have a bawl

I was tired this morning on my way too work, and when I’m tired I find I’m more emotional (read: I cry a whole lot easier) than when I’m fully rested.

That’s right, I cry. I have no problem admitting that.

We aren’t talking full on sob sessions (and so what if we were), but my eyes will water up and spill over the edges on occasion while watching movies, reading books, listening to music, telling stories…  It happens.

This morning, listening to Bruce Springsteen sing “This Hard Land,” I had to wipe my eyes:

Hey frank won’t ya pack your bags
And meet me tonight down at liberty hall
Just one kiss from you my brother
And we’ll ride until we fall
We’ll sleep in the fields
We’ll sleep by the rivers and in the morning
We’ll make a plan
Well if you can’t make it
Stay hard, stay hungry, stay alive
If you can
And meet me in a dream of this hard land

There are a couple things going on here:

First, he is calling out “Frank,” which always brings to mind “Jessie.”  (You know, Frank and Jessie James.)  So, there’s history, and family, and life and death, and all the romance I ascribe to the old west all rolled into that one word.  Who among us hasn’t made believe at one time in our lives that we were these notorious outlaws robbing a bank or train, stealing from the rich and giving to the poor, watching each other’s backs, protected by family and friends and tradition?  So, with all that now running through my head, we proceed into the rest of the stanza.

The second hit comes from: “Just one kiss from you my brother, and we’ll ride until we fall.”  I haven’t always been close with my brother, there were a couple years where we didn’t talk much at all.  But, since then, we have become much closer.  This line resonates with me.  I know, either way, if one of us needed the other, we’d be there to whatever end.  Without question.  Without complaint.  Guns blazing if needed.  At this point I can already feel the pressure behind my eyes as my tear ducts are starting to do there thing.

Then it all comes together with the third and final stressor on my (fragile?) emotional state with the final lines: “stay alive, if you can, and meet me in a dream of this hard land.”  If you can?  If you can!  That’s it, I’m done, I can’t stop the tears from coming.  Life is a struggle, there are always going to be challenges, but there is hope, there is something wonderful about meeting those adventures head on with someone by your side, there is more going on in those lines than I have the words to capture.

From there, on my drive, I moved on to thinking about the other lines from my life that I can’t help but cry when I hear them (see them):

For Love of the Game – written on the baseball – “Tell them I’m through, ‘for love of the game’, Billy Chapel”

Schindler’s List – Oskar Schindler (Liam Neeson) – “I could have got more out. I could have got more. I don’t know. If I’d just… I could have got more.”

The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers – Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen) – “Ride out with me. Ride out and meet them.”

The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance – Jason Tully (Willis Bouchey) – “Nothing’s too good for the man who shot Liberty Valance.”

Zulu – Adendorff (Gert van den Bergh) –  “They’re… they’re saluting you. They’re saluting fellow braves. They’re saluting you.”

Five seems like enough for today.  And now, of course, I want to watch each of these films again.  If you haven’t seen them, add them to your must watch lists.  That’s an official kingdom proclamation.

40 thoughts on “have a bawl

  1. I get more emotional when I’m tired, too. Mostly, it’s songs that do this to me. Then I’m stuck listening to that song over and over even though it’s depressing me.

  2. Oh you are doomed. As a parent there is the sheer exhaustion and so very many highs and lows. It seems like every movie, every song, every book, every dance performance all relate somehow to those moments both wonderful and terrible. I was never a crier until I became a parent. Okay, that’s not true…I cried a lot up through Junior High School…I was one of those kids. From High School on, I thought I had myself in check, but becoming a parent just intensified the emotions brought on by the world around me. Now, even the most mundane of commercials can start my eyes to drizzling…but it’s a good rain.

    • Commercials are definitely something I have to be careful when I’m watching too. That was before I become a parent! Yes, I know I’m doomed… But, we only to look to my dad to have seen that all along. We are just a family of criers.

  3. Nothing wrong with admitting that you cry. Schindler’s List was stunning. That quote flooded the gates, when I saw the movie.

    To Mer’s point, Lucas was good. Lol, my dad used to watch it and used the I’ve got.something in my eye, deal.

  4. I love this. I got teary eyed today when I was walking with a colleague and we were discussing a different colleague who always speaks so badly about his wife. I got tears in my eyes because I knew if my husband was like that with me and saying things behind my back, I would be so sad. Thankfully, the wind was blowing hard so the watery eyes seemed like an effect from that.

    As for movies, I tend to always get teary eyed at the end of Pocahontas (yes, the Disney movie). Her and John Smith are in love but he goes back to England and she stays in America because she’s needed by her people. It was my first lesson growing up that sometimes love forces harder decisions than you would want. So even now, I’ll feel my tears well up a little bit when the ending comes around.

    One more thing, the first movie I ever cried at in a movie theater was “A Walk to Remember”. It created such a hollow feeling in me that I haven’t seen it since.

    • That was on TV last night and the queen and I were watching it while playing with the little prince and trying to get him to sleep. That one doesn’t really affect me.
      The first movie I remember crying at in the theater is My Girl. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen it, but I bet it would still get me.

      • Yeah, I don’t think that movie affects very many people, lol. I think it was just the sudden realization when I was younger that sometimes, even though you can be totally in love, the best thing for each other is to be apart. Or, you know the whole saying of, if you love someone, let them go? It’s kind of like that, and I think I never realized that until that movie. I was used to watching movies where they always got together in the end and lived happily ever after, so seeing this movie and thinking … “Wait! How can they live happily ever after? They’re not together! What?!” …blew my little itty bitty 8 year old brain.

      • I don’t remember which movie did that for me, but I’m sure I had that moment at some point too. Silly movies, they are supposed to be our release, our entertainment, not cause us to have emotional reactions and learn life lessons! Rude.

  5. Nice to know that you’re not ashamed to admit to getting teary-eyed. Some men refuse to make such a statement, which is sad — a little emotion never hurt anyone.

    I get teary-eyed — commercials can be the worst, because sometimes they’re so unexpectedly moving. At least in a movie, you’re aware that there might be a moment that inspires you/breaks your heart, etc. But commercials — it’s all just out of the blue: ad for product, them BOOM–right for the heart.

    Schindler’s List is one of the most emotionally exhausting movies — I think it’s the B&W that makes it so much more draining, because there is not a single bit of color (i.e. brightness, joy) in the whole movie.

    Two Towers … Ride out with me… that one doesn’t do it to me so much, but, the speech of Theoden in ROTK gets me every time: “Forth, and fear no darkness! Arise! Arise, Riders of Theoden! Spears shall be shaken, shields shall be splintered! A sword day… a red day… ere the sun rises! Ride now! Ride now! Ride! Ride for ruin and the world’s ending! Death! Death! Death! Forth, Eorlingas!”

    • Theoden’s speech gets me too, but between “ride out with me” and the Ents going to wary, the second movie is my favorite of the trilogy (of movies, anyway), so that’s the one I included in my short list.
      Schinder’s list – the girl in the red dress… and then you see her again… and there isn’t a dry eye in the place.
      I agree with the commercials comments. It’s amazing how many of those can get me.

      • I had forgotten about the girl in the red dress … it’s been a lot of years since I’ve seen Schindler’s… twice, that’s all … and it drained me both times…

      • I think the only reason I remember the girl in the red dress is because it was just on TV not too long ago and I watched it then. I think that was the 3rd time I’d seen it – once in the theater, once when I bought it on DVD, and then when it was on TV. That should hold me for a long time.

  6. How about Tim McGraws song… “I don’t know why they say grown men don’t cry…” Who is the idiot that made that rule. My dad, grandpa’s and brother are some awesome tough men. Yet I’ve seen them cry!!! It’s all ok! Oh! Jesus wept! He had the power to raise his friend and knew he was going to… But saw his friends family and friends weeping and he two wept!

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