So here at Chez McNeil, we can’t commit to Santa.  I’m down with the whole Christmas magic thing, but I just can’t bring myself to tell Callum this whole long story about North Pole, chimney, presents, be good be good be good bla bla bla. . . just can’t do it.  Don’t actually see the point.

Thing is, there’s Santa.  The kids at school know about Santa, and Santa actually comes to our neighborhood on a pick-up (that’s how we roll in Oakland) with pixie dust and an antler-clad dog, asks Cal what he wants, etc.  And we don’t want Callum to be the kid who’s all “Nuh-uh. . . no santa” and then all the other parents hate us.

So.  Last year, we got as far as Santa is a friendly guy who comes around at Christmas time.  He wears red clothes and says “Ho ho ho.”

This year, poor little chap is figuring the rest out on his own.  I’m really curious about what he thinks, so I ask him questions.  When he brings up Santa, I say things like, “What else do you know about Santa?”
“He’s a very friendly guy.”
“He comes”
“Where does he go?”
“Does he come to our house?”
“Is he real or pretend?”
“Maybe both.  Sometimes real and sometimes pretend.”

That’s where it started.  A couple weeks later, the story gets more elaborate.  This weekend I learned the following:

  • Santa wears shoes with jingle bells on them (we learned this from the neighborhood visiting Santa). He also has lots of other shoes with jingle bells on them. He probably has Crocs with jingle bells. They’re probably green.
  • Santa rides outside of the car (in the bed of the pick-up) so he can say “Ho-llo” to the children. (If you haven’t heard Callum say “ho-llo,” it’s an intentionally silly pronunciation of “hello,” in which one’s head goes from one side to the other – one side per syllable – and you sound a little like Franc from Father of the Bride).
  • Santa finds old things (including toys) that nobody wants any more, and he cuts them up and throws them in the garbage.
  • Santa likes to eat healthy things.

I’ll let you know if I learn more.