Today is Sunday. It is also Academy Awards Day! I am a huge, huge fan of the Oscars. I sit, riveted to the screen, from the minute the arrivals start to the final closing comments from the Oscar host. I have watched Ryan Seacrest and Giuliana Rancic interview celebrities on the red carpet for so many years that I feel like I know them. I love everything about Oscar day. I love the prepping. I love all of the filler interviews they do all day long on E! I love the dresses, the interviews, the actual awards themselves. It’s just a super fun day all around.

Last night M and I went out to dinner. Our table was up against a floor to ceiling window and I noticed a young man walking around outside the restaurant, talking on his cell phone. Nothing unusual about that. What was unusual was that he was holding a dozen roses. Immediately my mind started running through probable stories regarding this young man. Was it a first date? Was it an impending engagement? Was it an anniversary? He kept pacing in front of the restaurant, nervously shuffling the roses from one hand to the other as he checked his phone. Who was he talking to?  Was he being stood up? It’s funny how this stranger became a central focus for M and me. We couldn’t stop analyzing him. M suggested that this man was using the flowers as a ploy, an act to attract women. The story he tells at bars to gain sympathy. “I’ve been stood up,” he’ll say, as he lays the flowers beside his beer at the bar, getting ready to drown his sorrows in alcohol. The women would flock to him. There’s something about a man carrying roses that makes the female heart melt.

As M and I were preparing to go, M ducked into the bathroom and I headed for the front door. I came face-to-face with the man and his roses…and his date! They were speaking with the hostess and she was directing them towards their table. Success! I felt a surge of excitement and happiness for these strangers. As they turned the corner and disappeared into the restaurant, M appeared from the bathroom. “You just missed it,” I said. “She came!” M immediately knew what I was talking about and was immediately frustrated by his bad timing. “I missed her!  What did she look like?”  I described what I had seen and we walked out of the restaurant discussing the strangers. After spending the night dissecting a strangers life, I felt like I knew him…and maybe her, as well. Just like the celebrities on the red carpet. The truth of the matter is that none of us are really strangers. We’re all sharing the same time and space with similar stories, struggles and successes.

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