my relationship with santa has improved since 2020!
more and more as the years go by, i have resisted the usa cultural christmas. maybe it has always been in me. my folks have a picture of me and santa when i was about one or two. i was crying looking to get away from him!
a year or two later, i have my earliest memory of santa. at the filipino community center in seattle, they had santa visit one afternoon near christmas. all the kids were amped up and i sat with the big group waiting for santa to show up. he finally arrived waving to us all and holding his big sack with the toys he was going to give us. everyone was excited. but i remember looking at him in his red suit and big white beard thinking, “santa is white (i’ve seen pictures); that guy is filipino like us!” even as a three or four year old, i smelled something fishy about this whole santa clause scheme.
as the year went by, i didn’t give santa much thought. but during the seahawks years in the 70s, i had heard that philadelphia eagles fans booed santa at a game. that has always made me smile. i never looked it up until today:
i appreciate and get my shadenfruede on at the raw negative reaction to santa, albeit under different circumstances. but perhaps they are not so different at all.
i love the advent season leading up to christmas. it primes us to love the real meaning of christmas. it readies us for Christ’s light born anew in the world. the Word is our ultimate joy, love and hope. christmas is the mystery of the incarnation.
for me, as good and charitable an example as santa claus is, he is not the ultimate reason for our being. santa has become a milquetoast version of st nicholas. santa is the usa’s symbol-idol to consumerism.
idolatry is my reason to boo santa.
so this year, on christmas eve i started to decorate. i brought out the tree, lights and nativity set. then, i saw the santa stuff in our storage room. i paused. i took out one santa: it was the oldest santa decoration from back in the 50s or 60s. i left the rest in the storage room. ultimately, i did not even put it up.
maybe next year. probably not.
who knows though? last year i wanted to punch santa! https://frarthurcmf.wordpress.com/2020/12/20/on-the-verge-of-punching-santa/ this year it is just booing
so, my relationship with santa has improved!
As someone who might know a Santa from Nov to Dec, I loved the headline. Also…I got a Lowe’s and Home Depot card for Christmas based off your encouragement.
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home improvement gift cards are a great shift! it occurred to me that when i get a temptation to boo or b!itch slap santa, i’ll just imagine that it is you under the costume and smile instead!
a blessed christmas season and 2022 to you don