I woke up this morning thinking of lots of subjects I could write about, today and in future posts.
I considered writing some drafts for future posts, and then thought, “Hey! Maybe I can come up with a topic today that can cover several of these ideas!”
Hence the title of this post, “Things that make me go __.” (With thanks to a song title I’ve always liked: “Things That Make You Go Hmmm.”)
THINGS THAT MAKE ME GO BOO HOO.
Here are some things that can make me so sad, that I may very well cry.
1. When I experience somebody disconnecting from me.
There are all sorts of reasons why people disconnect from each other — why they regulate intimacy in the moment — whether it’s guilt, shame, being overwhelmed, fear of being rejected, boredom, fear of intimacy, etc.
In the hospital, when I was a kid, I think treaters would sometimes put up barriers to connection, for lots of reasons, so I think I am pret-ty sensitized to that moment of disconnecting. At the same time, I recognize that we all regulate intimacy — we have to! Boundaries are important.
My most recent experience of my sensitivity to this “moment of disconnecting” was yesterday. After a person who schedules meetings at work was harried and a little abrupt with me — because (I know!) that person is overworked and (I think!) guilty about needing to cancel lots of meetings — I went back to my office, closed the door, and, much to my amazement, sobbed for a few minutes.
2. When somebody I like leaves.
When I was sobbing in my office yesterday, it also occurred to me that this reaction might also be related to the fact that one of the people at the front desk where I work — who does a great job and who is welcoming, thoughtful, fun, and just generally wonderful — was leaving yesterday. It was her last day at work with us. (Sigh.)
3. When animals are in danger or hurt in some way.
When I was a kid, I remember reading a children’s book where somebody steps on a kitten, and the kitten dies. Oh. My. Gawd. I think I cried for days.
Also, I saw the movie “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” in the theater when I was really young. (I just looked it up — I was 8 years old.) I remember a scene at the end of the movie, where Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard are reuniting for a “happy” ending, after Audrey Hepburn had done this horrifying thing of pushing her cat out of the cab into the rain. I remember that I couldn’t stop crying — even though George Peppard had found the cat, and he and Audrey were hugging, with the cat in between them — because the cat was still getting wet.
While I think that’s great that I could find that scene just now on YouTube, I have to admit that — watching it again now, for the first time since I was a kid — I started crying when Audrey Hepburn kicked the cat out of the cab. Again! And I’m just turning off the waterworks, now.
Okay. Time to move on to another emotion. I think I’ll write about one more, for this post today.
THINGS THAT MAKE ME GO HA HA.
Here are some things that make me happy, to the extent that I Laugh Out Loud.
(By the way, I have a pet peeve about the abbreviation LOL. I sometimes suspect that people use this inauthentically! I think that when people write LOL, they are often NOT Laughing Out Loud, but rather Smiling To Themselves. I know that’s shocking, but this is what I assume.
If I ruled the blogosphere — and was therefore corrupted by that power — I might track people’s use of LOL, compare that with video taken of them by their computers’ cameras, and impose fines for misrepresentation.)
1. Certain scenes in certain movies.
The first movie I remember laughing out loud at in a theater was “It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World” — a very slap-stick-y movie with a huge cast. (I just googled that, too, and I was 10 years old when I saw it.) I laughed and laughed at a scene where there is a car crash in a tunnel — which we don’t see, but only hear. What cracked me up was not the crash, but what happened after a moment of stillness and silence, when a tire comes rolling out of the tunnel.
I have seen this scene subsequently, and it didn’t make me laugh again. I don’t think I even found it all that funny. But I did enjoy seeing it, remembering how much pleasure that movie moment gave me, when I was a kid.
Let’s see if I can find that scene on YouTube now. (I have to admit, dear reader, I’m still a little drained after watching that friggin’ Audrey Hepburn kick that poor cat out of the cab again.) (So I will do my best, but I’ll only look for a brief time.)
The trailers I looked at have lots and lots of action scenes, but they don’t show that moment. Here’s one trailer (I think it’s actually a non-USA trailer):
“It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World” trailer
The only YouTube video I found that included that Rolling Tire was one of those compilations somebody makes with their own soundtrack. So forget that.
But looking at several YouTube videos told me something– I probably liked that rolling tire because it was one of the few “subtle” moments of comedy in the whole thing — it was a momentary rest from all that action!
Other movies where I’ve laughed out loud — since that initial time in 1963 — include “The Producers” (the original, 1968 version), “This is Spinal Tap,” “Galaxy Quest,” “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” and “A Fish Called Wanda.”
While there are lots of movies I think are funny (I’m thinking of the early Woody Allen movies), I don’t easily laugh out loud at them. And I’m actually having trouble thinking of another movie, since that scene in “It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World,” where I have truly cracked up, laughing for an extended period of time at a movie.
2. Sharing a moment of silliness with a friend, where we both think we’re not supposed to be laughing.
Oh, yes. This is probably the Mother Lode of Laughing out Loud. My friend, Megan, at my birthday party, told a story about our attending a weekend workshop at a place where You Weren’t Supposed to Talk During Meals. Something struck us both as funny during one of these meals, and we could NOT stop laughing. We had to leave the dining room. The laughing — and the trying not to laugh — was so intense, it hurt. (Do you have memories of something like this, dear reader?)
3. Finding pleasure, delight, and surprise in something somebody tells me.
I’ve been told that I’m quite an easy laugher — outside of movies, I guess. When I’m having a personal interaction, I know I really enjoy hearing other people’s humor, creativity, and any expression of their personal joie de vivre.
I’m sometimes not actually aware that I’m laughing, and other people sometimes let me know about that. Just the other day, a patient whom I had seen for a few sessions, and then hadn’t returned for about a year, called to make an appointment. She said, at the end of the phone conversation, “I miss you!” I remembered being surprised by that. When I saw her in person, she said, “You laughed when I said I missed you. Why?” She said she wasn’t offended, but curious.
Sometimes I wonder whether people might take my (often unconscious) laughter “the wrong way.” I guess I can’t control that, but maybe I can be more mindful of my own laughter, and hope that people check it out with me, as this patient did.
Okay, dear reader, I’m going to end this Saturday Post, because here are two Things that Make me Go Zzzzzz (or at least run low on energy):
- Writing a post with some deep emotional content, and
- Needing something to eat.
Thanks for reading, everybody.