This is it, December 1 and I have just 24 days until the Big Scary Red Man breaks into my home and fills it with useless crap, much to the short term delight of my kids.
But first BSRM will threaten and intimidate the kids for several weeks, demanding that they not pout, cry, shout, or be naughty — that they stop acting like kids — or else they face the doom of NO TOYS. Instead, they must pretend they’re lobotomized drones, tucking their self-esteem issues and imperfections away in the dark corners of their hearts to fester into adulthood; and they must write a beggar’s letter to BSRM asking for trinkets and baubles, because they can’t ask for really amazing and important things like world peace or an effective ebola vaccine or an end to religious hostility or world-wide equality for women or food for all the hungry kids. BSRM is just a toy-making elf, after all, whose once-a-year delivery service has somehow come to be conflated with all that is goodness and kindness in human nature.
Still, how come BSRM gets all the credit? Why not me? I’d like to have Jesse and Nick fawn all over me, with my huge gut popping and hair all over my face and a PIPE to smoke, for god’s sake.
The kids would blow several gaskets if they had to connect all that unbounded and whimsical generosity with me. I’m just the bitch who makes the food, does the laundry, cleans the house, wipes the asses, helps with the homework, provides taxi service, schedules life, and disciplines the little shits to make sure they’re ship-shape for BSRM’s Christmas Coming, grumbling all the while about the marginal levels of intellectual stimulation I extract from these activities.
I don’t even want to say BSRM’s name out loud. I’m tired of being used by The Man. Like the peeps who basked in the auras of Mia Hamm and Tiger Woods, I want to own the cultural consciousness that has been filtered and concentrated into the shape of BSRM. I want to stand up and speak — in a voice that rings across the tiny wannabe mountains of Wisconsin — the words that will empower me and join me to the gestalt of happy little children reveling in the magic of Christmas:
I AM SANTA CLAUS.
I. Am. Santa Claus.
i am santa claus
* * * *
Oh fu^* it. That’s not doing anything for me. I can make it through another 24 days of secrets and lies. I don’t look good in fire-engine red and a beard anyway. I’m good.