snapshots of an idle mind

November 22, 2005

12 angry men

Filed under: Uncategorized — sassinak @ 11:21 pm

i’ve had a few conversations recently that involved anger and it’s effects, control or ramifications. I suppose that one could argue that effects and ramifications are the same thing. funnily i’m listening to this screamingly beautiful music and it’s hard to think about this.

anyway. i was a child encompassed by anger and terror. where there wasn’t anger there was fear and where there should have been love there was hate. so i spent a lot of time in my life expecting to get kicked when i was happy. i spent even more time expecting that i would be the kind of adult who was violent.

I especially thought that there would be problems with children. In fact until something that happened in my mid twenties I had decided not to have children. It’s probably why I came late to the party and probably why I’m a little heartbroken at the idea of not having kids. Sometimes the things you think you want the least will break your heart the most.

Anyway eventually I had a couple of really fucking angry moments that did not go the way that I expected them to. The first was with a two year old who hit me in the face about half an inch below my eye with a surprisingly sharp plastic hoe [the farm implement… geeze you guys! *snerk*] and it hurt like HELL. No you guys a lot. I grabbed it out of his hand and shouted his name in this really angry voice and he flinched and looked afraid.

and the anger just melted away.

like it just wasn’t there anymore. i was just so heartbroken that i had made this beautiful boy afraid of me that i didn’t have an ounce of anger left in me.

it was actually pretty cathartic. I realised in that moment and in the many months and years thereafter that I had been a violent child but that I was not a violent adult. I eventually realised that both my physical and emotional violence (the emotional violence had rapidly become something that i pointed to myself… with severe long lasting consequences) [wow i’m a bit physically ill from typing that] were natural outcomes of being raised in a savage environment. [public school]

so i had become violent to deal with violence but when left alone i reverted to my own nature.

which is to hurt for every little thing
the butterfly i murdered with my bumper
the dying animals
the homeless people everywhere
my friends pain
beautiful music
unkind words
the chopped tree

to be unable to bear it.

and yet i’m still violent. i participate in sports which require me to work my body to a ridiculous degree and i’m not happy unless i’m a little bit injured. i tease my clients for being type a jocks but i am one myself. [speaking of, one of them took a climbing lesson because of me! she got three quarters of the way up a 5.8!]

so for me it turns out that anger isn’t a natural state… although i come closer to it around my second year of ridiculous pain. anyway i had a similar incident with an adult roommate a few years later and i realised that it was gone. that the scary black anger had melted out of me when i wasn’t looking.

it’s good, no child should hate that much.


all things considered my childhood was pretty tame compared to the ones on the talk shows. it sucked. it sucked a lot, but it wasn’t oprah material for sure.

and then i look at the angry people around me. and i hear stories about what angry people have done to people i love. and i hear about the shitty things that happen to people for no reason. worse i hear about the shitty things people do to other people for even less reason.

and two things occur to me.

that i am helpless to understand this incredible morass of rage in which i live

and that i am afraid to imagine what must have happened to those people to make them that angry.

i don’t know which idea is scarier really. that they are reacting to things which happened in their lives and left them feeling helpless and out of control and thus they inflict rage bombs on other people [done that btw, the leftover guilt sucks] or that they are just that angry.

because if people are just naturally that angry? if no one taught them to rage and hate? well then there will always be war and rape and greed won’t there? and that too breaks my heart.

holy shit this post hit nowhere near where i thought it would. but i like it.



  1. wow … i like it too.. and btw: you dont need a therapist anyway… you do a great job analyzing on your own.. now step over the fear threshold and answer those questions

    Comment by sugarpunk — November 23, 2005 @ 1:17 am | Reply

  2. I think that if we can understand WHY we are angry and WHERE the anger is coming from we can go a long way towards learning a lot about ourselves……
    Ive made a few very positive changes in my life because of my anger!

    Comment by whitesgem — November 23, 2005 @ 3:10 am | Reply

  3. punk: it’s very difficult to answer that kind of question for other people though don’t you think? i can only really see the seeds for my own feelings and although i get angry and i have anger inside me adn when i’m very stressed out anger manifests i am just not that raging person that i see around me all the time…

    gem: nice, me too i think. but what do you do when you understand it but you’re powerless to change it?


    Comment by sassinak — November 23, 2005 @ 6:09 am | Reply

  4. the key is for people learning how to positively channel their anger. I used to rage all the time and take it out physically. Football helped; it was OK to go crazy mad there.

    In time, I learned to redirect my anger to other outlets; often writing. sometimes I still have to hit something … I just go with something inanimate instead of people these days.

    I hope that some day, somewhere in the future, all of us will learn how to best use and defuse our anger and rage. We can all hope.

    Comment by DZER — November 23, 2005 @ 9:17 am | Reply

  5. dz: yeah for sure, i use climbing and all the other sports i’ve ever done for that. just toss the feelings at the wall and let them melt away or transmute themselves.

    i hit pillows and throw things :)

    let’s cross our fingers together shall we? :)

    Comment by sassinak — November 23, 2005 @ 10:15 am | Reply

  6. well sassiness i think you have done a great job…

    and love to bite pillows.. i mean HIT them … :)

    Comment by sugarpunk — November 23, 2005 @ 10:56 am | Reply

  7. thanks punk, i do try so i’m glad to know that it shows through

    i love to bite things but not necessarily pillows!

    Comment by sassinak — November 23, 2005 @ 1:01 pm | Reply

  8. Wow, it’s amazing that you have been able to break the rage and anger cycle. If everyone was able to accomplish this, it would be a completely different world we live in.

    I also had a terrible childhood. Not terrible because of my parents, but because of several other adults that were in my life. Unfortunately I could be a case for Oprah. Luckily, I have also been able to break the cycle. However, I am left with no self esteem and am a super overprotective parent.

    I only hope that one day you will be a mother so that you can pass along the knowledge and love that you have to give. :)

    Comment by SignGurl (Jenn) — November 23, 2005 @ 2:04 pm | Reply

  9. Hm.

    I’ve always been a very level person. Whether I’m remarkably good at subjugating anger (and there was a period in my adolescence where my fantasies were EXCEEDINGLY violent), whether I’ve managed to channel it into my writing sufficiently (most of my fiction is horrifying)or if I’m just too far gone ADD to bear grudg…oh look! SHINY!…

    However, I can say, with absolutely no doubt in my mind that my son was BORN ANGRY. He was a pissed off infant he was a violent tempered toddler/preschooler (and I can DEFINITELY relate to the pain of getting clocked with a toy) and my daughter was born remarkably chill.

    I think some of us are intrinsically angry, and others are not. Learning to cope with the anger is admirable, though. Good for you!

    Comment by mightydoll — November 23, 2005 @ 2:46 pm | Reply

  10. jenn: i don’t know for sure until i have kids of my own but i’m at least willing to believe i can do it. i may make certain to have a punching bag in my basement though :)

    my parents are pretty excellent people, there were issues in my home but they were in no means the only reason i had a messed up time.

    i’m so sad to hear that you are oprah worthy, no one should be that!

    i have no self esteem either but i lecture myself every time i hear myself diss myself and it’s starting to help!

    i hope i get to be a mom too but if not i’ll investigate foster care.

    doll: *lmao* i have some definite add issues of my own! oh look new sport! but i do believe there’s a certain amount of nature in this for sure. i was violent when surrounded by violence but as soon as i was away from it mine faded away (okay that took a few years and a lot of self awareness but nonetheless…)

    which of your kids is the elder? the boy?

    i think you’re right, and in my case and the case of folks like me i know what to do. but with the ones that are born that way i’m left helplessly shaking my head.

    i don’t want to believe that anyone is born angry, i want it to be true that you can trace it to parenting or fetal nutrition or or or… and i know that isn’t it. but i still wonder why it happens and what we can do about it.

    oh man baby toys are so SHARP what is that??

    Comment by sassinak — November 23, 2005 @ 3:18 pm | Reply

  11. I’d hate to think that, honestly, but my own not so empirical evidence suggests exactly the opposite, honestly.

    I was MUCH healthier while pregnant and nursing Baz than with MC. (and yes, Baz is the elder, at 7. MC is 4 1/2).

    Idunno, but you really haven’t felt ANYTHING until a toddler has hit you square in the nose with the back of their hard little head….

    Comment by mightydoll — November 23, 2005 @ 3:56 pm | Reply

  12. doll that’s the thing that has me upset, just because i want to believe it’s not true doesn’t make it not true. i think that last sentence might have been not english too!

    well, a kid hit me square on my new belly button piercing with a small sized basketball and i hit the floor unable to speak and couldn’t move for like 5 minutes… so maybe i’ve felt something in the region?


    Comment by sassinak — November 23, 2005 @ 4:05 pm | Reply

  13. hey sass .. this crazy ass holiday set apart from the canadian one is not good for flow of blogwhores like myself ..

    want some turkey?

    Comment by sugarpunk — November 24, 2005 @ 2:44 pm | Reply

  14. hey punk i know what you’re saying

    i’m working today and y’all are drinking

    i ask you, is that fair?

    yes please!

    Comment by sassinak — November 24, 2005 @ 4:02 pm | Reply

  15. LOL fair i dont know.. and my family doesnt drink.. i will have to leave to do that… (SOON!)

    Comment by sugarpunk — November 24, 2005 @ 4:23 pm | Reply

  16. your family doesn’t drink?

    dude that fully sucks.

    i still have another class to teach today in fact… it’s in about half an hour.

    Comment by sassinak — November 24, 2005 @ 4:33 pm | Reply

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