FROM The Irish Independent
Some people never grow up. They continue to believe in magic. They like surprises. Love Christmas. They’ve never stopped believing in Santa. I am one of these people. Not only do I believe, I am Santa’s biggest fan. If he weren’t already St Nicholas I’d lobby for canonisation.
This is not some whim or mere infatuation. My love of Santa is based on very sound, practical reasons. It’s not just that he gives generously, expecting nothing in return. I like his style. He has no interest in the limelight. Just quietly gets on with the job. No radio interviews. No TV appearances. The love of children is more than enough for him.
Organisations could do a lot worse than look at his management style. He is an equal-opportunities employer. All his employees are short of stature. He does not tolerate bullying and stopped the other reindeer coming down heavy on Rudolph. In fact, he saw a benefit to Rudolph’s nose when no one else did. Which makes him a lateral thinker. And how wise to promote Rudy to ride up front, in the place of honour, to the admiration of the other reindeer. Santa knew what this would mean for him, sharing the limelight with a reindeer. But he was smart enough to know that in return, he would receive fierce loyalty. Would Rudolph ever leave? I don’t think so.
Santa has a strong work-ethic. He might set unrealistic goals, but he always meets them. He does not cut corners, calling personally to every home. No such thing as dropping the gifts down the chimney and hoping for the best. He even goes to the trouble of eating everything we leave out for him, no matter what it is, beer, peanuts, cake. To do otherwise would hurt a child’s feelings. Considering the amount of homes he visits, that’s truly kind.
Some might laugh at the fact that Santa has been slow to embrace technology. Not me. In a rapidly changing world, there’s something admirable about a traditionalist.
He is not as judgemental as he pretends to be. Yes, he has a naughty and nice list. But, in reality, he ignores it. Yes, he does. Who do you know that has ever received a bag of coal? The rationale for the naughty list is simply to help parents control their kids. Sometimes parents need a little help.
He has balls, too. Going out in public in a red suit. Santa is immune to fashion trends. Above them. In fact, he has created one. Every year, men all over the world congregate in shopping centres trying to be him. Of course, they never get the look one hundred percent right.
Santa is obese and proud. No diets for him. No early mornings at the gym working up a sweat. He is happy as he is. And I love him for it. He’s cuddly. Or at least I presume he is. I’ve never had the pleasure. I did see him, though. Once at the end of my bed when I was eight. He left me a Chopper bike, the thing I’d wanted most in the world.
Santa is the only reason to get up at four in the morning. And no one can make children’s faces light up like he can. I wonder if he knows how much that means to parents. Santa brightens up a miserable time of year for everyone. In a world where there’s little magic left, Santa can be relied on to bring his own each year.