Welcome to the Dinner Table! If you don’t know what the Dinner Table is, check out the intro post for a full explanation. We post a new weekly topic every Sunday. Readers can submit topics to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll credit you with first name/last initial/city (unless you specify otherwise), so make sure to tell us where you’re from.
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How should we do government on Mars?postsThe concept of a colony on Mars in the near future is incredibly exciting. But it also opens up a lot of perplexing questions. One point of contention is how the Mars colony should be governed. Should we set up a similar system the way we do things on Earth? Or use Mars as an opportunity to try some... Are designer babies a good thing?postsCouples today are able to examine groups of embryos they produce and select one based on its traits, and we’re getting closer to a time when it may be commonplace for couples to tweak the DNA of a single embryo in order to change or enhance the traits of their future child. Are these developments ... The Loyalty Quandary: At what point would you turn your friend in?postsHow bad a crime would a friend have to commit for you to turn them in for it? How about if the criminal was your spouse, your parent, or your child? Where do you draw the line between personal loyalty and loyalty to your fellow citizens and to the law? What would you most regret not getting a chance to tell someone before you die?postsIf you were to die suddenly, what would you regret not having told anyone? Secret recipe? Overdue apology? Funeral arrangements? If you could learn one statistic about your life, what would it be?postsIf you could learn one statistic about your life, what would it be and why? Whether it be knowing exactly how many words you've spoken, how many miles you've walked, or something very specific like the number of red skittles you've eaten in your lifetime. How Do People Do Food Where You're From?postsLet us know how the culinary traditions of your country/culture/ethnicity/religion/family—anything from the types of ingredients or dishes to the way you set the table to eating-related rituals to the time of day food is eaten. It's all interesting! What Other Type of Person Would You Be For a Week?postsWould you want to spend a week as someone of the opposite sex? someone very old? very beautiful? very ugly? or severely handicapped? If so, which one would most intrigue you? Is Success Smiled Upon More in the US Than Elsewhere?postsElon Musk believes that the attitude towards success is different in the US than elsewhere. Where in the US, people think, "Good for them" when someone succeeds, in many other countries, people see individual success as someone "rising beyond their station" or becoming the "tall poppy" that should b... If You Could Only Save the Louvre's Art or Its Visitors, Which Would You Save?postsSay on a given morning, there are 100 people in the Louvre in Paris. If a wicked sorcerer threatened to vaporize all people in the museum or all of its art, sparing one or the other based on your plea, which would you save? What, if any, fruits of our culture are worth more than even a million lives... If a Time Machine Could Take You Anywhere for One Day, When/Where Would You Go?postsYou find a time machine that can take you anytime in the past and anytime in the future, at any location in the world. When and where will you go? Advice For Job Applicants?postsPeople who do a lot of hiring know exactly what the Do's and Don't's are for the job application process, while people applying for jobs are often total or near amateurs at doing so and will inevitably make rookie mistakes in the process. The WBW community contains a ton of people on both sides of t... What Does the World Get Wrong About Your Demographic?postsWhen it comes to your gender, ethnicity, race, nationality, sexual orientation, religion, socioeconomic status, age, appearance, or anything else—is there something about the way well-meaning people in society view you or treat you that you wish would change? What's Something I Can Learn or Do in 10 Minutes That Would Be Useful for the Rest of My Life?postsI've come across this question on the internet a few times before, and it always seems to bring out some great responses. If your child were to be boring, stupid, or ugly, which one would you prefer?postsIf your child were to be boring, stupid, or ugly, which one would you prefer? Would your choice depend on the child’s gender? Who From Our Modern Era Will Be Universally Known in the Year 4015?postsThey lived over 2000 years ago, but we all know who Buddha, Confucius, Aristotle, Julius Caesar, and Jesus Christ are. In the year 4015, when our modern era is 2000 years in the past, who from our time will be universally famous? Online Dating: Good Thing or Bad Thing?postsOnline dating, once a fringe and stigmatized activity, is now over a $2 billion industry. But is this a positive development or something to be concerned about? Is online dating making the world better and dating more effective, or is something important being lost or sacrificed as a result? And wha... How Useful Would Your Current Knowledge Be if You Were Back in 10,000 BC?postsYou're back in 10,000 BC. A local tribe invites you in, not knowing you're from the future. How could you use your knowledge of the future to help them, and yourself? What's One Book, Movie, Song, Poem, Etc. You're Grateful For?postsFor 51 weeks of the year, it's fine to focus all your energy on obsessing over what you don't have and take the good things in your life totally for granted. But not this week. How Long Would You Live if You Could Choose ANY Number of Years?postsYou wake up and find yourself alone in room. The only things in the room are a table, a chair, a calculator, and a note. You have 10 minutes to make one very, very big choice. What's Something About Your Job We'd Be Surprised to Learn?postsNo matter what you do for work, the rest of us don't get it. Tell us something interesting or surprising that we don't know about your job. What’s something you know now you wish you had known at 22?postsWe’re all born amateurs at life and we get better at it as time goes on. What’s something you know now that you wish you had known when you were 22? (If you’re 22 or younger, what’s something you wish you had known five years ago?)