Santa, it's time we had a talk

Dear Santa,

I know you’re particularly busy right now. The big day is right around the corner, the elves are getting grumpy with all the overtime and it’s pretty much crunch time for people to fall on either the naughty or nice side of your ledger. I empathize with you, Santa. I really do.

But I want some stuff.

It’s just been that kind of year, Santa. The economy is crushing everybody, my health hasn’t been exactly stellar and I’ve watched as my brethren in the media have camped out at Tiger Woods’ house and attacked him like he went on a four-week shooting spree throughout orphanages across these fruited plains. I want to overcompensate by getting some really cool stuff for Christmas. Well, I did promise I wouldn’t take any more of your time than is necessary, so let’s get on with the show.

I want town, county and state officials to make comprehensive land-use plans that serve the best long-term interests of their constituents. That seems easy enough, but there’s a catch (isn’t there always?). I want them to actually follow these plans when they get tested. If it says someone can build such-and-such at a designated place, than let them do it. If it says they can’t, then don’t. I understand the need for variances, and I don’t wish to eliminate that outlet, but stick to the overall plan, people. Can you help with that, Santa?

I want some socks. I have two dogs that are, well, playful. My socks that have managed to not get taken off into some strange ritualistic canine burial ground have been used as pull toys or teething rags. I’m getting tired of spray-painting my ankles and shins black before I leave the house, Santa.

I want states to actually have some power in this country, Santa. If Delaware wants to allow sports gaming, then what is the problem? This nation was started as a union of individual colonies with common goals. Let the states have their own identities. While people are indeed people, wherever you might go, it’s also undeniable that different regions of the country have different needs or circumstances. Talk some sense into them, Santa. I have confidence in you.

I want a new raincoat. Or, I’d like you to do something about the rain. Either way, I’m tired of feeling like I’ve been marinating.

I want something to happen with healthcare, Santa. Now, I’m not going to get into the debate as far as what kind of plan the government should be offering or anything like that. However, people are losing jobs because companies can’t afford the healthcare costs and many people in this nation are in danger of bankruptcy if they get the wrong results on a test at their doctor’s office. We are a good nation, Santa. The best. But I sometimes feel that our leaders let politics get in the way of leadership. Check that. I feel that politics always gets in the way of leadership and government. Perhaps a massive ego check is in order. Tell these elected officials that we elected them to serve us, not the other way around. If I hear one more yahoo in Congress say ...

But I digress.

Santa, I want you to make the guys of 6th Marines healthy this holiday. My old unit is having a 20-year reunion this weekend that I can’t get away for, and I hope you can bring all those guys joy and happiness this holiday season. If it’s not too much to ask, can you bring something in your big red bag to all the men and women who are currently serving this nation in the military? I’ve been overseas for Christmas as a scared and lonely 20-year-old and, trust me, they could all use a little holiday cheer. Also, big guy, the families at home could use a little boost, if it’s not too much trouble. They’re all-too-often forgotten, and they’re not any less lonely.

I want the new Army of Two game for my XBox. Silly, I know. But there’s just something about blasting bad guys that makes the world feel a little better to me. Call it repressed rage or whatever. It’s fun.

I was hoping you could give a little extra this year to the staff of the Coastal Point. Well, not Saxton, but the rest. They’re a pretty good bunch, Santa.

In fact, while I’m on that line of thought (and, truthfully, it doesn’t take much to make me wander off a line of thought), times are flat-out tough, Santa. I know I’m just adding to your headaches, and that bag gets pretty heavy while you’re traveling around the world, but could you throw a few extra smiles in there. They’re needed.

That’s all for now. Good luck, big guy.