Gary Rinsem

Desperate Letter To Tami
My final failed attempt

2020 - Below is a letter I wrote in 2004, but didn't send it to her. In a letter Tami said it would cause her a problem if her husband found out about another communication with me. I couldn't find a way of getting the letter to Tami, without risking a problem for her.

My fear when writing this letter... became my reality a long time ago. I never heard from Tami again. I can't accept it. It just can't be true. Even in this insanely long and rambling un-sent letter, I didn't have the courage to truly say I Love You. I only put it in the signature.


Just like in school, I enjoy writing. I found your letter in the mail box this evening. I went to a party but left early to come home and write a reply. It became a long reply since I wanted to be certain I conveyed the CORRECT message. I type fast and tend to ramble when I write so just hang in there, it will end sooner or later. I wanted to answer your letter since it looks like the only chance I'll have to talk to you (my original desire.)

The words to your song rang true and I'll never hear it again without thinking of you. In many ways, you're still the one. I wonder if there's a special memory associated with the song or if it's the sentiment behind the lyrics which reminds you of me. Either way, I smiled to know 'that girl' thinks fondly of me. I'm delighted to know I might still drag a smile from your heart once in a while. I'd like you to know I'm forever reminded of you when I hear "Hotel California." I gave you the album and recall the look on your face. You were excited and ripped it open to play it at full volume. You tore the cover and felt bad about it. I chuckled and said it didn't matter. You realized it wasn't important so you frantically raced around the house trying to decide which stereo to play it on. I chased after you trying to figure out what you were doing. That's the sort of memories I wanted to share. Another one pops into my head from time to time, something I hadn't remembered for years. Memories of you still give me days of lighthearted smiles.

I intended to be as direct as I know how to be. I wanted to address the concerns you expressed. I tried my best but deleted the nonsense, it was too difficult to follow. All I can do now is guarantee your concerns are unjustified.

I sent what I thought to be a very innocuous letter, with a clear and open intent. I expected at least some remnants of my high school sweetheart. I was sad when I got what appeared to be a bizarre response. I don't pretend to understand all the confusion so I just want you to know 'who' I am. I want to put your mind at ease. I'm the same person you dearly loved. It was my expectation that contacting you would result in a phone call or two, and meeting for a long friendly talk. Call me foolish but I still hope for some part of it to happen.

I had no way of contacting you except for what I did. It didn't seem out of line and my letter was sincerely worded. It amazes me that you didn't understand. It amazes me you were so suspicious. It's amazing you didn't accept my letter as being from the sweetheart you knew, and hopefully still know. By the way... that's me... ME! :) I always was and I still am... a hellofa nice guy. From the moment we met you were never afraid or suspicious of me and you shouldn't have been now.

I've thought about you often, you are more than a minor part of my history. I was surprised to find that you've been living right here, I never suspected that possibility. I hadn't thought you would be living so close with my name and number in your phone book, without having called at some point. I didn't know you moved back to Arizona. The last I heard from you was 20 years ago when you were in California, many years after the last time we saw each other. I assumed you had cut all ties with the valley.

The composition of your letter proved to me that you're not completely out in left field. It made me smile to know you think of me and that I'm still "important" to your past. Yet the... other parts of this, including your letter, still worry me. You should have called without any cares. It makes me feel sad (I hope I'm wrong, tell me I'm wrong) because I see a troubled woman (instead of the wonderful girl I know) or a woman stuck in a bad relationship (sorry, not being judgmental, it's just one possible explanation.)

Basically, I don't freekin get it! It's weird! If Cindy had sent you a letter then I suspect you would have just grabbed a phone to call her. No hesitation, no suspicion, no paranoia, no weirdness. I'm sorry I'm a man, I was born that way, it doesn't make me bad. I'm the guy you hung out with. We ran all over town and had a terrific time together for three years at a very important time of life. We shared what I'm positive was a special love and it was special to both of us. I hope the problem is because I've always been as important to you as you've been to me. I honestly hope the problem is because you still have feelings for your high school sweetheart... and just stored them away when we parted. I hope the only problem is that my letter brought out those feelings and you didn't know how to deal with them. I've always carried those feelings for her. It's normal and healthy. It was too special to have denied them or hid them away. It makes me smile whenever that love comes to mind. My second letter had that as it's message to you. I tried to make it somewhat subtle since I didn't know what the hell... was going on! I had doubts, only your letter showed me that I'd actually contacted you. So if there's a problem I haven't considered, one unrelated to me and not a sad problem, then I haven't figured out what it might be. I had assumed after so many years, we'd both wish to remember our days together and discover how the other has lived their life.

I gave up hearing from you and sent the second letter to hopefully put an end to this. It was sad but I wanted to forget having looked for you. Guess I should have given it more time. I didn't realize you simply needed a bunch of time. You could have called and quickly explained that fact. You said you would have looked forward to talking to me so it will be a regret if it doesn't happen, I will regret it.

I regret I didn't find you 20 years ago after you last called me. What the heck was going on? Why didn't you send me the letter? I had no way to follow up because I didn't actually have your phone number. I only got the number in my head and only long enough to dial the phone. I've wondered forever why you called and why I didn't get a letter so I could reply. I've often thought maybe you sent a letter but I never got it.

I want to hear from you now more than ever due to the negative impressions I've received. Did I make that point perfectly clear? I'm sorry I'm a man, it's not my fault. :) I was looking to settle our curiosity and share a trip down memory lane. I expect it would be a pleasant time and a memory we'd both be happy to have. I hope you can remind me of events I've forgotten. I'd like to know what memories have been important to you. I could answer the concerns you expressed, something I wasn't able to do in writing. I tried but couldn't make sense of it as a one way conversation. Mostly I felt that you would see even more, uhm, misunderstanding. I second guessed every word I wrote which made it too difficult to write.

I'd like for us to meet again, maybe over dinner at a casual restaurant. I'd like to see you smile. I'd like for it to be a warm and friendly meeting between two old lovers who are both at ease with who they became. You can call on the phone or send a letter or ring my doorbell at any time of the day or night. The reason for contacting me will never matter. At some time in the future if you think you've made me angry with you, then you'll probably be wrong but you will still be welcome even if you're right. If I don't answer the door I might be sleeping, you should have a big smile on your face as you repeatedly pound on the doorbell to wake me up. That's what any friend of mine would do. I often know who it is by how hard they're ringing. Even if you discover I'm married, even if you drive up to my house and see me kissing another woman in the front yard, I want you to pull in the driveway and get out of the car to introduce yourself. If it's what you want, then give me a big hug right in front of the woman you just saw me kissing. It won't be a problem and your reason for being there won't matter. You have always had a friend in me, someone you could count on to do his best in helping you with any problem. Someone who would expect nothing from you. If we don't talk to each other now, then the same rules will always apply. You'll be unconditionally welcomed with no expectations or demands from me. You'll still be able to show up unannounced even if what you want is help with a problem. You could call in the middle of the night from S. Phx. with car troubles and I'd get out of bed to come help you. No conditions, no expectations. You're my friend, that's who I am to my friends. You always have been and you will always be a friend to me. OK that's gotta be clear by now, or was it too subtle? :)

Did you finish high school? I didn't think you continued at Saguaro after your parents divorced. Did you go to college? Where have you lived? What have you experienced? What do you enjoy doing? Tell me your memories of us. Is this your first marriage? I want to know if you have children. Back then you were positive you would NEVER get married or have children. It was a giant part of who you were. I thought it was wonderful for you to have such strong adult convictions at such a young age. It made me feel much less mature than you even though I was 2 1/2 years older.

I lost my reason for wanting to travel. My plans have changed and I don't expect to leave AZ anytime soon, if ever. I loved your motor home dreams because that's what I was planning. Well not the rest stop pamphlet, I wanted to do a coffee table book. "Bridges of the Mississippi River." Mostly I wanted to go exploring and take pictures, with the hope that I could make something of the exploration. Instead... I may even go to work. Wonder if I remember how to do that? Who cares, I'll wait till next January. First I need to get off my butt and finish remodeling this house. After 17 years I still might sell it but wherever I am I'll always try to have my number listed. Ralph and Greg Clark are options for finding me in the future. They should know where I am and they've always been in the phone book. I hope you remember them, they both remember you. Ralph mentioned your name at dinner just last week.

So I'm really not loony, I'm not a problem, I'm happy, I'm stable, I'm sober, I'm trustworthy, I'm intelligent and I'm sane. We were and apparently are important to each other. I want us to know if we're still the same people... I've rambled... needed to be certain the message would be clear... Guess I talked it into the dirt. One sided communication... no feedback... don't know when the thoughts have been understood... don't know when to shut up... Hmmm, broken sentences... my way of showing a light hearted perspective... difficult in writing... no vocal inflections... no facial expressions... no visible smile... it won't go away since I got your letter... read it many times... found the lyrics to your song... it's been a very nice evening... thank you... I'm concerned but the composition of your letter gave me some confidence in your state of mind. :) Have you squirted anyone with a fire extinguisher lately? Been arrested in a hotel lobby by a couple goofy high school boys? Filled a public fountain with dish soap?

I can't be positive if this letter will be appreciated and saved, or viewed as unwelcome and intrusive. I expect it will be appreciated. I hope it will be appreciated. If it is, then 'my little Tami' is still around. Writing it has been important for me and I want it to be important to you. Hmmm, I don't want to be blamed if your husband finds it. This should be nothing for him to be concerned about.

I hope I've made you smile many times and put your mind at ease. Maybe it will be enough that you talk to me. You should know by now, that's my goal, and I'd like to see you smile. You should know who I am. Not my fault I'm a man... Done rambling... time to just shut up. :)

Love always,
(480) 945-5515