How is he a failure?
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Haymitch is a drunk. He is seldom sobre and usually humiliates himself at official functions. I think he does this to cover for the pain he feels for not being able to help the tributes he must train for the games. He can't handle watching these kids get killed by highly trained tributes from other districts. Haymitch doesn't want to be a part of it.
he drinks: He gets drunk within 30 seconds. (It doesn't say that though. I just came up with it now actually. at 2:49 PM).