Ballad of Failure

Disclaimer: In retrospect, I realize that this post may seem overly emo and a desperate cry for help. Rest assured, it’s nothing of the sort. I just thought it would be something interesting to write about.

In a shocking twist to approximately zero individuals, Nikky is again hit with a fear of failure, despite a life that is, oddly enough, largely devoid of what he would consider serious failures to the point that he would dwell on them and remain bitter even to this day. I got the idea for this post on the bus after work today when reflecting a short story I had read in the morning. After reflecting upon the message of this tail, I started reflecting upon my own failures and sources of bitterness.

I was always in the advanced placement classes throughout school. or at least, what little classes my small district could offer to those who they didn’t consider challenged enough. When I reached high school, I didn’t expect anything else. We were on the semester/block schedule, so we changed classes in the middle of the school year. In my first semester of ninth grade English, I suddenly found myself somewhat challenged and while being made to work at last part of the time, I finished the class with a solid A and on my way to what I thought would be a successful high school career (as much as you could call high school “successful”). Yet I had heard rumblings of an “advanced” 9th grade English course that students were being invited to take if they did well enough in the first semester.

There was only problem: I never got invited.

I’m still bitter.

Whatever, English sucks anyway. I just made up whatever I felt like and vomited it on paper for a passing grade. Most of the time that passing grade was somehow an A, which was often very surprising when I considered just how much of the class I was just randomly guessing.

The second event that really stung was when the UW’s First Year Programs didn’t choose me to be a FIG leader. I, in my own mind, was clearly perfect in all ways and would have made an excellent mentor. Except my interview was two days after lung surgery and I had exactly zero minutes to prepare. A drugged-up shuffling out-of-breath zombie was forced to somehow interview for a leadership role. Needless to say, and despite my assurances that I was quite awesome most of the time, they ditched my application just about as quickly as possible.

I wasn’t at my best, but I still expected better. Sting number two.

Sometime around them I applied for the Washington State Legislative Internship. The application process was during the middle of a very intensive and busy quarter: I was working as well as taking Italian (languages are about the only class I really needed to study for), and was just trying to keep my head above the water with that damnable Italian homework and studying so I could graduate. My mistake here? I wrote the internship application essays the night before they were due and took almost no time in editing them. Come time for the interview, they were like “well, your first essay is awesome. But what the hell is with this second one? Are you a moron?” It didn’t go exactly like that, but fairly close. It turns out I had completely blew it and sent them an early draft of one of the essays, where there were run-on sentences, spelling errors, and just about everything that you could do wrong with an essay. Didn’t get that internship, to say the least.

My last failure is really more of an ongoing failure of life, but since it weighs heavily upon me, I decided it mostly qualified for this post. I’m pretty horrible at the whole “dating concept.” With a naturally shy personality and an often crippling lack of self-confidence, I generally don’t have too much success even talking to girls. Combined with my amazing ability to always hit on girls who are already in long-term relationships, a feedback cycle occurs and I quickly lose any interest in trying to break my lack-of-relationship streak: sliding back into the mindset of “well, I guess playing games, staying late at work, and watching movies isn’t so bad after all.”

I suppose that’s just about it really. Until next time.

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