The Sledgehammer – Version 2.0

December 9, 2010

Dear Santa, I can explain…

Filed under: Holidays, Random Stuff — Tags: — Brian Lutz @ 1:56 am

To:  Mr. S. Claus, North Pole

From:  Brian Lutz, Bellevue, WA

Dear Santa,

You know, it’s been quite a few years since I wrote a letter, but if I recall correctly, it’s more or less customary to start one of these by talking about how nice you were over the past year.  I’ll dispense with this, mostly because I’m posting this on my blog, a fact which has the uncanny ability to turn such declarations almost instantly into egotistical blathering (well, more so than usual anyway.)  Not that it matters much, since I’m pretty sure I’ve already managed to make the naughty list, but still…  I’m not sure if there’s supposed to be some sort of formal appeal process for such things, but I’ve never heard of there being one, so I figure I might as well give this a shot.  If you would be so kind to ignore for a few minutes all that stuff I posted earlier this year about the inability to suspend disbelief, I would appreciate it.  In my defense, I should point out that I didn’t technically say I don’t believe in Santa Claus, only that I don’t necessarily believe in Mickey Mouse, in case that makes any difference.  If you can kindly overlook the fact that I made those nice carolers we had down the apartment lounge this evening sing Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer, I’d be grateful for that too.

Anyway, as a relatively new resident of a community populated by a significant number of ecologically-minded  citizens, I feel it necessary to point out that the use of coal is generally frowned upon here (and if that isn’t enough, I don’t think my apartment lease would allow it anyway.)  Some have suggested organic tofu to be a more Earth-friendly substitute for coal in naughtiness applications, but I feel it necessary to point out that I’d most likely just find some recipe to use the stuff in and promptly mess it up, which would kind of defeat the whole purpose.  To tell you the truth, I really haven’t been keeping up on the latest trends in Yuletide punishment technology, but I’m sure you’ve made a list of such materials and (apologies in advance for the old cliché) checked it twice, so I’ll leave that one to your discretion. 

But, as I stated earlier, I am not writing this letter to haggle over such inconsequential details as that, but to make an effort to try to prevent my impending naughtiness, if it somehow happens to be possible.  To that end, I shall attempt to explain a few things.  First of all, I would like to point out that I have now ceased my previous efforts to be “Mean Uncle Brian” to my four nephews.  I am under the impression that this act was in large part ineffectual, and efforts are now well underway to try to rebrand myself as “Crazy Uncle Brian” instead.  So far, this has provided decidedly mixed results.  I should also note out that Imola and Minardi most likely still consider me to be either their third or fourth favorite person in the whole wide world, even if I don’t let them dig holes in the dog park quite as often as they would like., and prevent them from licking off the plates in the dishwasher.  Isn’t that all part of the whole job description for a packleader?  Finally, I should explain that the use of words such as “Bunghole” and “Fartknocker” in some of my bug reports this year resulted from nothing more than standard professional necessity, as unconvincing as that may sound.  It’s a long story really, but let me state that I’ve already been through the whole undersupervised teenager phase once (minus the overexposure to questionable music videos,) and I have no  intention of revisiting that phase if I can help it.

If, for some reason, it so happens that I am able to successfully get myself reclassified into the “Nice” category, there are a few items which I would put on my list.  To be honest, I need practically nothing, and already have most of what I might want, so I don’t ask for much.  I also know some of these items are well beyond what I could reasonably expect to receive as a gift, but I put them here just out of sheer delusions of grandeur (oops, did I say “delusions of grandeur”?  I don’t have any of those, I swear!  Well OK, maybe 2 or 3, but who doesn’t?)  I also know that one or two people might be shopping for me this year, and might need some suggestions.  So, without further ado, the list:

  • A Cuisinart Mini-prep Food Processor.  I’ve seen these smaller food processors showing up in a number of places lately, and since I don’t really have the space for a larger one, I figure this would be a good compromise.  It’s also a lot cheaper than the full-size Cuisinarts too.
  • A silicone iPad sleeve.  For reasons I have yet to fully comprehend, I’ve been using my iPad since the day it was released, but have yet to purchase any sort of case for it.  iPad cases seem to be one of those annoying situations where everything seems to be either overpriced, hideous, or a combination of the two.  I’m not looking for anything fancy here, just a simple silicone sleeve, preferably in black or blue.  I’ve seen a few of these floating around at Marshall’s/TJMaxx, and can be had relatively cheap.
  • A good wooden/bamboo cutting board.  Not too big though, since kitchen space is, as I have already stated, in somewhat short supply.
  • A new set of snorkeling gear to take on the upcoming cruise in March.  I actually had an old set of snorkeling equipment I used for the cruise I went on in 2005, but I had to fight off about six or seven giant spiders to get at it when I cleaned out the storage closet at my old apartment in the process of moving, so I decided it probably wasn’t worth the effort. 
  • Buckyballs:  I need some new desk toys for my new cubicle, and I’ve heard these are supposed to be fun.
  • An iPad Bluetooth keyboard.  With the previously mentioned cruise coming up , I’ve been looking at the possibility of using an iPad as a notebook replacement, and the biggest obstacle to this seems to be the on-screen keyboard, which is just a pain to type on for any length of time.  It’s not that I necessarily want to be giving Apple money or anything, but having an actual keyboard for the iPad would be nice.
  • Lessons for PADI open water certification.  I plan to do at least one Scuba dive on the cruise, and although the thought of diving in Puget Sound in the dead of Winter sounds really, really, REALLY cold, I’ve thought about doing the certification for some time now.  I’m pretty sure this one’s way too expensive to get as a gift though.
  • A Magnetic Poetry set:  Nothing too pretentious though.  I’m not quite that cultured.
  • A pair of 24″ monitors:  My computer at my new job came with dual monitors, and although I’m still getting used to them, it’s makes it a lot easier to get things done having two monitors to see stuff on at once.  The things are getting pretty cheap these days too, but I’m pretty sure these would be too expensive to get as a present.

Anyway, that’s my list.  I’m afraid that the whole chimney thing is a bit tricky around here, so I’d recommend the freight elevator as an alternative.  There will probably be cookies of some sort on the counter when you get here, but the milk is going to be in the fridge.  Feel free to help yourself, the things are probably bad for me anyway.  If you still find it necessary to deliver the traditional coal, I would ask that it be tendered in the form of commodity futures.  After all, what’s the worst that could happen?

Merry Christmas,


Age 32 1/2


  1. I just got Apple’s wireless keyboard and took my first trip with only the iPad and no laptop, and I think I got more writing done than if I had an actual laptop with me. It’s worth the $60 just to use the cursor keys in a text editor instead of the clunky magnifying glass cursor placement thingee. Just remember to unpair it before you shove it in a bag, or you will hit the keys and constantly re-wake up your iPad.

    Agreed about the cases – I was thinking about buying one of those moleskin-looking book cases, but they are so insanely priced, and all have long lead times. I will probably buy a nice leather-bound book for a dollar at a used book store and hollow it out with an xacto knife. Stands are even worse – you can pay $60 for an iPad stand, or buy a $5 picture easel like I did, which is pretty much the same exact thing.

    Comment by Jon Konrath — December 9, 2010 @ 9:01 am

  2. You are hilarious Brian!

    Comment by Emily — December 9, 2010 @ 3:10 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a free website or blog at

%d bloggers like this: