Dear Brooklyn Ayn Rand Club members,
I’m writing to address some issues that have come up for me recently related to our club, and I hope you will hear me out. When I started the BARC, I was really looking forward to meeting people who shared an interest in objectivist philosophy, unregulated capitalism, and personal freedom. What I didn’t realize was that I would end up doing all of the work myself. This has got to change if the club is to continue, at least with me as a member.
First of all, have you noticed we always meet at my place? In the beginning, I was happy to volunteer my apartment. I did so of my own free will, but it’s getting to be a drag. Not that I expect you to consider my happiness over your own, or to act altruistically, but it would be cool if someone else offered to host. Because you guys make a mess. You really do. No one ever helps with the dishes, or puts the books back in order (Anthem before Atlas Shrugged!), and when you leave, the place reeks. I’m not a smoker, and while I would never deny your right to light up, my couch smells like an ashtray, and it’s grossing me out.
I have to say, some of you seem more interested in sitting around and looking severe in black, boxy dresses and suits, with your angular haircuts, and smoking your lungs out, than in discussing the The Fountainhead. Fine if that’s your thing, but maybe there’s another club for you. (The Brooklyn Beatnik Society?) And not be an emotional parasite, but I’m concerned you’ll get cancer or emphysema. I refer you to the Surgeon General’s Warning printed on every pack of cigarettes (see if you’re persuaded by reason, then act freely, of course).
Also, I buy all the snacks. Again, it’s my choice, and I don’t expect anyone to make a sacrifice for the group. But isn’t it irrational to assume that all the cupcakes, chips & salsa, hummus, and cookies you’ve enjoyed at our meetings will just keep showing up? And some of you eat a lot more than others. Not to name names, but if you feel it’s in your self-interest to eat six cupcakes and not even leave one for the person hosting the event, who paid for the cupcakes, there’s something morally wrong with you. I believe in the Invisible Hand, but it doesn’t make cupcakes magically appear. I suggest starting a “snack fund” that we all contribute to, say a donation of $5/month. Obviously completely optional, but if there’s no $ in the fund, no snacks!
What I’m asking for is a little cooperation, if we’re to succeed at our mission of promoting individualism as the highest ideal. Maybe we need more group activities, say a softball team, or volunteering for the Ryan-Romney campaign. But it’s hard to imagine those things working out. Let’s face it, we’re too laissez-faire.
Lastly, I’ll just mention that when I was in the hospital with my torn meniscus, none of you visited or called to see how I was doing. Not that I deserve your love or concern, as a temporarily week member of the species, or that there’s any virtue in sending flowers, but a card would’ve been nice. In case you were wondering, I made it up and down my four flights of stairs on crutches just fine for the last month, and now I’m back to my heroic, productive self.
So, please think over the above suggestions. If things don’t improve, I’m seriously going to have to consider quitting the group to focus on my own needs. I don’t want to be your sacrificial animal, and I sure don’t want you to be mine. I may just have to go Galt!