You’re rushing up the stairs to class and share a knowing look with a cute boy. You happily spend your subway ride stealing glances at a cutie across the car, his face hidden behind the latest Malcolm Gladwell, yours behind a suddenly inadequate Us Weekly. Dropping your change while you pay for coffee, a sweet guy helps you out by lending a hand and a smile.
Ever wish these moments didn’t just disappear, that they didn’t simply fade into fleeting what-ifs you can never get back? Ever wish for a second chance to reconnect?
Now you can get that second chance— on Craigslist. The well-known online resource for local classifieds has a category in its “Personals” section called “Missed Connections.” In this section, men and women (in four categories: men seeing men, men seeking women, women seeking men and women seeking women) post their missed connections, seeking someone they met on the subway, someone they spoke to while waiting in a line, or, quite often, people they haven’t ever officially met at all. Giving many or almost no details, people try to reconnect with those strangers who just came and went.
Almost all the postings are shout-outs to strangers, and they range from creepy to romantic. Many are innocently heartwarming, peppered with phrases like, “I can never muster up the courage to talk to you…” or “I don’t know if you saw me, but…”
Some of the postings come off more stalkerish or extreme, although Craigslist includes a disclaimer upon entering “Missed Connections” that the reader should be over 18 and aware that the site may include “adult content.” But the overtly racy or fatal-attraction postings are outshined by those wistful gems, postings of regret tinged with wide-eyed hope, that make this site so pleasing. My recent favorite:
“After having walked a good length of 7th Avenue and noticing that all the women looked like size 0s, even with their heavy winter coats on, I was feeling a little out of place. I stopped in at the Starbucks and, after purchasing my beverage, was leaning against the wall, waiting for a table and engrossed in my Blackberry. You walked by and whispered, “You’re beautiful.” I can’t tell you how much that brightened my day! There aren’t many men who are kind enough or brave enough to say those words to me. I never even got a look at your face. I was so stunned, by the time I looked up, all I could see was the back of your head. Thank you for the sweetest boost! Me: pale-skinned, full-figured, long-haired blonde, tan short winter jacket and black scarf. You: very tall, black, shaved head, long tan coat, messenger tote bag. Keep telling those of us with bodies that we’re beautiful. It really does mean something to us!”
See it for yourself… maybe there’s someone out there thinking of you.