Hi! Another Christmas is upon us, another year nearly over. Seems to go by quickly for us, but must be so much quicker for centuries-old you.
Speaking of being centuries old, hey, did you know that tonight Silent Night is 200 years old? While you’ll be on your physics-defying worldwide journey tonight, this song will once again take its candlelit place in late night services. One thing I’ve always wondered is that, if you’re a stickler about people being asleep in bed when you come by, do you make an exception for these late night festivities? I should think you do.
Of course, I don’t believe in all that stuff about you spying on everyone at all times, looking for what falls into the “naughty” or “nice” category, a painfully simplistic dichotomy when people are at all times on a spectrum between good and evil, however these are defined. Parents push this narrative to make you out to be a jerk, a tool for their perennial mind games with those they brought into the world. I mean, I imagine that must piss you off. You’re a jolly kindly soul who just wants to make everyone happy, and here people and our society as a whole are exploiting your name to commit mass emotional manipulation. Though it could of course be a whole lot worse.
Of course, come to think of it, never mind that I don’t believe in all that. Here I am, at 35 years old, writing a letter to Santa. Does this mean I believe in you at all? Shouldn’t I have outgrown this quite a long time ago?
Really, I find the whole concept of belief to be odd. Belief in Santa Claus. Belief in God. What does that mean? That I believe you to exist? Well, what does that matter? Either you exist or you don’t. Belief doesn’t affect that. What it really means is whether I believe whoever first told me you exist at all. There wasn’t any concrete proof of this, but whoever must have also said things that were demonstrably true, so maybe belief could mean I believe this to be true as well. But with a lack of evidence that can’t be otherwise explained, it’s harder to hold on to that idea. But is belief something to be held onto despite lack of evidence? I guess there’s supposed to be some virtue in this, but I wonder this is one of those virtues that really just amount to allowing yourself to be easily manipulated by others, be it parents saying Santa won’t give presents if you’re bad or preachers saying God will send you to hell if you vote Democrat.
And yet, all of that said, here I am writing you a letter, at 35 years old. Why? Should I be telling you what I want for Christmas? Maybe. Not like that annoying Grown Up Christmas List song, though. You know the one. It’s a fine song, really. Wishing for wars to never start and everyone to have a friend. Sure, that’s nice. This season is all about wishing for peace on earth and the like, so why not? Though the song does have overtones of saying kids are silly for asking for toys and shit, which is not so nice. Nothing wrong with toys all wrapped up in pretty packages. I mean, it’s not zero sum here. You can wish for a better world while still feeling that sense of joy and wonder upon seeing what’s under the tree Christmas morning. But, again, this holiday tends to be stuck with a lot of black-and-white scenarios.
So maybe I should be writing to let you know what I want you to bring me. Well, it’s kind of already Christmas Eve, so kind of a bitch move to be dropping that on you now. You defy physics as it is, but even that’s a bit much, right?
Of course, that’s just it. You defy physics, yet your legend still gives you a lot of seemingly arbitrary limitations. Like, you need a sleigh and flying reindeer? What’s with that? Is it because around the time your legend was coming into being these were the main ways of conveyance? Honestly, I think it makes much more sense to teleport. This is an idea we can imagine now, though maybe a long time ago not so much. Or at least maybe that would have made you too supernatural. In any case, it is also said you go down chimneys, even though most homes do not have chimneys and fireplaces. My house when I was little didn’t have one, but my parents said you came through the backdoor. Of course, much longer ago, most homes would have had chimneys, so your legend was made based on what was available at the time. Our world has moved past it, but our vision of you has not. Maybe our vision of you is due for a much needed update.
Then there’s you living at the North Pole. When the Winter Solstice hits, you’ve been in total darkness for like three months, halfway through it, so makes sense that’s the point where you go elsewhere for some light. But then again, you go at night, so maybe the point is moot. Do you actually live at the South Pole? At or near Amundsen-Scott Station perhaps? You’re three months into 24/7 sunlight and you need some darkness before you lose your mind. Might give the southern hemisphere some self esteem in all this. Here we are celebrating this holiday as a Winter Solstice thing, but it’s their Summer Solstice. When their Winter Solstice comes around, there’s no Christmas. Always winter and never Christmas. Like some kid was offered Turkish Delight by some witch in exchange for betraying his siblings.
Or maybe you go by Annual Gift Man and live on the moon.
Then there’s the elves who make the toys. Another outdated part of your legend. Christmas presents are generally purchased somewhere, created by some corporation by way of underpaid Asian laborers.
Maybe there’s no elves and not even a Christmas Eve journey. Maybe you just have us all do the gift giving to each other in your name. Your existence is a tenuous technicality in that you pass your giving spirit to us this season.
Still, though, it must be pretty sweet. Making everyone happy at Christmas while not having to actually interact with them. Immortality. Traveling everywhere at way beyond warp speed.
Okay, I think I know what I want for Christmas.
I want to be YOU!
Tim Allen says all I need is a slippery rooftop…
Your friend and totally honestly not usurper,