Failure. Success.

You say "Potato...".

Once upon a time, two different guys got kicked out of their bands...

In 1983, a guitarist was asked to leave his band abruptly, undramatically. Bewildered and well, furious, he vowed revenge. He. Would. Absolutely Kick Their Butts By Forming A Way Awesome-er Band And Make His Original Band Regret Ever Dumping Him.

He wrote songs, he practiced, practiced, practiced, and he hired new bandmates who were awesome musicians.

Within just a few years, his new band signed a record deal, their first album proceeded to go gold, and they sold over 25 million albums. This guitarist is apparently (I say apparently because I don't know heavy-metal) considered one of the most brilliant and influential musicians of his genre. His name is David Mustaine, his new band Megadeth.

The band he was originally kicked out of however was Metallica. They sold over 180 million albums.

So, Boo Hoo. He failed. (No one else thinks so, but he apparently thinks so.)

The other guy who got kicked out of a band... was kicked out because he didn't fit in. Among others, he was the only one not doing drugs. 

So the rest of the band got together and asked their manager to fire him. 3 days later they replaced him and did their first recording, and went on to sell 800 million albums. The band was The Beatles.

Paul McCartney would come right out and say it: "He wasn't quite like the rest of us." "We were... wacky... He was... sensible..."

Can you imagine being kicked out of The Beatles for being "sensible"? For not doing drugs?

NOW what am I supposed to tell my kids?

So basically one guy was famous and successful... and still thought he wasn't. Another guy then got kicked out of arguably the most successful band ever, and never "made it back".
Guess which one would come to describe getting kicked out as the best thing that ever happened to him?

Pete Best initially experienced "failure" NOT from actually not being good enough, or even from doing anything "wrong". At one point some people (including female fans) thought he was the best-looking Beatle. After getting kicked out, he then also had to "survive" Beatlemania. The idol-status of all those people who did "that" to him. But he would go on to find a steady job as a civil servant, get married for the next 50 years, have 2 daughters and 4 grandkids, and his own band named after him, which he would still do public performances with, just for fun. Just... not for wild fame and fortune and a crazed fan shooting him.

"Wacky's" great for.... entertainment? This is the whole problem with entertainment and reality tv and what-not - what's "bad" will so very often be more alluring than what's "good" (so instead of watching The Kardashians, let's have a gadzillion animals at home and watch what else kids are making on Youtube these days!)

Caveat:

There are three freaking SNAKES up for adoption on the SPCA website right now and if you want them the vet would first like to speak to you about their pre-existing health conditions. We know this because Hamster Ninja was eye-ing "Brownie". Thank God for Sophie The Russian Hamster being in our home right now.

Also, Rockstar likes to play this to irritate me:

PFUDOR = Pink Fluffy Unicorns Dancing On Rainbows = IWTHMOTHWSJTMIS = I Want To Hit Myself Over The Head With Something Just To Make It Stop :D. There is one version that plays just the unicorn on the rainbow for ONE HOUR. (See kids, you don't need to do drugs to annoy your parents!)

See, I don't believe the Beatles necessarily needed drugs to perform. I think somewhere in their personality along with the wild talent lay a susceptibility to using heavily (lotsa articles about the alcoholics who qualify for Mensa), and I guess I'm just opening the door to getting hammered for laying keyboard to the Beatles, except the alternative - to see probably the greatest band of all time as achieving what they did with heavy drug usage going hand in hand - is worse, isn't it? There are whole books written about the presence of drugs throughout the Beatles' career, a list of songs inspired by drug trips (personally, I always loved Yellow Submarine but how is "We All Lived In A Yellow Submarine" that different from "Pink Fluffy Unicorns Dancing On Rainbows," which I'm pretty sure is something a bunch of kids came up with while watching Canadian Youtuber Andrew Huang(he credits one of his viewers with first inspiring him to do Unicorns))

pic from ideas.lego.com

What if the real reason such a gifted group of performers as the Beatles couldn't stop with the drugs was because of a correlation between susceptibility to an addiction, and pure creative talent? (That, and the fact theirs was the era of free love, anti-war and yup, drugs, in the '60s.) Nowadays we know differently, don't we? Plus, nowadays we have Youtube (with... the parental controls on, of course.)

Not to mention, what if the need for drugs was just an excuse? See Mark Manson, author of The Book I'm Still A Little Chicken To Name, practically reviles the pursuit of pleasure: "Pleasure is a false god... ...The easiest to obtain, the easiest to lose..." "Ask any addict (or adulterer) how they feel about the pursuit of pleasure..." 

At which point I finally feel halfway safe enough to say what book that was from:

Screen shot off Amazon.com

The Subtle Art Of Not Giving A F*ck by former banker-turned-blogger Mark Manson.

I decided to horribly plagiarise paraphrase the band stories in this book because "over 1 million copies sold" be damned, the title alone might just make some of us parents cover the kids' eyes, "Ah Boy Ah, Don't Look This Way Ah. Got F Word Ahhh.." and unless you actually read it with a pinch of salt, some can come off as a little... too irreverent. (Hard enough already getting all that 'tude from the kids today, without an internationally best-selling book title that appears to advocate "Not Giving A F*ck"). It would be an uprising of F* words and 'tude to match, from which society might never recover! Today it's reading this book about NGAF*, tomorrow issa Life Of Crime 😀 Problem is, while Manson does clarify that he doesn't mean to not care about anything, you do have to read it through. And the colourful language and examples are way more attention grabbing.

Now, I don't have actual tweens yet, (do an almost-10yr old who can Major Eye-roll me pretty good (of course in school and at home he'd get in trouble if it got too far, but kids are not total robots, right...) and a contender for Hong Kong's Biggest Tween-Wannabe* who has just passed her fifth birthday count?) And SO. I shalt falleth on the swordeth and readeth the #1 International Bestseller with the most compelling and bad*ss title because well maybe I could use a Life Of Crime 😀

For real though, I was initially a little misled by the title, and I only looked further into it after Bored Panda re-posted this picture off the Daily Mail awhile ago, along with a collection of others, with a comment that was in essence:

"No F*cks Given"

As in, old couple flips a car, poses for pic even as rescuer climbs in to get Grandma out. I assume this old couple read the memo about not deliberately flipping cars, but as my former Taiwanese RMs (bank relationship managers/Sales) liked to remind me, "As-ident Happen No-bah-dy Hurt Is Best Of Unlucky." If they umm, "gave more of a F-" they might've had heart attacks from flipping a car even if no one was otherwise hurt...

Separately, that was how the internet was won one day by the elderly 😀

ps: *Hamster Ninja already asked why grownups or Youtube or on tv people get to use the F-word but little kids don't. Since I couldn't block out every single F-word there is (though we do try), I told her context is everything - whenever she's heard it it's been when someone caught their fingers in the door or got hit with something - BUT not in proper school or polite conversations.  

Happy Halloween! Try not to eat too much candy! (Or, if you do, at least try to make the next Fluffy Pink Unicorn Video out of it!)

(We were Metatton EX and Sans from Undertale, and Wonder Woman this year. Rockstar wanted company; Hamster Ninja just wanted to get to wear whatever SHE wanted.) Mine's just duct tape, felt and glossy cardboard held together with stick-on velcro - just for the night - but Rockstar'll be wearing that tailored Baleno hoodie for awhile...

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About Aileen

I blog about living and raising my son in Hong Kong - where toddlers have entrance interviews, parents keep test score spreadsheets, private school debentures can trade for more than half a million USD. Raising Rockstar's the most important thing I'll ever do. We show our true colors by the choices we make in bringing up our children. My blog is a message to my toddler son, about what the world and his parents are like today - for when he becomes a teenager and knows everything.
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