18th century woman smirking as she kicks over a table in front of a man.

I’m Furious About Everything

On May 5th, 2016 in Quibbles

“The minute you’re not angry about things, the minute you’re not upset about things, what are you talking about?

I’m furious about everything. Good things don’t always happen to good people. And I’m very angry about it. But if I didn’t have the anger about it, I wouldn’t be a comedian. Anger fuels the comedy.”

-Joan Rivers, A Piece of Work

I often think about this quote. I think about what it means to be angry. Really and truly angry. Pacing around the living room, seething, and just barely preventing yourself from smashing things you know you will regret breaking later angry. It’s not a good look.

But, to dismiss it on these grounds alone would be akin to dismissing fire because it burns. Fire can be harnessed for heat and light; fire is great! And, when it is treated with proper precautions, can be harnessed to even greater extents than its raw form alone, powering our entire civilization.

Anger is the same way. Shouting at your screen of choice is not productive. Holding onto your rage too tightly will result in you burning yourself, but holding on just enough to feel your anger and letting it motivate you can lead to change, and some really great art.

For a time, when people would tell me to calm down, I thought they were right. Now, I think they are telling me not to rock the boat and to stay in my lane. I think they’re being apathetic, or trying to go numb. Now, when people tell me to calm down it makes me angry. I’m okay with that.