People who work in any industry for long enough eventually learn the tricks of the trade. More importantly, they learn all the secret ins and outs of the job that only people in their profession can know, like how food industry employees know there are probably roaches in every restaurant, and how retail workers know there are never “extras” in the back but will still use the opportunity to grab a 5-minute breather.
When u/TheMasterQuestioner and, more recently, u/HannibalGoddamnit asked Reddit:
“What is an “open secret” in your industry, profession, or similar group, which is almost completely unknown to the general public?”
People of all walks of life replied with their “open secrets.” From pilots to surgeons to cartoonists, here are some insider secrets you never knew, and maybe never wanted to.
The sheer magnitude of criminal cases that detectives have that will pretty much never even get looked at, much less investigated due to a massive lack of staffing.—u/Detective_IRL
We don’t actually know how general anesthesia works at the molecular level. There are theories but nothing concrete.—u/linkin06
If you book a rental car and are going to return it to a different location, you’re getting the sh*ttiest car on the lot.—u/Sunuvamonkeyfiver
Dummy thermostats are pretty common. It basically works like a placebo where people feel more comfortable when they think they have control over the room temperature. It results in way fewer complaints.—u/SpicyHat
You’ll never get told a nurse is monitoring your breathing, I could be pretending to take your pulse again or something else distracting, but if you know I’m monitoring your breathing, you’ll breathe differently—u/jaypkay93
If you see twelve different sellers for an item on Amazon, in all likelihood the total number of sellers is probably three to four, all of whom have multiple names selling the same item at different prices.—u/maleorderbride
Soldier here. Everyone knows that the government wastes money. But you have no idea how much the army will spend on a vehicle that will quite possibly never get used. If you ever drive on a base and see the line up of heavy armored vehicles that look brand new, its because they probably haven’t moved since they got them.—u/novags500
Surgeon here. All surgeons make mistakes while operating. Any surgeon who doesn’t is either not operating enough or lying.—u/sumvell
As a freelance ghostwriter, most of my clients are Russian or Middle Eastern men who publish five to ten ghostwritten romance or erotica books a week under female pen names. They spend 10k a month and double or triple that by flooding the market. At one point one client told me he had six of the top ten Regency Romance spots on the paid best seller list.—u/Thunder-Mutts
The amount of salt and fat in your food, especially at high quality restaurants. We kept a large hotel pan full of clarified butter behind the line, itd be empty by the end of the night.—u/MrGorgon