North Beach Cry Baby

I need a little help here.

Why do parents hush their children when the tears come? A three year old little boy bumps his back on the right side in a painful place. He wails “owwweeee.”

One parents says, “You’ll be okay honey. Do you want me to look at it?”  The other parent says, “Stop crying.”

Why?  Why, in his own home, where we can’t possibly be bothering anyone, are we hushed?   Is crying some sign of weakness or something?  Are we afraid that this little boy will be teased at school, if he doesn’t learn to control his tears.

I have watched this happen over and over again. I’m not being critical of parenting here, I am looking to understand this phenononem. It is healthy to cry. Healthy.

I figure if I had done a little more crying as a kid, I wouldn’t have been so devastated when Wham broke up. Okay, I’m kind of kidding with that one.  

I sit in conference rooms and watch us control our emotions all day long. Why? What is so scary about being what we are feeling?

I listened to two poets last night at the North Beach Library.  Blake More read 6 poems that caused the audience to throw their head back in laughter and well their eyes up in tears.  Only a stanza apart, the emotion is what made the evening so perfect.   My friends John and Luke had convulsions when she mentioned “Camel Toe” in a poignant poem about peace.    Moments later, Blake’s beloved Chris, was caned by an elderly woman in a beret.  It seems he backed into her while telling the story of another elderly woman swimming over him in an open swim race.   The timing (and emotion) was perfect.   He was beaten by a cane in the abdomen as we sat in horror for a second and spasmotically laughing in the next.

I looked around the room.   Emotion bonged around that room like a pinball Cirqus Voltaire Pinball Machine.   The emotion-o meter peaked in that moment and slowly waned over seltzer water and lemon as the night wore on, the once loud crackle of the ice in the first pour, settling into a quiet fizz as  dinner  arrived.

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