Dear Table 52

Dear Table 52,

Upon sitting in the booth behind you this evening, I couldn’t help but eavesdrop as you discussed certain popular books and movies of our generation. (This rude behavior of mine was partially aided by the fact that you spoke as though the server had given you a microphone with your dinner. Still, let me offer my apologies for intruding on your clearly private conversation.)

I took particular interest in the piece of your discussion where one sonorous member of your party stated, “It was a horribly filmed scene of a horribly written book . . . I haven’t read it, but enough people have told me about it.” The same member of your party, clearly too educated to lower himself to primary research, went over “that horrible movie” piece by piece. My favorite statement included his belief that the movie portrayed magic, as he repeatedly displayed his complete dismissal of every scene showing advanced technology.

[Hunger Games, for the record.]

Your bumptious discussion gave me hope, and I truly wish to meet you again. In a few years time, I will gladly sit in the booth behind you and listen to your secondhand opinion of my own novel. When you denounce my writing style, my character development, and my plot, I will know I have succeeded in creating a piece of literature with philosophies too complex for your refined tastes. Listening to that discussion will indeed be my “I’ve made it” moment.

All of my best,


[The rest of the discussion tore apart the character motivations and world building depicted in a number of books by Ms. Collins, Ms. Roth, and Ms. Rowling. I almost asked which books the table did like to read, and then realized that my chosen wording (“Can you recommend a picture book for me?”) would likely start a fight. Four on one is hardly great odds, unless we’re strictly adding together IQ points.

Okay, I’ll stop now. Much love to you, friends.]


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