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Jun 6, 2023Liked by Sherman Alexie

Thee pleasures me. This Quaker phrase describes my enjoyment of your writing. You express my heart that you bring to life. I'm glad you are in my world.

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Thank you so much. Such kind words!

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Jun 6, 2023Liked by Sherman Alexie

It's how they get you. I had pretty serious crush on an evangelical girl in high school, and the next I knew I was squeezed between her and her father at their weekly worship.

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It's a serious consideration, one that I'll add when I work on this essay again. I'm not sure you can proselytize somebody you didn't want in the first place!

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Aug 14, 2023·edited Aug 14, 2023Liked by Sherman Alexie

Churches still want people they don’t want. They just look down on the lesser converts once they arrive.

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The status games of church. Yup, sounds true.

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Hahahah! Or something that would get you tackled by Homeland Security.

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When I was 9-years-old I misspelled Pontius Pilate as “Punches Pilot” in a dictation exercise. The nun circled it and told me that it read like a stage direction to a Vaudeville sketch.

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Jun 4, 2023Liked by Sherman Alexie

You have such a gift. Wonderful. 🐦

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Thank you, Joanne.

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Wonderful story. Especially the fine way you capture that teenage paralysis--when you're so overwhelmed by new feelings and desire and fear and ignorance--you float helpless in this bubble as the crazy world slaps you about. And I know very well the feeling of waiting for a father to appear.

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Thank you, Patrick.

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Jun 2, 2023·edited Jun 2, 2023Liked by Sherman Alexie

A lovely and aching story about the unfulfilled desires of adolescence. I have more than my share. Here's one on Substack about the first time I got high with my high school crush, "Melody": https://trules.substack.com/p/santa-fe-walkabout

I'd be delighted if you read it.

ET

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Santa Fe! The Indian amusment park! Such an intense blend of spirituality and capitalism. I have quite a few friends there. I love the food but I try to avoid the ethereal. That's my walkabout everywhere!

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I have a question for you. I don't know if u read my post today, but my wife and adopted son are both Indonesian. My son just turned 16, and he has been politically corrected to not allow me to use the word "Indian", even when I talk about the "cowboys and Indians" of my tv youth of the 50s & 60s. Well, here's the question, When you say above "Santa Fe, the Indian amusement park!", are only YOU, as having come from the reservation, allowed to say or write it, like so many other politically-corrected, racially-loaded names, or is "Indian" cool for me to use as well?

Do you understand my question? Or am I just an old fart, like my son thinks?

-Trules

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Next time your son gets after you, send him to my tribe's homepage. https://spokanetribe.com. He'll see that we call ourselves The Spokaane Tribe of Indians. My analogy for non-Indians is that Native American is business casual and Indian is weekend wear. There are very very few Natives who would be offended by being called Indian.

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Man, are we going to have A DISCUSSION!

Thanks!

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Wellll.... we had our "discussion" and I read my son your comment. He hung his head in "defeat" for a moment - but then rallied to claim "historical" victory by saying that you and your tribe are certainly entitled to call yourselves "Indians". However, it is STILL a historical error because Mr. Columbo, and his fellow conquistadors, when thinking they "discovered" the East Indies, called the indigenous people, "Indians" - incorrectly!

My son is a privileged "urb", as you call some of your fellow tribesman in one of your recent Substack posts that I just read. But I have much tolerance and compassion for him because he also grew up "on the rez" - that is, in very poor, 3rd world Sumatra, Indonesia, until we brought him here when he was eight years old!

Any comments?

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Your son's point that "Indian" is a historical error means he implicitly believes that we Indians are making the same historical error in calling ourselves Indian. Sounds condescending, perhaps? "You can call yourselves what you like but I have the true knowledge."

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Such a fun, tender and thoughtful read. I really appreciate the immediate access to the experience and you’re unapologetic honesty. I felt that I was right there with you.

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Thank you, Elizabeth.

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Jun 1, 2023Liked by Sherman Alexie

Such multifariously confusing years, each with its own particular setting, features, terrors, hopes. Thanks for so articulately reawakening it all!

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Thanks, Kerry!

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Reminds me a little of my weekend at a bible camp. Plenty of food, a fair amount of proselytizing, but what upset me was the kid putting lit firecrackers in frogs mouths. One of many reasons I walked away from the Christian church. Lots of rules and regs for people, but not much for the rest of creation. Oh, and "Ah Juicyfruit".

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May 31, 2023Liked by Sherman Alexie

Your substack posts fill me with both regret that I’ve never read your books and anticipation about discovering a new (to me) author. Oh, I’d heard of you. I figured your books wouldn’t be my cup of tea, which I like sweet and milky. But the occasional herbal infusion sticks with me longer, and even if for some reason I don’t like what you say, I know I will love the way you say it. So I’m off to Amazon/Audible!

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May 31, 2023Liked by Sherman Alexie

I'm grateful for your essays and poetry. It was a Lummi woman who was a Christian who helped me understand that I didn't have to be a Christian to thank God.

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That was a lark.

“And it wasn't until years later that I realized the lack of food and sleep was meant to make us new kids more vulnerable to the evangelical preaching.”

Well-spotted, Sherman. Sounds like cult techniques—including the honeypot to lure you there (although after reading the rest of the story, I realize she wasn’t intentionally playing that role).

“1979 one-hit wonder by Gary Numan”

I have to take you to task on this one, Sherman. “Films”? “M.E.”? And the rest of “The Pleasure Principle”? Plus “Are ‘Friends’ Electric?”? Not a one-hit wonder :-)

“shouting prayers” and “blasphemous breakfast”

🤣🤣🤣

Typo alert: “a evangelical” :-)

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May 31, 2023Liked by Sherman Alexie

Epic storytelling. The smell of juicy fruit mingling with wild flowers, well water, sweat. Delicious. I think of course she remembers you but she remembers the story as one of unrequited love with the sweet funny bright gifted Indian boy she liked to dance for and the violent fight with her bearded father who nixed any hope of kissing in the moonlight and she tells her seven grandchildren this was the beginning of her eventual escape from any kind of organized institutionalized religion. And why she decided to become an agnostic nutritionist. Or maybe a pole dancer. Who knows ? However her life unfolded she remembers. She remembers. Thank you as ever.

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Thank you!

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May 31, 2023Liked by Sherman Alexie

The beauty and power of a great story. Thanks.

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