Not to be an armchair sportscaster and psychotherapist, but howzabout this theory: obesity is rage turned inward. Well, then, why is America simultaneously the most overweight and furious country on the face of this planet?

Now, I don't want to get off on a rant here, but our hair-trigger society has a fuse shorter that's than George W's attention span at Yale.

I guess the latest rage that's all the rage is road rage. We use our middle finger so much, scientists say it may soon evolve its own brain.

I'll tell you what's scary, flipping off some asshole only to watch the car follow you all the way home and pull into the driveway behind you, causing you to cower on the floor of your car frantically dialing 911 until your wife comes out and explains that they're the friends she invited over for dinner. How humiliating... I would think... Probably.

Of course, the phenomenon of road rage, like many other curses on humanity, originated right here in Los Angeles, where you have to get in your car even if it's just to go get shot.

I have a simple solution to road rage. Make everybody's license plate number the same as their cell phone number. That way, you can drive a safe distance away before you call the other car and tell them what assholes they are. Of course, they'll probably have asshole waiting.

And a recent scary derivative strain of road rage is air rage. Boy, hard to imagine how flying could make you uptight. As the events of last night point out, some people feel they're better in a wheel well than in Coach. From the moment you get to the airport and a sadistic airline drone starts measuring your bag like they're making a suit for it, you're treated with all the respect of Emenem at the GOP convention. It would be fair to say that airlines no longer treat average passengers like cattle because you have to upgrade from Dustin-Hoffman-In-The-Dentist's-Chair-in-Marathon-Man Class to even get to Cattle Class.

I think for me, the sickest and scariest kind of rage is the Hillary Clinton kind of rage. You know, the perpetual permafrost smile she wears that's hiding a well of fury deeper than Barry White's voice during a bout of pneumonia. If she loses the election, I predict all that will be left of Hillary is a five foot three inch mushroom cloud and a pair of canary yellow Ferragamo pumps.

Personally, I get pissed off when I think about the generitrons both major parties are foisting on us this year. Al Gore couldn't be more phony if he were a professional Al Gore impersonator, and George W. Bush is 20 gallons of dumb in a 10 gallon hat. I know millions of Americans share my feelings, and you know what? If this country could simply channel that rage into productive political activism, it could transform the entire American system come November. And if you do so, let me know how it goes. I'll be busy voting for whichever of these two losers is gonna take less of my money.

It's true. America's a very uptight place now. Sure, we're making more money, but people are working longer and longer hours these days with some of us holding down two jobs in completely different fields at the same time. We're fighting more traffic, paying more for homes and food and having to fuck around with more goddam remote controls. No wonder we've become touchier than a blind man reading Penthouse Forum in Braille.

Rage is not a completely unreasonable response to the stimuli around you. The meek may inherit the earth but trust me, the assholes are going to contest the will. And occasionally, you've gotta express your displeasure at the cosmic injustice of it all.

But if a human being causes you extreme stress, the best thing to do is take it out on an inanimate object. Break a clock, kick in your TV set, or smash your computer screen with a ball-peen hammer. You'll feel a lot better. Just don't hurt anyone. Unless, of course, the cause of your rage is a malfunctioning piece of machinery. Then it's only fair to take it out on a human being, preferably somebody smaller than you. Or better yet, try digging up cemeteries and beating up people who are already dead. But considering this country's Puritan attitude toward disinterment, it's best trying this one overseas. I guess what I'm advocating here is beating up foreign dead people. Sorta like a Hearafta-NAFTA.

During the past two decades we have become inundated with money and technology that allow us as Americans to become accustomed to everything going our own way, which means we've got very little tolerance for frustration. The difference between the rage we see today and the rage of the 60's is, road rage and air rage are the rage of the haves, not the have-nots. The people flying off the handle today are the people who have no reason to be upset about anything. Their rage is the byproduct of an overfed, overindulged society of spineless, blathering crybabies. And it just makes me want to kick their fucking teeth in.

Of course, that's just my opinion. I could be wrong.


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