when it comes to love, is there a difference between four dollars and four million dollars?

What if one is not the loneliest number?

What if two is actually the loneliest number? After all, how many times have you had your heart truly broken by a large group of people? You really have to be most wary of the other half of the couples you’ve created. Or been born into.

My friend says she’s only been in romantic love three times. My other friend says he falls in love three times during his commute to work.

At the present moment, I have four dollars in my wallet. What if there were my only wealth? At times in my younger life, my entire wealth was less than four dollars. When it comes to love, is there a difference between four dollars and four million dollars? What did Lear say to his daughter Cordelia, who truly loved him, but was too tongue-tied to say anything other than “nothing” when he he asked her what praise she had for him? He said, “Nothing comes from nothing.” That fucker Lear disinherited his daughter because she was less articulate than her sisters. How’s that for love?

I've served on the Board of Trustees for five different charitable organizations. I've lost count of the number of times a rich person would only give money if his or her name were publicly printed in bold type. Rich people want buildings to be named after them. Rich people want cities to be named for them. I think the saddest people in the world are rich. Maybe one billion is the loneliest number.

I worry that my big brother will soon lose the sixth best friend of his lifetime. I worry that my brother will outlive everybody. I worry that he'll be the last person on earth and spend his life wandering among innumerable gravestones. And I've just decided that the only structure that should bear anybody's name is a gravestone.

[Sherman Alexie, from 'Crazy Horse Boulevard' in What I've Stolen, What I've Earned]


  1. Replies
    1. Mm-hmm! I was leery of Alexie at first but once I started reading, I'm so glad that I did. Visceral, witty, and hard-true.