Negotiations: You don't ask, you don't get
I have a few demands.
I don't want to be difficult, but these demands are non-negotiable (otherwise they'd just be requests, wouldn't they)?
First, I want a subsidy. Any kind of subsidy will do. Tax increment financing. A Transportation Improvement District. A Special Business District. Crop subsidies. Tax abatement. Tax credits. A quality jobs incentive. I do a quality job, so why not me?
See, the numbers just don't pencil out without a subsidy. In fact, I demand a better pencil.
I demand a coordinator. And a position coach. I want a quality control guy for my coordinator and one for my position coach, too. I want to see dozens of guys on the sideline, wearing silly matching jackets, for no purpose other than satisfying my demands. I want you to hire my brother so I have someone to talk to.
I want local control. Not so much local control that the aldermen are sticking their nose into my business, but some good, solid control that's local, or at least local-ish.
I want my pension secured. Twenty and out, that's me.
I demand to talk to your supervisor.
I don't want to pay earnings taxes any more. Or income taxes either. They sap my incentive.
I don't want to be forced to buy health insurance. If I get sick and have to go to the hospital, I want you to pick up the tab. Also, I'll want a private room. With cute nurses.
I want the bullpen coach fired.
I may want a heart transplant. I haven't decided yet. But if I decide I want a new heart, I expect someone to donate one PDQ.
I want to be the highest-paid player in the game. I'd like to finish my career here, but hey, you never know. It's a game, but it's a business, too. You know?
I demand some recognition from the national media.
I want to whack some haddock upside the head.
I want my own reality show.
I want people to read my tweets and buy my books.
I want the media out of my face.
I want to call my own plays.
I want parity. If not parity, disparity in my favor.
I demand a personal assistant, or at least a guy. This guy will handle things for me that I don't want to handle. That way, I can say, "Call my guy. He'll handle it."
I want people to talk more civilly, especially those clowns I can't stand.
I want a publicist. I want my publicist to announce that I've contracted malaria on an errand of mercy, though I have no intention of going on any errands of mercy. What did the Sudanese ever do for me?
I want the media to refer to my "fan base," not merely my fans. In fact, I want a fan base club.
I demand a classical music radio station, a regular one that I don't have to buy a new radio to listen to.
I demand my own sideline reporter, someone I can tell, "We've got to keep the other guys off the scoreboard," and she'll report it like it's news.
Like my nurses, my sideline reporter must be a female and cute. She doesn't have to be Erin Andrews, but under no circumstances can she be Tony Siragusa.
I demand it in writing.
I demand that you cut the deficit. But keep your hands off my Social Security, my Medicare, my crop subsidies and my ethanol tax credits.
I demand amnesty for tax cheats, because doggonit, those tax forms are confusing and hard to fill out, except for the 98 percent of people who manage to do it correctly.
I want healthier food at Walmart that I can walk by on my way to the Cheetos.
I demand an exemption from the smoking ban. Surely the law doesn't apply to Hot Shots or to hot shots at the MAC.
I demand that you stop making fun of my knee injury. If I said it was hurt, it was hurt.
I want a week of hype.
I demand higher tuition so people will think I'm going to a better school.
I demand some intangibles.
I want a Missouri film tax credit for my movie about Missouri meth addicts.
I demand to play a skill position.
I demand an $18 million "sweetener" to run a cardboard company that docks its workers' pay if they don't show up after a blizzard.
I demand to be taken seriously.
I demand anonymity.