As you may (or may not) know, I like to write tiny letters sometimes. And when the holidays roll around, I like to write tiny Christmas letters. So here goes.
Dear Downtown Macy’s • Hey! Thanks again for the candy windows. My favorite one this year is the one called “Golden Spike,” which celebrates that day in 1869 when candy elves drove a train all the way to Utah. Candy elves rock!
Dear Snow • Please. Don’t be a no-show this year, OK?
Dear People Who Put Up Christmas Lights (even if you only put up a few strands in the window) • I love you! You make the holiday merry and bright!
Dear Inversion • You’re the one thing that could make me leave Salt Lake City for good, which is why I am NOT wishing you a Merry Christmas, OK?
Dear Wham! • Hello. WHAT WERE YOU THINKING when you wrote the following lyrics:
Last Christmas, I gave you my heart
But the very next day, you gave it away
This year, to save me from tears
I’ll give it to someone special
Did you really think the world needed a Christmas breakup song? And also, why do I hear this song every time I go to the grocery store? Does the world really need to hear Christmas breakup songs at the grocery store?
Dear Temple Square Concert Series • Your free 30-minute organ recitals at noon on Mondays through Saturdays and 2 p.m. on Sundays at the Tabernacle during the month of December are a generous gift to the community.
Dear Temple Square Concert Series • Also. Thank you for not playing that stupid Wham! song on the Tabernacle organ.
Dear Real Christmas Tree in My Living Room • Thank you for making my living room smell like a real Christmas tree.
Dear Fruitcake • I know. You’re the butt of everybody’s holiday jokes — you and ugly Christmas sweaters. You should know, however, that I still love you even though it’s lonely being a member of your fan club in America these days. But whatever. Fruitcake forever is what I’m saying.
Dear Eighth Avenue Market • It’s been years now since you closed your doors for the final time on Christmas Eve. But I still miss you and your owner, Bill Spencer, who always said, “Hell, they’re lucky to be out of this mess” when you told him somebody had died. Then he’d turn right around and generously donate a ham to the family for the funeral dinner.
Dear Vermont Country Store • Ceramic deer. Ceramic Christmas trees. Ceramic elves. Ceramic Christmas Lady Head Vase. Thumbing through your catalog is like revisiting Christmases past, just like Scrooge did while wearing pajamas. Which you can also order from your catalog. Never change, Vermont Country Store. Never change.
Dear “Merry Christmas” album by Johnny Mathis • You’re my favorite holiday album of all time. I remember the way our high school biology teacher, Coach Whitney, used to play you on his turntable during the month of December while we did worksheets on cell membranes and so forth. If grocery stores played “Silver Bells” instead of that stupid Wham! song, I would be a whole lot happier.
Dear Great-Grandma Pat, aka “Wyoming Game Warden,” aka “Scary Force of Nature,” aka “Mrs. Never-Leave-Your-House-Without-a Shotgun-in-Tow” • By the time I knew you, you were a frail, silvery shadow of your former huge and vivid self. But the stories about you live on in our family — especially the ones about Christmas and how much you loved it. That part of you lives on in me. Most of the time, anyway.