“I was in line to buy a thing of milk and out of nowhere, I started welling up,” Vasquez explained as she splashed cold water on her face in the store’s public bathroom. “I thought ‘maybe it’s allergies?’ But I’m only allergic to ragweed and Drakkar Noir, and nobody around me seemed to be a plant or a douchebag.”
At the time of the incident, Vasquez reported having high job satisfaction, a loving partner, and a great relationship with her parents, both of whom are healthy and still together. She could not recall the last time she wistfully recalled the simple joys of her past, or watched a compilation of dogs greeting their owners after a long time apart.
“Maybe I thought too hard about that Taylor Swift documentary?” Vasquez sniffled, bravely reapplying a decidedly-not-waterproof mascara like some sort of hero. “I mean, she’s really struggled, in a Taylor Swift kinda way.”
Vasquez considered many possible culprits for her tears, including that time Alanis Morissette came up on shuffle last Tuesday and the bus ride she shared with a baby who reportedly had “kind eyes.” Eventually she deemed fleeting intrusive thoughts of hypothetically attending her mother’s funeral as the likeliest cause, though even that didn’t feel quite right.
When reached for comment, Vasquez’s therapist was unvexed. “Olivia cries over TikToks featuring little girls who are really good dancers. She cries when she thinks about how hard it must be to not work near a window. Last week she scheduled an emergency session because she heard her neighbor playing the sad song from Toy Story 2. She’s like a living Mad Libs for reasons why someone would cry. This is her normal. I’m writing a paper about it, actually.”
But Vasquez is determined to find the root cause of her crying. “Maybe it’s just the physical manifestation of the relentless stress I experience whilst facing down the abject futility of my existence in this bleak reality,” Vasquez mused.
“Or maybe I have a new allergy? It’s probably that. I should get tested for celiac.”