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by: Max Burbank

Dear Santa;

It's hard to argue I've been good this year. In any case, that's what my parole officer says, ha-ha. (That's a joke, as you know I haven't seen my parole officer in months and neither has anyone else.) In fact, I would say that considering the stresses I'm under as a modern Father, Husband, full time employee of a non-profit-i.e.-pays-for-shit-'educational'-institution, Unitarian/Jew, hobbyist pornographer, I think I've been very well behaved. The few incidents of road rage should be overlooked since I don't have a car and it was the booze talking. Likewise, while I may have told my eldest daughter you don't exist, I was only being mean to her and I lie constantly so it's unlikely she took me seriously. I think I more than made up for it by telling her, that in a fight between totally made up people, you would beat the crap out of Jesus. I'm pretty certain I have not cheated on my wife at all in the last year or if I did it was during blackouts and if I'm going to get coal in my stocking for things I've done while in blackouts, hell, I'll start heating with coal. Like you're in any position to judge, Mr. "Well-I-Guess-We'll-Have-To-Cancel-Christmas".

My point is, it's not up to me whether you judge me naughty or nice so I figured I'd hedge my bets and send you a Christmas list. You know, if you're not too busy with the forced Elf Labor and whatever the hell genetic engineering you get up to with those reindeer. (I'm kidding. I'm sure the Elves enjoy their work, and Reindeer can't talk so do what you want, I say. Especially that Clarice. Rrrrrr, between you and me, Santa, Those eyelashes, know what I'm saying? I know you do.)

Anyway, here's what I want:

1.) Peace on Earth. I shit you not, Santa. I'm not just saying that to look all goody goody so you'll give me the other stuff. I mean, I can't even express how much the news depresses me these days, like I want to hear about soldiers dying and child slavery and all that crap. It's gotten to the point where even with my Discman on I can't shut it all out, so either make me even more selfish or clean this mess up, and frankly I don't care which.

2.) Booze. I'm not that concerned about the quality. I don't appreciate it, it's wasted on me, I'm strictly talking about utility booze here.

3.) No electronic shit. If anyone gets me electronic shit I'm blaming you. I'm too damn old, there's no damn way I'm figuring out how to operate Tivo or a Blackberry or any damn, hand held crap with weeny little buttons my fat, arthritic, shaky fingers can't even find, let alone push. NO ELECTRONIC GADETRY unless it comes with a teenage slave to make it work. A girl teenage slave. Pretty. And not a big talker.

4.) More Time to Spend With My Kids. They're not slaves exactly but they still do what I tell them generally speaking and my back hurts like hell since that time I was found asleep in the locker at the Port Authority.

5.) A Better Lawyer. I mean, honest to Christ, Santa, what the hell is the point of a shyster who can't get me workman's comp for the damage done to my lower back sleeping in a Port Authority Locker?

6.) A Helper Monkey. Those things are the coolest and apparently you can't just have one because you want one, you have to be handicapped. I'm not kidding, Santa, it's apparently some sort of 'law'. I think restricting me from having my own Helper Monkey is a serious infringement of my civil rights, so if there's no way to get a Helper Monkey in my stocking, just go back and change number five from "A Better Lawyer" to "A Better Lawyer Who's Really Good With The Whole Civil Rights Thing vis-a-vis Helper Monkeys."

7.) Worse Hearing. I know that sounds odd but at Thanksgiving my wife's Uncle Leon was there, and he has this hearing aid. And for most of the evening he had it turned way low and whatever you said he'd yell something unrelated back at you, like you'd say "Uncle Leon, how's the soup?" and he'd yell "BECAUSE THE DAMN JEWS WON'T GIVE ME FULL DENTAL!" and then Aunt Imogene gave him hell and made him turn it all the way up, and he did and it started making this high pitched squealing noise? And then he fell asleep. That was so cool.

8.) Good Slippers. Every winter my feet get cold and wet until they feel like two, huge lumps of fresh Mozzarella in brine and every year my kids get me some cheap ass slippers that are too tight and my feet can't breath and they feel like hot Mozzarella instead of cold Mozzarella and I have to pretend I like them. Is a decent pair of slippers too friggin' much to ask for, Santa?

9.) For Donald Rumsfeld to suddenly vomit up gallons of live leeches on national TV until he dies. No shit, Santa, I know that sounds harsh, but I hate that son of a bitch so bad, I am not kidding, if I could have Donald Rumsfeld gagging and clutching at his throat with his eyes bugging out and shit and then keeling over dead on live national TV, I would totally forgo everything else on this list. Either that or make me Donald Rumsfeld. He looks like he's having a pretty good time.

10.) I'm not even asking for a new liver. I'm just saying if I could get on a donor list. Because the Hospital says my liver is in okay shape, but I know it can take a really long time to get to the front of a donor list.

11.) You know that movie "Scanners"? That old David Cronenbergh thing where these people had psychic powers and could make other peoples heads go all shaky and then blow up? Can I have that?

12.) Peace in the Middle East. I swear to God, if these bastards drag us into a Nuclear Armageddon at a point in my life where I have not even been with two women at once or thrill killed a hobo, I will hold you personally responsible.

13.) Tickle me Elmo. I don't know how the hell I missed the boat on this, a few years back one of my kids was absolutely begging for one and I was all like 'Tickle me Elmo, what the hell is that, you only want that 'cause everyone else does, screw that, a canned ham is a great gift'. I saw one of these things at a garage sale? Fucking hysterical, Santa. But they wanted like ten bucks for it, which is insane, so I'm asking you.

14.) A Genie. Like, a Barbara Eden type Genie who's all 'master' this and 'master' that and could get me anything I wanted whenever. Then I wouldn't need to even write you anymore letters and just the thought of you in a midriff exposing harem outfit is very hard to take, no offense. You know what, screw the rest of the list, just get me the Genie, and I'll take it from there.

So, anyway, I hope you're having a good Holiday season, even though it's like, a busy time for you I'm sure, and tell Mrs. Clause I say hello, and tell Rudolph I was just kidding about Clarice, (like he doesn't know we're all thinking it anyway, am I right, Santa?). I bet I know what you want for Christmas if that "Polar Express" film is any indication. A gift certificate for a Tom Hanks exterminator! The North Pole is apparently infested with Tom Hanks! Ha-ha. I'm kidding. You're the miracle gift giver, not me. All you're getting is the plate of cookies just like always.



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