The important thing to know about missed connections is that they’re lame as hell. If they aren’t written by people who should just take a risk and say something, they’re written by skeezy people excusing their gross behavior. Some Craigslist poet out there put every super sensitive Missed Connection out there to shame by turning a Missed Connection into 60 years of painfully awkward silence and shy glances.
The story, as it is, about two people staring at each other from across the aisle of a Q train for six decades straight, perfectly encapsulates the passive aggressive nature of the Missed Connection. The best part definitely being the million excuses our nameless protagonist makes up to stay quiet:
I’ll talk to her before daybreak; I’ll talk to her before Tuesday. The longer I waited, the harder it got. What could I possibly say to you now, now that we’ve passed this same station for the hundredth time? Maybe if I could go back to the first time the Q switched over to the local R line for the weekend, I could have said, “Well, this is inconvenient,” but I couldn’t very well say it now, could I? I would kick myself for days after every time you sneezed — why hadn’t I said “Bless You”? That tiny gesture could have been enough to pivot us into a conversation, but here in stupid silence still we sat.
This is pretty much what we think of with any Missed Connection, and the whole story is funnier than it is tragic. So read it, and remember: a Missed Connection is no connection at all.