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Dear Santa: nine things we want for Hong Kong this Christmas

Written by
Graham Turner

If you could ask Santa for anything to gift to our city, what would it be? Universal suffrage? Cheaper housing? Great answers, sure. But this is Christmas, the time of year for fanciful, self-indulgent wish lists, not political manifestos. So, let’s put most of the real issues aside for one day and revel in our own self-absorption. Santa, if you’re reading this, get to work big boy...

Dear Santa,

Hope you’re well, mate. Now we’ve got the small talk out the way, let’s get down to business.

1) More classical music in MTR stations
We're always pleasantly surprised when we catch a snippet of Beethoven as we head to work – it helps keep the commute demons at bay. But, much like stations in New York and London, we'd love to see it taken to the next level with actual buskers soundtracking our journeys with some soothing classics. Just to be clear, we mean actual, classically-inclined performers, not bongo-tapping freeloaders trying to raise money for Burning Man.

Introduce John Woo Day
Make it a public holiday, cover the city in soft play mats and encourage people to dive around with toy guns. Whoever does the coolest slo-mo dive gets to be Chief Executive for a week. Sensible and doable, it celebrates a local legend too. An easy win. 

3) New dai pai dongs 
In case you don't know, we'll get you up to speed – the government no longer hands out new licenses for these iconic outdoor eateries. To make matters worse, existing licenses are now being passed down to a new generation that doesn't even want to use them. The fact that these institutions are being allowed to die is a travesty. So Santa, even if you can't convince the government to rescind their decision, you must know a guy that can make fake licenses, right? 

4) Char siu bao-zooka
See picture. For sports events, funerals, handover celebrations, etc. 

5) Do something about our waste problem
It's not as fun as weaponised cha siu baos but dammit, it's almost as important. There's two ways you can go about this, Santa – you can go all-out and give us waste recycling firms that operate on a large scale to tackle the problem (one that's slowly spiralled since the 50s), or make the powers that be (threaten them, Santa) offer refundable deposits on plastic containers for a more grass-roots approach. 

6) More Burger King
Now, we're not suggesting more precious space be taken up by mega-corporation chain restaurants. No, we suggest putting the pin in some of the outrageous number of McDonald's and replacing them with the much nicer Burger King. If you disagree you're kidding yourself Santa – have you ever tried the bacon double cheeseburger, SANTA? We can only ever eat half because by the time we've taken three bites the burger starts disintegrating from the flood of tears of joy cascading down our face. Also, the burger in the picture is something called a 'Quad Stacker' that we discovered on the internet. Bring that here, Santa.

7) Gay marriage
If Taiwan can do it, why can't we? We got the Gay Games, now we're ready for this. And if you're not, well, there’s always the char siu bao-zooka. 

8) A whistle that pacifies minibus drivers
While at first, it feels like some mini-bus routes are a welcome cheap alternative to Ocean Park, the novelty soon wears off as you plead to your god, whose existence you question, to escape with your life. We get it. Minibus drivers work too much and earn too little – they're rightly pissed off and/or looking to score as many fares on their shift as possible. But you have to think safety. That's where the whistle comes in – one blow and they go from Fast and Furious to... safety curious? Yeah, that works. 

9) Goodwill to all men
It's a really famous quote from a book or song, most likely Eat, Pray, Love or Despacito. We can't remember which one but it really hits home. Be nice to each other. And to us. Even if this article makes you angry, just remember, we love you.

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