Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Santa Claus: What a Prick

As I dosed myself with coffee this morning, I found myself involuntarily singing Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. Maybe it was the caffeine, or maybe it was the slowly creeping realization that the world is a cruel, heartless place, but I began to think of the song in an entirely new light.

Let's get some facts out there. Santa provides room and board to a group of reindeer in exchange for a valuable annual service. These reindeer apparently live and cavort with one another. One of these reindeer has a horrible deformity. The nature of the deformity suggests that he may have been injured, or conceived, in an environment riddled with unsafe levels of radioactivity. Anyway, this deformed reindeer is ridiculed and humiliated by the other reindeer. They actually laugh at him, and call him names. And they don't let him play reindeer games!

Where is Santa during all of this? I'll tell you where: Sitting his fat ass down by the fireplace drinking an endless series of rum-drenched hot toddies, getting sloshed and yelling at Mrs. Claus to get his damn dinner ready. Meanwhile, his reindeer dependents have cultivated an atmosphere of bitter hatred and intolerance. But the Clauses aren't there to set them straight.

Lo and behold, one day Santa needs something from the deformed, radioactive reindeer. Suddenly, that drunk bastard is kind and gentle. "Say, Rudolph, how about sticking that nuclear nose of yours in front of my sleigh tonight, so I don't ram it into a chimney in a drunken stupor?"

In a startling display of magnanimity, the deformed reindeer doesn't say, "Fuck you, Santa, you absentee father. Where the fuck were you when Dasher was branding my nose with that hot poker? Where were you when Donner was sticking that broom handle up my reindeer ass?" No. The deformed reindeer says, "Sure, Santa."

And the day is saved.

Suddenly, the other reindeer like Rudolph. Why? Two reasons. First, he was useful to them. Indeed, he very well may have saved their jobs, or lives. In Rudolph's absence, their flight would have been exceptionally dangerous, what with Santa's tottering ineptitude and the inclement weather conditions. And even if they had made it, what about the next foggy Christmas Eve? I suspect Santa might have considered an efficiency initiative, replacing his reindeer with gas turbine engines and halogen headlamps.

Second, Rudolph was a celebrity. He was, after all, about to go down in history. The other, non-radioactive, reindeer were surely angling to join his entourage, hoping to be guided by his nose into the hottest North Pole clubs and restaurants. Fucking cult of personality, that's all.

So, in short: Santa is a prick whose addiction to alcohol fostered an inhuman (or inreindeer) environment in which the slightest difference was a reason for ridicule and humiliation. His reindeer are stuck-up, sanctimonious assholes whose affections are determined solely by self-interest and short-term gratification.

Hey kids, sing along.


Blogger Joseph K said...

I think the precursor to Santa Claus was this weird old dutch guy named (phonetic spelling) Seenter Klaus who gave good kids salty licorice and if you were bad, he'd take your clogs. I think he drank heavily too, a common theme among Santas from various nations.

Also: why do we worship a pine tree to celebrate Jesus? Even the druids didn't do anthing that pagan or weird.

10:22 PM  
Blogger Henry Baum said...

Look at Santa in terms of the Patriot Act. "He knows when you are sleeping, he knows when you're awake, he knows if you've been bad or good, so be good for goodnes sake." Santa is a fascist theocrat.

3:49 PM  

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