A study in contrasts

Two messages I spotted from last Saturday highlight the rather extreme range of Missed Connections posts. Both are what I consider “true” Missed Connections – posts for a relatively unknown person, whom the writer has no other means of contacting.

Yet, in style, tone, and content, they couldn’t be much more disparate.The first of the two posts seems to raise more questions than it answers, and in my current nearly-bedtime-tired-state, strikes me as ideal fodder for a short story. How did “Jess” (great name, incidentally) and this honourable gent meet? Why did she loan him money? Apparently it wasn’t for bail, or else she would already be aware that he was in jail.

Why is he so insistent that he sees her again to return the money? So many ambiguous motivations, such a dearth of punctuation.

The next post is a stark contrast:

Unlike the jail-bird writer, this woman’s post is rife with detail. In fact, it is superfluously descriptive for a connection that she admits never really occurred – the writer and her tall would-be love interest never even made eye contact. She’s pulled out all the stops here; either she is particularly verbose, or is quite handy with a thesaurus.

Nonetheless, I appreciate the miniature Shakespearean drama woven from her fleeting sighting of a Starbucks patron. Her writing is so poetic – “the vice of a luxuriously liminal moment” keeps echoing in my mind – that I almost doubt that this sighting actually transpired at all.

So here we have it – an attempt to re-connect, post-incarceration, to return $250, compared to an eloquent exposition, replete with alliteration, of a failed attempt to connect. I personally love the expressiveness of the latter, but they are effectively both equal in the world of Missed Connections – and the odds seem low that either writer will (re)connect with their subject.

Each message is merely one more post in an unending stream of regret, hope, lust, and longing, but each is also unique. For me, at least, these posts reflect the diversity of ways to express these core feelings – and their differences make the overall forum of Missed Connections so rich and fascinating.

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