Warning – this post contains details about Santa that may cause trauma to those who believe in Santa.
A bitch woke up this morning with a healthy amount of holiday stress…and I had a flash of a holiday memory that I thought I’d share with y’all.
When this bitch was a wee bitch I feared Santa…big time. My parents had related the tale of Santa Claus and his dreaded list of good or bad kids. The warning was clear – get your ass in gear or you’ll be shit out of luck come December. I tried to be good…I really did! But I usually fucked something up right around November and then spent a month fretting that Santa would make me pay at Christmas.
I was one stressed out kid!
Anyhoo, one Christmas was different.
I was beyond good…good grades, a clean room and I even resisted talking back most of the time.
I was set!
That new bike…my greed-based want of the moment…was mine, damnit!
A couple of days before Christmas I was well into working my father’s last nerve with my excitement and constant questioning. At some point I asked my father what would happen if Santa got stuck in the chimney.
Well, shit…I’d worked my ass off to achieve a level of good and I’d be damned if it all went to shit just because Santa’s full figured self couldn’t squeeze down our narrow chimney.
My father didn’t even look up from reading the paper.
He took a sip of his after-work scotch, flipped a page and said… “You better hope Santa doesn’t come down that chimney while I’m awake. If I see an old white man in my family room I’m gonna shoot his ass on general principle.”
My jaw dropped.
My father had just threatened to murder Santa!
And he had a gun too! I’d seen him clean his gun and he told me not to even think about ever touching it.
Lawd, have mercy.
I ran to my bedroom and threw myself on the bed.
What to do? It was too late to get a letter to Santa to warn him…and if Santa got word of my father’s threat he’d skipped our house for sure.
I had just decided to wait up Christmas Eve and somehow bodily protect Santa from my father’s murderous wrath when my sister came in, rolled her eyes and said something along the lines of… “You are so stupid. Santa isn’t real. Dad is Santa!”
What the fuck?
“You’re lying!” I screamed.
“You’re stupid.” She replied and then offered to prove it to me.
So, that Christmas Eve we snuck out of bed and observed my father bitterly trying to assemble a new bicycle in the family room.
As he cursed and chain smoked while tossing back scotch, the fire burned (earlier that day I’d accused him of planning to burn Santa alive) and the lights blinked cheerfully on the tree.
My father looked tired but pleased with himself as the bike came together…and a warm fuzzy happiness settled in my tummy.
Daddy was Santa and that was a very good thing.
We went back to bed after agreeing to not let on that we knew the truth… ‘cause working the Santa hustle had serious benefits.
But that Christmas morning, after I woke my exhausted parents up way to early and then screamed for half an hour because I was told I couldn’t ride my new bike in the house…after all that drama I went to my father and gave him a huge hug.
I held on a little longer…squeezed a wee bit harder…and when I looked up into his eyes I knew that he knew that I knew that he was Santa.
And that was a very good thing.
My father passed away several years ago, but the memories…I hold those memories as close as I can, like a hug that lasts a little longer and squeezes a wee bit harder.
Happy happy to all the parental Santas out there…
…and yes, your chil’ren are on to you.