It is always a big problem finding just the right Christmas gift for some people, especially for the very rich 1 percent of the population, as I am sure you know.
While readers occupied with class jealousy will scorn me today for suggesting gift ideas for the super wealthy, I believe everybody should share in the goodwill of the season.
After all, it is not the fault of the chronically monied that they have so much cash, which in some cases they inherited. It is not their fault that Republican politicians want to keep giving them tax breaks -- it would be very rude to refuse these kind gestures.
It is not their fault that they were dubbed "job creators" by those same politicians. Just consider the strain of living up to that title. Why, some of the rich, made guilt-ridden by not creating a job that day, have been known to go out and play golf just so they can employ a caddie.
But it would be our fault if we did not recognize that the grandly wealthy are as deserving as Tiny Tim of holiday cheer. (As for Tiny Tim, surely that crutch was really a crude form of emotional blackmail. Did the Cratchit family, with their cheap sentimental theatrics, have no pride?) But the question remains: What do you give people who supposedly have everything? How disappointing it would be if the rich person receiving your gift said: "Not another BMW!" Or, "Not more diamonds and pearls!" Not to worry. House of Henry Gifts for the Discerning is ready to suggest creative choices for all budgets. While it would be crass to mention prices, even an Occupier could afford our first item: The 1 Percent T-shirt.
Offered in attractive colors (coral pink, Pacific blue, greenback green, Palm Beach tan) and decorated with the logo of a tycoon with a glass of champagne, our T-shirt is emblazoned with the words: "I'm a One Percenter and You're Not. Ha, Ha."
Another popular item, sure to be snapped up, is the Automatic Pants Putting-on-Machine. For too long, the rich have had to suffer the populist remark: "They may be rich, but they put on their pants one leg at a time like the rest of us."
Not anymore. With the aid of breakthrough technology, the pants are suspended in a frame above the ground waiting to be filled. The pants-less wealthy person ascends velvet-covered stairs, then slides down a pole so that both legs are covered by the pants at the same time to the consternation of the poor.
As it happens, House of Henry labs are developing a deluxe model of this revolutionary machine based on an entirely different principle.
These futuristic pants are packed like parachutes and the person who is dressing merely puts his or her legs into two coils lying on the ground. At the push of a button, a small detonation occurs at ankle height and the force makes the pants uncoil and simultaneously fly up both legs at great speed.
Unfortunately, some minor groin injuries have resulted during testing, but once this problem is resolved the automatically dressed will be the talk of fashionable cocktail parties. Place your orders now.
To those super-rich grown-ups who read Donald Duck comics as kids, our company can also provide a Scrooge McDuck Money Bin, complete with diving board to do cannonballs into the pool of Benjamins. This will provide hours of entertainment for the whole family. And if anybody runs short of pocket money, one scoop of the pool-cleaning net will take care of that.
As an added bonus, our Scrooge McDuck money bins are guaranteed Beagle Boy-proof. (For the benefit of younger readers, the millionaire Mr. McDuck was much tormented by the burglarizing Beagle Boys in the comics.) As well as goods, we offer services to please the wealthy. A topical service now available is called Occupy Your Neighbor.
As the Occupy movement is not fully occupied at the moment, some of its members can be hired out at a reasonable hourly rate. Send them around to that neighbor with the bad taste Christmas lights or have them camp in the front yards of your golf or business buddies for a lark. How they'll howl at the country club! We can also supply lackeys from Lackeys R Us, who will stand by and say you are wonderful in everything you do. Just go to our website, www.absurdlyrich.com.
But rich or poor, a Merry Christmas to all and a Happy Malice-Free New Year.
Reg Henry is a columnist for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. E-mail email@example.com.