So you’re a doctor, a lawyer, a bioethicist, a fiction writer, a playwright, a licensed New York City tour guide, you’ve published 215 short stories and you have nine graduate degrees. Do you really exist?
Maybe. Schopenhauer wrote, “The world is my representation” (“Die Welt ist meine Vorstellung”), which suggests that I exist only as long as you exist to appreciate my impressive literary talent and rudimentary knowledge of German. However, Schopenhauer is dead, and also a rather tedious read, so he may not be the most promising authority on the subject.
I have discovered that I exist to the IRS and the folks who issue jury summonses. Less so to the girl I had a crush on in tenth grade and to many major Manhattan literary agents. But assuming I do exist, I am indeed the author of 215 published short stories and I do have nine graduate degrees. Alas, none of that reduces my subway fare or helps me self-assemble an exercise bike.