I was here one night with a huge group of friends celebrating a weekend event. I'd been noticing one particularly lovely young lady all that time but hadn't found the right time to ask her out. I hoped to have an opportunity here, but just when I maneuvered into place next to her in the beer garden, the bar closed it, moved everyone inside, and she was surrounded. Then my best friend started feeling the beginnings of a mild case of food poisoning and implored me to go home. I was ready to be a good best friend and leave but turned to see that radiant smile one last time. She walked right up to me and said, "I've been wanting to ask you a question . . ." We were in a full-blown conversation and about to make a connection when I see my nauseated best friend 20 feet behind her making desperate gestures to leave. What could I do? I couldn't turn my back on 15 years of friendship. She was understanding, but the look on her face told me I'd blown my chance. Boy, that was a tough walk home, but at least I didn't have food poisoning. Maybe she'll read this and give me another chance.
--Surge Sen, federal reserve bank manager