Thursday, July 22, 2010

Calling all venters

Butch Rascoe was a favorite at Mansfield (La.) High School. The history teacher and coach had a way of simultaneously instructing and entertaining that was unmatched by any educator I ever had before, or since. I remember being in the classroom one particular Friday when the American History discussion waned and Coach Rascoe began to tell one of his “stories.”

He confessed that he had long fantasized about adding on to his house, but not with any ordinary room. This addition would be special -- a long and narrow room built entirely of concrete. And it would be stocked with bottles and bottles of beer, but not for drinking.

Coach Rascoe’s plan was to use the space for venting -- finding relief from the frustrations of a tough day by hurling, one by one, bottles of beer against the concrete wall. As each bottle smashed, he imagined that he would begin to feel better and better.

A mall in Shenyang, China, has had the same idea. A recent article told of a store opening that allows customers to pay to vent frustrations by breaking, smashing, and vandalizing all kinds of domestic objects. Designed for women, interestingly, the store contains several rooms with plans for more in the making.

Check out the story here.

-- Katherine Field

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