“What makes you cry, Wolf?”


“How deep is that? Cry Wolf?”


“Ok, rephrasing:  Is there anything that moves you to tears?”


“It might sound shallow, but whenever I see those abused animal commercials, I have to switch the channel.  If not, I would be in tears.”


“So it takes an animal to make you cry?”


“I cried when Charlie died.  He was such a bad dog, but I loved him.  And I cry at weddings, funerals, parades and whenever the National anthem is sung.”


“What the hell?  What’s to cry about when you are watching a parade?  Or hearing the Star Spangled Banner?”


“I get overwhelmed with the moment, and I cry.”


“Have you ever cried at work?”


“Yes.  I have.  There was an unusually nasty customer who was in a meeting, berating me, and I had to leave, in tears.”


“Anything else?”


“I  have cried over lost loves, 911, the Iraq war, and when I left Minnesota to pursue a career. And when I see others crying, it makes me cry.  I cannot bear to see suffering.   And when children are involved, I am especially vulnerable.  I even cry at Christmas. It is supposed to be a joyful time, but for me, it only brings to mind those who have nothing to celebrate.  I cry when I see homeless people, lonely people, injustice and prejudice.  I cry more than you think I do.”


“But you always seem so silly and happy.  What’s with that?”


“It’s been said that people  are motivated by one of three things:  To win, to be liked, or to avoid pain.  My goal is to avoid pain, not just for me, but for all those I meet.  So, I go around smiling like an idiot, and find a reason to make others smile.  We never really know what people are going through.”


“A smile can’t stop a war, or abuse or prejudice.  Isn’t that being phony?”


“Could be.  I might just be the phoniest person you will ever know.  You will see the smiles, but you probably will never see the crying.”


“Can you recall the last time you cried?”


“Yesterday, Minnie.  It was the anniversary of my Mother’s death.  I miss her.”


“What do you miss most about her?”


“Her laughter, and her smiles.  Sometimes she would laugh so hard, she would cry.”


“I don’t get it. What do smiling and laughter have in common with crying?  Aren’t they opposite ends of the human spectrum?”


“I don’t know, Minnie.  But I do know that those who really live their lives to the fullest, experience all their emotions unconditionally.  And, eventually, turn into their Mothers.”




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