Pet Peeves


December’s Wishlist


By Mark D. Crantz

Laguna.  Another perfect day in Paradise, but then there is the “December to Remember Sales Event” commercial jingle. Oh, no! Unless you’re clinically dead or Ted Williams, there is no way you could avoid seeing these Lexus TV commercials. In case you are Ted Williams and you don’t get around much, let me describe them. Cut to a homey Christmas living room where the wife opens a beautiful music box that plays the Lexus jingle. Several bars into the music, she thinks what a crappy gift and I should have left him in June. Suddenly it dawns on her that the tune signals there’s a brand new Lexus in the driveway.


By no means the worse commercial ever conceived, but its relentless play is creating havoc in my little piece of Laguna Paradise.  Every time that jingle comes on, my wife pops up, runs to the driveway looking for the new car to be disappointed over and over to find my old 1975 AMC Pacer instead. The popping up and down and overwhelming disappointment is taking its toll. I’m starting to have my doubts about the Pacer. The fact is the 1975 AMC Pacer is one of a kind. Literally. Everybody else with half an automotive brain has kept his wife and gotten rid of the Pacer.  I love my wife, but to be honest, the 1975 AMC Pacer and I are kindred spirits, whereas my wife and I are soul mates. This is the worse Christmas ever. Must I choose between the 1975 American Motors Pacer or the 1972 American-born beautiful wife?


In keeping with the American spirit of the season, where it’s better to get than give, perhaps there is a way to keep both the ‘75 kindred spirit and the ‘72 soul mate and give up nothing. What to do? Think. Mull. Drink. Dull. Oops, next day same problem. Two aspirins and a pot of coffee later, I get an epiphany. Call the Cox space age cable guys.


You know these guys. They wear white helmets with blue tinted visors, a dashing white jump suit with blue piping, topped of by a hint of turtleneck. Blue mittens and shoes round out the ensemble that screams space age technology for any average earthbound mortal that needs connectivity answers. These guys look suited up enough for my interplanetary problem: where men are from Mars and women are from Venus. And Pacers are from a galaxy that nobody will fess up to.  But looks can be deceptive.


The Cox space age cable guys were formerly employed by NASA’s scrubbed space shuttle program. These former astronauts were responsible for running cable from the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral to the space shuttle, in high definition no less. This American ingenuity by guys wearing blue mittens flabbergasted the Russian space program that still relies on rabbit ears and repeated shots of vodka for focus tuning.


I’m happy to report that the Cox space age cable guys arrived at my house as promised and reprogrammed the Lexus commercial to show the Christmas car in the driveway to be a beautiful gift wrapped 1975 AMC Pacer. Problem solved!


Now my 1972 American-born beautiful wife wants me to look into Elizabeth Taylor’s jewelry collection.  Think. Think. Drink. Drink.  Merry Christmas to all.



Mark Crantz is a recent transplant to Laguna from Chicago.  He occasionally contributes the guest column ”Pet Peeves.”


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