Tuesday, December 21, 2004


It's the most wonderful time of the year...

...I know, I know, I promised Faith, but things have been slamming. Good news is that I now officially do not have to actually live under the Bush regime (at least in terms of geography) for any more than 3 1/2 years. We'll see what I can do about fixing that, as well. BUT...in the spirit of Christmas, a spirit that I am very much in right now, having just spent the last hour and a half indulging the consumerist whims of my wife and daughter in a crowded Zentrum with lots of pushy Germans, I wanted to share the following with you--it's a first draft, and it needs lots of development if it is ever to amount to anything but a mildly amusing blog entry...and that's assuming it's worth developing at all. Keep in mind that it's the product of about 1 hour from conception to present draft...it was a writing exercise, centered on...well, you can probably guess what it was centered on if you read it. Still, thought I'd share.

I'm off to Vigo, Spain for the holidays. I'll be online, but only for short check-ins, and those will all be devoted to the Trip. So, I present you with...

The True Story of Ebeneezer Skywalker

A long, long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, there was an energetic young corporate officer by the name of Ebeneezer Skywalker who was in the employ of the Mattel empire. Ebeneezer lived an exemplary life of virtue and thrifty-living. He was the head officer of the Aldaaran branch of toy-making, and in this capacity, he was the very personification of proper executive living. Employing Jawas at half the local minimum wage (a practice easily justified due to the fact that Jawas are but half the size of humans), he was adept at vanquishing the terrible force known as "The Christmas Spirit" (for of course, they have Christmas on Aldaaran, too...) by attacking on two fronts: First, due to his thrift in employing Jawas, he was able to sell the fruits of the Jawas' labors at many times the amount they cost to produce. His coup de grace, however, was in convincing those same Jawas to buy the toys they had produced, at many times their actual market value, through a carefully crafted advertising campaign wherein they were convinced that it was more virtuous to give than to receive. Due to these and similar business practices, young Ebeneezer was widely respected in Aldaaranian society for both his business acumen and the formidable size of his light sabre. His life was, as a consequence, often a solitary one, but he did find some consolation in those material comforts offered by his high position, comforts which included a chauffeur driven stretch hovercraft, equipped with a fully stocked wet bar, and a veritable harem of heavily drugged female Jawa sex-slaves devoted to satisfying those more base needs that perforce must exert their influence upon even the most virtuous of men.

As a result of Skywalker's having enslaved an entire planet of Jawas in an unbreakable cycle of production and consumption of the Skywalker Mattel brand of unique, mass-produced plastic gizmos, Skywalker's life was at somewhat of a remove from that of the average Aldaaranian's. Rarely did he come into any real contact with the day-to-day concerns informing the life of the average citizen. One day, however, all of that changed. The day in question began much as any other day would, with Ebeneezer laying off a few thousand Jawas during a slow breakfast over coffee and the Aldaaranian Financial Times (he was particularly fond of the comic's page...). Around noon, Skywalker decided that it was probably time that he went into his office, so he summoned his hovercraft, and off he went. The hovercraft, unbeknownst to Skywalker, had, however, been sabotaged by the rebel element known as the Jawanese Planatary Front. As a result, it broke down, but a scant two city blocks from Mattel headquarters, and Skywalker, in a rare display of spontenaety, decided that rather than waiting for the Aldaaranian Hovercraft Association to arrive, he would walk the remaining two city blocks and take in the sights.

And what sights they were! A bustling, intergalactic hodge-podge of normal citizens going about their daily business, which included, among other things, the buying and selling of Fava beans, hyperspace drives, and black market Jawanese Joy Juice--along with the occasional casual dismemberment of troublesome elements, rebel insurrections, and epic struggles between light and dark. In other words, although it was very eventful, it was also very vague. Skywalker was captivated, however, when he chanced upon a large display window, within which was housed a wide array of genuine Skywalker ware. In the exact geometrical center of this display was a large, stuffed reindeer, with antlers that easily spanned a distance twice the length of its body. This reindeer began thus to speak to Skywalker:

"Jingle bell, jingle bell
Jingle bell rock
Jingle bell swing
And jingle bells ring
Snowin' and blowin'
Up bushels of fun
Now the jingle hop has begun

Jingle bell, jingle bell
Jingle bell rock
Jingle bells chime in
Jingle bell time
Dancin' and prancin'
In jingle bell square
In the frosty air!"

Skywalker was, understandably, at first quite skeptical, and he had no way of knowing that this particular reindeer, like the hovercraft, had been sabotaged by the JPF. So he was understandably surprised when the reindeer began to speak words that it had decidedly not been programmed to say. The first real blow came when the reindeer rumbled: "Ebeneezer, I am your father."

Nevertheless, Skywalker, being a promising young executive, was not entirely without the ability to think on his feet. So, after a brief pause--it couldn't have been more than 30 seconds, tops--Skywalker replied: "No you're not!" He shouted, emphatically.

"Yes I am," asserted the reindeer.

"Are not," maintained Skywalker.

"Am too," re-asserted the reindeer.

It went on like this for quite some time, and Skywalker, it must be said, put up a valient fight. However, being only human, and thus comprised of weak flesh, he eventually capitulated when the reindeer delivered the final blow.

"Come to the dark side!"

Skywalker was overcome. It's what some have referred to as seeing the light. In that moment, he understood that giving is, indeed, better than receiving, and he vowed to immediately change his manner of living to better reflect this new revelation. That very afternoon, he doubled the wages of his entire work force, dedicated a significant portion of his own profits to a detox and re-education program for former Jawanese sex slaves, slashed the asking price for his entire line of products to more accurately reflect their actual market value, and, in general, instituted a wide-ranging program of reform in the interests of rendering his toy-making empire a more socially responsible entity. As a result of these events, Skywalker was much beloved by the Jawanese population, who hailed him as a great reformer and a well-endowed man. Within just three days he had spent, or otherwise negated, over twenty years of Mattel profit, a fact that, while it did him no harm in the eyes of the Jawas, did not exactly endear him to his compatriot executive officers. He was dismissed from his position within three days, and while it must be said that he attempted to press onward with his program of reform in spite of this fact, he was stone broke within six months. He passed the remainder of his more than averagely long life sporting a dirty brown cloak and wandering the deserts of Aldaaran, and in fact, to this very day, if you happen to be standing in an Aldaaranian desert, and the wind is just right, you can still hear him, singing "Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell, Jingle Bell rock...Jingle Bell swing and jingle bell ring..."

To you and yours, happy holidays, and may they involve something more meaningful than massive credit card debt and unbridled gluttony. Tchitch, out.

happy holidays to y'all------------------corey
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