Missed Connections

To the sad and lonely person who stole the final clue to my girlfriend’s birthday scavenger hunt from the patio of Lakewood Theater,

I try to picture as you on that warm Sunday afternoon. You’re wearing the same ratty black T-shirt you slept in and last night’s beer is stale on your breath. You wanted to watch the Cowboys, but you overslept and now you’ve got nothing to do. The few (very few) people you hang out with are busy getting ready for their work week but you don’t have a job or a girl friend so you’re off kill the day at the bar. Alone.

You stare at the sidewalk as you walk but glance up to notice a shiny pink balloon in the shape of a heart swaying gently in the breeze. It looks like it’s waiting for someone, and hey there’s even a note.

Oh how sweet. It’s some girl’s birthday and this is the final piece to her scavenger hunt. I bet her boyfriend planned it for her and this FINAL balloon is the culmination of an awesome day. They must be so happy together.

You imagine that you planned an awesome day for your awesome girlfriend. How excited she is when finds the final note and jumps into your arms smiling. It’s like a scene from a movie and you lose yourself in the fantasy for a brief moment.

Then the headache from your hangover snaps you back to reality: you don’t have a girlfriend, you smell, and you’re alone. You’ve never actually had a girl friend. That one girl you liked so much in high school only used you for a few weeks to get back at her real boyfriend. And it still hurts all these years later.

So tear the balloon from the patio table and let it go. You watch it float away into the sky knowing that it will never reach the special person it was meant for. Ha! Knowing that almost covers up loneliness. As the balloon drifts out of sight, that familiar feeling of loneliness seeps back to it’s usual place, just below your heart in the pit of your stomach and you walk into the bar. Alone.

Maybe you kept the letter. Part of me hopes that you did. Read it when you feel like there’s no love left in this world and let it stand as proof.


2 thoughts on “Missed Connections

  1. mike says:

    So sad. Very well written. I trust you figured a work-around, like a sweet hug and an explanation, and went onto the rest of your day together.

  2. rachel says:

    Just re-reading this… despite the missing balloon, it was a fantastic birthday. I still jumped into your arms, smiling. And if there’s a silver lining, I suppose it is that we have this excellent missed connections post and a mystery of the missing letter and balloon on our hands.

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