I am a fairly emotional person. I have not always been able to contain said emotions, but Iwas never one of those people who cries in restaurants (unless, of course, i am 15 and there is blood on my rice from the bbq duck and i know i will not be able to eat it cuz it is so gross, and you totally should have understood that, Lisa! Sorry. Back to the present).
Last week, Emily and I were out for dinner with our respective partners and fetuses in tow. We started talking about The Girls, a novel we had both recently read about conjoined twin girls (a really great book, highly recommend it) and we recalled a story within the book that made us both weepy. Literally. Tears over our big steamy bowl of Pho.
And then Emily told the story from her dad's book of buddhist stories, and one that explored the idea of true giving. In the story a 9-year old boy is told by his parents that his bone marrow can save his little sister's life, but that it was his choice to make whether he wanted to go through with the procedure, which would be very painful. The boy thought about it for a day or so, then solemnly told his parents that he was ready to do the transplant.
The day of the operation, as he and his sister lay on cots next to each other and the doctors tended to both patients, the boy turned to the doctor and said: "when do I start to die?"
The boy had thought he was giving his life for his sister's. Are you weepy now? Cuz we cried, then laughed cuz we were crying. And cried some more. And our guys looked both horrified and amused that the hormonally-compromised mothers of their future children were crying in a Vietnamese restaurant. But there you go.
Kiff explains these things as the "Cujo is adopted" phenomenon. Explanation: emily's sister was watching the hockey playoffs a few years ago, when Cujo was our goalie. When he was on, he was on fire, when he was off, it was agonizing to watch. On a particulary "off" night, Amy turned to her hockey-loving husband and said: "Cujo was adopted!"
Kiff hypothesises that women need background story more than men in order to enjoy stuff (hence our lack of enthusiasm for porn with its crap storylines). But I am not so sure it is such a gender thing. Kiff spends hours on craigslist looking at furniture for sale. But I know his secret: He loves the stories that people post with their objects: "Black wool sofa for sale. Moving in with my girlfriend and her white, long-haired cat who sheds."