The No Cry Challenge

When I was in college, my roommate at the time introduced me to a challenge that was being spread around Reddit.  It was called the No Cry 19 Challenge. It was a playlist of videos that was guaranteed to make people cry. They weren’t all sad, though many were, but were just extreme from an emotional sense.  Extremely sad, extremely happy, and just a whole range of emotions. The comments were fun to look at as you saw a wide range of individuals detailing out how far they made it, with many falling off within the first ten videos.

The challenge was fun but it also made me realize two ideas.  The first, is that it’s a universal thing to need to cry, and through empathy we’re able to share in those emotions other have.  This sounds super philosophical, like some hoity-toity shit, but the fact of the matter is that it is one of the most human things to cry.  Many other animals don’t even have tear ducts that enable them to do so. It’s been shown that elephants can grieve but they still cannot physically cry like we do.  Humans are able to express in such an extreme physical manner what we feel emotionally.  That shit’s ours. We own it.

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…And They Lived Happily Ever After – Starting with the Ending


Sometimes when writing a story, the easiest place to start is at the end.  This may seem strange to do, but really we can tell a lot about a story from its ending.  For instance, the original meanings of the terms “comedy” and “drama” comes from ancient Greek plays.  Very simply, a classical comedy is a story with a happy end.  A classical drama is then a sad ending.  So if a story ends with something happy, then it’s a comedy and vice versa.  We don’t need to see anything else about the play to understand which is which.  Just by the ending, we know exactly what kind of story it will be.

Even more information can be obtained by looking at even the simplest and cliched of endings:  “And they lived happily ever after.”  As mentioned above, we can see the word “happy” and determine that this would be a classical comedy, with the ending being positive.  However, let’s look at a few more words in that statement.  First off, the subject of this phrase is “they”.  If we know this, we can infer that there is more than one main character to this story.  So without knowing who this story is about, we now know this isn’t Castaway, Aviator, or some other film where the emphasis is put on only one character.  So while we don’t know how many there are, we know this story has at least two main characters.  If we know the history of this phrase, we may be able to assume that this is a romance of some sorts, and so the characters involved are two lovers.  Although, this may assume too much and as cliched as this phrase is, there’s also the overstated phrase about people who assume.

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