“You have a girlfriend, Henry?” My mother said, her eyes lighting up. I could see the vision of plump grandbabies dancing in her thoughts. Never mind that Hank was only twenty—if he had a girlfriend, then hope sprang eternal.
“Yup, her name is Beth. I met her in an ethics class.” Hank attended Century College—a local community college.
“Well? Tell us more!” My mother demanded, her food forgotten. “Is she Taiwanese?”
“No, Mom,” Hank said, rolling his eyes. “She’s white. Beth Richardson. Nice girl, though. I swear you’ll like her.”
“When do we get to meet her?” Mom asked, her eyes still shining. Although she would have preferred for Beth to be Taiwanese, Mom wasn’t too picky at this point.
Hank promised that he would invite Beth to a family get-together soon. They had only been dating for a month, and he didn’t want to rush things. She was taking a few classes at Century to see what she liked before transferring to the U. She hadn’t wanted to go to the University right out of high school, so she had bummed around Europe for a year before returning. Her parents had agreed to help her with rent for an apartment if she took a few classes at Century and if she promised that she would apply to the U for the spring semester. She found out that she was interested in medicine, but didn’t want to be a doctor. She thought she might like to be a nurse. She liked Clint Eastwood movies and all the ‘Must-See-TV’ hits on NBC. In short, she was perfect for Hank—the original mainstream maven. I would have bet my last dollar that she was under five-feet four inches and weighed under a hundred and ten pounds.
“Here’s a picture of her,” Hank said, pulling something out of his wallet and passing it around. When it got to me, I had to hide my smirk. There besides a beaming Hank was a petite woman who barely came up to his chest and who looked as if she was about to float away if Hank’s arm around her shoulder wasn’t tethering her to the ground. The only thing remotely surprising about her was that her hair was a fiery red instead of blond. Other than that, she was exactly as I pictured her.