By Sarah Jost
If you haven’t taken the time to peruse the Missed Connections section of Craigslist, you’re missing out. In Missed Connections, people post little love letters to strangers they saw on a train, passed at a library, or shared a brief moment with in a McDonald’s PlayPlace. They’re brilliant. Here’s a selection of gems from the Vermont Missed Connections page.
Some are simple and sweet…
you ordered fries – m4w – 22 (essex)
you came into my work tonight. thought you were wicked cute, your name was marissa. hope you see this
Some are sweepingly poetic right in the title…
drum & tears in a blizzard – m4w – 40 (you know)
Manchester McDonalds – m4w – 36 (Manchester)
You were working the drive through. You are very friendly and have the nicest ass I have seen in a while.
If that doesn’t make you want to go on a date, I don’t know what will.
Just when I thought Missed Connections couldn’t possibly get any better, I heard about Brooklyn-based illustrator Sophie Blackall’s illustrations of her favourite Missed Connections in Chinese inks and watercolours. Missed Connections have always possessed a dreamy quality to me; all the possibilities of a chance meeting or passing boiled down to one brave moment of outreach. Blackall’s ethereal illustrations perfectly capture this fantastical sense of romance.
Here are some of my favourites:
You were reading Catch-22 on the subway this morning. I have never seen such a beautiful profile. I wanted to say hi, but then you’d turn towards me and I wouldn’t be able to look at your profile anymore. You were so into your book, I don’t think you noticed me falling in love with you. But I thought I’d ask, just in case.
Well, whatever the case, it was cute. Do you live on N7th too? We could hang out.
You had pink fingernails and got on the Q train at Atlantic (if not Dekalb). I felt an irrational desire to invite you out to dinner. I found you stunningly beautiful, but you’ll probably never know. I think you changed trains at Times Square and I watched as you stepped between closing doors and disappeared. If for some reason you check this, It’d be nice to hear from you. Either way, I hope you’re well.
cursive, on leaving, stepped on my foot
wish i could have stricken up a conversation
So you came in out of the rain to do your paperwork and could only show me a few tats… I saw the scissors and would love to see the rest.Wednesday came and went. I am still waiting.
I saw you for maybe a second or two.
I’ve read missed-connections before and wondered why people just didn’t say something then and there. Now I understand… perhaps it’s because the moment is extraordinary; containing a fullness of its own… and the thought that this person across from me is not a part of my everyday life, and at any second will disappear, didn’t even occur to me… it seemed that we were in whatever it was together, and that sort of connection rarely, if ever, happens between strangers, so my mind was a little slow on registering that there would be no “some other time” if neither of us asked for the others phone or email.
Now, hours later, the ripples created by those few tender seconds still gently rock something within me…and I become a missed-connections poster.
Would you be interested in having tea or going on a ride?