Bad Days: Understanding Assholes

Everything is making you upset, bad things seem to be following you, and the stress of it all is transforming into a silent and sad rage. It’s just another day, except you’re pissy at the universe and the universe is retaliating. It isn’t really though, because I’ve lived through this day; in fact, I experience this phenomenon two to three times in a good week.

"My hair looks like crap? I hate everyone."

“My hair looks like crap? I hate everyone.”

It can be akin to a child who ruins their day at Sea World because they’re still grumpy about not riding shotgun on the way there. When you wake up upset, everything in your path will make you more so as the day goes on, and when it’s over you feel like the irrational and idiotic person you hate other people for being. It’s the hindsight that really kills you, and you end up having a string of thoughts similar to this:

‘You idiot, you got upset over that? You’re a real shit-head. Here, have this big reality check.’.

But even if you’re flipping tables, or cussing-out your mother, or death-staring strangers on the train, there’s something you should know; it’s a shame to think that anything you feel is invalid.

I’m going to take a chapter out of the Big Book of Cliches and say that nobody is perfect, and human nature makes us prone to dramatise everything that we do and everything that is done to us. If we’re lucky, there’s always someone around to tell us when we’re being unreasonably shitty, but even then we can’t pretend to switch off the feelings that have already bubbled to our brim.

Example: My partner tried to kiss me but instead smashed his nose into my face. What a funny little accident, right? Nope, not in my state of despair; this was just another sign that the universe was against me. Once my anger subsided to muffled misery, the unloading began, and suddenly he became an audience member to the tragic play that was my Tuesday:

‘It’s just that my mum called, and that made me miss her, but also we didn’t have milk for coffee, and my hair wasn’t doing that flippy thing I like, and oh yeah, I’m sad about how strained me and my father’s relationship has become.’

And just like that my day from Hell was diminished to a few annoyances and a huge emotional issue that was lying dormant in my self-conscious. If I had taken the time to talk to someone about this, or even think about it myself, I might have had the best damn day of my life. But realistically, days like this can’t be avoided so easily, because when emotion takes over, all rationality is crumpled up and thrown into the gutter – and this is why I desperately try to apply this to all the other seemingly evil people I come across.

When an old lady cuts in front of me at the shops, sure, I hate her and all other elderly people in the world, but only briefly, because I know there’s an excuse for her rudeness. Maybe she only has two more hours to live, and before she dies she has to purchase a photo frame for her only daughter, Jessica, and place inside a picture of them sitting on the beach together from their Perth trip back in 89′, just to let her know that she will always be with her and that her love for Jessica is as endless as the waves of that ocean.

Not only do I admire this lady’s love for her daughter, but I pity her, because she is going to be dead by the time I eat the chocolate I’m waiting in line to pay for. I know the story is farfetched and lame, but I’d like to think that instead of this lady being a total dick, there’s a reason for her actions, because I know I’ve always uncovered a reason behind mine. But this doesn’t excuse the lesson that taking the time to sort out the emotional stress in your head will make you less of an asshole, and more attuned to all the goodness in your day.

So instead of categorising your feelings or the feelings of others as unworthy, think of why people do the things they do. When you’re having a bad day take the time to figure out why, rather than spend it hating on yourself and others because you might feel like you have the freedom to wallow in your own frustrations, but it comes at a cost, not just to your day but to the people around you.

– by Josefina Huq

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