Photo courtesy Megan MacKay

An open letter to Ryerson’s Radio and Television department

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By Megan MacKay


Dear RTA,

I hope by now you know how much I love you. I’ve been inside of you for almost three years, and I hope to stick around for at least one more. But let’s cut to the chase, baby: I’m here to talk about staplergate.

In case you’ve forgotten, this semester you’ve decided to very generously purchase office kits stocked with a stapler, stapler remover, and hole punch for each and every RTA student. You’ve done so to make up for the elimination of communal access to the aforementioned tools in the RTA office. And though this act was more thoughtful than my last ex-boyfriend’s Valentine’s Day gift (coincidentally also a stapler), it was a misguided and horribly erroneous use of student’s tuition.

Let’s do some math. I know, I know, this isn’t business management, but just try. Let’s lowball it and say you supplied 600 RTA students with a $2 office package. That’s $1200 of pure liquid cash. $1200 that could be spent reinstating some of the many table courses you’ve decided to phase out due to lack of funds. Or $1200 that could be spent buying a camera and setting up an affordable student equipment rental system for use on our personal projects. Or $1200 on an in-house male escort available to attend my cousin’s wedding so that I can finally convince my grandma I won’t die alone. Instead, you’ve spent $1200 ensuring that your salaried secretaries need not take five minutes from their daily Facebooking to reload a stapler and empty a hole punch. If you’re quiet enough, you can hear U of T cackling at us from the safety of their squillion-dollar laboratory made of diamonds and electron microscopes.

Don’t get me wrong – staplers are a worthwhile investment. When you have two pieces of paper that need to be attached to each other, you can’t always rely on bubblegum or sterile blood agar gel as an affixing agent. Staplers are a necessary and integral part of society – and one that students should be able to provide for themselves. Any adult-in-training can set up what I like to call a “stapler fund” – putting aside a mere 25 cents a week for four weeks to purchase the dollar store’s finest mini-stapler, complete with built-in remover and a complimentary pack of staples. If said students can’t afford a full 25 cents a week they can drop down to 20 cents a week for five weeks, or perhaps they could consider retooling their budget. Y’all can’t buy beer on sterile blood agar credit forever, you know!

Oh RTA, please don’t cry. You may have frittered away our money senselessly, but there’s always next year. Next year you’ll have a whole new $1200 to spend on something actually useful. Hey, we won’t even mind if you give RTA professors and coordinators a raise, as they work much harder than most staplers.

I’ll let you think on that. In the meantime, I’ve got some stuff to go staple together.

Forever yours,

Megan MacKay


  1. aptly written, Megan. maybe next year they’ll spend it on renovating the cage, which you’ll pay for but won’t get to use! YAY!

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