We're endlessly being told that we live in an angry society these days - and it's true. It seems there's no human activity these days that doesn't have its own form of "rage" attached to it. This blog post from Gary Linnell details some of the many incidents of fill-in-the-blank rage that have occurred recently - including, most tragically, a retiree beaten to death on his front lawn in an argument over water restrictions (as it turns out, it was legal for lawns to be watered at the time the man was killed).
Why is this happening? Oh sure, we live in a more stressful society these days, and we're all short on time...but I think those excuses rather miss the point. At times of extreme stress, such as during war, communities often pull together with deep solidarity. Of course, people also have developed short tempers and limited patience due to our instant gratification society. But I have another theory - which you sure as hell won't hear from the mainstream media.
We're all angry because no one smokes anymore.
I'm not just referring to what may be the angriest creature on Earth - the just-quit smoker - but to everyone. The act of smoking a cigarette makes you take at least a couple of minutes time out, and the nicotine of course acts as a relaxant. In the days when everyone smoked, we were all getting those relaxing little breaks through the day, and a dose of stuff that made us relax even more; now we don't have that, and people often step outside their offices from the moment they arrive in the morning till when they leave (late) at night. No wonder we're all angry.
So everyone should start smoking again. Of course, average life expectancy would plummet as Medicare costs soared - but we'd all be a lot happier in the meantime.