…which I eschew. There are a number of reasons for this; however this post is not directly about these reasons. What I find myself pondering at the moment is this: Some awards have cash prizes associated with them. The Nobel, I believe, has as much as a Million of some kind of dollars, pounds, roubles, yen, or pesos. How much would have to be in the award, I wonder before my resolve would fail? My sweetheart says, regarding me, that it would be a lot more than I think it would.
I find such things hard to visualise. I think of the scenario wherein an armoured car falls over and $100 bills go flying all over the road. Would I run around stuffing them in my shirt like many others would? I always thought: “Yes, I would.” But at some point, I realised that I would not. I would, however, watch the scene with morbid fascination. I am not sure when I realised that she was right about this. But came as a surprise when I did.
So, perhaps I should believe my wife in such matters. Come to think of it now, we have both turned down inheritances because there were strings attached. At the time, I thought nothing of it. It seemed second nature to refuse such a thing. (And trust me when I say, that both instances, we most certainly could have used the money. Needed it.) We were not well off–especially not then.
I think I might falter around a million dollars. But my wife doubts it. Sometimes, regarding these awards, someone has no choice. One cannot decline the nomination or the award, one can merely refuse to acknowledge the prise. I am not at all sure what happens to the cash part of the award if one does not accept it; I am not curious enough to look it up. In any case, a sonnet writer is not likely to earn such a prise. And since I probably do not fit the narrative which is desired in the giving of such prises, I doubt very much if I would be a candidate for any such prise, regardless of what kind of art at whatever level of acclaim or notoriety I might earn. Much like Mr. Borges, to which Christian Mahai refers in one of his posts.
an award without money is like getting a chain-letter.
Still… Such chain-letter awards come at least from individuals rather than committees.