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Our brains are made up of millions of connections. So, it seems only natural that we’d see signs in the likely meaningless events of our day-to-day lives. But, might we be overanalyzing the mundane?

Don’t get me wrong: there are the occasional big, honking signs that wring your gut and practically bitch-slap you. There are also the more subtle signs, the ones you pick up on but ignore until it quietly dawns on you Jaws-style—eyes blank, cigarette still half-hanging from your mouth, we’re gonna need a bigger boat.

But everything else might just be excessive analysis chalked up to faux intuition. Take my Sunday for example.

I’m walking home from the metro and a girl compliments me on my shoes. Shoe compliments make me immensely happy. A toothy grin is now plastered across my face. A block later, a guy glares at my shoes. He either hates them or can’t handle my #shoegame. I choose to believe the latter, but the grin still goes tight-lipped.

Yet another block later, I pass by a guy I went on two dates with last summer. He and I promptly ended after he gave me a point-by-point synopsis of a Zac Efron movie and then dove tongue-first into the worst kiss I’ve ever experienced. Anyhoo, he’s walking hand-in-hand with his presumed girlfriend. They both have that post-brunch glow. Our eyes meet, I send him a pleasant oh-good-for-you smile, and he stares straight ahead.

Overanalyzing, Part I:

My mind immediately jumps to analysis of the entire walk. Potential signs surface. I draw several possible conclusions. For instance:

  1. Women are friendly and amazing, guys are shitheads;
  2. As a fortune cookie might say, “For each wonderful interaction, you shall have two unsatisfactory ones;”
  3. If a guy who awkwardly licked my chin can be in a happy relationship, maybe I can too; or
  4. If a guy who awkwardly licked my chin can be in a happy relationship, why the fuck am I not?

So, which is it? Let’s break it down, starting with the shoes.

From a logical perspective, none of these signs make any sense. I pass by tons of people — both men and women — who couldn’t care less about my shoes. So why am I so hung up on the one woman who happened to say she loved them and one guy who glared at them?

If I’m being honest with myself… how could you not glare at these shoes? They’re flaming fire-engine red all over. They scream “LOOK AT ME NOW” in true Chris Brown fashion. Logic says this is not the universe giving me a sign of yin and yang, karma, or some other mysterious shit. It just happened. And it happened to happen in the matter of a few blocks.

Let’s move on.

Overanalyzing, Part II:

That the face-licker seems to be in a happy relationship realistically means that he met someone who:

  1. happens to enjoy saliva as a moisturizer;
  2. is thrilled to hear all about Zac Efron and how his character achieved his dreams; or
  3. genuinely likes him because he’s actually a very nice person.

And that’s when I stopped in my tracks. Jenna, smile, you son of a bitch.

Fact of the matter is, I’m exhausted with over-analyzing micro-signs. When I think of what I could do with all that extra time and brainpower, I run into that fire-under-your-ass kind of motivation that makes you want to take on three side projects and Kondo your closet.

Leave the signs to your gut. It knows what it’s doing. You’ll know it when you see it. And you’ll know it when you feel it.

Jenna Godfrey

Jenna Godfrey is too chill to be a hater. Too hype to wait for later. Too lazy to make another rhyme.

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