Time of death. 7th October 12:13am.

It’s one of those really familiar cliché images in a hospital drama, doctor giving CPR as others around them look on wondering at what point the doctor is going to join the rest of us and realise the body on the slab is no longer a person.

I’ve reached that point of realising the idea I’m trying to pump life into is just that, an idea. Not a living breathing thing but just a clever idea, a nice idea, an idea with energy to it and one that inspires but it’s not something I can keep giving heart massages to.

I’ve got to climb down off the stretcher, quietly say “shit” to myself and walk away.

I’m walking away from organising Fail Camp. Doesn’t mean it’s dead, it’s not a new idea, it’s a nice idea and someone else can pick up leading it.

It’s hard to face your own failure in this regard, it’s hard to fail so publicly, part of me wishes I’d failed on a huge scale, this is a bit of a damp squib- a blog post late at night, sneaked out. The fail camp blog & twitter stream will still exist, the expectation of my peers strangely met and missed. The energy and enthusiasm misdirected.

So, for the fail camp purists out there who advocated moving the venue at the last moment and not telling anyone, I’ve just gone one better: I’ve failed at making fail camp happen.

Conceptually it’s beautiful, personally it’s a tad frightening.

Part of me would prefer we all pretended the idea never bubbled out into the ether. That same part has an instinct to run away and hide. That same pretending hiding part would also like you to never mention it to me.

But there’s another bit of me, a bolder, brassier bit that wants to examine these feelings from all sides, walk round the shape of failure, feel it up close, press my nose against it’s glassy surface and huff on it to see if I fog it.

Yes, I’m sad to let go, yes, it does feel a bit of a waste.

But I’ve grown through the process (as you’d hoped I would). I had a number of really beautiful moments I cherish with Pete Ashton. He’s a genius, a do-er and a great guy to work with. Don’t worry, Pete, cakes are coming your way. I’ve made sure this one is dead before I walk away.

This entry was posted in Ben Whitehouse, Birmingham, FAILCamp and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Time of death. 7th October 12:13am.

  1. Russell says:

    It’s kind of poetic really

  2. If it had gone ahead, it would have been another example of a brumblogger having a great idea and miraculously making it happen,
    despite juggling a full time job and a load of responsibilities outside work. Of course every time that does happen, it’s hugely admirable and a great example of Birmingham’s digital scene, yadda yadda… but you know what? I kinda find it intimidating.

    This, on the other hand, is inspiring to me. Now, I realise it’s okay to “just” have ideas. Sometimes, life will just get in the way of executing them – and actually, there’s nothing wrong with that. Reading this, I feel more inclined to “do stuff anyway”, safe in the knowledge that it’s okay if it doesn’t work out – rather than becoming stifled by the fear of even starting something.

    So, in a funny old way, you’ve ended up doing exactly what you set out to do – inspiring through failure. Thank you 🙂

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