What's the Most Bizarre Thing You've Caught Yourself Doing after Your Brain's Autopilot Misfired?

(Meme: Minor Mistake Marvin)

When we're tired and used to doing a particular task, such as driving home or blogging, we may stop thinking about it consciously. Different parts of our brains take over monitoring our activities. Sometimes those parts of the brain make really stupid decisions.

Redditor Kirushi asked the question in the title. How have our autopilot functions let us down? Here are some of the best responses.

Some were harmless, as Derped_my_pants remembers:

Was jogging late at night. A guy reached out his hand in front of me as I passed.

I high-fived him.

Turns out he was hailing a taxi.

Others were possibly dangerous, but nonetheless hilarious. Danseaman6 writes:

When I was in high school and living on the family farm, I used to feed the horses and barn cats every morning. Waking up at 6am for this as a 16 year old guaranteed that I was half asleep. So, I grabbed the cat food like I always did, walked to the table where my cat's bowl was like I always did, and poured some in. My cat always jumped up on the table right away to start eating right away, and one morning as something jumped up in front of me I absentmindedly pet it as usual. The hair felt a little rough so I looked down and instead of my friendly orange cat, there was a skunk. Just chilling there eating the cat food while I pet its back.

Arndta was amusingly blasphemous:

As a teenager, I worked at McDonald's. My McDonald's was 24 hours and, during the summer, I worked the overnight shift. My sleep schedule would get all messed up.

My parents woke me up for dinner one evening. I zombie walked to the table and sat down. My dad asked me to say grace. I bow my head and say, "thank you for choosing McDonald's, may I take your order?"

I've done what nopingonthat did:

I sat there at an intersection in suburban Palo Alto at 11PM, patiently waiting for the stop sign to change.

Or possibly what pixlepix did:

Turned around and went back home because I forgot my car keys.

I was driving.

Children born today won't ever understand Grimmcartel's problem:

Tapped a picture in the newspaper hoping to see the full article. Took me a good 5 seconds to realize where I messed up.

How has your own autopilot brain led you astray?


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Years ago I drove to work and as I'm gathering up my things after parking I noticed the my daughter's car seat was still in the back. With my daughter in it. Had to drive 25 miles back to day care. For months my wife would see me off with "Have a nice day. Don't forget to go to school."
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