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God Help Us Every One

My Christmas wish list


As the eminent philosopher Erma Bombeck once wrote, there's nothing sadder than to awake Christmas morning and not be a child. So, the way I see it, grown-ups have to make the most of the month before the big day. It's a time of year when we turn away from our material wants, re-charge our spiritual batteries and wish the best for those around us. Of course, that's only after we've finished shopping to the point of exhaustion, flipped off drivers who are pissed that we took their parking spot, and eaten and drunk ourselves into a stupor. With those fond sentiments and notions in mind, here is my list of holiday wishes for a few deserving folks. Not many of these wishes may come true, but hey, it's also the season for believing in miracles, right?

• For the Women's Shelter and Crisis Assistance Ministry, we wish enough funds to expand their outreach to those in need in the community.

• For independent musicians, writers and actors, or symphony conductors who don't stick to the "19th Century's Greatest Hits," we wish good prospects and a plane ticket out of sports-crazed Charlotte.

• For U.S. Airways, we wish ... actually, we don't care about U.S. Airways. We just want lower plane fares for Charlotte travelers. So whatever it takes to get them, that's what we wish.

• For City Council members, who in the past few years have seemed overwhelmed to the point of irrelevance, we wish a change from part-time to full-time status, so they can keep better tabs on what the city manager's office is doing.

• For CMS Superintendent Peter Gorman, who faces the task of pleasing both the parents of inner city students who are struggling with a lack of topnotch teachers and suburban parents who want more buildings and special programs, we wish good f-in' luck.

• For The Carolina Panthers, who started the season as a Super Bowl favorite but have languished in mediocrity, we wish a change in quarterbacks in the off-season, preferably Vince Young of the Tennessee Titans.

• For The Charlotte Bobcats, who are struggling to win games and gain fans, we wish the gift of more Charlotteans who actually give a damn whether they're here or not.

• For baby boomers, we wish the new Beatles album in a new home entertainment center, next to the new treadmill, across from the cholesterol-free cookbook. Oh, and peace on earth.

• For Charlotte restaurant patrons, we wish a new appreciation for locally owned, innovative, chef-driven eateries and a move away from national chains -- and the ability to tell the difference.

• For Jennifer Roberts, the next Chairperson of the County Commission, we wish a redoubling of her commitment to environmental protection and equal educational opportunity for all students.

• For Bill James, local paragon of the Christian right, we wish the courage to run for an at-large County Commission seat in the next election so he can join former commissioner Jim Puckett in a job outside government.

• For Rep. Sue Myrick, who ran for Congress 12 years ago on a platform that included term limits, and who has recently become an anti-immigrant activist of the worst sort, we wish her the gift of exercise from being run out of town by a mob of angry Latinos.

• For Mayor Pat McCrory, who has been waiting for years to run for Sue Myrick's House seat, we wish a new sense of purpose to find something else to do with his life besides being mayor forever.

• For N.C. House Speaker Jim Black, we wish a big lottery pay-off so he can go back to doing what he does best: being an optometrist.

• For CATS CEO Ron Tober, we wish his first ride on the first light rail commuter train will keep going and going and going.

• For liberal churches in Charlotte, who are more numerous and passionate than you'd think from listening to local media, we wish the next year to be spent speaking out more on the social issues that face the poor and marginalized.

• For big oil companies, who have gouged the American public with impunity the past few years, we wish them a Democratic-led government to break them into smaller companies that will be forced to compete for our business.

• For parents of U.S. soldiers in Iraq, we wish a safe return of their kids in the next few months.

• And finally, for our good friends Dubya and Darth Cheney, who have screwed things up in the United States beyond anyone's worst expectations, we wish two years of endless frustration, followed by an intimate acquaintance with a war crimes tribunal.

And on that note, happy holidays to CL's loyal readers!

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