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Tear Jerker: Cracked
The online humour site
5 Things They Never Told Us, a simple but successfully crushing article for students to read to prepare them about the loss of youthful energy, the anticlimactic realization that you are an adult but still have no idea how life works, and summer going from three months off of freedom to just a simple change in the weather for you.
The rest of us can only hope that in that situation, we'd do the same. And then we can pray that we never have the chance to find out we're wrong.
4 Things You Learn Quickly About Internet Hate, particularly the part where Gladstone mentions being legitimately touched by a mentally handicapped person's plight he saw on the street to the point of shedding actual tears, but went on, connecting to the current point that people generally don't get involved in a tragedy until after it's already ended.
"My only contribution was my worthless tears. Look how good I am. I cried. And kept walking. Because it's easiest to cry when you keep walking."
8 Tiny Things That Stopped Suicides is by far one of the best articles on Cracked and the entire reason Christina H is still at the website in spite of all the hate she gets. Many, many, many tears of happiness.
"Even if nine out of 10 threatened Internet suicides are trolls or attention-getters, I don't care about looking stupid nine times to save one person's life."
6 Shocking Realities of the Secret 'Troubled Teen Industry'—as described in the opening, "an industry dedicated to taking America's at-risk youth and fucking them up in the worst way possible." The author, a victim of one of these facilities, relates stories of forced physical labor, deprivation of sleep/food/etc., and the off-chance that a child might die in one of these facilities...all because a parent doesn't like what their child has become (usually an attempt to weed out delinquent behavior, but stories crop up of kids being sent there because they don't follow the parents' religion, are gay, or in the case of the author—formulating your own identity; in her case, she got into heavy metal music).
This is Nightmare Fuel for Mario players in itself, but a commentor provides a sad reason why Peach does not remember mothering Bowser's children:
skim172: You'd think Peach would remember having sex with Bowser. Or at least, giving birth to a giant spiked turtle. Eight times.
Unless she's suffering from intense psychosis brought on by the trauma of multiple kidnapping, torture, and repeated rapes. She blocked out that part of her memory as she's blocked out so many things. It's a defense mechanism. It explains why she's always kind of spaced out; she's not an airhead - she's disconnected from reality, because that's the only way she can cope.
Think of Super Mario as the world ... viewed through the eyes of Peach - not a princess, as in her delusions, but a sexually abused and tortured woman with a shattered psyche. The real world hurts - instead, she imagines a cartoon world with talking mushroom people, smiling plants, and fire-flowers, where she's a beloved royal figure - and she can fly. Free as a bird.
And out there is a hero - a paunchy middle-aged plumber, perhaps representing a father figure - fighting through legions of enemies to come rescue her.
But she never does get rescued, does she. On those brief resurfacings to reality - she's still a prisoner of that evil man. Bowser. And so she returns back to the dream - another adventure for the heroic Mario, to come save daddy's little princess.
6 Things Nobody Tells You About Working At Disney World has a particularly horrifying moment when the author talks about how the people in the full-body costumes would meet lots of kids... many of whom had cancer or other fatal diseases. And while being Mickey (who all the kids would ask to meet) was bad, it was even worse for the people playing the Fairy Godmother- they had to meet dying kid after dying kid who would ask 'Fairy Godmother' to cure them.
5 Things I Learned As A Sex Slave In Modern America can best be summed up by the final line: "People need to know that slavery in America never ended, we just got better at hiding it." Note that this is one of the few articles to include a content warning, not for containing NSFW pictures, but just because of the true events described.
6 Things I Learned as an Innocent Man on Death Row: The #1 thing on the list is how used to his horrible life within prison he had gotten. He gets headaches from fresh air because he's now allergic to it. He can't digest real food properly. So he had to eat bread for months to avoid getting sick. And he's so used to arguments ending in murder that he gets extremely worried that his family will kill each other during arguments and is shocked when they don't.