Having a smashing good time
I understand that aggression and rage makes people do some pretty crazy things. Iíll admit Iíve had my fair share of breakdowns. But what I have never been able to understand is people destroying things when they are angry.

The first time this came to my attention was watching those nanny reality shows. The kids are out of control and the prim and proper British nanny comes in to observe and correct the wild behaviour. When kids have a tantrum they throw and break their own toys. Why though? It doesnít make sense to me.

Adults are no different. Grownups have punched holes in walls of their own homes, smashed their possessions all in a fit of rage. I guess itís better than going and ruining someone elseís things, though the actions donít compute in my mind.

There is a difference with teenagers and immature adults who go out and ruin peopleís belongings for the sake of having fun. How many times have you seen a smashed store window or stolen car somewhere?

Maybe I should be posing these questions to a psychologist but I have never had any gratification from breaking or ruining any of my possessions or that of someone else Ė especially mine when I have worked hard to buy the things I have.

I will admit that when I was a teen I wrote on my jeans. Brand new clothes and I doodled words on the thighs when I sat in class. That was the extent of vandalizing my own property but it was also something all the other kids were doing so it didnít seem so rebellious.

The action of destroying things reminds me of animals. I have two dogs: one of them loves his stuffed animals and cuddles with them, while the other runs crazy and obliterates any toy given to him. It seems like his sole purpose is to tear whatever it is to shreds. Heís doing it to play, but are humans that uncivilized that they get joy out of destruction?

I guess all those monster truck shows where cars get smashed and crushed are beginning to make sense. People do find very bizarre ways to be entertained. Or maybe Iím just uptight and canít appreciate destruction as entertainment.
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Jeremy Bradley's weekly newspaper column To the Point on SpeakFree with JB
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