“Coming right up. Say, aren’t you the…”

“The Genie of the Lamp. At your service.”

“You know, I almost didn’t recognize you.”

“I’ve been getting a lot of that, lately. Mostly because of this neck brace.”

“And you’re pretty bruised up, too.”

“I’ve been hanging out with musicians. It’s that time of year, you know.”

“You mean the Grammys?”

“That’s right. I swear, I feel like I’ve been pulled in a hundred different directions at once.”

“What do you mean?”

“Well, the Recording Academy wants legitimacy.”

“Don’t they want that every year?”

“Yeah, but they also want to recognize sales. After all, that’s where the money is.”

“More obvious words were never spoken.”

“I thought that Eminem nomination would satisfy everyone. He’s got the sales and the bad boy attitude. But noooo, they weren’t happy until I delivered nominations for Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears, ‘N Sync.”

“Ya gotta admit, 2000 was a pretty good year for them.”

“I know. So I balanced that with the Barenaked Ladies nomination.

“That band from Canada?”

“Yeah, but I can’t do anything about that. Then the boomers got into the act.”

“You must mean those nominations for Sting, Paul Simon and Steely Dan.”

“That’s right. After last year’s Santana sweep, everyone wants a piece of the action.”

“But I still don’t understand how you got so beat up. What happened?”

“That’s from my other job.”


“You see, I’m not just the Genie of the Lamp.”

“You’re not?”

“Oh, no. I also moonlight as the Genie of Digital Music.”

“Then you must mean…”

“That’s right. All these injuries are from the recording industry trying to stuff me back into that damn bottle.”

“That’s gotta hurt. Here, have another glass of sparkling water. On me.

“Thanks. You wouldn’t happen to have a spare Band-Aid, would you?”