Exposing the real Santa Claus

By Matt Campbell
December 3, 2004

Shawn Rice

Santa’s coming to town. Christmas is the best time of year to be a kid, a kid still believing in old St. Nick of course. It’s a time of giving and family but I can still remember those nights before Christmas when you wanted to go to sleep so bad just so you could wake up and tear through some presents. The myth of Santa was easily believable as a child.

I was still young when I found out Santa wasn’t real. I was about 5 years-old when I found out the guy in the mall was his helper, and apparently he had helpers wherever we went.

I’m 7 years-old and I am getting ready to go to school when the major crisis of finding socks exploded. This dilemma was not quite what my mom was hoping for on her attempt to get me to school and get to work. “Here, you can open one of your presents early,” she said. What a shock, the all purpose gift of socks for Christmas. As I ripped through the wrapping paper I noticed the tag on the gift. To: Matt, From: Santa. Hmmm could Santa possibly come to our house early like my mom desperately tried to explain? Busted! Santa was a fake and the cookies I left out over the years, all for nothing.

I don’t have any little brothers or sisters so I didn’t become a threat to the family. I did however have some news to all the kids in my elementary school. Despite my efforts to unveil the ghost that was Santa, I was turned into “the naughty kid” who doesn’t believe in Santa. I have to admit, it was a clever move on the side of the parents to keep Santa’s existence a secret.

I still had some belief in Santa but I needed to figure out how parents everywhere had the same explanations for all the imitators. It was universal. “Santa can’t do it all himself so he has helpers,” parents said. The final proof of the secret of Santa came when I exposed the “Santa’s helpers” theory. “What about that guy dressed like Santa just standing around ringing a bell outside the grocery store,” I asked. Sure they tried to give me the traditional excuses but I saw through them and found out the truth.

I wasn’t sure what to feel. I had exposed one of the greatest secrets of every childhood but now Christmas was boring. Don’t get me wrong, presents are wonderful but it’s a bit more fun believing.

I think my only consolation will be if I have children and get to play the part of Santa. I will have them believing in Santa until they are teenagers.

Posted to the web by Shawn Rice

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Matt Campbell

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