#521 Calling a mulligan on the day

Do you play golf?

Me, I’ve tried a couple times but it’s always the same: I lace up some stained sneakers, borrow rusty clubs from someone’s basement, and then scrounge around the parking lot for some dented balls for my once-a-decade tee shot.

Now, I’ve mentioned my athletic abilities before so you’ll understand why I love that golf rule which lets me call a mulligan. Have you heard of it? Basically, I swing and miss the ball a dozen times before eventually shanking it dead sideways into the dense forest.

But then I just yell MULLIGANNNNN! really loudly and everyone lets me try again.

It’s a great rule and it got me thinking: We should be able to call mulligans anywhere. Because hear me out.

What if you could call a mulligan on your driving test? Yes, after tire-punching the curb and hitting Grandma’s shopping cart you just drop the m-word and start again. Or how about calling a mulligan after an awkward side hug in the airport? Or after accidentally spitting a tiny piece of food on your date’s face?

It’s starting to sound good, am I right?

Now, my old college friend Mike is the master. See, he’s perfected the beautifully indulgent Weekend Mulligan. He often gets up and groggily stumbles around the kitchen, spills coffee grinds on the floor, and accidentally steps on the cat. But then he stares at his dark, hollow eyes in the mirror and realizes he woke up too soon.

That’s when he just calls a mulligan on the day and goes back to bed with a plan to give it another shot a few hours later.

People, life’s too short not to sleep when you feel like it. So take a page from our book and when your first couple shots land in the rough, just yell mulligan and start again.


We are in USA Today today!

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— Email message —

“Yesterday, a mysterious package showed up at my apartment. I opened the box, and there it was: The Book of Awesome! The label said my mother had ordered it for me (I go to college three hours from home). I called her to thank her then asked how she knew I’d wanted the book! She said she saw a link I posted on Facebook and thought it would be a nice surprise! So there’s another awesome thing for the list: Small surprises that show how much someone cares.

This gift reminded me that even though my mom and I have disagreements she loves me so much more than I could ever fathom. Your site and book are so lovely — sometimes we get so wrapped up in our own personal crises that we forget to remember the small miracles that make up the beautiful world we live in. Thanks for reminding us every day. Keep the awesome alive!” – Kelly from Virginia

Photos from: here, here, and here

70 thoughts on “#521 Calling a mulligan on the day

  1. The closest I get to even trying to play golf is putt-putt, and I’m totally fine with that. I’d need more mulligans than are allowed, I believe …

    Calling a day-mulligan, wow; so awesome. I see one in the near future.

    AWESOME story! :)

      1. I wish that was a legitimate excuse to leave work.
        ME: “Hey, I’m going home….I’m calling a mulligan on today.”
        BOSS: “Well, you go right ahead and do that. I think I will do the same.”

        Kinda funny cuz we have a bar like 3 blocks from work called Mulligans.

        1. Hahaha wait, you mean me telling you to take the day off isn’t legit enough to fly?!

          Ok, I guess I get that.

          But … I think that’s a sign for where you should go for a lunchtime treat … ;D

          1. LOL…if only. Maybe I need something like a hall pass like back in elementary school.
            I have a very cool, awesome boss. I’m sure she would have a laugh about it and actually let me leave if I tell her I want a do over.

            1. Hey, it’s worth a shot. Maybe if you catch your boss in the right mood the whole office will have a mulligan.

              It’s like the adult version of a snow day.

              1. I’m just trying to add my signature to the petition that Bekah get to call a Mulligan today and head home. If we get enough signatures, maybe you can print off this whole comment page, and show it to your boss as evidence?

                There’s an off chance that your boss will just get distracted by how cute bed-head-baby is, and you can run out of the office and he/she won’t even notice you’re gone! :)

              2. Omg. How amazing would that be to get to work and see a sign posted on the door:


                We’re calling a mulligan on today, guys. Go home and sleep some more. See y’all tomorrow.

                — Your boss”

                1. I might just have to see if I can conjure up a sign and try to pass it off as a sign my boss made…. hmm…… no that’ll never work….or will it?

                    1. Did somebody call for a picket line? (Zoom to the 0:30 second mark! Just replace the words to the chant with “Bekah gets a Mulligan!”)


                    2. D’oh.. my embedded link didn’t work very well, given all the nested replies.. You know what that means, don’t you?


    1. I could have most definately used a mulligan this morning….. then again, there’s always tomorrow….

  2. Bedhead Baby makes its return! Huzzah!

    I love spending my mulligan-sleep on the couch with the tv on some marathon of Mythbusters or Modern Marvels or No Reservations…that way, when I do finally get up and see the same show on, I don’t think I’ve wasted the day. Self-mind tricks are awesome.

    1. Totally love the idea of the self-mind trick here.. awesome!

      However, Ix-nay on the Oh-nay Eservations-ray, hosted by one Mr. Anthony Bourdain. Currently, this site is locked in a bitter webby nomination battle in the “Blog – Cultural” category with Bourdain, so I think references to his show should be verbotten around here (at least until the webbies are over!).

      Speaking of – Everyone go vote!


      1. Was not aware, Freddo! Clearly, this site is the superior blog. Voted and done and passed on to others! Thanks!

        1. No, thank YOU Mel! :)

          As a fellow fan of Bed Head Baby (really, who isn’t a fan), we’re all definitely kindred spirits…

          Huzzah, indeed!

  3. What a great idea. I expect to be screaming “MULLIGAN!” throughout the day. Does it work if you accidentally bump into the car you are tailgating? I plan to try it out. I’m also getting a physical today, so if I don’t like any of the results, I know what I’ll be yelling.


    1. I don’t know about where you live, but here in the big MO, it is so YOUR FAULT if you rear-end somebody. I really dislike tailgaters, and I let them know. No mulligans allowed on this one, cuz tailgating can most definitely be avoided.

  4. Congrats on USA Today…too bad they didn’t give you an infographic, like the big lobster shows that Maine produces more seafood than the smaller lobster Oklahoma

    1. Ahhh.. Oklahoma.. everyone’s second favorite lobster-producing state.

      Too bad about the infographic though – when I was a kid and we’d vacation in the states, the USA Today delivered to our hotel room was a big treat for me, because I’d immediately rush to see all the infographics (other than comics, the only part of the paper I’d read).

      They could’ve done a pie-chart on the distribution of awesome things, and it could’ve had a big slice of almost 20% for “Bathroom-related”, and then the other 80% of the pie would be “Other awesome things”.

      1. Hahahaha. Perfect.

        Um maybe USA Today needs to call “mulligan” and redo the piece, adding a sweet and ever-informing infographic.

        But yes, congratulations! So exciting. :)

  5. I saw the USA Today article this morning and giggled to myself, knowing that I’d found the blog site before they did. :-) Oh, and I got my book last Friday at the office. Although I knew it was coming, I’d forgotten I’d had it shipped to my office instead of my house, so the “surprise” delivery was a great ending to my work week.

    Thanks again for all the AWESOME you share!

  6. Baby picture has returned with a vengeance! I love it love it. Oh so much.

    I really need to get back into the regular swing of things and comment at midnight like the good old days. Can I call a mulligan on this?

  7. Kelly’s reaction inspired me to ship The Book of Awesome off to my younger brother, who’s 2000 miles away, in Minnesota. Thanks for reminding us all of life’s little joys, and ways to reach out to each other! AWESOME.

  8. Aw baby picture!
    So I definitely woke up, read this article … and decided to call a mulligan on my own day. And it made everything so much better! I was finally able to catch up on some lost sleep … although I did wake up looking like Junior up there!

  9. Hey Neil, just wanted to say congrats on becoming “Heather’s pick” at http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/
    I always look forward to seeing her pick and this time I was so excited to see it was your book, since I have been following your blog for a while now… it always lifts my spirits, and on a bad day, its one of the first things I do because I know I will feel better and probably “LOL” !
    Ordering my copy 1000 Awesome Things soon :)

  10. just wanted to say that the book smells and feels absolutely amazing.

    i smiled quite a large smile when i saw the Colon entry, remembering the time you blogged about how you sneakily kept it in there after the publishers wanted it out multiple times. hahaah. awesome! :D

  11. I have both a [CTRL]+[DEL] necklace AND a [CRTL] [ALT] [DEL] necklace.

    Some days … some days … I wear them both.

  12. Yahoo!
    The Bed Head Baby has finally returned! He is seriously cute. When I get the book, I hope it has the BHB on one of those awesome pages! :D

  13. Ahhh, Mulligans. Is there no-where that is safe from a cry of MULLIGAN!!!!!

    Playing Settlers of Catan tonight, and after a dumb trade was made (by myself), I cried out MULLIGAN upon realising my mistake :P

  14. In english class we use I digress. You were able to use it on state exams to completely start over if you screwed up.

  15. Calling a mulligan is an important phrase to keep in your back pocket for when you really need it. Another phrase I keep is: Right of Parlay.

  16. There have been an awful lot of days where I just wake up and crawl back into bed and decide classes are unimportant. It’s ALWAYS a good idea.

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