Thursday, December 22, 2005
"Peace on earth, good-will to men." An astute reader noticed the words in a Christmas poem by one "Henry Wadsworth Longfellow," and notified the authorities. They examined pictures of Wadsworth. Long white beard. Thick moustache. No doubt about it. It was Santa. What's more, the man was a dangerous pacifist and an enemy to the State! Why else would he have all those aliases? Santa Claus, St. Nick, Kris Kringle. Word went out and the man immediately arrested. They kept him in a cell, solitarily confined for weeks. He lost lots of weight, but he never told where the elves were. It was decided finally to make an example of him.
They announced the event, to be held Christmas Eve. Everyone was there. Standing room only. Bigger than the Macy's Day Parade. The door to the field opened and Santa was led in. A hush embraced the entire audience of spectators with tension so thick you could cut it with a cookie cutter. They were throwing him to the reindeer! - wild, raging beasts that streamed onto the field through another door. When they saw his cheeks like roses and that red suit, they went berserk, charging towards him in a pack.
Santa may have been a pacifist, but he wasn't stupid. And that black leather belt meant something. It meant Judo. The first reindeer went down in a heap. The second tripped over the first. More rushed in and more crashed to the ground. Soon Santa was knocking them down faster than they could rise again. Downed, Dasher! Downed, Dancer! Downed, Prancer and Vixen! At last the reindeer could take no more and were away in a blitz, flying up out of the stadium, never to be seen again. It was a Christmas miracle! "Ho! Ho! Ho!" Santa's jolly laugh rang through the stadium. The children went wild and swarmed to the fences to tell him their Christmas wishes.
A very Merry Christmas, a Happy Chanukah, and a wonderful Holiday Season to all of you. Indeterminacy will be back in the New Year. Postscript: Last year's Christmas story is here.
Note: Persons of a non-English language cultural heritage may not recognize the references in the story to the classic Christmas poem "The Night Before Christmas." You can read the text of the original version here.