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You think your day was bad? Try on these worst day ever stories for size – and feel better!

Posted by mandyf on October 6, 2011

One of my favorite sayings is “Life sucks, get a helmet!” I’ve heard it on many bad days. I’ve said it to people when they were having bad days. Usually, it works well enough to snap someone out of their funk – even if just for a few minutes. So you’re having a bad day – maybe even what you think is the worst day – so what? Tomorrow will be better – or possibly worse. The point is, another day is another day, and no matter how bad you think your day is, the odds are there have been plenty of people that had worse days. Just take these examples for instance – how freakin’ happy do you think these folks were about their day?

Worst days from the sports world

Photo by John Trainor from Roswell, GA, USA

Ga Tech Football - not the 1916 version , but still tough

In 1916, Georgia Tech spanked Cumberland College on the football field. They destroyed them. They ruched for 1,650 yards! Their defense was so stingy they never even allowed Cumberland a first down. When it was all said and done, Tech won by a score of 222-0. At that point, it’s not just a bad day, it’s a bad season. It’s a loss unlike any in college, or pro, football history.

Here is a worst day ever twist. In 2009, Covenant High School (A Christian High School no less) defeated the Dallas Academy in girl’s basketball by a score of 100-0! You’d think that the team on the losing end would look back on that as a bad day – and to a degree they likely do – although in a slightly different way. The people that really look back on the day as a “worst ever” is the winning team, that school’s administration, and many people that actually witnessed the game. The Dallas Academy is a school for students with learning disabilities. The entire team was made up of 8 students, which considering that there were only about 20 girls enrolled makes fielding a team tough. As the game began getting out of hand with the girls from Dallas Academy clearly over-matched in this contest, 59-0 at the half, the Covenant coach allowed, and actually encouraged his team to continue taking three-point shots and employing a full court press to run the score up even more.

While reports vary, even from kids on the court that day, at least one girl anonymously related she felt ashamed running up the score at certain point. Fans took no pleasure in watching a team of special needs kids get beaten down so mercilessly. The Covenant coach would not withdraw from the game early. Afterwards, he refused to apologize for pushing his team to run up the score. The administration at Covenant saw it different. They apologized for the game and then forfeited the win. The coach, already a villain for piling on the points so needlessly, was then fired for his refusal to apologize. For him, he went from coach, to winning coach, to asshole winning coach, to asshole loser, to asshole loser unemployed coach in a matter of about 24 hours. That is a sucky day!

Here’s an odd mix of best day ever followed by worst day ever, but should really be WTF day? In 1885, Bon Accord of Aberdeen was invited to compete for the Scottish Cup. For those unfamiliar with the Scottish Cup, it is a soccer tournament. Bon Accord had to be pleased with a tourney invite, because they accepted and competed against Arbroath who defeated them 36-0. That is kind of a worst day ever scenario, that is a crushing defeat. What makes it as much of a WTF day as bad day however is that Bon Accord, while a professional team, was not a professional soccer team – they were a cricket team. Wires got crossed in several different places, but being good sports, and out travel expenses already, Bon Accord took the shellacking.

Worst day ever divorces

Aside from divorces involving children and custody battles, there is nothing worse than getting taken to the cleaners by an ex. Granted, there are plenty of times one spouse really gets screwed over which totally sucks, but then there are those times where even though everyone says the right things and people say the divorce is “amicable” someone is pissed off. Usually that pissed off person is the one writing really big checks to make it all end. Here are a couple guys that understand what a bad day can mean in a way most people never will.

When Steven Spielberg and Amy Irving first met, they were basically unknowns with bright futures. Neither had much of anything, and it could be argued that Irving was actually doing a little better. The pair dated several years, long enough that they felt comfortable getting married in 1985. By then, Spielberg was undoubtedly enjoying more success professionally than Irving. After 4 years of marriage and one child, a son named Max, Spielberg ponied up and signed an agreement turning over $100 million to Irving in one shot. They could be friends, they did have a child, but cutting loose $100 million hurts any time you do it.

photo from World Economic ForumIf giving your ex $100 million is unpleasant, giving your ex $1.7 billion is like having your prostate exam performed by Captain Hook. Rupert Murdoch is the only man around that can testify as to whether that is an accurate assessment or not, because after divorcing his wife of 32 years, Anna, that is what he shelled out. Initially, the split was going to be less than that sum, but Rupert, like many smart men dealing with conflicting passions, thought with the little head and did stupid things his attorneys had to have told him were imbecilic. Before the paperwork was all signed and ready to turn in, Rupert forced Anna out of her seat as a board member of News Corp. and things got incredibly ugly.

At was no secret by then that Rupert was dating an employee of his at news Corp., Wendi Deng, who did later more or less replace Anna in the bedroom and boardroom. Anna let fly at her soon to be ex with both barrels blazing and kicked him in the Jimmy over and over again (figuratively speaking) until Rupert settled for a total of $1.7 billion with $110 million of that in cash up-front. If he had been less of an asshole to Anna, it is rumored he could have gotten away with paying her as little as a billion – which still makes for a worst day ever.

Marvin Gaye

Truly unique in many ways, when Marvin Gaye divorced from Anna Gordy he was so broke he didn’t even really have the money to pay his attorneys much less his ex. The attorneys looking to get out of the deal and get something for Anna agreed to allow Gaye to record an album whose royalties would go exclusively to Gordy as alimony in lieu of no other alternative. The attorneys were excited they were done with the case, and with Gaye being a platinum selling recording artist, Anna felt good about seeing some major cheddar for many years to come – until the album actually dropped at least.

The album, “Here, My Dear” was divorce themed and unpopular. Sure people understood his feelings, but nobody wanted to pay to hear hm bitch to music. Critics hated the album as much as consumers did and it became the worst selling album in the Marvin Gaye catalog.  Marvin got panned and Anna barely got paid thanks to winning the royalties to his worst selling album. For Anna Gaye, the agreement was truly a worst day ever.

Worst wedding Day ever

What is worse than a horrible divorce? How about a horrible wedding that leaves no joy for anyone involved. How about a wedding so horrific it makes international headlines? That is definitely a worst day ever.

In China, a man named Liang and his girlfriend were forbidden to marry by their families. The two young lovers decided to get married anyway and just o really piss their families off even more, created a marriage/suicide pact. After their covert wedding, Liang fatally stabbed his bride as a part of their pact. When it came to killing himself however he decided that maybe he didn’t really want to die and called the police. His wife was dead, he was on the hook for murder, and both of their families were extremely pissed off. That is an all around worst day ever.

Actors that missed the boat

Far worse than flubbing a line is never getting a line to flub. While these actors have all enjoyed good careers, you have to wonder if the following choices they made ever vaulted onto their worst day ever list.

Tony Soprano? Almost....

HBO approached Anthony Lapaglia for a role in a new dram they were just starting to cast. While many of the supporting roles were up in the air so far as who they really wanted, one thing that was for sure was that Lapaglia was to be the centerpiece.  he turned them down flat, for reasons still undisclosed, and never even bothered to haggle for perks or more money to take the role. HBO needed someone rather quickly and turned their gaze to James Gandolfini for the role of – Tony Soprano. The rest is history.

Eric Stoltz of Some Kind of Wonderful and the Butterfly Effect woke up one day way back in the eighties and said to himself  “Wow! I am going to be a huge star after I do this movie with Christopher Lloyd!” Okay, he didn’t really say that aloud, but c’mon, he had to be thinking it!   Everything was going great until he received a call that a different actor had their schedule opening up and he seemed like a better fit. That “better fit” was Michael J. Fox and the role was Marty McFly in “Back to the Future.”

Tom Selleck was doing pretty good as Magnum PI, but he was also ambitious at the time and looking to do more work on the big screen. He was pretty particular about the roles he would consider, which is why when he was approached for the lead in a new action adventure movie – which allowed him to retain his trademark mustache – he was ready to go all in. The problem was, the suits at the network weren’t ready to let Selleck branch out yet and refused to release him  from some smaller obligations he had to the show to free up time to film. No compromise seemed to work and Selleck had to bow out of the lead role for the film – “Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark”. His career went along just fine, but you can only wonder what might have been.

Who else turned down or lost roles that may have positively re-defined their career or brought critical acclaim upon them?

* Will Smith turned down the  role of Neo in “The Matrix” stating he didn’t really understand the premise of the film and how it would work on screen

* Richard Gere was in the lead for the role of John MacClain in “Die Hard” until Bruce Willis became available. Willis, it was believed, would be a far more convincing blue collar type cop that Gere was capable of pulling off – and time says they were likely right.

* Clint Eastwood was the studio choice for the role of Superman in the movie of the same name, but between contractual obligations, money, and a number of other factors, the role eventually went to Christopher Reeve.

* When casting “Rocky”, Stallone did not actually want to act in the film. He wanted to get James Caan to play the role of Rocky Balboa, but that fell through and Stallone took the role on upon the advice of – basically everyone involved in the film – and everything worked out fine for Stallone. Caan’s career didn’t tank by any measure, but it could have been a major coup for him if he could have pulled it off.

One bad choice after another once Seinfeld ended

*ABC purchased the rights to “Monk” which they were going to cast Michael Richards in the lead role. Richards thought the premise of the story and character couldn’t work and that it offered little comedic value. He turned it down and ABC sold the rights to USA who inserted Tony Shaloub in the role of Adrian Monk. It became one of their most successful series ever and Shaloub won  3 Emmy’s for his effort.

My album rocks – sort of …well not really

Don’t be fooled by sales numbers, sometimes albums that sell big don’t really make much money – at least not what you would think they should pull down at least. In some cases millions go into making an album, but that doesn’t translate into millions of sales. Sometimes, big stars expecting big things from their new album are left scratching their heads asking them self “how did everything go so wrong?” These are some of those people.

Heidi Montag spent $2 million dollars on her debut album, not including whatever she dumped into plastic surgery to make a slamming publicity package photo. When “Superficial” hit the shelves something odd happened – it never sold a couple million copies or even a million. Actually it didn’t even catch a whiff of a hundred thousand. Even 10,000 sales was out of reach. In actuality, in the US, “Superficial” has sold about 1,000 copies – and if rumor is true, a lot of that went to family and friends. That means she spent about $2,000 an album to actually earn about $2.25 per album sold. Not a good day…

In 2000, the Spice Girls released “Forever”. After selling 7.4 million copies of their debut album, they thought going platinum – at the least – was a given. There was one problem – actually several. Ginger spice left the group, Posh spice was mostly disinterested in the venture, the music was awful, the videos were lame and the adoring fan base of just 4 years earlier had grown up and out of saccharine pop slop. All told, about 200,000 units sold – only 7.2 million units off the mark.


What hurts more than that? Ask Meatloaf, or Mr. Loaf if you please, about his album “Dead Ringer” that followed up the 14 million copy selling “Bat Out of Hell”. Meatloaf had health issues, money issues, family issues – let’s just agree he had a lot of issues. “Dead Ringer” was supposed to put him back on top and get some cash flowing his way. Instead, the album fell flat, garnered little or no critical acclaim, and as a result barely managed to sell 500,000 copies – and that is a current number after 31 years on the market. he may not have actually expected to sell 14 million copies of “Dead Ringer”, but you can bet he expected enough to crack the platinum barrier.

What’s even worse than that? Try being Vanilla Ice. That’s bad enough. Now try being Vanilla Ice trying to follow up his hip-hop sort of smash (hey it sold 7 million) “To the Extreme” which included “Ice Ice Baby” with what can kindly be called an experimental type of collection of various sounds. It even had some sort of Rob van Winkleized remake of “Ice Ice baby” that really didn’t go over well. How bad was it? Since 1994, “Mind Blowin'” has blown dog. The best guess is that around 42,000 units have sold. maybe it has spiked a little after a few reality TV appearances – but to be honest – no one is really tracking sales of Vanilla Ice albums too closely. The verdict – career death!

Is it possible that even Lady Gaga can have a bad day? yeah, it kinda is. While “Born This Way” sold over 1 million copies in it’s first week out, the next week it dropped to 174,000 units sold. Those are still impressive numbers, but there is a catch. The bulk of her sales were online – specifically through Amazon who offered a .99 sale of the entire album – not just a track. For a buck, it was a bargain and people bought it unheard. It’s a decent album, it has sold well, but keep in mind that the vast majority of those sales netted her next to nothing. That is a kinda bad day – loyal little monsters and the curious did all their buying immediately to take advantage of the promotion which as fate would have it tanked future sales where the money was suppose to be made.

Lawyer’s worst day ever

Just for fun and to show that worst days ever know no bounds, here’s a worst day in court  for a trial attorney. Enjoy if you’ve ever been screwed by a lawyer.

In Hall -v- Brookshire, argued in front of Judge Barlow in 1955, the counsel for the plaintiff delivered a closing statement that was one for the ages. Somehow, he managed to offend nearly everyone in the room, according to eyewitness accounts at the time as well as drag Julius Caesar,  Jesus Christ and somehow the Mennonites as well, into his statement. it was a passionate closing statement. It reigned down fire and brimstone. It was also a load of crap, which Judge Barlow took him to task for in front of  everyone pointing out ever failed piece of logic and historical inaccuracy his statement contained. It makes for a really sucky day when that happens!

Here is an excerpt from the court transcripts:

“You may remember when Christ was preaching the gospel, in the Holy Roman Empire that Julius Caesar was Emperor of Rome. As Christ was making his way toward Rome, the Mennonites and the Philistines stopped him in the road and they sought to entrap him. They asked Christ: ‘Shall we continue to pay tribute unto Caesar?’ And you will remember, in the Book of St. Matthew it is written that Christ said: ‘Render ye unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and unto God the things that are God’s.”

In case anyone needs a little help, here is what is wrong with that portion of his closing statement:

* The Holy Roman Empire was not formed until about 800 years after the death of Christ

* Julius Caesar was already dead before Christ was born

* Julius Caesar was never the Emperor of Rome

* Christ was never embarking on a journey to Rome – ever!

* The Philistines hauled ass out of Palestine before Christ was even a twinkle in his Father’s eye

* The Mennonites didn’t even exist until around the 16th century, so they sure as heck weren’t entrapping  Christ anywhere

Keep in mind – that was all from just one paragraph of his closing statement!

If your day sucks, refer to this list and feel better in knowing everyone has a  crappy day now and then. You can let it beat you down, or you can take your licks and press on. Nothing says tomorrow has to be awful, and evern though many of the famous people on this list had some monumentally bad days, they still likely wouldn’t trade those bad days in for anything. We enjoy the good days, but how we handle the bad days is what defines us!


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