A new Tumblr is tracking the best and worst places to cry in New York City, with a short list right now consisting of the Build-A-Bear Workshop on 5th Avenue, the Bank of America on 5th Avenue, the AT&T Store on 5th Avenue, the Duane Reade on... presumably anywhere on 5th Avenue will do. They've also got the 7 train and the Standing Side of the Escalator in Grand Central. Really, though, you are going to cry wherever you are standing or sitting when you feel the waterworks turning on... what you need are some tips for when this inevitably happens in public.
This is the #1 tip, because just LET IT OUT. We've all been there—you just sat down on the brightly lit subway car, the girl next to you is listening to her music loudly, that song charging out of her earbuds sounds so familiar... it's, it's... your ex-boyfriend's band. He wrote that song for you, or at least that's what he told you, and played you an acoustic version on your bed late one night, when you were up talking at sunrise. The night you knew had fallen in love with him, even before the first string was plucked on his guitar. Inevitably, he ended up changing as his band got more gigs. There were more late nights, more girls, more parties, and suddenly you found yourself sleeping alone in that bed he once sang to you on. It was empty now, cold, and the memory of that night was imprinted on the mattress, like a scar that would haunt you and your future relationships.
Maybe they don't know the specifics, but everyone on that subway with you has these scars... and they'll think about their own pain as they discreetly film you crying for their YouTube channel.
TRY THESE CLASSIC CRYING MANEUVERS
From our own Marc Yearsley, who tell us he has personally tested these maneuvers during his own public crying fits, some tips: "Just do the classic nose bridge thumb-and-forefinger pinch... it's that easy!" You know the maneuver. And if that doesn't work, Yearsley adds, "Strategically place one half of an everything bagel on a flat surface below your chin to catch any stray tears not sopped up already by dabbing your face with the other half of the everything bagel. Just eat the bagel first and you won't be sad!"
GO INDOORS, GO ANYWHERE INDOORS
Anywhere will do, but the darker and more spacious the better. Is there a department store? Go in there, push apart some of the hangers in the women's clothing rack, go inside, close the hanging clothes gap so no one can see you, push your knees to your chest, and sob. Or got to a bar, they have alcohol in there.
And remember Marc Yearsley, professional public crier with that bagel tip? He says, "GO TO A MOVIE THEATER and stay in that movie until you stop crying or are not sad anymore."
ALTERNATIVELY, GO TO A PARK
Do you really need further instruction here? Go hide in the park.
ALWAYS CARRY SUNGLASSES
You should always have sunglasses, even if you're not a crier. You know how quickly squinting will age your face? But if you think you are capable of crying in a non-fetal position outside of the comfort of your own bed, then always carry these protective shields with you. The bigger, the better, like those octagonal sunglasses your mom wore in the 1980s. Put a pair of those on and YOU won't even realize you're crying anymore.
CREATE A CRYING PLAYLIST ON YOUR IPHONE IN CASE OF EMERGENCY
You should probably have a mix of sad and happy here, because sometimes it's the sad that cures the sad. It's weird how that works. But do not include any songs that you have emotionally attached to experiences or people during your lifetime. Because of that, it's impossible to give you a personalized playlist, but we've got some suggestions...
John Del Signore's pick ("Radiohead's 'Exit Music (For a Film)' is the first thing that comes to mind—it builds to a rising sound that helps transmute the sad into rage."):
Scott Heins's pick (he adds, "Always have some Sadcore (I prefer crying to Bon Iver, but then again there's nothing like a good old fashioned 'Karma Police' sob session)":
Marc Yearsley's pick:
Ben Yakas's pick:
Jen Carlson's pick: