Anger Mismanagement

Welcome to the blogging confessional.  Penance can be distributed as you see fit in the comment section.

I really lost it last week southbound on a divided 2 lane heading deeper into West Asheville to survey the catastrophe that is our rental property.  Stoner Bob (name changed to protect the hapless) was supposed to be out at the beginning of the month but his Hendrix and Widespread Panic posters and psychadelic Cobra Commander collages still hand from the walls and truckloads of his junk repose in the basement.  Bob’s slackerism wasn’t to blame for my temporary lapse in sanity but it didn’t help much, either.

What was the cause of my breakdown?  Who knows.  A chi stagnation, possibly.  Maybe the buildup of too many unfinished projects and abandoned resolutions.  Maybe it was the Bojangles fried chicken digested and converted into devilry.  All I know is that after finishing a mildly disagreeable phone conversation I decided it would be a good idea to toss the phone onto the passenger side floormat with mild, let’s call it level 3, aggression.  I was just as baffled as the phone was when the dang thing broke into 2 pieces.  It was time for a phone upgrade, anyway.  No big deal.  But suddenly it was a big deal and I was up to level 5.  Level 5 generally calls for some alone in the car primal screaming.  You know, to let off some tension.  I get to this point maybe once or twice in a decade if the fates or my own poor decisions have been especially cruel.  But primal scream was fuel to the fire, elevating me to level 7 and and ceding control to primal brain.  Primal brain reasoned that primal scream could be enhanced and amplified with the accompaniment of my embarrassingly puny japanese truck horn.  Unfortunately, level 7 coordination is extremely poor at managing horn activation exertion intensities.  My slammed down palm activated the horn so well that it “locked”, or “fubar’d”, into permanent banshee scream position.

I have a new respect for my puny T100 horn that for so long seemed out of proportion to the size of my big truck.  At short intervels it is weak, but in the always on position it is a terrible force of brain splitting sound.  RRRRREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!, etc. etc. etc.

The cars passing in the opposite direction looked at me with bewildered dismay and then pity.  I continued beating the horn in hopes of disabling it into a less agonizing position.  Safe to say at this point I was topping out in the high 9’s on the crazometer.  Luckily I was in a pocket of rurality in the wilds of outer West Asheville so my humiliation was shared by only a few passing spectators.

I pulled over on the shoulder and briefly flirted with the idea of browsing the owners manuel to identify the correct fuse to pull but at that point I could barely see through the red rage, much less do indexing.  I popped the hood and SO LOUD the piercing horn was vibrating the entire engine.  It was hot to touch and just awful to feel the same vibration in my fingertips that was destroying my eardrums and possibly my longer term sanity.  Eventually I found the little angry demon alongside the driver side headlight and yanked out the wire and, FINALLY, a productive action/reaction experience.  Blessed silence.  I wanted to weep but was too horrified by my own stupidity to indulge the drama further.  Aggression levels quickly receded to 0, neutralized by cold shame.

The aftermath:

I got a new phone but Verizon wins again.  I’ve managed to lose the box which contained both the charger and the UPC required to redeem the $50 mail-in rebate.

I’m now driving mute and have already missed several perfectly good opportunities to justifiably honk at other dangerous drivers.  I’m overdue for inspection and have to either fix the horn or find a crooked inspector.

Rage does not pay.  I thought I learned this in my 20’s but apparently needed some continuing education.

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6 responses to “Anger Mismanagement

  1. I may be able to round up an old bicycle horn or bell. You can strap it to the steering wheel. Then when a fit overtakes you, you can take it off the truck and carry it around honking indiscrimately at passer-bys.

  2. Well — if it makes you feel any better — you made me laugh out loud twice, and then Malinda made me laugh out loud again. I could never picture you angry, but another consolation is that the situation you describe would have ended in jail time for most. It’s a good thing you have a T100 rather than the train horn that Malinda used to have in the Lordmaster. Your head would have probably exploded trying the dismantle that badboy.

    I just laughed out loud again picturing a bicycle horn/bell on your steering wheel …

  3. Aaaahahahahahahaha! There’s nothing worse than a hot-ass rage getting “neutralized by cold shame”. Lovely writing, M.

    • It’s exactly the same shame I feel when I gouge myself with a carpentering tool and have 5 hours in the emergency room to look forward to.

  4. Pingback: PPD | Highland Street Blog Co.·

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