You see, it's 10 years of the world's first crying club, which was started in Tokyo by a visionary entrepreneur. His most popular offering is a service where women cry under the guidance of a handsome man. #TrueStory. I wanted to ask: What have we learnt about crying alone and in a pack? I found some surprising answers.
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Lovely then. Enjoy the edition, and keep writing in. – Tanmoy
"A little bit of onion juice in your eye/will make you cry," announces a voice befitting a Shakespearean town crier. The audience is a group of people dressed like cosplayers, huddling grimly over a table with a heap of onions in various stages of being chopped.
"Thank you so much, and I will smell nice as well," says one member of the group as she gets a slice of onion rubbed on the bags under her eyes. It's the British comedian and actor Jo Brand. Before her entertainment career, Brand worked a decade as a psychiatric nurse at Maudsley Hospital in London, so her appearance in this setting adds up.
"Chop chop," the town crier orders. "No one's leaving until every single onion is chopped." The group now begins to break out into sobs, some members offering their shoulders to the others, the tears seemingly flowing from their souls and not merely induced by all the syn-Propanethial-S-oxide in the air.
The scene is from a British crying club, which is exactly what you think it is. What they do with all the onions after their catalytic role is over isn't clear from the 55-second video I found online.
I am a habitual cryer, a hopeless lacrymose romantic. I find the idea of crying in a commune fascinating. Exactly 10 years ago, a visionary Japanese entrepreneur – it had to be Japan – sensed the potential of mass tear-jerking-as-a-service and kickstarted a whole new industry.