All I don’t want for Christmas
Hey, Santa, it’s me again, and I’m sorry, but this year I’m going to be a little harder to please than I have been in the past. I don’t want a toy. I don’t want a brand-new self-defining object. I want something different. What I want may be harder for you to deliver, although you’ll be happy to hear you may require a smaller sleigh. With the price of reindeer feed being what it is, that has to be good news for you. So listen up.
Don’t bring me anything made of plastic. I’ve had enough toys to last me a lifetime, and I’m actually at the point where I resent putting aside my old one more than I appreciate acquiring the new one. I liked my first-generation iPad. Then I got my second-generation iPad. Now I have a third-generation iPad. Or is it a fourth? I don’t know. Whichever it is, it’s about as superior to the prior generation as my kids’ generation is to mine. And I don’t need a new case for what I’ve got either. I like the one I have.
Same goes for music players, Santa, or shiny objects that stream things. Got a pile of them. They arrive. They are superseded. They go into a drawer. They die, like a lot of the music they store. Likewise their headphones, earbuds, Bluetooth sound-canceling head tweezers, whatever. Right now I’m using a little in-canal delivery system I picked up at an airport a few months ago for $19.99. They work okay. Don’t bring me their replacement, particularly if they’re expensive. The more they cost, the more I’m likely to lose them for some reason.
Oh, and if you were thinking of springing big for a new laptop, Santa, you can save it for one of the subsidiary Clauses. I’m working on a two-year-old MacBook Air right now, and it may not have a state-of-the-art Retina display, but I don’t have state-of-the-art retinas anymore either, so you can bag that too.
And if you were contemplating bringing me a new Tesla, forget about it until they solve this whole punctured-battery-exploding thing. Same goes for the new Peachy Keen Liner my airline is thinking of putting into domestic service; I’m not interested until they can absolutely, positively promise its dilithium crystals aren’t going to burst into flames while it’s sitting on the runway. Or in the air, for that matter.
I’m not trying to be difficult. It’s just that as time goes by, the things we dream of change, don’t they? I think my wish list is pretty simple. I hope you agree.
First, please bring me another year of federal subsidies propping up the bond market. They’re like sugarplum fairies that dance in our heads all year round. I don’t believe that the market can stand on its own without them, Santa. So keep ’em coming, okay?
Could you also bring an end to the sudden ubiquity of kale on menus? Also quinoa and farro. What the heck are they, anyway? Phooey on all of them!
Also, please bring me some clarity on statins. One study says we should all be taking them or we’re sure to die almost immediately. Another says no, stop, don’t. On the one hand, I hate taking potentially poisonous medications unless I have to, particularly ones that have alcohol warnings on their labels. On the other hand, I don’t want my brains to fly out of my ears in the near future either.
And finally, Santa, for the love of God, please tell the FCC that no sane person in his or her right mind wants it to allow cellphones on airplanes. If you do nothing else this year, please bring us that. The alternative is murder at 35,000 feet.
That’s about all. Unless you want to bring me a pony. I can put it in the space I was reserving for the Tesla.
This story is from the December 23, 2013 issue of Fortune.