Friday, October 9, 2015
Letter to Nobel Prize committee
Dear Nobel Prize Committee:
First of all, I apologize for not writing in Swedish. I thought about trying to write you in Swedish, and while I was confident that you would be touched by the gesture, since I do not speak Swedish I would not have known what I was saying. If I wrote you in Swedish and my letter turned out to be about, I don't know, lingonberries, I'd be wasting both of our time. I am able, fortunately, to write you in my adopted language of Minnesotan, which, though primarily derived from English, is also about 10% Swedish due to its rich immigrant history. I hope this connection will help lay a sound, personal foundation for a rich relationship between us.
Note to translator: If you are translating this into Swedish for the Nobel Prize Committee maybe just say:
This letter to you is basically in Swedish. I'm just translating a few of the tricky parts. But boy can this guy write!
I am not writing, as you are probably accustomed, to ask for a Nobel Prize. I respect your selection process and would not think of imposing on it. The fact of the matter is I'm pretty confident I'll be winning a Nobel Prize for Literature from you eventually, but probably not until after someone decides to publish my writing. I know that as keen as you are to award me a Nobel Prize, you like people to dot all their "i's". Even though observing the proper forms of things is not a strong suit for me, I am willing to make a little extra effort for a Nobel Prize.
But I could use your help in this, and that's why I'm writing you. I feel that it would be a lot easier to get people to publish me, and have people read my work, if I were already a Nobel Prize winner. And yet I can't get a Nobel Prize until people publish and read my work. In my country this is known as a Catch 22, based off a book by a writer who you did not award a Nobel Prize due to your bizarre penchant for obscure, local, academic writers. But I didn't write you to criticize you, and as far as I can tell your Chemistry Prizes have all been spot on.
So here's my plan. How about if you award me a provisional Nobel Prize for Literature. You don't have to announce anything, or send money, or any of that stuff. It's provisional. You can just put it on your website or something. Then, when I approach, for instance, Tropical Fish Hobbyist Magazine with my writing I can casually mention that I am a Nobel Prize Winner. This will impress them. They will publish my work even though it has very little to do with tropical fish, and soon my writing will be famous and disseminated throughout the world. At that point, with those "i's" dotted, you can make my Provisional Nobel Prize official and can send me checks and T-shirts and tickets to Sweden for the ceremony.
I am guessing that you are as relieved as I am with this solution, so I will immediately begin calling myself a Nobel Prize winner for Literature in order to get the ball rolling. But if you have an alternate idea or are not okay with this let me know and we'll figure something else out. Other than that I look forward to seeing you all in Sweden at my award ceremony probably around 2018, maybe 2019 as I have a lot of yard work to take care of next summer.
Thanks for everything and keep up the good work!