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Confessions Of The Curmudgeon Santa

2010 December 27

Christmas day was some frustration, fun and reaffirming the best things of life are seldom if ever about ourselves.

So where to begin. A couple weeks back my brother asked me to play Santa in the wee hours of Christmas morning. Me, Curmudgeon, Mr. bah-humbug personified! And he asks me to take on the role of Santa? What the heck is wrong with his thinking anyway?

Far be it for me to delve into the dynamics of his last marriage which ended about a year ago. Suffice it to say he fears the offspring of his first marriage were treated differently than had he not remarried. So this Christmas his youngest daughter, her five kids, dog and main squeeze came to spend Christmas with him in his new digs.

First of all brother has always been the one that “brings home the bacon” not the family event coordinator. How overwhelmed would you be in that situation? Lucky for brother he has Janice and me to at least advise in matters of this nature. But when he comes up with a unique scheme there’s no question it’ll take some doing. Thus Curmudgeon got roped into playing Santa at around 3:00 AM Christmas morning.

Full disclosure here: Santa (that would be me) actually had the easy part in this fiasco. Santa’s chief elf (Janice) actually did the hard stuff including keeping brother focused while gift shopping. The chief elf worked diligently wrapping gifts and putting them in properly labeled gift bags. Late Friday afternoon (Christmas Eve) all was prepared for Santa’s 3:00 AM Christmas visit at brothers place.

A text message at about 2:50 AM awakened us. They arrived from their 300 plus mile winter journey and brother promised they would all be in bed by 3:00 AM. Chief elf muttered something about brother enduring an endless list of favors in exchange for this. Curmudgeonly Santa agreed and off we went. Don’t you wish you had been with us?

A well lit Christmas tree allowed us to maneuver while Christmas tunes from the stereo helped cover most unavoidable noises. Chief elf and I arranged decorative bags of gifts around the tree, emptied the glass of milk on the table, snatched up the cookies and note to Santa asking if he is real and left a 1½ inch sleigh bell. Gizmo (brother’s dog) provided a couple raucous outbursts; hey he was only doing his job. Chief elf headed for the door reminding me to let her get down the steps and on her way to the vehicle (arthritic ankle y’know) before the infamous “ho, ho, ho” and loudly slammed door.

On our way home we got a thank you text. We knew then what brother envisioned was what was happening.

Janice and I stopped by brother’s place about 6:30 Christmas evening. We listened to theme and variations of five kids excited versions of Santa’s visit. On our way home, Chief elf commented brother had the look of a wiped out tired new daddy: too tired to stay awake and too pleased and excited to allow himself to fall asleep. I’ll bet he snored extra good Christmas night.

Even curmudgeons need experiences like this as reminders the best things of life are seldom if ever about ourselves.