According to The Objective Standard, “Today in 1946, Ayn Rand began writing Atlas Shrugged, which would be published eleven years later.”
The first day IN the novel is also September 2. In the novel, that date is mentioned again and again, year after year.
I first read Atlas Shrugged when I was 19. I have since read it at least eight times. It’s more than 1,000 pages. I love that book. By now, I still can’t recite it but if someone reads it to me, and they misread it slightly, I can usually catch it, and often I can guess what the next sentence or two would be. I have integrated the ideas in that book into my life’s philosophy.
Recently, I’ve been mentoring a t-girl in her mid-20s. In my opinion, she was living her life in the shadows, relegating herself to an unfulfilled life. By the time I was her age, I’d already gotten a university degree, started six businesses, worked as a cost analyst in an automobile factory, moved to America, worked as the office manager of an automotive speed shop, been promoted to general manager, and then started a thriving new career in software development. Much is possible when one applies oneself.
Last Saturday night, this t-girl spent the night with me. And yes, I sleep in the nude. You’d think one naked t-girl and one half-naked t-girl in a king-sized bed would mean there would be very little actually sleeping. And that’s precisely what happened, but not because we had sex that night. We didn’t. We talked — a lot. We talked until the sun came up.
I pointed out to her that she was going out of her way to be fair — to everyone except herself. Others’ needs always came first and her own hopes, wishes and desires did not even feature on her radar screen. I gently pointed out to her that she was being hypocritical: one set of rules for her, another set for everyone else. Indeed, mostly I’ve seen that approach used in the reverse way this t-girl used it, which is to deny herself everything instead of to allow herself everything. Even so, it’s still an unfair principle, and I pointed this out. She was very moved at the realization of what her life might have been and still can be, were she to allocate a good portion of her energies into furthering her own life.
The next day, I took her to Barnes and Noble, and bought her a large copy of Atlas Shrugged, because this novel eloquently illuminates the implications of this sort of approach to life.
Then, she and I spent a large part of the next night in bed together yet again, this time reading the first chapter of the book aloud to each other. She loved it, especially the style of Dagny Taggart, the heroine.
Now that she’s allocating her energies to herself, wow, what a dramatic change, even in just three days. This bodes well. She declared her independence and is proceeding accordingly. Hence, my choice of this picture: Independence Hall where the US Declaration of Independence was signed. Ironically, I took that picture on the same afternoon as when I handed her that book.