Anger Becomes Laughter When There’s Two Of You
My first time in a Rage Room.
Last weekend, I went to smash bottles.
One of my best friends and I went to a Rage Room here in Singapore, called Fragment Room.
Singapore's first Rage Room! A room where you are encouraged to let down your walls release your inner frustrations. So…thefragmentroom.com
(I’m not being paid to talk about this, although I wouldn’t mind some free sessions!)
In case you didn’t know, Rage rooms are locations where you’re given an enclosed room, breakable items such as glass bottles and porcelain bowls (or even TVs and old FM radios), and a weapon (baseball bats, mostly) to hit these items with.
The aim is for people to let out their frustrations in a safe space instead of over someone else’s head.
Since we’re both moderately stressed individuals (who isn’t, nowadays?), we decided that we would book a Saturday to go smash some stuff.
(It was also a birthday present from her to me, which says a lot about me and my tastes.)
The week before the event was a stressful five days at work, so we were both looking forward to it.
We imagined ourselves smashing bottles like an angry guitarist smashing his guitar on stage, with all the rage coming out in that single, over-the-top action.
And then we met on Saturday.
We had an enjoyable lunch, catching up on each other’s lives; discussing work, personal growth, families…then, full of energy, we went to the Rage Room.
The first thing we were told to do: put on oversized jumpsuits over our clothes.
It was ridiculous, because my friend is tiny. So tiny, that she needed to fold the sleeves and the hems 4 times in order for it not to drag on the floor.
It was funny as hell.
So we had already started our angry day off on a bad foot.
We were then given a room with a crateful of beer bottles, porcelain bowls, and a freaking porcelain sink (that my friend had managed to wrangle as a freebie!).
After some general safety instructions (always wear the protective hats and gloves, and aim at the side of the room that was already covered in glass), we were told to grab one of the baseball bats in the corner and have at it.
Cue 15 minutes of us trying to hit straight, and lots of laughter when we inevitably failed to even touch the bottle.
Being alone keeps you introspective, but you can’t do that with two people.
If I was alone, being there for an entire hour might have been enough time to conjure up some latent anger and project a couple of my archenemies’ faces onto the bottles, but with another person in the room, it was impossible to have the time.
I was always either swinging the bat, or helping to set up the bottle for my friend to aim, or cheering at a great shot, or trying to take a good slo-mo video with my phone.
Even when we tackled the huge porcelain sink, which took us each two tries to even crack, it wasn’t done in anger; instead, it felt like a challenge for us to overcome.
And hence our individual anger just disappeared, because we were having too much fun spending time with our friend.
When you’re having a conversation about the optimal angle to hit for maximum impact, you don’t have time to think about the annoying work day you had, three days ago.
You just can’t plan anger.
And so, even though I would definitely go back again, it was odd; I didn’t go there and accomplish what I wanted to do.
I didn’t let out any anger; I just had so much fun that i forgot about it for an hour.
After all, none of us want to remain angry all the time; if it’s already dissipated, why would we dredge it up again?
Of course, there are other considerations:
- I could have gone back alone to see the difference when I’m alone with just my thoughts.
- I could have gone down again on a whim, on a day when I was already angry, and see the difference.
However, considering that the Fragment Room isn’t near my workplace, I really doubt that I’m going to take action to go there on a shitty day, instead of just going home or going out for a good meal.
Planning how to get rid of anger is just…odd.
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