The Girl at Extension 5261


Dear Girl at Extension 5261,

I don’t know your name, and you don’t know mine, but a few weeks ago you called me. I hope you don’t think I’m crazy for slipping this letter under your door. (By the way, very cool that you’re in a coed dorm; I wasn’t allowed). But I guess tracking you down is no crazier than receiving a phone call from a strange girl crying about her botched dye job.

Did you get through to the friend you were trying to reach, the one whose extension is one digit different than mine? Did they find you a hair dresser?

I’m assuming they did, because I haven’t seen anyone with dishwater-green hair around campus. And if you didn’t, I hope you didn’t go for that Sinead O’Connor look I joked about. Not that Sinead looks bad—actually, I think she’s beautiful, especially considering how much she’s accomplished after such a shitty childhood.

Still, I don’t picture you bald. I can’t picture you at all. I only hear your choked-back cry, feel my spine tingle when I recall you mentioning your parents. Disappointed, was the word you’d used on the phone. Your voice shook. That suggests more than disappointment.

Parents’ weekend is over. It’s been a week, but I can’t stop thinking about it, can’t stop thinking about the weekend, about you. I hope your parents didn’t rag on you about your hair, or the classes you chose, rather those you should have chosen. I hope they didn’t threaten to send you home because of your mistakes.

I hope your parents treated you like every child deserves to be treated: I hope they told you that you’re beautiful, green hair or not.


Lindy, the Girl at Extension 3802


Wendi Dass is a Professor of Mathematics from Central Virginia who spends her free time indulging her muse. Her short stories can be found in Black Fox Literary and The Ocotillo Review, among others. She is currently seeking representation for her novels.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *