Volume 10, Issue 3
Guess which emoji is the most popular one in China now.
It’s the Face with Tears of Joy 😂
The magic of this emoji is that it’s really useful to express paradoxical feelings in helpless situations we are confronted with.
Admittedly, we Chinese have many concerns in our lives. I cannot recall when Beijing the capital, also my hometown, became most famous for the smog (here I add a face with tears of joy 😂 ). Besides, there are also great traffic jams, skyrocketing house prices…too many things to worry about that we can not help to make fun of. Because they just can’t help to happen.
Let me elaborate on the use of the emoji with a typical scenario which once occurred in my workplace.
“You know you will die soon breathing like this without a mask, right?”
“Yeah, so will I working like this without a break.”
“Fine, makes sense!”
Then everyone goes back to work with a face with tears of joy 😂.
Implicitly, the emoji expresses a combined attitude of accepting the reality and hoping for a better future. So it is actually a little more than an artificial smile from an optimistic pessimist.
In my hometown, an attitude of appreciation has been deeply rooted and still thriving as everyday life is getting more colorful. Accordingly, even if you cannot get rid of bad aspects in life, you can still enjoy living. To me, there is much more delights than concerns about life in Beijing—a wide variety of dazzling dinner choices despite the lifelong queues, the fantastic places to visit despite the fierce ticket-grabbing process, and the opportunities to be rich overnight in the turbulence of stock markets despite the ‘heart attack’ moments. Life really rocks!
The funny effect is, the more you use the emoji in your chat, the more likely you realise that hey, the city might be crowded and annoying, but what’s the point in stressing out over something you have no control over? Let’s have some fun in this life!
I didn’t realize how those talks ending up with a 😂 had made my day until I left work and started the JD here. Now there seems little to be concerned about except for my own study!
Being so far away from those concerns in my hometown, I actually feel much more eager to know how my family and friends are handling each day and what’s new to joke on. I guess they are getting tougher and tougher with the face😂.
I love my hometown as well as my motherland. They make me worry, they make me concerned. All in all, they make me who I am now.
And the culture thing is magical. Here in law school I’ve found this small emoji just as useful as that back home, especially when I finish talking about something with my usual optimistic pessimism (I don’t mean to blame it on the workload here, but I’m not going to stop you from drawing inferences). Luckily, the same conclusion is, with the attitude of the emoji, we survive, just as my mood could survive in Beijing’s dreadful weather!
I don’t say that readings we are doing everyday are as miserable as breathing smog in my beloved hometown. After all, we are evolving everyday with the knowledge learned. I say, no matter how much we miss something happy and somewhere nice, we have got to appreciate what we are doing and where we are at the moment. There may be mixed feelings behind our faces with tears of joy, but we will definitely come to an end with only joy.
If tears come, can joy be far behind? 😂
Chenzi Dong is a first-year JD student
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