And to All on the Scene, Let ’92 Be Green

‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the state

No houses were selling--the market lay prostrate.

A recession sat on us, an oppressive miasma.

California, it seemed, was no longer Bonanza.


With aerospace slumping and retailers sagging,

Sacramento’s red ink setting S&P; nagging,

Good fortune seemed now just a thing of antiquity

And business departures were, well, a ubiquity.


On none of these problems could I get a handle,

So heaving a sigh, I just snuffed out the candle.

I was newly retired (but just for the evening)

When out on the lawn there arose such a heaving,


It seemed like an earthquake, or Jeep Wagoneer

Was lifting the house off the ground by its ear!

Armed with a bat, yelling, “Call 911,”

I dashed to the doorway before they could run.


But burglars it wasn’t, nor nat’ral disaster

(Although, here and there, it’d nicked up the plaster).

Instead--in the floodlights--can it really be?

A glossy red surfboard, stuck in a tree!


All tangled with reindeer, its herald a dial-tone,

Like a plumb line below hung an outdated car phone.

Cursing and struggling, a fat guy descended,

Sunglasses bent, weird costume all rended.


I knew in a flash that this must be St. Nick.

“To the chimney,” he said, “and let’s make it quick.”

Once in the house, he unpacked such great riches,

‘S no wonder, I thought, he’s too big for his breeches.


Skateboards and sunshine, clean air and sweet rain,

Employment, prosperity, an end to all pain.

Clear freeways, good schools,

Fairer taxes, more pools,


Pastrami burritos, all kinds of good luck,

Several days respite from the name Wolfgang Puck!

Faster and faster the presents he’d yank:

A better debt rating! A failure-proof bank!


Frantically, giddily, covering the floor,

His presents included health care for the poor.

The hottest new chips for our Silicon Valley,

Too many miracles for pundits to tally!


Earnings per share mounted up to the roof--

Where by now we heard tolling the tap of a hoof.

“Cooling their antlers, they get kinda crabby.

Be seein’ ya, dude. It wasn’t too shabby.”


With that Santa turned and made ready to go

But stopped when I blurted, “Just a minute there! Whoa!

Are you really Santa? And how do you do it?

Can your elves succeed where the rest of us blew it?”


“They’re vertically challenged! " the saint said in warning.

“Besides, it’s a dream--all gone in the morning.”

Huffing and puffing, he climbed to his sled,

And saddened by knowing, I slinked off to bed


But not before waving, and hearing him holler:

“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a weak dollar!”