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    « The Payoff - Part 3 | Main | Around Campus »

    Friday, September 18, 2009


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    Katie B.

    A mom I know had to give birth to her baby that had died in the womb a couple of weeks before. Melancholy enough for you?


    I think the periodic good wallow is cleansing. As long as it doesn't go on for too long, of course.


    Well, since you asked, Monday, I started radiation treatments and Wednesday night into Thursday my cat died.

    I plan to have a good long cry after work today.


    Hi Norma! Sorry to contribute to your melancholy by posting that video. Isn't her voice just.....tortured sounding? I think that's the word. Anyway, must be in the air because I have had that kind of week also. Let's all just sob together!


    MUST be in the air for I too seem to have had one of those weeks-Or maybe it is just the human condition-we all suffer-just differently-Take care Norma and my fellow commentors!

    gale (she shoots sheeps shots)

    Well, I was feeling a hair on this side of OK until I listened to the Susan Boyle clip, now I'm a sob sister with you. Instant melancholy. I think we need a dose of Bob Marley, loud.
    (maybe its the season)


    When it hits, there's nothing more cleansing than weeping.


    Wow. I'm so sorry that everyone is having such a rough time. My heart goes out to everyone. I try to take each day, each hour as it comes. If something sucks, find something beautiful asap. I keep looking at the changing leaves and marveling at their colors and that no one can really reproduce their beauty. BTW - LOVE Out of Africa. 'I had a farm in Africa, at the foot of the Ngong Hills' gives me chills every time!


    My ex-husband used to say that the perfect day for me was to watch Camille while reading Thomas Hardy. On a rainy day.


    Another post - I was just thinking about the resilience of Isak Dinesen and Karen Blixen. Their perseverance and bravery. Their embracement of life & adventure. Surely that message is something to take comfort in?


    Dead Poet's Society. That's a movie that made me cry so hard I had to go change my shirt afterward.


    La Vita E Bella (Life Is Beautiful) just rips me. I highly recommend it.


    I love you, Norma. Don't rent Out of Africa, buy it -- I did. Then you could rent The Joy Luck Club. With luck it will start to rain.


    Geez, woman! You are a glutton for punishment. Forget the sob-til-you-drop movies - rent Wall-e. I absolutely love that movie and it always makes me laugh. Pixar rocks!

    (Oh, and I had a big downer week, too, but I can blame it on stupid hormones.)


    I had a farm, in Africa......
    (not much of a comment, I know, but it started playing in my head as soon as I'd read that part of your post...)


    Sometimes emotions just bubble right there . . . under the surface. And the only thing that will do. . . is a good cry. Let it happen.

    elizabeth a airhart

    oh woe
    oh terrible woe
    where did my woe go
    i am so woe begone
    now that my woe is gone

    oh woe oh terrible woe
    what am i to do
    now that my woe is gone

    susan boyle is for real


    I love Out of Africa-high five!


    I find melancholy to be cleansing and healing and healthy. It seems to me that people who let themselves embrace the pain are the ones who also find great joy in life. They're also much more interesting than those who are roses and sunshine all the time.


    It is exquisite, the melancholy, isn't it? I really believe some of us have the gene for it. I know that I do. The problem is that it gets out of hand sometimes. Wallow, but don't forget to come back up, Norma. I would really miss that sassy, smart-assed gal.

    Mary Fran

    I think I'm overdue for a good long cleansing cry. The past few weeks have been hell - transitioning to a new sitter, kids starting school, changes at work. I feel like I've been on the verge of tears all week. I think I need to just let them go. But not right now... I'm at work. My Mom said I've always been too sensitive, especially to music. I remember my Dad, who traveled for work my whole childhood, had just left. And "Leaving on a Jet Plane" came on the radio and I started bawling. My Mom had to turn it off.

    Tressa in NC

    Totally beautiful. Thank you, Norma, for posting this. I, too, have had one of those hellishly-wicked two weeks. Mine is from drugs to counteract an allergic reaction. Never again! As for you, it's transition time. Just ride it out. Life is such a surprise.


    Holy shit, you got that right. Stephanie (no link) took the words right out of my head/mouth. Wild Horses..did that ever take me back and Susan sings it beautifully.


    Watching someone execute a perfect performance on the ice will make me cry or hearing a beautiful voice in song. It is a from the chest weeping is the only way I can describe it. Yesterday it was Legends of the Fall that made me weep. Beautiful movie.

    I have noticed that when the weather brings a low pressure system through I get sappy and also sleepy.

    Hope your blues are over soon, it would be a shame to miss Vermont in the fall.


    If it's in the air, the whole country's doomed (okay, now I'm so hosed...I just put "The Eggplant That Ate Chicago" in my head with that line...). As I was's bicoastal...we've been having awesome weather in Seattle and yet...the verge of tears comment comes to mind...

    The only thing I can think of is that it is the start of school season, and even if you're not in school? You were once, and the repressed thoughts and hopes and shattered dreams and wonderful memories are trying to get out all at the same time and the combined emotional madness ends up as big fat tears on our pillow cases...or something.

    Alida South Africa

    Hormones? Greetings from Africa. Went into hospital this week for a hysteroscopy and everything that goes with it. I cried and cried because I was so scared. In the bed across from me was a young woman who lost her twin babies. We all cried for her. Alida


    Oh dear. There must be something in the air. Go listen to "Light One Candle" by Peter Paul and Mary, since Mary Travers just died, too. That broke me up last night.


    I feel so much better reading that it isn't just me. Right now happy and sad things seem to make me awfully weepy. I sobbed and sobbed the other night after seeing this commercial and the tears had nothing to do with the recent death of MJ.


    I think you need to snap out of it as it is not the right mood for a whole year and this afternoon the new year starts!
    So maybe go and rent the comedy you like the best instead?
    Shanah Tovah to you and yours.


    I caught a cold 2 weeks before we leave on an expensive vacation for a month. I'm hoping I get over it in time to board the airplane. That's my sadness. (I haven't had a cold in two years!)

    Mary K. in Rockport

    "Out of Africa" got to me, too, when it first came out, and I've been VERY CAREFUL to never see it again. I have to avoid occasions of melancholia because it's too contagious. I try to have a good therapeutic laugh every day to keep my spirits up. My current favorite is "Big Bang Theory."


    What? No "English Patient"? No "Truly, Madly, Deeply"? No Auden? No Eva Cassidy singing "People Get Ready" when she was pretty near ready herself?

    It's too dang cheery around here!

    Lsat night I saw Anna Deveare Smith's new play, "Let Me Down Easy". What I didn't know, beforehand, was that it was about dying, dying of cancer, dying of AIDS, dying in Katrina, being with someone when they die.

    I was not on an aisle seat. There was no intermission.

    It was frickin' brilliant but JEBUS! GO EASY!

    Highly recommended.


    I actually live around the corner from Karen Blixen House outside Nairobi (there's a museum and really good restaurant, mmmm). And I was having quite a week last week, too, but fortunately it has passed!


    I actually live around the corner from Karen Blixen House outside Nairobi (there's a museum and really good restaurant, mmmm). And I was having quite a week last week, too, but fortunately it has passed!


    Ditto Becky's comments. Feels like it's coded in my DNA. I try to carefully ration the things that push that button for me. Some of my favorites...
    "Hallelujah"--both the Leonard Cohen and Jeff Buckley versions
    "Lover, You Should Have Come Over"--Jeff Buckley
    Jim Croce's "Time in a Bottle" & "Operator"
    "Whiskey Lullaby"--Brad Paisley & Alison Krauss
    Uillean & highland pipe music
    three scenes from Braveheart--the two funerals of young William's da & brother and the scene at the wedding when the noble rides up and claims right of primae noctis--more specifically the slow motion portion where the bride acquiesces to being taken away. Exquisitely devastating. John Hannah's recitation of Auden's Funeral Blues in Four Weddings and a Funeral. Life is Beautiful, Pan's Labyrinth, The Orphanage. For a healthy mix of sad and funny I love Return to Me and Steel Magnolias.

    More powerful because of the reality of it is art made in art therapy programs, especially relating to mental illness. It's maybe the one thing that leaves me without words, just feeling.

    Seanna Lea

    I think good art is like easing yourself into a difficult yoga posture. It pulls you out of your comfort zone and away from yourself. It is good to spend some time outside of the me me me mindset that pervades so much of the U.S. today, and good art helps us do that.


    Yeah, I hear you. Its a mood, that hopefully passes soon.


    OMG... Kay! I love Truly, Madly, Deeply. The funeral in Three Weddings and A Funeral always gets me. /sigh

    I think something is going around. Embrace it, my friend. Then put on It's A Beautiful Day by U2 and go for a drive.



    Sounds cathartic.

    Go read Rumi. He knows about the human condition in all its pathos and humor.

    Also, listen to Tori Amos. She brings beauty out of the pain.

    Angie L.

    Yup, it's goin around for sure. Thanks for saying something about it, Norma, I'm glad to know I'm not alone. I was starting to think I was a bit off.
    I recommend "Ghost" with Patrick Swayze in it. For music, "creep" and "Karma police" by "Radiohead", "drops of jupiter" and "Meet virginia" by "Train", and anything "Coldplay". Also, "Brick" by "Ben folds five", and "Freshman" by "The verve pipe".


    ps... Crying should always be followed by Ocean or something of that sort. The sinuses cannot be allowed to win.



    I felt the same way early in the week.. .two funerals of people I knew on Saturday probably started it off. But then I looked at photos of a friend's wedding, remarrying a few years after losing her hubby to cancer before either was even 50, and that brightened my spirts. Then, grandbaby Odessa arrived and I am beaming, even though Mercury is retrograde and making people snappy... this too will pass, grrl.


    Sometimes we just need to cry--it can be very cleansing. A movie that always makes me cry because the song at the end is so touching is Fly Away Home. The song is sung by Mary Chapin Carpenter and it is hauntingly beautiful.


    I recently caught "Out of Africa" on the TV also -- the umpteenth time I've watched it. I think it's the magic of the voice-overs with the photography of the countryside that gets to me. Isaac speaks in poetry. I read the book long ago and still have it so I pulled it out and re-read it again.
    Pure magic.


    I cannot wait for Susan Boyle's album release after hearing this song the other day. Incredible. Hugs to you, sister. Wish I could come over...

    Melissa G

    Yes, yes, and yes. I have to be very careful about "Out of Africa." One other that I avoid is "The Mission" the tale and the music combined are deadly. Earlier this week I was blindsided in yoga--our guide asked us to put a smile on our face, think of someone who brought joy into our lives and take it out to others. I'd been doing just that but the flash of my grandparents had (and does again) tears running down my face. Of course it's been a brutal week and I've succumbed to my daughter's back-to-school cold.


    OMG! I thought it was only me! I have been feeling on and off sadness at the passing of summer since mid August! Why I can't understand since I have an abundance of wonderful trips and gatherings planned. Maybe I needed just a few more days at the beach or on the water in Maine.
    "Out of Africa" is one of my favs, but I couldn't face it without dissolving! Here's hoping the crisp fall air snaps us out of our blues!!


    Out of Africa, yes! One of my two favorite movies of all time (the other being, what else, Gone With the Wind. Susan Boyle, love her and her success story. I do hope Mr. Jeffries makes a full recovery soon...adore him and Terrier Tuesdays.


    Sophie's Choice did it for me. It depressed me for a very long time!!! I swore off sad movies after watching it. My motto became, "nothing but fluff", but of course, being a musician, melancholy is always just a note away. Without sad moments we would never truly appreciate happy ones. Glad you are better!

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