35 Of The Biggest ‘Screw You’ Moments Ever Witnessed In History, As Shared Online
Everyone has their limits, but why do we always try to conceal our anger? Gracefully telling folks to get lost can be healing and pretty satisfying, of course, but only if the setting is suitable for doing so.
Hiding our emotions for the sake of avoiding heated reactions will eventually backfire, where a minor inconvenience might set us over the edge.
Perhaps it would be in our best interest to start challenging ourselves and learning that swallowing our feelings and putting on an act of politeness will only harm us and our mental state.
However, sometimes words don't hit the right spot, and life calls for creative solutions:
“What are some of the greatest [screw yous] in history?” – this netizen turned to one of Reddit’s most thought-provoking communities to ask fellow members to share the shadiest and most satisfying moments known in history. The post has managed to receive nearly 24K upvotes and 7.8K comments discussing the famous events.
More info: Reddit
Frank Zappa was interviewed by an abrasive radio host named Joe Pyne.
Pyne commented to Zappa, “So I guess your long hair makes you a woman.”
Zappa replied, “So I guess your wooden leg makes you a table.”
Pyne had lost his leg serving in WW2.
Although I'm sure he wouldn't have called it a "f**k you" because he had way too much class, I'm going to say Mr. Rogers sharing a wading pool with a black man while people were fighting to keep blacks out of public pools.
When France was invaded during WW2 they cut the lines to the elevator up the Eiffel Tower so when the nazis went to put their flag on ot they had to take the stairs all the way up.
In 1962, a wealthy Italian businessman met with Enzo Ferrari to discuss his displeasure with the famous luxury sports cars. His chief complaint was that the clutches didn't seem to hold up well. Ferrari responded, "The clutch is not the problem. The problem is you don’t know how to drive a Ferrari and you break the clutch.”
The businessman happened to have founded and owned a successful tractor manufacturing company, so he knew a thing or two about vehicles. He was incensed at the reply, and not only vowed to never buy another Ferrari, but to begin building his own supercars to show Ferrari how it was done.
And today, the cars of Ferruccio Lamborghini are famous worldwide.
I've always been fond of the exchange between John Montagu and John Wilkes, both British politicians in the 18th century (Montagu was also the 4th Earl of Sandwich, the namesake and possibly inventor of the sandwich).
During one of their many verbal battles, Montagu reportedly spat at Wilkes and said, "Upon my soul, Wilkes, I do not know whether you will die on the gallows or of the pox."
Wilkes replied, "That depends, my lord, on whether I embrace your principles or your mistress."
Joan of Arc’s trial was known to be tedious as the Church tried their hardest to find grounds for a conviction. In an attempt to trick her, she was asked whether she knew if she was in God’s grace. Since the Church believed no one was able to know if they were truly in God’s grace, either a yes or no could be condemnable. She responded by saying, “If I am not, may God put me there; and if I am, may God so keep me”. Reports on the trial say that the court was stupefied by her deft answer. It was basically a mic drop in the face of the Church at the hands of what they saw as an illiterate and heretic farm girl.
When that dude on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? used his only lifeline on the final question to call his dad… Not to ask for help, but to let him know he was about to win because he already knew the answer.
King Philip II of Macedon sent a note to Ancient Sparta saying:
“You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army into your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people, and raze your city.”
Ancient Sparta replied to King Philip’s threat: “If"
Upon being handed his death warrant, the Marquis de Favras quipped, "I see that you have made three spelling mistakes."
Explain this one in a similar form but it keeps getting buried.
After the second World War, a group of soldiers, all Jews, held a memorial service during the Passover and prim for the fallen Jewish comrades. The ceremony was carried out at the summer home that once belonged to Joseph Goebbels, a known hater of Jews.
Goebbels wasn't shy of saying f**k the Jews. So, for a Jewish memorial service on his estate was a "f**k you right back" from Jewish soldiers.
Bette Davis, who had a decades-long feud with Joan Crawford that lasted right up to the bitter end, was quoted upon first hearing of her rival’s death:
*”You should never say bad things about the dead, you should only say good…Joan Crawford is dead. Good.”*
Tolkien was in negotiations to sell *The Hobbit* in Germany. The Nazis were in power, but WWII hadn't started yet. The German publisher asked him to provide proof that he was Aryan. This was his response, with emphasis by me:
25 July 1938
20 Northmoor Road, Oxford
Thank you for your letter. I regret that I am not clear as to what you intend by "arisch". I am not of **Aryan extraction: that is Indo-Iranian;** as far as I am aware none of my ancestors spoke Hindustani, Persian, **Gypsy**, or any related dialects. But if I am to understand that you are enquiring whether I am of Jewish origin, I can only reply that I regret that **I appear to have no ancestors of that gifted people**. My great-great-grandfather came to England in the eighteenth century from Germany: the main part of my descent is therefore purely English, and I am an English subject — which should be sufficient. I have been accustomed, nonetheless, to regard my German name with pride, and continued to do so throughout the period of the late regrettable war, in which I served in the English army. I cannot, however, forbear to comment that **if impertinent and irrelevant inquiries of this sort are to become the rule in matters of literature, then the time is not far distant when a German name will no longer be a source of pride.**
Your enquiry is doubtless made in order to comply with the laws of your own country, but that this should be held to apply to the subjects of another state would be improper, even if it had (as it has not) any bearing whatsoever on the merits of my work or its sustainability for publication, **of which you appear to have satisfied yourselves without reference to my Abstammung.**
I trust you will find this reply satisfactory, and remain yours faithfully,
J. R. R. Tolkien
One general in WWII wrote to gen. Patton: "you can't take Trier wtih less then 3 divisions"
Patton wrote back: "I took it with two, should I give it back?"
Calvin Coolidge, one of our late American presidents, was nicknamed “silent cal” because he was a man of very few words. A person once seated next to him at a dinner said to him, "I made a bet today that I could get more than two words out of you." Silent Cal replied, "You lose."
Sara Bareilles was pressured to add a "catchy love song" to her debut album.
*I'm Not Gonna Write You A Love Song* was written as a "f**k you, I quit" message for the label... except it backfired: They actually *liked it* and they put it on the radio.
John Paul Jones when, in a naval battle that he appeared to be losing, the British called for him to strike his colors (surrender). He replied with "I have not yet begun to fight." He won, and sailed both ships home.
During the Korean War, a coastal battery got lucky and hit the battleship USS Wisconsin. It did minor damage but was the first direct hit on the Wisconsin. The USS Wisconsin then returned fire with all nine of her 16" guns and pretty much reduced the coastal battery to atoms. The funniest part is that one of Wisconsin's escorts sent a message to the Wisconsin afterwards that just said "Temper, temper."
More on the tame end, but in the 70s Rush’s record label was pressuring them to not make any more albums with long rock operas because it would kill sales.
They went ahead and made another album where one side of the vinyl was a 20 minute song and it ended up being their biggest seller at that point in time.
In 2007 the website Gawker posted an article that outed Paypal co-founder Peter Thiel as gay. Not being able to sue defamation himself (it's not defamation if it's true), he instead started funding lawsuits brought against Gawker by others, including the lawsuit by Hulk Hogan that ended up bankrupting Gawker.
There are lots of ethical issues surrounding the idea of a billionaire targeting an outlet like Gawker, even if the outlet is utter trash like Gawker was, but I still consider it a glorious F**k You.
When the Royal Navy had finally cornered and were engaging the German warship Bismarck, one of the ships in the taskforce was actually made up of Polish navy crewmen who had escaped the country after the occupation. As the crew fired upon Bismarck they used their lights to signal the message "I am a Pole" for the Bismarcks crew to see.
When DeGaulle told Lynden Johnson to removes all US troops from French territory and Johnson asked him if he should “take the ones buried in Normandy.”
Where Abe Lincoln criticized James Shield to the point where Shield challenged Lincoln to a duel. Lincoln 6’4” vs Shield 5’9” Lincoln being the challenged party got to pick weapons. Lincoln picked broad swords ⚔️ seeing the huge disadvantage Shield had to suck up his pride and forfeit the duel.
Chesty Puller - They're in front of us, behind us, and on both sides. They can't get away this time!
Also Chesty - "We're surrounded. That simplifies the problem."
Basically anything that the Greek philosopher Diogenes ever did. The entire basis of his teachings and actions were to critique society and social norms, and make a mockery of contemporary teachings.
Perhaps the most famous incident is when Alexander The Great, a fan of Diogenes' philosophy, went to Sinope to speak with him. Alexander offered Diogenes anything he wanted in exchange for teaching his wisdom, and the philosopher replied "stand out of my light".
The man also had an infamously bitter feud with Plato, who was attempting, among other things, to define a human being in its most fundamental of forms. After arriving at "featherless bipeds", Diogenes gate-crashed one of Plato's symposiums with a plucked chicken in-hand, and presented it to the crowd declaring "Behold! I've brought you a man!".
The Twenty-seventh Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
It was proposed by the first-ever Congress in 1789 but stalled and was forgotten about. In 1982 a 19-year old college kid named Gregory Watson wrote a paper for his poli sci class arguing that it could still be ratified.
The teaching assistant disagreed and gave him a C on the paper. He then appealed to the professor, who chose not to overturn the grade, so he decided to start a national campaign to prove that he was right. In order to do so he had to convince 28 state legislatures to ratify it in order to reach the necessary 3/4 of all states (10 states had already done so many years before).
In 1992 the Twenty-seventh Amendment officially became part of the Constitution when it was ratified by Michigan.*
Perhaps funniest of all is that it's a relatively obscure amendment that prevents any congressional pay raises or pay cuts from taking effect until the next election, as a way to give voters a say on the matter.
EDIT 1: Turns out that in 2017, his former professor signed a letter to get his [grade changed to an A]! A happy ending.
* At the time, the popular belief was that only 9 states had ratified it, so Watson set out to convince 29 more states. When Alabama ratified it everyone thought he needed one more state, so Michigan (which ratified 2 days after Alabama, so not a big difference) was believed to be the decisive 38th. Turns out that Kentucky had ratified it in 1792, but this was only re-discovered in 1996, meaning Alabama was actually the 38th state. The total is now at 46 states.
50 Cent bought 200 front row tickets to one of Ja Rules concerts in 2018 and left the seats empty in response to something Ja said on Twitter.
Not really well known John Hancock had a warrant for his arrest before the signing of the Declaration of Independence and they never caught him so when they said he could sign it he basically signed his name so large as to say f**k you to the king
Alexander the Great.
One of his tutors was a man named Leonidas of Epirus. One time, when visiting a temple and making an offering to the gods, the eager and pious Alexander scooped up as big a handful of incense as he could hold and threw it into the flames. Leonidas chastised the young prince and told him not to be so wasteful of such a rare and expensive import--and that he could use as much as he wanted if he ever owned the lands where it was grown. Many years later, Alexander DID capture those lands and promptly sent his old mentor a reported 600 talents (the equivalent of 15 to 30 tons) of rare and expensive incense and myrrh as a retort, along with a note that now his old teacher wouldn't need to be so stingy and sparing in his offerings to the gods in the future.
And of course the Gordian Knot. A fabled knot that was said to be impossible to untie, though an Oracle had prophesied that if anyone could undo it they would rule over all of Asia. It was said many tried and all failed. Until Alexander walked up to it. He looked it over, took out his sword, and just cut it in half. And went on to conquer huge swaths of Asia afterward.
During the Battle of Bastogne, the Germans sent a team of two soldiers and two officers to offer the Americans a chance to surrender.
The written message, in both English and German, was roughly two pages long, and detailed how the Germans had them surrounded and would move in for the kill if the Americans didnt negotiate.
US Brig. Gen. Anthony McAuliffe's written reply, passed to the German commander, was a single word - "NUTS!"
Baffled, the German Commander wondered what it meant, and was told "It means you can go to Hell."
Pete Best - whom the Beatles dismissed in favor of Ringo Starr just before they began recording their first album - released an album of his own in 1966 titled *Best of the Beatles.* Buyers were disappointed to find out it wasn't a Beatles compilation.
I will forever love that in ancient Greece they had to make a law against prisoners stripping naked at trial because one woman managed to acquit herself of blasphemy by way of being too attractive.
After all, if she had truly blasphemed against the gods they would revoke the gift of her beauty?
I have to imagine that the session where they made that law was the saltiest runback.
Edit: Quick definition. Salty refers to being angry and a runback is (an attempted) rematch. Thought that the term painted a fun mental image of the forum.
Well, there is always that time when Amsterdam sold cannons to the Spanish army during the 80 years war, only for the Spanish to fire those cannons at the city.
Napoleon’s whole life was a huge f**k you, democratic revolution—> f**k I’m emperor although he was just an regular artillery office, all the European powers against him —> F**k You takes over most of continental Europe, Gets Exiled —> gets back to France and almost does everything again
The original Streisand Effect. Now it's *named* after her.
I had a cousin/"friend" who slept with three (out of three) of my boyfriends in high school.
Senior year her longtime crush finally paid attention to her. I f****d him. It was my first time. I wasn't even into him, I just REALLY wanted to hurt her.
The strangest part is that he won me over. We're still together and he has zero interest in her.
She has to see us at family functions.
I dare you to say that's not the greatest f**k you in the history of humanity.