Re: Discerning Women

In “Discerning Women,” by William Highsmith, aliens invade and either they just don’t understand humans or they have a really, really dry sense of humor. The trouble begins when Alexa, newly a subject of the Braxian empire, has to take a machine quiz with questions like:

> Why are Earth women the way they are?
> A) DNA, B) Earth men, C) Spiked heels?

I like the way the story keeps you off balance and finally has mercy on the reader and comes down firmly on one side of the question. Hmm. “Finally” is a funny word to use for such a short story. But then it is a funny story.