Gaming the ‘Missed Connections’ System

Craigslist Missed Connections: How-to


Sophomore year of college, while making my annual list of New Year's resolutions (which are usually given up for Lent), "be on Craigslist Missed Connections" took top spot. For a challenge rather than a resolution, I set out to appear on one of the Internet's most interesting-without-being-terrifying places.

For those unfamiliar with the service, Missed Connections provides strangers with a forum to get a second chance. See a cute girl but don't have the nerve to strike up a conversation? Missed Connection. Talk to a gorgeous man suit at Union Station who boarded the train before you got his name? Missed Connection.

Mad because you got dumped and want to rant to all women with the off chance one might contact you and be interested? Not a missed connection, but those appear pretty frequently.

The appeal lies not in the total rando seeking you out, but rather the idea that one could leave an indelible mark in passing -- that serendipity can be taken into one's own hands, and that some dude whom I was purposely making eyes at noticed, and wants to inquire further.

Craigslist Missed Connections is a cheatable system. Thankfully, my moral compass doesn't have the strongest magnetic pull north, so this task was an achievable goal.

Setting the Stage: Most missed connections occur in very public areas. Metro is the most common, and most easily identified. My approach to this is to pick a passenger who most likely is familiar with Craigslist (identifiable with a bike, flamingo lawn decoration, or anything else found on the 'free' section of CL).

Next, you must hit them with well-timed smoldering glances (call me a Metro-sexual). This will let them know you're interested, and attainable. Once you have their attention, make a swift exit; then troll the Internet for the next couple days searching for a description of what you were wearing.

Bars: This missed connection is slightly trickier, because it may involve conversation. It is key to offer only your name, some charm and nothing else. If you don't quite manage the name exchange, try to make sure you're wearing something, um, memorable. Again, exit swiftly.

False Alarms: If you think you've seen yourself on Missed Connections, make sure you read the whole post. I "found" myself -- I was in the exact same place and time mentioned. Description read, "Tall gorgeous brunette..." check, check, check! And then I got stumped on the last word: "fit." The only time fit and I are used in the same sentence is when it's "it doesn't fit."

Back to square one.

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