The Case for Seasonal Sentimentality
by Mary Laura Philpott

If I see the humanity in nature, I see the nature in humanity as well. 

There’s a line in Nora Ephron’s 1983 novel Heartburn: “Show me a woman who cries when the trees lose their leaves in autumn and I’ll show you a real asshole.” I reread it recently and thought, wait a second—cry sometimes when the leaves fall. Although I’ve always wished I’d had a chance to meet the late Ephron, maybe it’s better that I never had to admit to her my sentimentality, which apparently was as uncool then as it is now.

I’ve also been known to get a little teary when I find a craggy pebble that looks like a frowning face. I sniffle when I see a skunk in my yard who looks lonely, like it’s dawning on him that all his skunk friends went on an adventure without him. I laugh, too, when I see a twig that looks like it’s giving me the finger. I chuckle when I see an ant trying to carry a half a Froot Loop. As a cartoonist, I draw talking birds, smiling flowers, and chickens wearing socks, and very often these creatures feel as real to me—and as filled with inner narratives—as people.

(Read more of this piece at the Paris Review here.)

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