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I am not one easily moved to tears. But here are a few things that turn on the waterworks.

Abandoned dogs. Their eyes, the resignation on their faces, the body language which says ‘May be it was me. I did something bad, and I was punished’. It is so heartbreaking seeing the absolute dejection. Just don’t do it, people. Don’t get dogs and then abandon them to fend for themselves. It’s a lifelong commitment. If you don’t intend keeping your side of the bargain, just don’t do it in the first place. (Right now someone might ask, ‘What about cats?’ I don’t know why I don’t cry for cats. They somehow seem more capable, not the big babies the dogs are.)

The love and affection of siblings on screen. I am afraid though it is not the same in real life. Don’t ask me why it is so, because I really don’t have a clue, but no other form of affection/love moves me as much as that of siblings. Lovers might be sundered apart, parents may die leaving children destitute, but I remain unmoved. But let the siblings get back together and share an emotional movement and I turn all misty-eyed.

Animals who miss their humans who are no more, and the way they wait for them till their end. Who hasn’t heard of Hachiko? But I don’t know if you people have heard about the elephant that turned over while being bathed in the river and inadvertently crushed its caretaker to death. The last I heard the distraught elephant was carrying around one of the man’s slippers in his trunk, refusing to part with it. I cried.

Anyone who has been around long enough here knows this one: An exceptionally good singer moves me to tears. Strangely enough, this happens only on live shows (or live shows telecast on television). The same song in video or audio format does not have the same impact. Sing beautifully in my hearing and the waterworks threaten to start unmindful of the public location, embarrassing me in the process.

Then there is the small matter of accolades that come my way. I was never one to handle praise well. As a child, the minute someone said something nice to me, I was ready to cry. Fortunately such occasions were pretty rare. My friends from college, still talk about the time I had sung a song for them, and how when they clapped in appreciation, instead of beaming with happiness had started crying. But you can’t have that sort of thing happening, right? So over the years I developed a strategy, making light of it, or ignoring it altogether after a brief acknowledgement, leading people to conclude that I was ‘too proud’. Sigh. Oh by the way, in case you want to rave over a well written blog post or something, don’t hold yourself back. After all I am on this side of the monitor somewhere far away. Wiping those tears away surreptitiously, I’ll write you a glowing reply. Promise! 😉

What makes YOU cry?

© Shail Mohan 2020