This being the season of giving, I thought I would share with you a list of things I’d like to get from some of the major vendors in my life. The way I see it, I’ve given them so much during that past year. I don’t think it’s out of line for me to hop up on Santa’s lap and give them some clue of how they could make me happy in this joyeux season.
From American Airlines (AMR), I would like an on time departure from Kennedy Airport sometime in the next twelve months. As part of that, I’d like to have an airplane that does not have some “small problem” that needs remediation by a mechanic before taking off, or a host of puling announcements apologizing, thanking me for my patience, or explaining how our “brief delay” made us “lose our place on line to the flights headed to Europe.” I’d just like to get on the plane, take off and get where I’m going when I expected to, give or take a half hour.
I guess I’ll also ask Santa to bring some new planes for American. They’re trying to make do with what they have, Santa, but new Business Class seating is not actually the same thing as having an actual new plane that doesn’t require constant tinkering because it’s always in the air. I know they know that at American, and it must make them sad to offer the same old airplanes to people year after year after year after year after year.
From Apple (AAPL), I would like my touch-screen Ipod to hook up more easily to the Internet. The commercials show it seamlessly doing so, but I’ve had some problems getting online in places where you need a password, like Starbucks (SBUX). I admit this is a small present, just a stocking-stuffer, really. The gizmo is great. I love it. One with a few more gigs of storage would be nice, too.
From Stan O’Neal and Chuck Prince, late of Merrill (MER) and Citi (C), respectively, I’d like one million dollars. Each of them got enough in their platinum envelope to give away a little. I won’t go into any details with you, but believe me when I say that, like a lot of corporations, my expenses are very high and actually outpace my revenue. While cash flow is good, bottom line EPS for my annual personal report is nugatory. These humongous exit packages for failed executives aggravate me. I would feel better if I got a piece.
From Nintendo (NTDOY), I’d like a few more games? It’s a terrific platform, but XBox has a better lineup, at least for psychotic killers who want to roam free blasting evil mutants. I’m one of those and so are most of my friends.
From the Fed, I’d like a clear reading on whether we’re in recession, depression, inflation, stagflation, ingestion or decompensation, along with continuing decline in interest rates that will re-boot the ailing housing market.
From President Bush, I would like a quiet ’08. While continuing war is good for some industries, I persist in the conviction that peace is better for the overall economy, and certainly for anything American that seeks to operate in the global environment, including American brands and American corporations.
These are just suggestions. I actually appreciate anything I get. No beef sticks or cheese logs, though. I still have some left over from last year.