We’re all collectors of misadventure merit badges — those important life lessons we learn when things go sideways. I’d love to hear about your blunderful experiences and what they taught you!
To submit a story, fill out the form below. And each month, I’ll feature a selection of them here on Badge of Awesome.
Here are a few tips to get you started:
- Shorter is better. Try to keep your submission under 750 words.
- Your submission should be a true story (i.e., not fiction).
- Profound is great, but avoid getting too heavy. As a humour site, we’re looking for stories that may not have been funny at the time but can be laughed at in hindsight.
- Be sure to include a little life lesson about what the experience taught you. For inspiration, check out other stories on the site.
- Great stories don’t require exotic locations. Everyday misadventures make great fodder for submissions.
Although we review every submission, not every story will be published on Badge of Awesome. However, by submitting your story, you’re agreeing to let us publish it on this website. And if we do feature it, we’ll be sure to send you a link!
If you have any questions, feel free to email me at email@example.com.
Looking for inspiration? Check out these other stories.
Chapter 14: The Cement Truck – What a misguided act of heroism taught me about good intentions
It’s easy for me to point and laugh at Nicholas and his ludicrous screw-up on the job site. However, my own track record that summer included a few memorable mistakes as well. One stands out in particular. As I mentioned, cement trucks would roll in most afternoons to fill the moulds we had assembled that […]
Chapter 15: The Valet – What a parking disaster taught me about overconfidence
Judging by how much Paul cussed me out after filling his toolbox with cement, I accepted the possibility that I might not be cut out for a career in construction. Thankfully, I had other opportunities in the area to earn an income. Located on the shores of Lake Huron, my hometown of Port Albert is […]
Chapter 16: The Growl – What a wolf in the woods taught me about knowledge and responsibility
Most of the money I earned from buttering baby butts and filling toolboxes with concrete went into my savings account. But I did set some aside to fund the many camping adventures I took with Nicholas, Jonathan and Adam. Before hiking into the nearby woods for a night or two under the stars, we’d make […]
Chapter 17: The Shortcut – What a hike through stinging nettles taught me about cutting corners
Fortunately, the threat of disembowelment from monsters in the woods did little to dampen my love of hiking and camping. Unfortunately, that meant Nicholas and I had many more opportunities to demonstrate questionable judgement in the Great Outdoors. Indeed, whoever said two heads are better than one clearly didn’t know me and my little brother. […]
Chapter 18: The Backpack – What a giant duffel bag taught me about band-aid solutions
Despite our abysmal track record with hikes, Nicholas and I somehow convinced Mom to let us attempt a way more ambitious trek the following summer. Starting in Tobermory, our plan was to hike as much of Ontario’s 900-kilometre Bruce Trail as possible over the course of three weeks. We had a map and an unearned […]
Chapter 19: The Big Freeze – What camping in a snowstorm taught me about knowing when to quit
We returned home from our disastrous hike along the Bruce Trail feeling sheepish and defeated. But sadly, it wouldn’t be the last time an outdoor adventure forced us to tap out early. Because eight months later I’d be lying on a woodpile, as cold-induced convulsions wracked my body and a large branch jabbed me in […]
Chapter 20: The Snowy Gauntlet – What an idiotic bet taught me about redefining success
Just because Nicholas and I bailed on our March break camping trip doesn’t mean we hated the cold. Far from it. We were as Canadian as moose and maple syrup, built for blizzards and booger-freezing conditions. Exhibit A: the Snowy Gauntlet. Growing up in rural southwestern Ontario was great. But country living does require you […]
Chapter 21: the Christmas Tree – What a holiday hunt taught me about overkill
After failing to complete the snowy gauntlet against our big brothers, Nicholas and I were itching for a wintery win in the Martin household. Fetching the family Christmas tree the following year offered the perfect opportunity to show how capable we were — and to give Mom a much-needed break. The holiday season wasn’t exactly […]
Chapter 22: The BB Gun – What my dad getting shot in the eye taught me about owning up to our mistakes
Sure, Nicholas and I filled the living room with a giant, muddy tree. But that pales in comparison to the trouble our dad and his brother Ted caused over the holidays when they were kids. Now, I don’t know what Christmas in the 1950s was like exactly. I’m assuming it involved things like fighting off […]