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7 Ways I Completely Failed at Childhood

7 Ways I Completely Failed at Childhood

By Josh Sorokach

My 9th-grade history teacher once gave me some advice I'll never forget: "Those who don't laugh at the past are doomed to repeat it." I believe he was trying to teach me that sometimes before we can succeed we must fail...miserably. We need to learn the hard way that paste isn't for eating, our sister's diary isn't for reading, and if you want to hold two pancakes up to your ears to pretend you're Pancake Mickey Mouse, do it BEFORE you slather those bad boys in delicious globs of maple syrup. It's always fun to look back at our failures so we can truly appreciate our successes. I failed at childhood in an estimated 2,893 ways, but I'll share with SparkNation my personal top 7 so that we can all embrace the awkwardness known as childhood together.

1. Flirting

A lot of people wait until middle school to begin their long journey of flirting futility, but not this guy. You could say I was a bit of an early bloomer in terms of flirty failing...which is quite possibly the worst attempt at bragging in Internet history. In third grade I wrote my crush one of those classic "I like you do you like me?" notes and PLACED IT IN THE WRONG VALENTINE'S DAY BOX. In a plot seemingly taken from a Nickelodeon sitcom, the girl who accidentally received the note said yes, and since I was too embarrassed to tell her the note was a mistake, we became boyfriend/girlfriend. We "dated" for two weeks, until she gave me the third-grade equivalent of "It's not you it's me" by deciding she no longer wanted to sit next to me at the lunch table.

Sadly, this is probably my most mature relationship to date.

2. I never learned how to draw.

I remember truly dreading art class while growing up because I was an atrocious draw-er and scissors confused me. I'm not being hyperbolic when I say I may very well be the worst draw-er in the world. Last year I went on a camping trip and someone announced we were going to play a game of Telestrations. I honestly felt nauseous, as if someone had said, "Hey Josh, do you mind giving a 10-minute speech about your first kiss while in your underwear?" THAT'S how absolutely awful I am at drawing. I attempted to draw the state of Texas, someone guessed I drew a hamburger, and I faked a stomachache and went to bed early. Sadly, this is the very best I have to offer.

3. I'm mechanically inept.

One lazy Summer afternoon, while I was debating between eating an Oreo cookie or taking a nap, my dad attempted to teach me how to change something called a "fan belt" in our car. "Car engines don't have fans because they're hot," I said. "How are you my son?" my dad probably thought.  During our lesson I burned my finger on the engine because, as I predicted, ENGINES ARE HOT. So I bid a fond farewell to mechanics and, just to be on the safe side, anything that involved a hammer.

But I was foolish. Now I'm overcome with a sense of dread whenever something needs to be constructed. "Don't worry, honey, of course I can assemble that bookshelf," I say. But we both know I can't.

The "honey" in that scenario is my television.

4. I didn't pay attention in Home economics.

Home economics helps you tdevelop the necessary skills you need to become self-sufficient. I used my time in home ec to test my hypothesis that I could substitute soda for water to make a delicious batch of "cola cookies." My hypothesis and my grade on those carbonated cookies were one and the same: fail.

5. I never learned to play the guitar.

Here's a fun lesson that every single one of my ex-girlfriends can teach you: People who play the guitar are hot. I had a casual relationship with the alto saxophone in middle school, but one day I dropped my instrument and a—I believe the official term is "do-hickey"—fell off, thus concluding my dream of becoming that guy in the park that everyone avoids. Learning how to play a guitar, on the other hand, raises your attractiveness level by two full points. Don't believe me? Who's more attractive: Bachelor number one or Bachelor number two?

6. I dropped out of preschool.

Seriously, I'm a preschool dropout. How does one find themselves a dropout at the ripe young age of four? With a lot of luck and pluck! My preschool had a midwinter break, and our teacher informed us that we would be changing locations AND teachers for the second half of the year. This did not sit well with four-year-old Josh. I informed my mother that I had "learned everything I was going to learn" in preschool and would not be attending some new building with a different teacher. I mean, c'mon! A new building? The bathrooms could be anywhere!

7. I failed to grasp even the most rudimentary basics of advanced mathematics and cursive writing.

In 5th grade I won a scholastic excellence award for obtaining the highest GPA in math. Looking back, it was all downhill from there. Once letters were introduced, my interest in math subsided. Letters in MATH? If we allow this abomination to continue, we might as well allow cats and dogs to marry each other and all walk around wearing POTATO SACKS!

Cursive writing was also no friend of mine. I continually forgot that words need to have spaces between them, somysentencesoftenlookedlikethisbutincursive. You know, like a PSYCHOPATH! My mother, probably regretting her cavalier attitude regarding my premature preschool exit, was kind enough to hang a few of my 500-letter cursive monstrosities on our refrigerator while silently calculating how much it was going to cost to financially support someone who couldn't grasp the relatively pedestrian concept of a sentence for the next 60 years.

The lesson: stay in school!

What was your biggest childhood fail? (We still use the bunny ears method to tie our shoes!)

Topics: Life
Tags: embarrassing things, funny things, childhood, fails, being a kid

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About the Author
Josh Sorokach

Josh Sorokach is a comedy writer living in New York City. He's a former American Idol winner, three time Olympian, and habitual liar. Follow him on twitter @Joshsorokach.

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