I'm [embarrassed] that none of us thought about that.

Is this surprising?