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The Not Terribly Good Club of Great Britain

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The Not Terribly Good Club of Great Britain was an unusual organisation. In order to join you simply had to be 'not terribly good' at something - and preferably downright awful.

The world is full of people who can only aspire to the mediocre, yet, in the words of club co-founder Stephen Pile, we cut sandwiches and queue in the rain for hours to watch Segovia playing classical guitar without once dropping the plectrum down the hole. For every Segovia, though, there are thousands - hundreds of thousands - who spend their time shaking the plectrum out, and it was for these that the Club was founded.

The Club was immortalised by the publication of A Book Of Heroic Failures, written by Stephen Pile. This book was a celebration of human inadequacy in all its forms. Like the not terribly good burglar who wore armour to protect him from dogs and householders, only to be caught on his first time out due to the terrible noise the armour made and the fact that, weighed down by all that steel, he couldn't run away.

Unfortunately, the book included a membership application form for the Club. The result was predictable and tragic: membership rose. It rose indeed 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.

Click here for some more heroic failures.


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