You: tall, brown hair, incredibly voluminous moustache, blue/green checkered shirt
Me: tall, blonde, wearing all black and Burberry rain boots
I boarded the uptown C train at 14th Street at around 10:50 on Tuesday morning. You got off at 23rd. You were staring at me. Hard. You’re really really really ridiculously good-looking.
I am, you could say, a sucker for love. I bear the curse of an overly active romantic imagination, which is probably why
A) I am single, and
B) enjoy Sophie Blackall’s illustrated series “Missed Connections” so much.
Missed Connections is a place on Craigslist where people can post what are essentially classified ads looking for missed love connections – as in – that time you were locked in a staring contest with a cute boy (girl) on the train, trying to work up the nerve to chat him (her) up without squealing like a teenager…and then kicked yourself for not being more spontaneous/braver/grown-up when that cute boy (girl) got off the train first only to evaporate from your life forever. Love, found and then lost, all before you could exchange twitter information.
After her own missed connection, Sophie Blackall, discovered this treasure trove of bleeding hearts on Craigslist and began to illustrate some of her favorite ads. And though you’re probably more likely to be eaten by an alligator in this lifetime than to actually find your missed connection online, in 2011 Sophie received 27 emails from happy couples united after posting theirs and 6 asked her to illustrate their wedding invitations. This somehow legitimizes my lofty ideals about les grands gestures d’amour (I speak pretend French whenever I get worked up about love).
Here are some of my favorite illustrations and their corresponding ads – but you can see so many more on Sophie’s blog. (And Sophie’s book makes a very sweet gift for the love connection in your life.)
Grand Central, You and Me
Friday evening I was racing through the Main Concourse and you were there standing still, staring up at the stars. You had a book in your hand. You were lovely. Time stood still for a second while I fell in love, then I had to catch my train. Then I thought, Damn. Then I thought of a Plan. So here’s my ridiculously romantic plan: Meet me under the stars on Valentine’s Day. 8pm. Bring your book.
You were wearing an average office suit with an admirably messy haircut. I was the girl with brown curly hair and a blouse with horses on it. We did that awkward back-and-forth shuffle of two strangers trying to pass each other on the street; then you grabbed me and gently swirled me in a mini waltz in the middle of the lunchtime shoppers and angry passersby. I would understand that moment if it happened now – two people sharing a delicate second in a day that hadn’t gone to plan. But no, when it happened I was in my awkward early-twenties, so I just frowned, trudged away and hoped no one had noticed. Thanks for making my day.
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.
Not just those on show, you know that right?
Sometimes when you have played music late into the night or come home in the wee hours and turn it on, I knock on our shared wall or scold you the next day, but all along I am thinking how dreamy you are and how I just want to make love to you.