What Price Anger

Anger cost small for years then nearly all.

Like decades of tossing nickels and dimes in a 5-gallon water bottle until it can’t be carried anymore not even to the Coinstar or your credit union and if you tried you’d hurt something and badly … or the plastic o’er time has degraded and the bottle shatters and pounds and pounds of money pounds and pounds the floor and like,

whoa. shitload of anger ya got there.

When I was a kid, maybe elementary/middle school age, I’d throw everything off my shelves onto the floor. It forced me to clean my room I said and it wasn’t entirely untrue but it wasn’t unfun to mayhem either.

Somewhat older I know I lost writing work from it, from anger. Recalling one of those occasions brought these thoughts to mind today and genesis’d this post. I’d broken in with a magazine and this fellow edited my article.

He moved on and I got one or two other assignments. One went into some kind of black hole and never ran — though I got paid. The publication was badly run and I’m not sure they ever realized they’d 1) paid for a piece that 2) got lost in their process. Then a pitch was fouled off for what I still think was mostly subjective reasons.

It felt unfair.

True for he not for me.

A colossal violation of the space-time continuum.

I’m certain I responded less than professionally but that’s not oblique-speak for lost it or pitched a fit or went berserk or postal … only that the anger showed … I showed my anger … active voice … I’m certain of it.

That editor of mine died recently; that’s what reminded me of these things and led to this thing.

*

Memory is one of the awesomest things.

Not that he’s always fun to have around.

Don’t want to try and explain too much … no excuses, pronouncements … just trying for now to examine and remember … re-member … part of a much larger activity involved in just now and for the last several years. I am being not angry a lot more these days.

The trajectory looks good.

*

Then, quite a bit older, when I was in a three-week truck driving school, I watched two guys arguing. One kid, name of Mario, was clearly gaming it — he was kidding, playing a part but not showing it on the surface … and thinking the other guy, name escapes me, was playing too and that one of them wd stop.

Other guy’d been in a gang, which fact wdn’t have kicked him out of the school, and in jail, which did. Cd see in a second he wasn’t kidding. If this kept going, Mario was going to bleed. Even as I type that I know it sounds as if we’re in a script somewhere in the middle of Act III, maybe, and you don’t believe.

That’d be a mistake like Mario’s — thinking it’s a game.

This is not a game.

*

Mario quit the battle — maybe he glimpsed where it was headed. Fear can serve.

Eventually the guy was gone and he wasn’t the last one. ’nother story for ’nother time but 80% of the people in the class didn’t make it to the end and this wasn’t a unique outcome. He wasn’t the last one to get angry during the three weeks nor to get kicked out for something — a jail sentence, say — related to such acts.

Mario actually made it through the class; may even still be driving; this was six years ago.

The penultimate point is the anger — seeing the endgame of it in that other kid’s face and hands and words.

The ultimate point is even that didn’t do it.

Stayed angry.

*

At what cost?

Still have my kids, grown.

Working on and in, with and under.

The way around is the way through — is that the phrase?

*

Other things have been lost.

The passive voice can serve.

*

I will speak of such things one day, many days.

But it is so absolutely massively not about me.

So but … not just yet; for now … just the anger.

*

Here are some things I found in thinking about these words.

A clip from To End All Wars … one of my all-time favorite movies … even when in the throes of what we’re on about here … perhaps especially when that … it takes a long long long long long long long long time to change.

’nother article for ’nother time.

Not the clip about the weight of a soul weighing one feather or where Ernest asks What price mercy? or the Merchant of Venice speech which at the moment I do recall existing in the film but now am not so sure but least I found it here and here and here.

I found this blog from a pastor in Philly whose Twitter is here.

One of the next books I’ll get is this one, which may be of more use in the long run than this one.

Though I do like both and the latter’s exposing can be useful betimes.

Then there is this, by a governor who showed mercy, pardoned a man, who then raped and killed again.

 

pax et bonum

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