Tag Archives: anger

I’m so angry.

The thing is, I don’t let myself get angry anymore.

buzz buzz buzz

I haven’t lost my temper in years. Literal decades.

buzz buzz buzz

I trained myself in college to count to three, take a breath, and reassess the world. Was it really worth losing my temper? The answer was always no.

buzz buzz buzz

But this week? My safeguards have said “fuck it, we’re on vacation until people stop dying.” Grief and sadness have worn me down until I can’t feel anything except this constant buzzing. I wear it like a second skin, arcing and sparking off me, just waiting. For one last person to show a disregard for humanity, a contempt for civility, a lack of respect for me or someone I care about. That’s all it would take.

buzz buzz buzz

I realized exactly how angry I was on Thursday night, after a show, when a drunken idiot, sporting a mid-90s MTV VJ hair style and a pin-striped shirt indicating he knew how to fix air conditioners, took offense that we didn’t care for the awful joke he needed to share with us and decided to hurl invective at us. It wasn’t anything special or anything we hadn’t heard before, but I started to get mad. And when I closed my eyes for a second to count to three, instead I saw myself putting my right hand on his neck and throwing him to the ground, kneeling on his chest and driving my fists into his face until he was a sopping, bloody mess, with swollen eyes, a broken nose, a gaping open toothless maw for a mouth. I opened my eyes and dared him to say one more fucking word, which, as you’ve guessed, he didn’t.

buzz buzz buzz

I’ve been walking that edge for the last three days now. Normally, a buzzing like this precipitates an anxiety attack, and some deep breathing and mental acknowledgement of my inability to control my life will alleviate it; or, in extreme cases, I’ll just take a Klonopin and a nap. But this is different. Deep breathing just accelerates my adrenaline, and the rush of blood in my ears brings a smile to my face. I don’t even want to write about it – I want to walk around until I see someone who deserves to be hurt and I want to hurt them and just keep hurting them because it isn’t fucking fair that we’ve lost good people who should still be around and all of the shitty fucking assholes are still oozing around and i just want to feel something right now because i haven’t cried yet and i’m so fucking goddamn angry at the world and i can’t breathe because fuck you for still being here when they’re not and i know it can’t bring anyone back to smash my fist into some idiot’s face but it might bring me back to the place i need to be because i’ve lost my center.

Fuck.

I’m so angry right now.

 

When someone you love dies, writers write. This is for Stacy.

Stacy Campbell

amidst the broken chair and the fuck yous
dying  against the hard concrete block walls,
another memory surfaces from another of our
twisted story telling sessions.

not normal was our normal,
death was our life,
our frankness would be frankly
appalling.

“I’m going to go the way of The Greats,” you’d say
deadpan with no sense of irony and I’d file that
away in the folder marked
“Things To Talk About Soon”.

the list was my(our) lifeline,
finishing it would be the right
time to talk about all of the reasons why
you were wrong. So

why did you leave entries
empty? Unchecked boxes on your list
means you have to still be here.
You have to

we have to explore the
catacombs and travel the world
and
just talk. Again.

Stacy Campbell

Anastacia Campbell at Six Flags New Orleans

Happy Stacy

Anastacia Campbell the photographer

Adam Avitable and Anastacia Campbell

Stacy Campbell

Adam and Stacy NOLA

 

 

I Wish That I Had Never Met You

“I’ll be honest, I can’t tell you how much I wish that I had never met you, you narcissistic asshole.”

Her email ended as abruptly as it had appeared in my inbox – the first communication in over a year. We finalized our divorce a little over four years ago, but there was still the occasional conversation, through email, text, or even the phone. I wasn’t surprised by the radio silence over the last year, though – while I am happy to be there as a friend, I knew that her resentment hadn’t dissipated.

I know that getting her to listen to anything I have to say would require nigh-Herculean efforts. She’s made up her mind. So, this isn’t for her. This is for me.

I’m sorry that I let you down.
I’m sorry that we ended our life together.
I’m sorry that I betrayed your trust and love.
I’m sorry that things turned out how they did.

I’ll never be sorry that we met.

We are the sum of our experiences. We are our past. I am who I am, in large part, because of our time with each other.  And I like who I am. It’s taken years of work. It took a failed marriage. It cost friendships. It resulted in indulgences of every appetite.

By reflecting on negative experiences  and focusing on eliminating my own negative attitudes and actions, I’ve become a better person. Yeah, I’m still a narcissist and an exhibitionist and a boundary-pushing twisted attention-mongerer. But it’s what I do with that and how I use that to apply to the world that matters.

Our lives traveled an amazing path when we were together, and if it hadn’t been for that, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. I hope someday that you’re able to like who you are enough to feel the same way.

 

My look at anger, the asshole of the emotional spectrum.

I used to get angry. A lot.

Adam Avitable is angry

High school and college were punctuated with periods of almost tangible hatred for the world, for my family, for anyone who I felt was unfair and unreasonable. I punched holes in walls, screamed at the top of my lungs from the serenity of my car, and imagined terrible things happening to those whom I thought deserved it. Late at night, when others were out drinking, I would break into the gym, put on deep bass, and attack the heavy bag until my knuckles bled.

And one day, it faded. In fact, everything faded, quickly replaced with total apathy. I had a phase that lasted the final two years of college where I didn’t care about anything or anyone. It wasn’t a conscious decision, but I used it as a chance to figure out why I got so angry, and I realized that I didn’t know. There is no reason to get angry in that way. No benefit. It didn’t help me, it didn’t make me stronger. All anger did was get in my way and prevent me from living.

Now, I don’t get angry – not really. Sure, I’ll rant from time to time, but that’s more just an exercise in creativity than anger. And idiot drivers and unreasonable people always plant a seed of vitriol that threatens to sprout, but it never does. I haven’t yelled at someone out of anger in over fifteen years. When I was married, we never fought in a way that I’ve seen other couples fight. Her anger wasn’t matched in intensity by mine – I stayed calm and apologized and knew that once everything blew over, we’d be able to talk reasonably about whatever the issue was.

Whenever I feel that flash of anger, I take a deep breath and think about what purpose my anger would have. I don’t want to make other people feel bad for their actions, even if their actions could be construed as wrong. I don’t want to make an employee for a large corporation hate his or her job more just because of the corporate policies. I don’t need to feel better about myself by denigrating or destroying someone just because I have the ability to do so. And that helps me to relax, and I can focus on the issue that made me angry and talk about it in a reasoned, calm tone. (It’s funny, though – sometimes that reasoned tone infuriates others because they think that I’m doing it to be condescending or patronizing, when I’m only trying to avoid snapping and saying something that’s unnecessarily hurtful or petty that I’d regret later.) It prevents me from burning bridges, it makes it easy for me to apologize, and it keeps me from taking the trust that others placed in me and betraying it just to make myself feel better.

Anger has always been the emotion most accessible to me, but some emotions don’t come as easily. Sure, I feel love, and open up and fall in love easier than I should, and I feel pain and hurt so acutely that I can’t breathe, but happiness? That one is so fucking hard for me to feel because I try to apply logic to it. And logic and happy don’t go together, which means that being reasonable and calm can equal robotic and frustrating. When I’m happy, I can tell you that I feel happy, but it’s not impassioned and it’s not emotional and that can make it unbelievable for those around me. I don’t really know how to be happy like others are. I want to, though.

I’ve always been proud of my ability to avoid getting angry, but recently I think that it may be adversely affecting me. Not in the holding it in until I explode and shoot up an office building way, but in a way that I associate with someone who is deaf or blind and gains stronger senses. Rationalizing away my anger so that I can be the better person, so that I can try to be reasonable and understanding, so I can avoid taking out frustration on someone who may or may not deserve it – all that does is increase my anxiety and depression and pain until it’s almost unbearable, a stone that drags me under. And when the people I thought I could trust jump out of the way to avoid being dragged under as well, it just makes it all worse and self-perpetuating, even when I can’t blame them in the first place.

I’ve been emotionally dismantled over the past month, torn down from multiple directions, and things have never been more raw than they are right now. I’m in a dark place where I’m finding it hard to be reasonable and logical, because how can it be logical to want to lay in bed in the fetal position and sing Sinead O’Connor songs to yourself until you fall asleep? The robot logic board part of my brain has no answer for that, and I think that’s why my anger got away from me today.

All it took was one little event and before I had a chance to even think about what I was saying, it was too late: “You shitty fucking cocksucker! You’ve ruined everything, and I want to throw you into a fire and watch you melt and die. All you had to do was one. Fucking. Thing. And you fucked it up, you worthless little pissant piece of shit. Is it so hard? Am I speaking motherfucking English? Why can’t you fucking understand me? I JUST WANT TO WATCH SOME FUCKING AMERICAN FUCKING NINJA FUCKING WARRIOR, YOU FUCKING PIECE OF FUCKING SHIT FUCKING REMOTE FUCKING CONTROL!”

I don’t know if I feel better or not, but I’ll be over here singing “I can eat my dinner in a fancy restaurant” if you need me.

Fuck you world

Dear world,

Suck my cock. Suck it down and choke on it until you die.

Everywhere I turn, everything I read, all I see is darkness.

Depression, separation, death, pain, suffering, misery, sadness, anguish.

So many people are writing about their depression or their pain. So many of my friends. People I care about fiercely.

Two weeks, I saw a plea for help.

Last week, I read about a relationship being questioned.

On Monday, I saw a retreat from the world.

On Tuesday, my best friend was broken. She’s rebuilding, but I fear that her optimism will never be the same. That her capacity for love has been damaged. That her light has dimmed.

On Wednesday, I got to listen to a close friend sob while she shoved her dead cat into her freezer until she could dispose of him the next morning.

I just can’t do it. I don’t want to see what horrors Thursday has to bring. But I have to. I have to be the boss. The friend. The spouse. The party organizer. The comedian. The consistent one. The reliable one.

And I will. Because that’s what I do.