Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Posts Tagged ‘anger

Just Everything

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What really gets to me is this: everything! I mean, one minute the threat du jour is murder hornets and the next it’s not. Really. Are they a thing, or not? Can someone just make up their minds on this?

Oh, let’s start playing professional sports games again, except for the teams with too many players testing positive for coronavirus. They can go on quarantine. Those who play can just be careful and take appropriate precautions, except for the baseball teams that opt to do a bench-clearing brawl.

Have you sneezed into your facemask yet? Lovely. Just lovely.

Whatever happened to ethics commissions? Are they still a thing? I heard some politicians don’t even release their tax returns anymore so the public has no idea where financial improprieties may be happening. I guess nothing matters anymore. We can all do whatever we want. Except if you are black, or poor, or an immigrant or your mere presence causes discomfort to small-minded people who have one specific narrow view of how the world should conform to their perceptions.

It’s no wonder this video his so perfect for everything we are facing this year.

How’d that distance learning go for you last spring? It’s a good thing the schools will have a back-to-school plan all worked out by fall so parents don’t have to worry about …everything associated with having school-aged children during a pandemic.

For that matter, everyone should spend a little time with Julie Nolke and her explanation to herself about the pandemic. It’s only been viewed almost 12 million times since April.

I admit I’ve watched it over and over. How does she perform this scene so convincingly? Probably just riffing off the other actor.

Why do white supremacists get so angry when they see BLM protests? Can’t they just feel sorry for other people who disagree with their racism? I mean, if they truly are superior, can’t they just pity the rest of us?

I tend to feel sad and maybe a notion of pity for people who profess their allegiance to hate groups.

In contrast to that, I am feeling a certain sense of outrage over the systemic strangling of our US Postal Services and the abrupt mid-pandemic rerouting of coronavirus data reporting away from the CDC to a private technology firm. It happens right in front of everyone’s noses. A few news stories mention the audaciousness of the questionable actions, but that’s about it. Oh well. That happened.

Why do there never seem to be any consequences for the craziness that flies at us faster than we can drink it all in?

Maybe in the end we will discover the antidote for coronavirus IS the murder hornets.

I want to write a song like the one above that elementary music teacher, Liz of makeshift.macaroni  did.

About everything.



Can’t Breathe

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Anger boiling over in the form of roiling balls of flame with no visible public servants on hand to contain the rage as daytime turns into night makes for a disturbing meditation in the moments before nodding off to sleep.

It is hard to breathe through our masks.

It is hard to breathe through the smoke.

It is hard to breathe when being choked.

It is hard to contend with the fact that all I was going to do was breathe in our forest air yesterday and beam love to the world, yet the Pentagon needed to put military police on alert as protesters ignored curfew orders and ignited numerous new fires.

Morning turns the tide and reasonable people emerge with brooms and trash bags to pick up debris in an attempt to hasten the healing of the damage done overnight.

It’s an interesting dynamic to watch the venting of angst built up over multiple generations and centuries of time followed by the immediate effort to clean up the present damage which will actually require generations of repair to remedy.

How many years of treating people of color (and women and LGBTQ and homeless and impoverished and mentally impaired human beings) with equal respect to their white counterparts will be needed to complete healing that is the dream of healthy well-meaning communities of enlightened citizens of the world?

I’m not sure I can breathe that long.



Written by johnwhays

May 30, 2020 at 8:42 am

Infuriating Sounds

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I’m just discovering this now. The irrational over-reaction I occasionally experience –say, to the mouth sounds of my wife chewing beside me– has a label: Misophonia. I’m well aware of plenty of people who voice irritation over a variety of particular sounds, but reading about the fight-or-flight reaction being triggered in the brain really caught my attention.

When I feel this surprisingly intense anxiety pop up, as the ambient quiet of an evening gets disrupted by the munching of almonds, I have been curious about a sudden desire to crawl out of my skin in hope of escape.

It’s as if I’m being attacked.

Since it is obvious that I’m not, the idea that my brain is firing as if the command to run away has been triggered, seems like a very plausible explanation.

Almost everyone is irritated by the sound of fingernails across a chalkboard, but a misophonic reaction goes well beyond irritation.

Misophonia is characterized by intense emotion like rage or fear in response to highly specific sounds, particularly ordinary sounds that other people make…

“It’s as if the survival part of the brain thinks somehow it’s being attacked or it’s in danger…”


Choosing to just ignore the sound is not an option when your brain has fired and the whole body is revving up for a fight.

“Must. Stop. That. Sound. Before it kills me!”

My siblings may recall our family dinnertime ritual of being chastised by our beloved sister, Linda, for letting our teeth make contact with our fork.

I now have a better understanding of why that probably made her so angry.



Written by johnwhays

March 22, 2019 at 6:00 am

Wondering Aloud

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Cyndie and I have recently found ourselves pondering the limitations of our ability to love someone out of their predicament. It gets downright frustrating to watch others destroy their own lives despite a wealth of loving family support desperately wanting to help.

Frustration Builds to Anger

I think part of the challenge for us is the struggle of overcoming anger that builds up in us from witnessing the neglect of self, and abuse of others, dished out by people in need who choose to ignore all common sense offers of assistance. By our own philosophy, we want to be sending a flood of love to all others, even if they are making us angry. That gets hard to do sometimes.

IMG_iP3072eCHAs a person who lived with a dysfunctional mindset of depression for many, many years, I recognize how self-focused a person with mental illness can become. I understand that the person with mental illness doesn’t logically perceive how much pain and sorrow they inflict on those who dearly love them, especially family. Heck, even if the message were to make it through, it could well be insufficient to inspire a change toward choosing to become healthy in response.

Yes, family seems to receive the brunt of our worst selves, even when they are the ones to whom we are most attached. Well, for that matter, even our own selves tend to become the target of our worst. That’s how these predicaments get started in the first place!

Cyndie and I understand that the only person we can change is ourselves. As a parent, it became one of the driving forces for me to want to become the healthiest I can be. I couldn’t force my children to love themselves and make healthy decisions, but I could make that a goal for myself. Doing so became an influence on my relationship with Cyndie. Our subsequent couples therapy and efforts to grow toward the healthiest possible relationship then imbued our household with that intentional energy.

I can’t say for sure that it is responsible for healthy choices our now grown children have demonstrated thus far in their lives, but I no longer see my past dysfunctional behaviors reflected back to me like I began to experience when they were young and I was ill.

Healthy Choice of Sending Love

The exercise that Cyndie and I talked about wanting to embrace last night is to emulate the confidence of our precious friend, Dunia, and not let our feelings of frustration and anger sidetrack our good intentions of wholeheartedly loving those dear to us who are not of a mind to love themselves. We want to send love with the fullest belief in the power of that love to make a healthy difference.

You see, doing so is an act of making us healthier. We can’t make others choose health. That is their responsibility. We can know we are honestly providing loving energy and by focusing on that, overcome the interference of frustration and anger over things we cannot control.

It doesn’t hurt to have a place like this blog where we can vent some extra frustration now and then. It allows us to let go of that which no longer serves and regain a balanced perspective in love.












Written by johnwhays

March 16, 2016 at 6:00 am