When I was a little girl,' I said, sitting down, 'the wallpaper in my room had pictures of Noah's story.' [...]You know what's weird though? It's weird that the ark would be such a kids' story, you know? I mean, it's...really a story about death. Every person who isn't in Noah's family? They die. Every animal, apart from two of each on the boat? They die. They all die in the flood. Billions of creatures. It's the worst tragedy ever,' I finished, my voice tied off by a knot in my chest.[...] 'What the ,'I said, 'pardon my language, was that doing on my wallpaper?
The Freemen have 987 levels of membership, the first three of which are achieved merely by filling out an application. The 8th level is granted upon full acceptance into the local lodge, the 13th following Initiation, the 21st at the end of the Initiate's second week, and the 89th the first time he brings snacks.
Captain Smek himself appeared on television for an official speech to humankind. [...] 'Noble Savages of Earth,' he said. 'Long time we have tried to live together in peace.' (It had been five months.) 'Long time have the Boov suffered under the hostileness and intolerableness of you people. With sad hearts I now concede that Boov and humans will never to exist as one.' I remember being really excited at this point. Could I possibly be hearing right? Were the Boov about to leave? I was so stupid.'And so now I generously grant you Human Preserves - gifts of land that will be for humans forever, never to be taken away again, now.' [...] So that's when we Americans were given Florida. One state for three hundred million people. There were going to be some serious lines for the bathrooms.
We could have made it to the Arizona border in a few more hours if we hadn't been distracting each other with stupid little arguments. Don't get me wrong; I liked J.Lo fine. I've made that bed. But I'm not sure there's a person in the world I could be with twenty-four hours a day for three weeks without getting a little snippy. If I ever meet such a person, I'm marrying them.
Woah,' I said, blocking the doorway. 'You can't come in here. This is the girls' room.' Even as it came out of my mouth, I knew it sounded dumb. Dumb, I thought and maybe even .You...are a boy, aren't you?' I asked. 'I mean, don't take that the wrong way or anything -' J.Lo is a boy, yes.' I let that go.So...you Boov have boys and girls...just like us?' Of course,' said J.Lo. 'Do not be ridicumlous.' I smiled a wan little smile. 'Sorry.' The Boov have magnificent genders. There is boy, girl, girlboy, boygirl, boyboy, boyboygirl, and boyboyboyboy.' I had absolutely no response to this.
Sejal had not thought of her home, or of India as a whole, as cool. She was dimly aware, however, of a white Westerner habit of wearing other cultures like T-shirts the sticker bindis on club kids, sindoor in the hair of an unmarried pop star, Hindi characters inked carelessly on tight tank tops and pale flesh. She knew Americans liked to flash a little Indian or Japanese or African. They were always looking for a little pepper to put in their dish.