-- My flight was delayed so I headed to the VIP lounge and ran into my old pal Orville. "Hey, Rick," said Orville, waving his glass. "You still write those goofy SkyMall stories?"
Ahem. I prefer to think of my annual Christmas column as "amusing" but before I could say so, I noticed Orville looked a trifle pale - as though he'd just heard JetBlue was adding a bag fee. "I had the worst nightmare about SkyMall," confided my friend. He then gulped down his drink and whispered, "Ever hear of the Garden Yeti?"
Here is Orville's tale.
Note: All the fine SkyMall products mentioned in this story are real; find them online or in the catalog located in the seatback pocket of most planes. Descriptive quotes are from SkyMall's Holiday 2014 edition.
A SkyMall Nightmare
Orville's story: My nightmare began on a day I had to travel for work and all was well when I woke up in my spherical, futuristic Serenity Pod bed ($10,000). Since I didn't want to wake the missus or Orville Jr. who was "looking good enough to eat" in his Tortilla Baby Swaddle Blanket ($47.99), I didn't turn on the lights but found my way to the bathroom no problem thanks to the Glow in the Dark Toilet Seat ($49.99) which, by the way, Rick, makes a terrific gift. [I'll be sure to tell my wife, I murmured].
After breakfast - toast stamped with the Star Wars logo courtesy my Darth Vader Toaster ($44.95) - I worked in some spa time by sliding into my Alpha Fuzion Sauna Body Pod ($15,995.00), a human-size clam shell thing offering aromatherapy, vibration massage and "pure Himalayan ionic crystal salt tiles." Those salt tiles may have been an omen because the Himalayas would soon be haunting me.
But first, time to get dressed, so I squeezed into my Men's Padded Butt Enhancer Brief ($35.00), designed to make one's backside more attractive. [At this point I'm staring stared at my portly pal in disbelief]. Then I made a fateful decision: I donned my Sasquatch Flocked Men's T-shirt ($26.00). I think this made Bigfoot angry. [You may have upset the Fashion Police, too, I suggested].
I knew something was up I went out to the patio to greet to my Life-Size Garden Yeti ($2,250.00), I could swear he was glaring at me, but hard to say for sure since he is made of "quality designer resin and hand-painted for startling realism." With a thoughtful look back, I headed to the airport.
Once on the plane, I warmed up in my Deluxe Smart Blanket ($44.99) which includes a "privacy hood" that can cover my entire head plus a snug little pouch for my feet. [I said, I'll bet your seatmate gave you all the room in the world if you wore the head-hood].
Finally, we landed - but this wasn't New York. The flight attendants said, Welcome to Kathmandu! I climbed down the airplane stairs only to be greeted by Life-Size Garden Yeti and his friends, Large Bigfoot ($125) and Medium Bigfoot ($99.95). And they're angry! They hate my Sasquatch T-Shirt! [Maybe it's a turf thing, I said, since Sasquatch's home is in the Pacific Northwest while Yetis rule the Himalayas. Orville told me to quit interrupting].
I took off, only to run smack into Bashful Yeti ($69.95), another furry freak hiding behind a tree. That's when they all joined forces and began hurling missiles at me! Only, they weren't missiles, they were Holiday Yeti Ornaments ($19.90 for a set of three). I briefly stopped to admire these "one-of-a-kind mythical stocking stuffers" but the growling was getting closer. That's when I saw the shark.
This was no fish, but a Seabreacher Customized Boat ($85,000) painted to look like a shark. A "must-have toy for people who play hard" and a must-have getaway for escaping hairy monsters. And that, Rick, is precisely what I did. [Wait, I said, you used a boat to escape from land-locked Nepal? It's my nightmare, said Orville].
Final note: A colleague of mine recently saw a Garden Yeti proudly displayed on the front lawn of a trim little house in a large Midwestern city. She said it looked very handsome and seemed very happy. Here's hoping your holidays are just as happy and your travels in the New Year are almost as exciting as Orville's.
The opinions expressed by Rick Seaney in this column are his alone and do not reflect the views of ABC News or Bashful Yeti owners.