INDIANAPOLIS–Despite assuming that he had lost every last possible ounce of hope long ago, area office-supply coordinator Bob Dempsey, 31, was surprised to discover Monday that he did, in fact, possess one tiny additional shred of hope, which he subsequently lost.
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“Contrary to the belief of coworkers, neighbors, distant relatives, and Mr. Dempsey himself, this so-called 'hopeless' man actually still had one infinitesimally small shred of hope, which he became aware of in the process of losing said last shred of hope,” said noted therapist Dr. Eli Wasserbaum. “Oddly, it was only during that fleeting moment in which he was losing this additional micro-hope that he was able to realize that the hope had ever existed at all.”
“Unravelling this singular psychological event makes for a tremendous challenge for the trained therapist,” said Wasserbaum, who is attempting to reconstruct the basics of the incident, believed to be the least epiphanic moment of self-discovery in the annals of modern medicine. “In fact, some might even say a challenge so daunting as to be hopeless.”
Dempsey's discovery and subsequent loss of the hope is believed to have begun at approximately 8 a.m. Monday, when he noticed a letter in his mailbox–which he checks every two to three weeks, usually finding nothing–from a German address unfamiliar to him. Unable to open the letter at the time because he was on his way to work, he left it behind to read later.
At some point during his workday, which consists primarily of sitting at a desk, staring into space, and occasionally placing a checkmark in boxes next to such words as “staplers” or “paperclips,” he realized that the name on the return address was that of an old college friend who had moved to Germany years before and told Dempsey that “maybe you'll hear from me again sometime.”