Like Elvis and God, Santa Claus is dead. We're not speaking metaphorically here; we're talking about real and conclusive death. Santa expires every year, in fact--usually more than once--from a combination of age, overweight, and that 11-month interval spent on the couch with a bowl of spiked eggnog on his lap. Generally, Santa checks out quietly at home. But, given his long and illustrious history, it's inevitable that the Jolly Elf has also nodded off on his throne at some suburban shopping mall while a shy eight-year-old is whispering her desire for a new bicycle in his ear. The year 1998 was a particularly bad one: Casualties included the nation's longest-tenured mall Santa, the White House's official Santa through six administrations, and a retired St. Paul clothing salesman named Doc Johnson whose impersonation was so authentic that he was occasionally mobbed by... More >>>
Ursus horribilis: Dayton's Santabear reads about the consumer economy in Karal Ann Marling's Merry Christmas!