Real-Life Dialogue: The Inscrutable Double-X Chromosome Edition

Real-Life Dialogue[The setting: a comfortable suburban home in North Florida, USA, on an August weekend in 2014. She is sitting in the living room, her laptop computer open; He is walking through the living room on some mission or another, in one direction or another.]

She: Oh, these people.

He: Hmm? What people?

[He stops to look over Her shoulder. On-screen is a publicity still from a current television mini-series, based on a hugely popular novel of romance and time travel. The photo depicts an early moment in the romantic relationship between a twentieth-century English woman, Claire, and an eighteenth-century Scotsman named Jamie. Claire is tending Jamie’s battle wounds. Jamie is sitting quietly, looking at Claire, and of course wearing a kilt.]

He: Nice picture of them.

She: Yes. I’m just saying, you should read some of the comments on it.

He: Such as?

She: Like this one. [She points.] “Those knees. *SWOON*” [She laughs.]

He: Er, uh… Wait. Women swoon over men’s knees? They even notice them?

She: You’d be surprised what women notice.

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  1. Oh, that is funny.

    I look at hands, and if I find out that someone has long fingers but doesn’t play an instrument, I go home and gnash my teeth at the injustice of it all (which doesn’t help my teeth).

    • It’s always mysterious to me. So much attention is paid to the ways men evaluate women, but I do hear rumors from time to time — as described above — about how things work in the other direction. These reports usually have me scratching my head (with not-quite-stubby fingers). :)

      In one of the very first short stories I ever tried to write, tried to write “seriously” I mean, the protagonist had an ex-wife who had what he described as something like “the ugliest hands I’ve ever seen on a human being.” That comment was followed by several sentences describing those hands from the wrist to the fingertips, although I think I stopped before hitting the molecular level. I myself had already been married and divorced at the time I wrote that, but it didn’t describe my ex-wife at all — I don’t know where it came from. I think I was pushing hard for some artificial sort of verisimilitude, figuring, y’know, if I load it up with enough details everyone will simply HAVE TO accept it as plausible. And then, of course: hey, look at me! I’m a writer!


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