You know who I want to be when I grow up? I want to be Myrna Loy. Cool, poised, and witty – that woman could be faced with dire chaos and would simply pat her hair nonchalantly and fire off a quiet, deadpan quip. Dang, that woman was quippy. Also, if it is at all possible, I would like a dash of Margaret Thatcher thrown in if it’s not too much trouble.
Instead I am a crier. You know those pitiful people who have to carry kleenexes everywhere? That’s me.
Example: I wept the first three times I saw Home Alone. (That scene when the old man reunites with his estranged family? Three times.) I sob over fictional characters on television and in books. I feel a burning in my nose and a tug in my throat and it’s all over, mister.
And it’s not just when I’m sad. Every emotion comes spilling out of my eyes and nose. It’s messy. And it kind of makes me want to hunt down the Tin Man of Oz and whop him for being such an idiot. (But then I’d dent him. And then I’d feel really bad. And then I’d cry.) It doesn’t matter if I’m angry, happy, or any number of the seven dwarfs, the results are just awful. Mix all this up with the fact that I am a decidedly unpretty crier. Yikes. Maybe I should carry a paper bag to put over my head and stash it next to the kleenexes.
Not only do I cry at the slightest provocation, but I am mortified when it happens in public. I have a sneaking admiration for people who can own their puddly ways and work it.
My dad once told me that it must be genetic. He and his brothers used to tease my aunt to tears on purpose because she was such an easy target. I think I would like to trade in that particular familial trait and switch it for, say, the burning hatred of raisins that is common to my ancestors. You never make anyone uneasy when you are sitting in the park, loathing raisins like the dickens.
The happy medium for now? Settling in to watch The Best Years of Our Lives with a bowl of popcorn and some tissues. Lots and lots of tissues.