Friday, January 09, 2009

Appetite For Destruction?


Ever get so mad that you want to break something?

Do pent up feelings have you twisted in a knot?

Is your inner grief in need of an expressive outlet?

Well, you might want to head over to Sarah's Smash Shack - where you can relieve such feelings by hurling breakables in specially designed "break rooms".  San Diego entrepreneur, Sarah Lavely, charges clients $10 and up to pulverize plates, grate glass, break bric-a-brac and express emotions. You can bring your own stuff to destroy or buy things there to break. Music is available, either your own or house supplied, as well as protective gear and clean up services.

I think that using physical force to release emotions can be cathartic. This idea reminds me of aspects of Gestalt Therapy. My two cents would be to keep in mind that the smashing experience should have a verbal element to it - expressing the feelings and thoughts with words as well as with physicality. Constructive destruction, so to speak. Otherwise, it's senseless violence.

I wonder if this trend will soon be seen in a franchise near you.

What do you think?





31 comments:

phd in yogurtry said...

Interesting. I've had some vague notion of "someplace where people can break glass safely" from time to time. Funny that someone has opened a shop.

I agree with the verbal component you recommended. Research has shown that expressing anger in an extreme manner, i.e., very high levels of anger, can be counter productive and physically unhealthy. So some deep breathing and cognitive skills to help you not feel the need to break things? Probably the best help of all!

I definately think the experience could be fun, however. And that can be very healthy - safe recreating.

cannonballjones said...

Excellent idea although something about it does disturb me a little bit. I've only recently discovered a need to unload some pent-up anger/aggression but I've opted for a mix of Muay Thai and starting to shout backing vocals in my band. This looks like a pretty good substitute though...

Daisy said...

Excellent idea.
Love it.

I took a baseball bat to about 100 empty bottles 20 years ago. It was therapeutic!

Daisy said...

(oops, forgot I was logged in as Daisy, this is Kahless here really.)

Palmtreechick said...

I need to go there!!! Maybe I should just build my own things to break and throw and kick, though I don't think that would be as fun.

Sometimes I can't put my anger into words and punching or breaking something would feel so much better.

Teresa Lynne said...

I have to be honest, and say that I did this "Once." I was by myself, home alone, and I grabbed a Glass (An Empty Martini Glass) and through it in my fireplace. Oh, it was such a great feeling.

As I threw it, I let out a growl and that was it, I felt better.

But it can be more harm than good if someone is in your presence. This should be done alone or not at all :)

Angel Chasse said...

I am no expert, but I think that what you mentioned about verbalizing what is making you want to break things is very important. I know for me, sometimes its not breaking things but writing something down and ripping it up... I am all for anything that safely lets someone vent a frustration! Can't beat the "fun" aspect it brings to mind either.. :)

Have a great weekend!
Angel

jenji said...

A friend of mine was getting a divorce some years back and her son (13 yr old) in particular was having a hard time with the entire process, especially since dad wasn't being a very good dad at the time.

So, I took him out to an abandoned lot and talked to him about this and that; then I gave him a bunch of different paper bags that had old dishware in them and let him have at smashing them into the pavement. Easy clean-up b/c the shards just stay in the bags! If only I had thought to open my own business that catered to such an event back then.

A decade later the still remembers that day and how helpful it was to talk it out and then smash it out afterward.


jenji

traci said...

You know, there are times I feel an urge to throw things that is so strong it's nearly impossible to stop. It feels pretty scary to be honest.

I have purchased cheap dishes at garage sales before and hurled them into a big box on my back patio. The box definitely helped with clean up.

This place seems like a wonderful idea in theory. I'm with you about the vocalization though. I'd be interested to see it in action.

jumpinginpuddles said...

not sure ifd we could let oursevles go enough to do this just yet, anger and us is a scary prospect

OHN said...

I think I just found a new business to start in my town ;)

It is funny though..a few nights ago, I told my youngest 'no' to a request and I could tell he was angry..(he is 14 and caught between being a kid and a young man at the moment). A little while later, he was in the basement using his brothers punching bag and do you know what???....when he came upstairs he was in a better mood. I think he just needed to release whatever frustration he was feeling and did it in an appropriate manner.

I am completely against physical abuse/violence but if it can be placed safely, with objects that are there for that purpose, I think it can be very stress relieving.

Battle Weary said...

A long time ago another blogger talked about doing this in her own yard...she had something set-up already to make t safe and easy to clean up. Sadly I cant remember which blogger. Anyways...T and I have talked about this a lot...the idea appeals to me in a very big way. Too bad San Diego, while still in my state, is a good 8 hours away!

CrackerLilo said...

What a brilliant and awesome idea! Seriously!

That's one thing I like about interior decorating projects--I get opportunities to let my aggression out when I need to. (Not so much right now, but still.) If I'm feeling really horrible and can't break something or rip something up elsewhere, I'll see if I can't do it at our little row house. And if we can't afford it or aren't allowed to, I absolutely have to paint. I think it has to do with making something *change*, finally, quickly, right before your eyes. I feel more in control when I'm done.

I remember when I was in the middle of a health crisis a few years ago. This house was just L'Ailee's, and we were only planning my moving in. I was visiting L'Ailee, and we came up with the idea of turning the two small upstairs bedrooms into one large one and a walk-in closet. I was so tired of being miserable and so tired of feeling like an invalid. My intent was to "help" the two professional contractors that my soon-to-be-wife's landlady hired for us. Instead, I picked up a sledgehammer and ended up taking down two entire walls all by myself! Me, a short, chubby woman who had arms like mayonnaise at the time!

I hurt all over, but oh Gods, I felt *great*!

Janes Insane said...

Happy '09 Dr. Deb!

I don't like that idea. What's gonna happen when 1 of them get pissed off on the road? Pull out a bat & start smashing a windshield?
I could see punching bags, or soundproof rooms to scream in.
It just seems like this is providing a temporary fix w/o an alternative long-term solution.
Perhaps I'm analyzing this too much.

Sydney said...

definitely interesting.
are they trying to tell you that its best to deal with your problems physically?
i feel it would be a great art idea
but it may not be the best way to deal with issues - unhealthy way of expressing feelings.

the demand of this idea could go further -
im sure many people would enjoy the idea :
it just might come to more big cities.

Lisa Marie said...

This could be a good thing for some. I know for me I am afraid of losing control, so I would hold back my feelings and not get the full effect, but I imagine that most people would have a very positive reaction to this

Tracy said...

Haha funny, great idea. Thing for me is after i drove to the place i would probably have calmed down.

Carrie said...

I like this idea - although I suppose that the statement "all things in moderation" applies here as well...

Carrie said...

I like this idea - although I suppose that the statement "all things in moderation" applies here as well...

Marj aka Thriver said...

My personal favorite is this: I save the cardboard rolls from paper towel and I go down into my basement and beat them to shreds. Something about the noise it would make with glass or pottery sounds even better to me, however! And I also agree that the verbal component is important.

Tiptoe said...

I just read about this in the latest Psychology Today magazine. It's an interesting concept. What I found perosnally funny is that she was a vet before she went this direction.

I'm sure this could be helpful for some people to vent out frustration. I'd have a harder time with it, because, well, I just don't like to break things.

Ian Lidster said...

When I was going through a wretched emotional time following the breakup of my 2nd marriage, and was filled with anger, the therapist I was seeing suggested pounding, really beating up, a pillow, letting it be a substitute for my ex.

I thought the idea was stupid until I tried it, and also verbally expressed all the rage and insult I was feeling.

Damn it. It worked wonders.

Wanda's Wings said...

I am not sure I could safely let out my anger. It is an interesting concept however. I do agree talking would be a vital part.

Leesa said...

I wonder what kind of insurance they carry? I mean, having customers who are angry and may injure themselves in the process . . . sounds like a recipe for disaster.

I would love the shop, though. I would buy cheap things elsewhere and break them.

STAG said...

There is anger and there is frustration. I can release the energy created by frustration by throwing a tool across the shop, or punching a hole in a wall, but although this works to defuse me, it scares the people around me. Then you have to deal with THAT.

Road Rage is likely something similar. You feel better after leaning on the horn for 30 seconds or so. Of course the people outside just got hit with a lot of negative vibes....some would say thats their problem now in't it?

Anger is more cold blooded. When I was fourteen, I tacked a rubber strip to the basement wall, and learned to hit it with all my power with the full intention of doing the same to the school bully. Didn't defuse the anger at all. But it DID build confidence. It was the confidence which eventually defeated the bullies of the school, and eventually the world, not the threat of violence. But the anger is still there even after 40 odd years.

I wonder if this person's clientelle are mostly men, mostly women, mostly married, mostly teen agers.....

Jedi Master Daryl said...

Hmmm... I am so laid back that I can't imagine doing that. I also imagine it could open up something evil in somebody. Don't know about that.

Of course the house music would have to be Megadeth's "Symphony of Destruction."

There is that scene in "Office Space" when the guys destroy the fax machine. That was cool.

Oh, and I LOVE smashing old cathode ray tubes. That is cool because they are a strong vacuum inside. I do that not because I am angry or like increasing the entropy of the universe, but because it is cool.

Oh yeah, and I've broken lots of boards and bricks with my karate. But not because I am mad.

My Rights said...

great and beautiful blog
i love your blog.

Deb S. said...

I'm already thinking about locations!

Dr. Deb said...

Interesting comments. I have broken things and felt terrible and broken things and felt wonderful.

Awake In Rochester said...

I never have smashed anything, but it sounds like fun. To bad she changes for it.

Gary R. Schor said...

When I was 15, I had a temper tantrum and smashed one of my prize guitars. I never forgave myself and now find the idea of breaking things very unappealing. Control control control!