Comments on take a deep breath and delete
commentson 14 November 2003 : 15:02, justin sez:

i pared it down and i sent it.

commentson 14 November 2003 : 15:03, Liz sez:

When I get pissed, I can compose some pretty crazy emails. Usually I send them to a friend who tells me I'm nuts to react in anger and I just delete it. I'm always so glad when I do. The issue is best resolved when I'm no longer pissed.

commentson 14 November 2003 : 15:06, Liz sez:

Pared down version. Good idea.

commentson 14 November 2003 : 15:32, C(h)ristine sez:

Seething anger -- I just usually call up a friend and VENNNNT! :)

And then, I send that crazy angry email off, pared down, so I get a little of what I want.

Anger is great, it's an energy.

commentson 14 November 2003 : 15:52, Damanda sez:

I think it's best not to put anything on paper....or voice mail...i think it's best to call someone and smite them, then hang up and not answer the phone. Let them leave all the e-mails and voice mail that can be passed on to others later....held up as proof of their insanity.

commentson 14 November 2003 : 15:55, Fleischman sez:

I usually write it down with all my anger and bloodlust! Then, I let it sit on my screen and drink a couple of brews. It usually calms the beast and I end up editing it. That way I come off more like an angry intellectual and less like an angry loon.

commentson 14 November 2003 : 17:00, denise sez:

i have been in a situation the past week where i have had to show an enormous amount of restraint. you don't know how many times i've hovered over the "send" or "submit" buttons. rather than let it fester or build up inside, i've found a few trusted people whose counsel has been invaluable. they are able to calm me down to a point where i can't remember what i was angry about to begin with.

commentson 14 November 2003 : 19:46, Joao Bambu sez:

What the FECK are you talking about?

commentson 14 November 2003 : 21:22, signal9 sez:

Justin, I mean this with only the utmost respect:

Are you just about done feeling sorry for yourself or are you going to get a grip and get on with it? Seriously.

Sure it's comfortable to revel in the suburban luxury of fit-throwing, but make no mistake it is anything but that. Do you seriously want to be this self-indulgent?

commentson 14 November 2003 : 22:50, Fleischman sez:

Shit, I hate to admit it, but I think signal9 has a point.

commentson 14 November 2003 : 23:06, d sez:

1)place dog feces in paper bag.
2)place bag on porch of Evil and set aflame.
3)ring doorbell and run.
4)repeat until feeling sated.

commentson 15 November 2003 : 00:43, Rob R. sez:

The Buddha once said that a moment of anger instantly erases countless lifetimes of good merit... I mean just while we're on the subject of Buddhism.. That's the only reason I say that.

I've hit the send button on bitter, angry emails before -- sent with the intention of being as hurtful as possible. The result of which causing the recipient to cry. It was quite satisfying, and afterward I felt like we were even steven.

commentson 15 November 2003 : 06:52, alex sez:

Uhhh, fit throwing is far more ubiquitous in urban environments. Wrath is inimical to the whole suburban mindset. Suburban luxury enables far more euphemism, quelching, "positive- speak- praise" distance and deferment and all other life - stifling things. When trying to contend with a surplus of emotion one must turn away from American paradigms altogether. Might I suggest being more Italian about it? Walk through the streets crying out your plight without shame or self - checking and glory in the fact that your passions are ignited. Now is the time to turn away from the supplementally cultured cultures. You feel therefore you exist. Write a song about it.

commentson 15 November 2003 : 07:35, kev2302 sez:

The thing about anger (and pain) is that once it's gone it's as if it never existed. Anger and aggression leeches our strength and humanity subverting our integrity and inviting disaster.

You are a spirited individual Justin. I'm sure you will come through this.

commentson 15 November 2003 : 07:46, alex sez:

Or, alternately, anger and aggression face us with contradictions the contending with which BUILDS our strength and humanity. To deny these emotions, to pass "anger (and pain) if it never existed" only makes our selves less significant and vital. Any placidity that results is not honestly won. It's a self - deception.

commentson 15 November 2003 : 08:57, Wendy sez:

When you're a writer, I have found, holding back on hitting "Send" is even more important. It's one thing to vent and express anger. But from my experience, these e-mails aren't stream of conscious, write until you purge kind of things. It's like you are using a weapon you just know will cause pain--your writing ability. And while one is crafting clever, harsh and memoriable sentences and sentiments, you tend to forget how truly hurtful (and regretful) the creation can be.

commentson 15 November 2003 : 09:55, alex s (same as above) sez:

Perhaps I'm suggesting that that very purging instinct is merely sublimation and that its dominance in more reified cultures might itself cause more strife than it cures. Perhaps we should retain some vitriol in everything we do. Funny, I've always thought of this as a really fundamental Eastern critique of Western Raison, but Justin's case problematizes that duality. More South Asian maybe, I'll have to think about it more. But while I've seen people trod on carefully wrought relationships, burn bridges if you will, because of too much unchecked wrath I've also seen relationships that grow stronger because they foster more passionate, unmitigated - by - overthinking engagements between the dueling members. Wasn't there a Swarthmore - era relationship discussed on these pages that worked along the latter methods' lines? Anyway it depends a lot on the shared values of the people in the relationship. It can only work if both sides possess a certain toughness. It can be tragic if one side is tougher than the other.

commentson 15 November 2003 : 15:36, howard sez:

So you send an angry email, and the recipient gives someone else the finger and the someone else -- who you don't even know -- yells at someone. Eventually, it all ends up in the Middle East.

commentson 15 November 2003 : 15:37, howard sez:

So you send an angry email, and the recipient gives someone else the finger and the someone else -- who you don't even know -- yells at someone. Eventually, it all ends up in the Middle East.

commentson 15 November 2003 : 17:29, Judy sez:

Or posted twice......

commentson 16 November 2003 : 08:45, shady sez:

eh. when i get mad, i always give myself time to think it all the way through. that's key.

sounds like you need a blunt, justin.

commentson 16 November 2003 : 10:32, craig sez:

a piece of valuable advice i've received: the only time a feeling is overwhelming is if you resist feeling it.

i'm not suggesting you inflict verbal harm to deal with this. but i think FEEL WHAT YOU FEEL is your best bet. don't deny what you feel by swallowing it. and as for action, find a mature way to let the anger out: writing about it, punching a pillow, etc.

commentson 16 November 2003 : 20:19, kurt sez:

it's good to see J. is capable of anger. he's always projected an unnaturally mellow persona on the Web.

the trick is be angry constructively -- angry at the right things & people, to start with, & for the right reasons. J's outlook is far too rosy for this dump of a world.

ALWAYS pause 24 hours before sending any negative email. that's my personal rule. more friendships have been ruined from people farting out nasty messages at each other without reflection.

e-mail is one of the worst means of communication ever devised by human beings.

commentson 17 November 2003 : 05:53, Tom Barbalet sez:


I once stood outside the Coombs building (at ANU) eating a particularly sticky jam donut and watched two ambulence officers trying to reach an academic who had suffered a heart attack. The building is three hexagons from the top down (from memory) and a total maze. The levels are offset by half a floor from each hexagon. The ambulence offices kept running in and out of the building - almost totally lost.

It's important to know where information comes from.

commentson 17 November 2003 : 15:48, mo sez:

Yes, anger is mourning.

Sometimes people create a reason to be angry (or highlight a reason) in order to create distance from the source of pain.

commentson 17 November 2003 : 20:21, Werner sez:

I've often done that: writing a mail with a head
filled of buzzing fury and then sent it off ....
only to realize a few moments later when that initial
anger has faded, that I've no doubt made the problem
(whatever it was) worse than it was before. Always wait
those few precious moments before pressing "send".

commentson 18 November 2003 : 20:05, brian sez:

my therapist pointed out to me the other day that in my parents' generation (and therefore in your parents' generation, too) it is very typical for men to express depression & hurt through anger, whereas women express it through sadness & crying. which explains why, for lots of guys around our age, anger really is mourning -- that's what we learned. probably while so young that it's just burnt on there in the subconscious.

anyway, i know exactly what you're feeling, and i empathize. luckily, writing everything out serves as its own catharsis and then deleting / trimming what you've written saves the actual harm from coming to pass. and then you feel great later about having exerted the will power to delete / trim it, so you win yet again.

as for signal9, i agree with him only to the extent that you should be aware when you're letting yourself linger in self-indulgent melancholy. i don't really think you're overdoing it, or that you should "get a grip" and pull yourself out this instant, but just always be aware. chronic depression comes when you stop being aware and start enjoying the melancholy too much. comfort is dangerous.

oh, and i swear i'll send you a check for that hotel room soon, really. here, i'll go write it right now.

February 2005 - comments are closed on Thanks.