Some Things You Think You Know: Getting Mad

Getting mad, in its traditional sense, and lashing out whether it be at other people, the depression, another country, your neighbor, traffic jams, and the not-so-generous professor who seems to have a stick …. Er.. in his hand, when it comes to grading tests is almost universally frowned upon. I mean of course, if it means hurting someone else, causing destruction, leads to vandalism, it is wrong. Sure taking your frustration out on a punching bag is a good idea, but good luck convincing your parents to get you one. I know, have tried, and failed. Knocking down Lego cities is acceptable, so long as someone else worked on it for hours to complete it. Wait, I think I got that one backwards.

Alice In Wonderland fellas. 2 years out of school, still learning from children's stories.
Alice In Wonderland fellas. 2 years out of school, still learning from children’s stories.

But what is important to make of the brief time you have on this god forsaken planet worthwhile is, you guessed it, that you get mad. Mad about your career, your studies, mad about hitting the gym, mad about your spouse, your girlfriend, about that sport you love so much, mad about showing that professor that you’d be back next time, with the gift of a bigger stick. Life isn’t something you can appreciate playing things cool, taking everything in a calm and composed manner, and being indifferent to shit. No, you want something done, you first need to get mad. Get passionate about it. And then execute. People either whine about their issues, or take it upon themselves to do something about it. Ask anyone who spent years playing the no-sweat boring game of indifference ever in their lives, and if they’re finally out of their self-imposed slumber they’d tell you its away better to have life by the balls.

Howard Beale (Perter Finch)

Here’s a quote from the movie Network (1976) to drive the point home:

Howard Beale: I don’t have to tell you things are bad. Everybody knows things are bad. It’s a depression. Everybody’s out of work or scared of losing their job. The dollar buys a nickel’s worth, banks are going bust, shopkeepers keep a gun under the counter. Punks are running wild in the street and there’s nobody anywhere who seems to know what to do, and there’s no end to it. We know the air is unfit to breathe and our food is unfit to eat, and we sit watching our TV’s while some local newscaster tells us that today we had fifteen homicides and sixty-three violent crimes, as if that’s the way it’s supposed to be. We know things are bad – worse than bad. They’re crazy. It’s like everything everywhere is going crazy, so we don’t go out anymore. We sit in the house, and slowly the world we are living in is getting smaller, and all we say is, ‘Please, at least leave us alone in our living rooms. Let me have my toaster and my TV and my steel-belted radials and I won’t say anything. Just leave us alone.’ Well, I’m not gonna leave you alone. I want you to get mad! I don’t want you to protest. I don’t want you to riot – I don’t want you to write to your congressman because I wouldn’t know what to tell you to write. I don’t know what to do about the depression and the inflation and the Russians and the crime in the street. All I know is that first you’ve got to get mad. You’ve got to say, ‘I’m a HUMAN BEING, God damn it! My life has VALUE!’ So I want you to get up now. I want all of you to get up out of your chairs. I want you to get up right now and go to the window. Open it, and stick your head out, and yell, ‘I’M AS MAD AS HELL, AND I’M NOT GOING TO TAKE THIS ANYMORE!’ I want you to get up right now, sit up, go to your windows, open them and stick your head out and yell – ‘I’m as mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore!’ Things have got to change. But first, you’ve gotta get mad!… You’ve got to say, ‘I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore!’ Then we’ll figure out what to do about the depression and the inflation and the oil crisis. But first get up out of your chairs, open the window, stick your head out, and yell, and say it: “I’M AS MAD AS HELL, AND I’M NOT GOING TO TAKE THIS ANYMORE!”

Those for whom ‘reading’ things is such a drag, here’s the video:

Bottom line is this, get mad, and then get busy.

So get mad and passionate, and send in our views, articles, comments and criticisms to [email protected] or [email protected]

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