By Sienna Beck / New York City
On May 9, I went with my class to a captivating museum exhibit in Industry City in Brooklyn, N.Y. The Museum of Failure (MOX) is by far the most unusual but intelligent museum I’ve ever been to.
Many museums tell us about inventions that have worked out, but none of our incredible technologies and inventions would be here today without failure. This museum is dedicated to all of the failed inventions to remind us that even the most successful companies and inventors had failures along the way. All around the museum are quotes from famous inventors and successful people talking about how failures were necessary for their successes.
Now let’s talk about some of these failures!
Take the Hula Chair. It was the most hilarious spinning chair to strengthen your abs while working! When you sat on it, you could control the intensity, speed and twistiness of the chair. When I tested it out, I put it on the highest setting, but I cannot imagine working like that! Imagine typing on a computer while your torso is being twisted left and right. Office chair? Out of the question. But maybe for fun! I still feel the spinning sensation in my waist from the Hula Chair!
Next to the Hula Chair is the wall of rejected Oreos. (The wall that made me incredibly hungry at 10:15 a.m after a huge breakfast!) It made me sad to see that so many Oreo flavors failed! Ninety-nine out of 100 of the flavors sounded appealing to me: the Fruit Punch Oreo, the Brookie Oreo, the Dark Chocolate Oreo…
What was the Coolest Cooler? It was an orange cooler that had a blender on one flap and silverware and plates on the other flap, a stereo that played music, and a lot of space for food. The only reason it failed was because they couldn’t make enough of them! LOOK OUT, Coolest Cooler company! As soon as they’re back in stock, I’m buying a million!
Have you heard of the Growing Up Skipper Barbie doll? When you twisted her left arm backward, her breasts grew and she grew an inch taller. As you might imagine, many people thought it was sexist and inappropriate. So, Mattel stopped production.
What about a glowing hockey puck called Foxtrax? The point of the glowing puck was to make it easier for television watchers to follow the puck during televised games, but all it did was annoy the spectators who thought the glowing puck looked cartoonish.
Or the BIC for Her pens that were supposed to help females have better “smooth, trendy handwriting” (yeah, right) but it failed because why would females need special pens? The pens were made fun of for a long time because of the foolish idea.
Little Miss No Name was hands-down creepy. Dressed in rags with blonde hair and brown eyes, Little Miss No Name was the opposite of glamorous. Her sad, tearful eyes seemed to be following you wherever you were standing! I would definitely call that a failure, and a creepy one, too.
After seeing other people’s failures, it’s time for visitors to think about their own failures at the Wall of Failure. Using Sharpies, museum-goers write their own failures on Post-its and put them on a crowded wall of personal failures. After adding their own, many visitors then browsed the other Post-its to see which others applied to them.
My takeaways from the museum are that 1) It is okay to make failures, and even successful people and companies fail; 2) Not all failures are colossal ones; and 3) It is the best museum ever. I loved it so much, I brought my family back over Memorial Day Weekend.
Unfortunately, time is running out to hit the exhibit! It closes on June 18. I love it so much I would go every day until it closes. I would definitely recommend a visit. When you break for lunch, Industry City has all sorts of other cool stuff to see, too! But if you don’t make it to MOX on time, follow it to its next location: Washington D.C.!
Sienna Beck is a future author. She would like to become president when she is older. She lives in New York City (the best city in the world!) and spends her days ping-ponging between her two sisters, Willa and Olive.