It’s that weepy that you get when you know what’s about to happen, and you start crying before it happens.
Like in Act III of La Boheme, when Mimi sings her farewell, without rancor, and you know she’s going to die in the next act, and you start pre-crying.
15 March 1977. I am banished to my parents’ bedroom to watch the first-ever telecast from the Metropolitan Opera, on a 13″ black-and-white television.
And I’m hooked. And crushed by a C-sharp minor chord late in Act IV as Mimi dies. And I cry.
And ever since then I pre-cry in Act III. And then just sort of boo-boo my way through the next 30 minutes.
Friday evening, the Met transmitted again that telecast of 1977. And I watched in my darkened living room on a large television this time, running the signal through my Apple TV and listening in somewhat better sonic splendor.
And the pre-cry hit, just on cue.
Pavarotti, Freni, Wixell, all gone now. Thank the gods for taped telecasts, and for Puccini, and for the Met, and the wonder of opera. And for emotion that makes the pre-cry real.