Sherman Alexie and the double cherry lip gloss kissing game

In a volley of spoken word biography, Sherman Alexie discussed his many cultural identities at yesterday’s visit to Cascadia College. Poor American Indian from the rez, “Catholic atheist,” basketball fanatic, married middle-aged heterosexual, father of two boys, literary genius, admirer of Prince circa 1985, and fearless explorer.

As he described it, Sherman’s fearless exploration spanned the 22 miles and two distinct cultures that separated his childhood home on the Spokane Reservation from his all-white high school in rural Reardon, Washington. That journey, he told the crowd in Mobius Hall, represented the distance he had to travel to learn to respect others.

“We really only belong to two different tribes. People who are assholes and people who are not.”

This was a lesson that began with Sherman’s consent to playing the double cherry lip gloss kissing game. Where did your lesson begin? Share by responding to this post. And follow what the students in Anne Tuominen’s sociology course are saying.

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