Both the lone Ranger and Tonto are symbols that show the white and National American identity correspondingly. The book here is lifestyle on the Native Americans who have been spending the rest of their lifespan in Spokane. There is a theme depicted by this book that tends to bring out the life and experiences of these people. The book itself is based on imaginations and this therefore calls for a relation between the actual things happening and those that do not exist. The theme that seems to be recurrent in almost all the stories is the relationship between the real and the imaginary.
There are certain incidences in the stories that tend to be confusing as it is very difficult to understand some of the Victor's action. There are situations that Victor whose life is depicted from these short stories undergo a deep imagination that he himself wonder if it is true or false. In almost all the short stories in the novel, the theme of relating both the real and the imaginary exist. This shows that both Victor and Thomas took certain actions or positions in the story that were difficult in the eyes of a mere man to distinguish whether they were real or just mere imaginations. There are various short stories in the novel and this therefore makes the two main characters to have different roles to play in each story as depicted by this book. All the roles played by the two characters are pegged on one theme. There are various actions of Victor in the short stories that gives a great support and illustration on this theme.
As it can be seen in the first story of the novel titled "Every little Hurricane", Victor's life is given out when he was at the age of nine years at an eve party with his parents. It also gives a flashback on when Victor was five years of age and his parents were not in a state of buying for him anything for Christmas. This story is mainly based of imaginations and this included flashback as flashback is also another part of the imagination. The imagination in this case may also appear to be real in the sense that all this imaginations based on flashback at one time were real and actual though in the past. In the second story, "A drug called Tradition", Thomas -builds -the- fire who is another character in the story, holds a second largest party in reservation history. Here, Thomas, Junior and victor goes to Benjamin Lake where they take unspecified drugs after which they begin having visions on how they earned Indian adult names by stealing horses. Events of the past unfolded in the present meant to illustrate Victor's claim that "your past is a skeleton walking one step behind you, and your future is a skeleton walking one step in front of you." This story brings out the imaginations that seem to be real in the eyes of Victor after ingesting drugs that drove them to the visions he had. Reality can also come in where Victor's imaginations tend to link him to the past of which unfolds in his presence after the drug influence. This is so because at one time the past was true and all the activities that took place were seen physically.
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In the story, "My Father Always said he Was the Only Indian Who Saw Jimi Hendrix Play" The Star Spangled Banner" at Woodstock, Victor tend to have memories of the past by recounting on how his father used to come back home late while drunk as the action he used to do after getting drunk. His father was used to watching Jimi Hendrix's story claiming that he was the first Indian to watch the play. This gives victor himself a flashback on how he used to share in his father's drunken rituals by putting the song in the stereo as he walked in the house. After the song he could sleep in his father's feet. The novel also gives a a qoute"She realized that all those sexual stereotypes about Indians, were both true and false, but then she also realized that there were no sexual stereotypes about Indians" (239). This quote is also based on imagination as lastly the character realizes that all what he heard were not true. According to Victor all the memories he had, were also based on memories that form part of the imagination. Here, Victor brought all the past memories of his father into his present trying to analyze both the bad and the good memories that they used to share with his father as a young boy (Alexie 56-72). This is one of the quotes that were given by a character in the story "Sometimes it feels like our tribe is dying a piece of bread at a time" (199). The quote here also tries to give a clear picture on how he imagined and felt his tribe was dying a piece of bread at a time.
In the short story, "Crazy Horse Dream", Victor, relates an experience he at one time had with a woman at Powwow to that of a crazy horse that he draws on the image. His relation in this matter is to bring out a picture on how the modern Indian men reach the level of perfection of a crazy horse. The story tells on how the woman Victor met wanted to force him into something he was not worth doing as far as his dignity is concerned. This is also part of an imagination as he only tries to relate the Indian men not physically but through imaginations. He is trying to imagine that the Indian men are like crazy horse. Imagination here comes in the sense that Victor tries to put others in a state that they are not really in and cannot or never find themselves in. It can therefore be said that this short story was purely base on imaginations as there were no parts of the story that Victors mind was sober and at a present state other than the flashbacks and comparisons based on the imaginations.
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According to "The Only Traffic Signal on the Reservation Don't Flash Red Anymore", Victor who is the main character in the short stories is at a sober mind free from imaginations. This can be supported by the fact that they are identified as reformed alcoholics. Alcohol is one of the drinks that interfere with the normal functioning of a man's brain hence driving him into the world of imaginations. Here, he is sitting down with a friend by the Name Adrian on the front porch discussing some of the issues pertaining to basket ball and reservation rising star. Though the story ends while they talk about an Indian girl, it can still be believed that the theme of their story is based on the present but not imaginations as seen in the first set of books stated above. There are also general Quotes that tend to bring out an imagination in this novel ands is seen through a quote given about the Indians. The quote is also based on imagination and it was said that "There are some things Indians would've never invented if given the chance" (207).
Combinations of two short stories in the book are also based on imaginations. The two books are, "Amusements" and "This Is What It Means to Say Phoenix, Arizona". In the first story of Amusement, though it is difficult to judge on whether the story is based on imagination or reality, as per the actions in the story, it can be based on total imagination because there is no way one can be chased by a security guard and still takes a glance at the mirror instead of running for his dear life. The story, 'This Is What It Means to Say Phoenix, Arizona", Victor burns all his father's photos to ashes and in the process, his friend, Thomas gives him money for a trip but on their way to whatever the destination they were heading to, the two recovers Victor's father photos and recalls on him hence coming to an understanding of each other. Towards the end of the story, Victor gives his father's ashes to Thomas and this is to serve as a remembrance of his father (Alexie 70-89). The memories are part of imagination at it can therefore be seen that there was some kind of imagination in the story though reality overweighed it.
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Lastly in the short story, "All I Wanted to Do Was Dance", Victor goes into an imagination by recalling his drunken episodes in life and how this contributed largely in pining a negative impact to his life. The recall is also based on how drinking led to the destruction of his relationship. From this there was some bit of imagination by an act to recall something that does not exist at the present time.
The short stories have been talking much on Victor and how he interacts with people in the short stories. The stories are acted or happened at various conditions. The relationship between reality and imagination is that both the two go hand in hand. Both the reality and imaginations are two things that run almost in the same direction. This is so because all imaginations are based on reality and the reality talked about here is either at present, past or likely to be. Imaginations as seen in this book, refers to flashbacks, memories or wishes. The only part of imagination that brings about a slight difference between reality and imaginations is those imaginations that are future based as no one is certain that they are likely to happen as one imagines of them. The life of Victor is viewed as the book tries to get more information on how Victor who is Native American goes on with life and interacts with people in Spokane which happens to be the place where they were driven to. Spokane is situated in India. From this story, Victor and many other Native Americans who are in Spokane can therefore be referred to as the Indian-Americans.