Guess What's Coming To Dinner

"Hang on just a minute, young lady."

"He's waiting for me outside."

"I don't know where you think you're going, but—"

"You said I could go, we talked about this."

"That was before I knew who you would be going with. And now, looking out the window, I can plainly see why you didn't tell me."

"Oh, I knew you were going to do this. But I'm eighteen years old and I can associate with whomever—"

"As long as you're living under my roof, you'll live by my rules."

"Is that really what you want? You want me to move out? You want me to leave?"

"You know that's not what I'm saying at all. I'm saying… I'm saying that you're not going anywhere with him. If that's even…"

"What? If that's even what?"

"Never mind. You—"

"'If that's even a him'? Is that what you were going to say? I can't believe you."

"I didn't say that."

"You were thinking it. You know you were."

"Leonard, aren't you going to say anything?"

"Oh, don't try to drag Dad into this; this is all you."

"Fine. It's me. I don't want you going. I don't want you seeing him, I don't want you hanging around with him. I don't trust him. I don't want you ending up like him. That's not how we raised you."

"I'm not going to Upgrade, mom. First of all, I couldn't afford it even if I wanted to. Second of all, I'm happy the way I am. You don't have to worry about that."

"I just don't understand why you'd want to socialize with those people."

"Who, Upgrades? He's an Upgrade, Mom. You can say it. He's post-human. He wanted more out of his life, and had the money to do it. But he's still a person."

"Not the way I look at it."

"Oh please, you've had your tits done and your face done and lipo twice."

"That's different. I'm still me."

"He's still him."

"You didn't know him before he did it."

"Whatever. You've been listening to those—"

"What if you fell in love? What if you wanted to get married? Have children? What would they look like? What would they be?"

"They'd be Upgrades too, at least partially. The genetic stuff would get passed along, it's dominant, they designed it that way. They'd get the implants when they were old enough. If they wanted them, anyway. Maybe they wouldn't, who knows. It'd be their choice."

"And you think that would be all right with you? As a mother?"


"…I just don't think you've given this a lot of thought."

"Well, of course not. We're not even boyfriend and girlfriend. We're just going on a date."

"I wish you wouldn't."

"Well, it's not up to you."

"Fine. Have it your way. You'll learn."

"Learn what? No seriously, learn what? I've been around Upgrades my whole life. They go to my school. They go to the same parties I go to, the same dance clubs. They're everywhere. You just don't see them because they don't go to your church and they don't go to your spinning class. So you don't get it. You think they're monsters because you've never seen one up close."

"And I'm sure I don't want to."

"Guess what? You win. I'm not going out. I'm staying in. And so's he. He's eating with us. And you can ask him anything you want. Put out two more plates. No, don't look at Dad, this is happening."

"Oh, God."

"And he doesn't eat meat, so do your veggie casserole."

"Oh, God."


  1. This reminds me of conversations with my parents at that age, though they were pretty much in complete solidarity. They did not like my now ex-husband. When I moved in with him my mother called me a whore. I didn't speak to her for six months.

    1. Oh, I'm sorry. :( Family can be a trial, believe me, I know.