Tennessee woman Barbara Tatge was gearing up to partake in her first ever Boston Marathon when her daughter, Paige, presented her with an unusual challenge. She dared her mother to find a random, good-looking man along the route of marathon, kiss him and take a picture of it.
The dare seemed good-hearted and harmless, so the 55-year-old cancer survivor decided to follow through and kissed a handsome spectator as she ran through the town of Wellesley – putting a twist on the town’s tradition where the women offer kisses to runners.
However, after the race ended, she regretted not collecting her mystery kisser’s phone number. Realizing that the man had clearly left an impression on her mother, Paige took to the Internet to try to find the man. She even posted the picture that has since gone viral.
“I don’t want it to seem like I’m this desperate woman that’s seeking this man,” Tatge said of her daughter’s efforts, adding that she didn’t want to put the man in an awkward position if he’s in a relationship or married.
The campaign rapidly gained social media’s attention and eventually Tatge received a letter from the mystery man’s wife.
As it turns out, his wife was also running the marathon for the first time, and luckily, was not mad about the whole thing.
“When this story aired on the news we were pretty surprised,” the wife wrote. “For me, I’m not mad. Believe me, our friends have gotten a lot of mileage out of this story and I have thoroughly enjoyed watching them give my husband grief!”
She even called the situation hilarious, but decided to remain anonymous.
“While this may not be the ending that you had hoped for, that spontaneous, silly moment in Wellesley captured the fun, energy and spirit of the Boston Marathon,” the letter continued. “I greatly admire your spunk and courage and wish you many happy races in the future. Congratulations on your Boston finish!”
Tatge then wrote her back, thanking her for good sense of humor and apologizing if she has caused the couple any discomfort or embarrassment.
Kissing a complete stranger and then launching an online search for him may not have been that good of an idea, but Tatge is thankful for the strangers who showed her support and wished for her “fairytale ending.” She also hopes for the story to die down.
Perhaps kissing mysterious men only works for Disney princesses.