Not terribly good at anything and proud of it


The Olympics and all this hype about all things British is amusing to me.

I visited there years ago and found the country a bit pretentious and stuffy.   Now I find that I was all wrong about England which can be quite jolly after all.


Have you heard about the Not Terribly Good Club of Great Britain? In order to join you simply had to be ‘not terribly good’ at something – and preferably downright awful.

The Club received international exposure with the publication of “A Book Of Heroic Failures,” written by Stephen Pile, co-founder of the club. His book was a celebration of human inadequacy in all its forms.

A very funny book, Pile gathered the cream — or, rather, the glorious dregs — of the best stories of abominable failure. For example, there is the story of the Most Unsuccessful Tourist, who got off the plane during a refueling stop and spent three days in Los Angeles thinking he was in Rome.

The narrative exposes stories of breathtaking human incompetence (which Pile claims “separates us from the animals”), but it was so popular it caused Pile to be banned from his own club.



The book included a membership application form for the Club. The result was predictable and tragic: membership rose. It rose to the point where it became very evident that the club was – for want of another term – a roaring success. Under the terms of its constitution they had no option but to close down immediately.

I guess the world is full of people who can only aspire to the mediocre, yet, unintentionally become the very best they can be at being awful.  You’ve got to love that!

I’ve decided to form a chapter in my community.  In order to quality for membership, you need only provide evidence of some embarrassing failure.  I’m qualifying with a calendar I produced for the Federal Land Bank of New Orleans which contained the month of Febuary.  (I still have trouble spelling that month.)

Let me know if you’d like an application.  Dues, $2000 a year, can be paid with Monopoly money.

7 thoughts on “Not terribly good at anything and proud of it

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  3. I claim qualification. Left school at 14 after being caned almost daily. Sold newspapers and delivered telegrams until age 17. Joined army and was regarded as worst rifle shot in Platoon. Left army with chronic case of alcoholism. Joined AA got sober and best job I could get was truck and taxi driver. Bought taxi license in Sydney and had to work 100 hours a week to pay it off. Ended up working until I was 82. Old man and my reward is the Government gives me nothing , no pension, no hearing aids . Nothing

  4. I am really qualified!
    My daily life is an exact copy of French policeofficer Closeau. My friends even have named their failures after me. They say they have done a Karlsson when they really mess up things or do something really disatreous (if that is the way to spell it) or brake things. So, I have finally come home! If there is a community with fools like me!

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