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May 22, 2017     West Seattle Herald
Pat's View: Celebrating Failure
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May 22, 2017

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Pat's View: Celebrating Failure | West Seattle Herald / White Center News Skip to Main Content Area Monday, May 22, 2017 | Clear sky, 57.2 °F search Letters Sign in Subscribe Contact Us Front Page News Features Sports Opinion Police Blotter South Park residents fight back against fear-inciting fliers By Lindsay Peyton Brad Cerenzia works from his home in South ... Experimac: Apple centric sales and service store opens in West Seattle Experimac, an Apple centered store offering services, repairs and ... Tides turn back West Seattle By Tim Clinton SPORTS EDITOR West Seattle's ride through the ... Amanda's View: Colosseum and memoriam By Amanda Knox Approaching Century Link Field in a throng of ... Police Blotter week of 5-15-17 Man arrested for firing gun in park Around 11:30 p.m. on Wed., ... Features Jean's View: Catastrophe hits Seattle Pat's View: Celebrating Failure Star chef Cameron Hanin brings art and craft to the Ma’ono kitchen Sunset of the week 5-15-17 Summer Fest GreenLife – Sustainability for West Seattle and Beyond Pairing Words & Wine – West Seattle resident Jessica Trouillaud builds business around her passion Pat's View: Hairy Experience High security hide-and-seek, K9 training at Sea-Tac Pat's View: Ace reporter Sunset of the week 5-8-17 Enjoy a healthy smoothie, tax-free Take a ride on the Goodship – Jody Hall paves the way with cupcakes, cannabis Good for you: Mom was right Kitchen Talk: A mother's true love Westside-O-Rama West Seattle Entertainment Guide Marc Lainhart is a prospector in service to spirit Smart investing can help you keep moving toward your goals Sunset of the week 5-1-17 Pat's View: Hanging Shoes Good for you:The Unscrambling of Eggs Kitchen Talk: Eggsactly what you need Happenings in the Heart of West Seattle Jennifer's View: Meet the new SW Precinct Crime Prevention Coordinator Can you free yourself of some investment-related taxes? Sunset of the week 4-24-17 Pat's View: Celebrating Failure 05/22/2017 updated 22 minutes ago By Pat Cashman In the long human history of great successes, inventions and innovations, lies an even longer trail of dismal flops, mistakes and failures. In short: For every perfectly-operating tunnel-digging machine---there are also untold numbers of “Big Berthas.” Many of my favorite quotes are about success and failure: “If you set your goals high and they are a failure, you will fail above everyone else’s success.” “Failure is disguised success.” “The best lessons learned are from other people’s mistakes.” Here’s another favorite: “Whenever you publish quotes from other people, don’t bother giving them attribution.” OK. From the start, the human experience has been a series of trials and errors. Think of how many dirt clods and chunks of wood cavemen must have eaten before they figured out better cuisine. “Hey, Oop! Come here! See if you don’t agree that this squirrel tastes better than boulders.” Some poor ideas are immediately obvious. Gargling with hot sauce, skateboarding off the Space Needle, surfing behind a speeding car, or holding an open flame to a certain area of the body---are arguably poor concepts. No one knows exactly where such notions come from (except for the one with the open flame which was invented at a college frat beer party by a guy named Stanley---whose name has been changed from Pat to protect his identity.) But it’s when bad ideas wind up losing a lot of money that they become noteworthy. New Coke, the Betamax, Ben Gay brand aspirin, yogurt shampoo and the Edsel should all be in a museum of failure---if only there was one. Wait! There is one! Or soon will be. The Museum of Failure is opening next month in Helsingborg, Sweden. Suitably, Helsingborg is the fourth largest city in Sweden, failing to crack the top three. The Museum will house a curated collection of more than 60 products---products that the Museum website says, “provide insight into the risky business of innovation.” A guy named Dr. Samuel West---who is something called an ‘organizational psychologist’---is the person in charge. He says, “The purpose of the museum is to show that innovation requires failure.” With that kind of mission, if the museum turns out to be a flop---it will simultaneously be a success. Among the goofed-up innovations the museum will house: • Bic pens specifically designed for women---presumably sleeker, prettier and less grubby than regular pens. • Coca Cola Blak---a coffee-infused version of the soft drink. “Drink three and stay awake for a month.” • A Harley-Davidson fragrance. No further details available, but it failed---probably because motorcycle riders don’t want anything masking the scents of sweat, fumes and bug juice. • A battery-operated health and beauty mask. It looks like it was designed by the maniac from those Halloween movies. The mask stimulated facial beauty using small electrodes---in effect, shocking your face into looking more attractive. The claim was that---if properly used---you’d wind up looking like the actress Linda Evans. If improperly used---you’d wind up looking like the maniac from those Halloween movies. The coming museum will also include some better-known near misses like the Segway. This sort-of scooter was introduced in the early 2000’s with more promise than a Trump-Comey wrestling match: “The Segway will be as big a deal as the personal computer!” “It will be more important than the internet!” “Faster than a speeding bullet. More powerful than a locomotive.” In fact, the Segway fell pretty well short of expectations---and that’s why it’s featured in the soon-to-open museum. (Even though they are used occasionally by police to catch crooks---provided those crooks don’t exceed a speed of 12 miles an hour---and that they don’t try to escape via bike paths and sidewalks in Seattle where Segways are, of course, not permitted.) Even relatively new products like the Google Glass will be featured in the new museum. If you remember, the Glass was designed to look like a pair of spectacles---that ideally nobody would notice were actually recording video. It turned out that silly things like privacy laws screwed up an otherwise fine idea---in much the way a virgin margarita screws up tequila. In fact, some say, 80 to 90 percent of new products fail. That’s good news for the Museum of Failures. It should eventually be much larger than any other museum in the world. Unless there’s a Museum of Reality TV Shows. Recently seen in a magazine cartoon: Two older men sitting in an office---as one of them remarks, “Those who don’t study history are doomed to repeat it. And those that DO study history are doomed to stand by helplessly while everyone else repeats it.” Pat---who is scheduled to receive a special plaque in the Museum of Failures---was a longtime cast member and writer on KING 5’s Almost Live. He is a keynote speaker---and a fundraiser auctioneer---plus he co-hosts a weekly on-line talk show: We encourage our readers to comment. No registration is required. We ask that you keep your comments free of profanity and keep them civil. They are moderated and objectionable comments will be removed. View the discussion thread. Please send us your news tips, photos or ideas of how we can better cover your neighborhood. Email us at or TEXT news tips to 206-459-6717 Receive updates on news and events in the West Seattle neighborhood via Twitter! Web development by Freelock Computing © 2017 Robinson Communications Inc. All Rights Reserved. Contact Us Terms Home Delivery Media kit available on request -- contact window.fbAsyncInit = function() { FB. 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