The Attempted Surrender
Last night I was awoken from my slumber by a fat man in a red velvet pimp suit and a ZZ Top beard.
He just sat there….all sullen looking…sitting in the rocking chair I made myself for Christmas last year.
I sat up in my bed, rubbed my eyes, turned the lamp on that sat on my nightstand and looked at him with a concerned but not quite awake look.
I thought carefully before I spoke. Then I said,
“Those midgets of yours aren’t raiding my fridge like they did last year are they?”
“No,” he said with a sigh,” I left them at the work shop…..and for the last time they are elves not midgets.”
“Potato, potatoe….whatever. I was cleaning mini puke out of my sofa until Easter last year when they cleaned me out of salsa. What brings you back to my solitary neck of the woods this time. Nick?”
He smoothed over his long beard with his palm, hunched over and rested his forearms on his knees and explained….
“First off, I come to talk to you because you knew me way before I was “a holiday icon”, before the fables and lore…..I worked very hard to make people believe in the power of Christmas and to bring good cheer and happiness throughout the world. Even if only for a short time of the year….my presence sparked positive attitudes around the globe……”
“So why the long face…your always enormous ego seems to be in great shape…..and hey your dogs aren’t gonna poo on my roof are they? Those creatures have no manners.” I interrupted.
“REINDEER NOT DOGS!…and no I brought the copter. May I finish? Thank you. Ever since I beat you out for this job, so long ago, I have come to visit you to garner advice. Your insight into the realities of the realm of Earth go way beyond my lists of naughty and nice.”
“And each year I keep telling you, you are getting too big for your britches…and I keep telling you the more they want, the thinner your state of happiness will become. Look at you now, fatter than ever and not a glimpse of happiness to be seen..what gives El Tubbo from the North?” I asked.
“I just can’t do it anymore. No one…and I mean no one wants hand made crafts or toys that need an imagination to bring them alive. I don’t have the resources to produce touchscreen phones, virtual reality video games. LCD flat screen 3D televisions. The world has become spoiled, I can’t keep up with demand the parents or the youths I used to have influence over. They just go out and buy them anything and everything they want…whether they are good or bad!” St. Nick frantically replied.
“So….you are here this time because you think I might be looking for a room mate?….look, I like being alone. I am perfectly happy….all year round….being here, building things and sending them to random people around the world. It works for me. The only glory I receive is inner peace. Once I lost the North Pole gig to you, I was devastated. I didn’t think I would ever recover. Your name got bigger and mine was forgotten. But as time went on. I did recover. You were meant for that job, but once you franchised your image out to marketing companies you lost your edge. Your image became about sales and not about good cheer. That’s why you can’t keep up. But if you think I am going to jump on your sad train…I am not.”
“I don’t know what to do.” Nick pleaded with tears in his eyes.
I exhaled loudly and got out of bed. I Walked over to the desk and pulled that chair over and sat in front of my old nemisis and said,
“Awww….poor Santa is feeling sorry for himself. Don’t you realize the world is no longer about good will toward all men…it’s good stuff for all men. Once you quit trying to fulfill their needs and began to fuel their wants you lost who you were. You have to get that back. I can’t tell you how. But you can start by getting rid of that helicopter. Your image should be about wealth of hope not wealth of power.”
Santa sat up straight looked me in the eye and confidently replied,
“You’re right. I’m going to rediscover myself after this Christmas. Thanks for the pep talk, Ralph. I only have 22 more days to go…I had better get back.”
With that Santa got up,straightened his suit and walked back out to his awaiting helicopter.
Ralph watched as the copter soared off toward the north, shook his head and said to no one in particular,
“Until next year my old friend.”
He then went back to his desk to check the short list of names who would be receiving the anonymous gifts that he made from his small work shop.