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So I’m thinking into the future here about Ricochet’s answer to the National Review cruise. Why, you ask? Isn’t that a little premature? Well, yes, but I’ve got another deadline, which always inspires me to apply my mind to any problem but the one I’m supposed to be solving.
My train of thought went like this. I found this great link to the best magazine articles ever written, and if you’ve got a deadline, too, I suggest you not click on it, because there goes your weekend. So instead of working on what I’m supposed to be doing this morning, I ended up re-reading, among other things, David Foster Wallace’s essay Shipping Out, which is about his one-week trip on the cruise ship M.V. Zenith. It was later published as A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again. That was the first piece I ever read by David Foster Wallace, and I remember reading it and feeling thrilled to see proof that America could, indeed, still produce that kind of incandescent talent, because for a time I wasn’t sure. Now, of course, it’s impossible to read his work without sadness.
But that’s not my point. My point is that after reading that, I just lost all my enthusiasm for cruising, not that I ever had much of it in the first place. Anyway, cruises are National Review’s market niche, and while I love National Review as much as any red-blooded American woman, all the more so since they publish me, I just don’t see a cruise as a Ricochet kind of thing. For one thing, I don’t think our exuberance could be contained to a seafaring vessel, particularly since I imagine one is not allowed to bring firearms on board. For another, a lot of us are pretty broke. So I figure we need to put our minds to the problem of creating a more appropriate Ricochet signature event, or at least I need to, right now, because the alternative is doing gainful work. So here’s what I’ve come up with so far:
Ricochet Goes to Burning Man! I’ve always wanted to go to that. Don’t you think we could build a great Ricochet “Art of the Free Market” theme camp? I get the sense that a lot of people there don’t realize it yet, but they’re actually on our side. They just need a gentle, inspiring nudge.
Right-wing Yoga Retreat! Wouldn’t it be terrific to go on one of those great-looking yoga retreats you always see advertised in the yoga journals–the ones in some subtropical paradise in Costa Rica, with all those pretty birds and flowers–in the full knowledge that no one’s going to give you that look when you finish your savasana and tell your favorite Ronald Reagan Cold War joke?
Ricochet Self-Defense Seminar! Honestly, the way I’m envisioning this is we all go out to the desert and shoot things and blow stuff up.
Ricochet Shakespeare Camp! I want Ursula to lead this–I loved her description of coaching her students through their performance of Romeo and Juliet. For a bonus, we could reenact the Peloponnesian War with Victor Davis Hanson, in period costume. Family-friendly!
Ricochet Safari! We may have to wait until we take back the government and the economy improves for this, but I’m seeing us stalking the lions on the grassy plains of the Okavango Delta, the elephants watering themselves in the lagoon, the huge blood-red sun, big as half the sky, setting over a grove of mangosteen trees, a flock of swirling kingfishers darkening the horizon, the impala, the zebra, the giraffes, the lechwe, the tsessebe–although I’m a little worried that none of us will be paying attention because we’re all looking anxiously at our Blackberries and fretting over the lack of high-speed Internet access.
Ricochet Bumper Cars! Just a simple outing to the adventure park. Low budget. Lots of you have kids, right?
Classical Liberal Square Dance! Whatever happened to square-dancing, anyway?
The Ricochet “See it While it’s Still There” Tour! Come visit Judith and me in Israel and Turkey! You never know how long these countries will still be here! I’ll personally show you the elusive moderate Moslem, and then we can all hang out and shoot the breeze in Judith’s bomb shelter.
Anyway, those are just a few ideas off the top of my head. They all sound a lot more fun than a cruise to me. Not that there’s anything wrong with cruising, if that’s what floats your boat, but I just don’t think it’s Ricochet.