If Jonathan Ive Were Santa Claus…

"La-la-la-la, la-la-la-la-la. Living in a winter wonderland"…I hate that song.

The Joker, Batman: The Long Halloween by Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale

(Outside the Apple Store in CUPERTINO, CA) --Trying to start a new company tradition, Apple CEO gives Apple employees two options for participating in the communityis Christmas Spirit this year: dress up as Santa Claus outside the Apple Stores or man the Salvation Army bell and kettle outside the unemployment office. Design guru Jonathan Ive opted for the former. For the first few hours, he is bored to tears, listening to snot-nosed toddlers litanize about toys, games and such. That all changed, when he noticed a woman approach him, holding the hand of giant, goofy black kid wearing an oversized bib and a Malcolm OS X shirt….

"Mommy! Lookee, lookee, lookee! Thereis Santa Claus! Can I tell him my list? Please, huh, please, hunh, please?"

"But, Rodney, youire 33 years old…"

"WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH! I wanna talk to Santa! I WANNA TALK TO SANTA! I WANNA TALK TO SANTAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA! I WANNA, I WANNA, I WANNA….!!!!!"

Big sigh. "Oh, okay. But only for a few minutes. We still have to get into the Apple Store."

"Ho, ho, ho, young iun."

"Semper Mac, Santa. Why you sound like Tony Blair?"

"Great," Ive mutters to himself, "another bloody Mac freak. And to imagine, I couldive still been designini bath tubs."

"Whatis that, Santa?"

"I said that these Macs are bloody freakini. Make PCs look like old bath tubs."

"Can I sit your lap, Santa?"

"No."

"WAAAAAAAAAAAAH! I wanna sit in Santais lap. I WANNA SIT IN SANTAiS LAPPPPPPP!!"

"Maiam, why is this man wearing a Bib? And hasnit he ever heard of a razor?"

"Rodneyis special."

"Iim sure he is. Okay, kid, what do you want for Xmas?"

"I want peace in the Middle East, a reduction of the proliferation of nuclear arms…"

"Bright kid, lady. How old is he?"

"33."

He looks at the lady. "Er… yeah. Well, look, um, ikid.i I canit make the peace. Iim just a humble Design VP."

"Okay, then…. how about this: I want a PowerBook G4."

"Now, youire talking my language. Which PowerBook do you want, um, iyoung man.i"

"The one without Titanium on it.."

"Excuse me?"

"I want one wiiout Titanium on it."

"Youire kidding, right?"

"Nope. Two kids in our neighborhood, Mikey and Stevie, have PowerBooks, and they can never reach Nickelodeon.com with their AirPort, but little Johnnyis iBook can. Mikeyis daddy says it cuz of the Titanium. So I want one wiiout Titanium."

"No can do, kid. The Titanium is our signature."

"Then put the Airport antennas closer to the surface."

"What makes you think theyire not already?"

"Mikeyis dad told me."

Turning to his mother. "He sure has dropped the baby talk."

"He does that whenever he gets to talking about Macs."

"Iim sure. Okay, kid. Iill think about it. What else do you want."

"I want a delete key on my iBook."

"You have one."

"No, I donit. Not like the one on the other iputers. That iBook has a backspace key, not a delete key."

"Excuse me?"

"Look at the G4 tower in the window. It has a backspace key and a delete key. The iBook only has a backspace key."

"Okay, kid. Timeis up. Thereis others I have to listen to."

"But, Iim not finished!"

"Yes, you are."

Little Rodney and his mother walk off, as Rodney drools over his OS X shirt. As they leave, they notice another oversized kid, this one wearing a shirt with a Mac LC on it. The last thing they hear is the "kid" haranguing Santa Ive about the lack of OS 9-like features in OS X. As they turn the corner, Rodney stops his toddling gait and begins walking more upright, ripping off the bib. Then he turns and smiles at his "mother."

"So, tell me, baby. Do you think Ive bought it?"

"I donit know, darling. Weill just have to wait and see what happens in San Francisco."

Rodney O. Lain is back after taking the show on the road for several weeks. A contributing editor for The Mac Observer, he writes his "iBrotha" column, as well as the occasional editorial. He lives in Minnesota, the quintessential winter wonderland -- as soon as they get some snow...

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