Christmas is a widely observed holiday on which neither the past nor the future is of as much interest as the present. It is that time of the year when you exchange hellos with strangers and good buys with friends. There is increasing concern about the lack of religion in Christmas. A recent survey showed that the only time most people mention God is when they check the price tags in the stores.
Christmas is when most people get Santamental. In one case, they almost drove Santa mental. I was working for a large company, with many employees, in Central Trinidad when we decided to have Santa Claus distribute gifts to all the employees' children. Not content with a sleigh, or even the traditional ox-cart, a vehicle associated with the early days of the organisation, we arranged for Santa to arrive by helicopter.
Our Santa was appropriately built and willing to play the part. He had never been in a helicopter before and had, unfortunately, thought it necessary to imbibe some courage to fortify him for the journey. He may have also eaten a large meal immediately prior to boarding the helicopter. His stomach and the helicopter were not mutually compatible. Santa's complexion changed from black to green and as the helicopter dipped, swooped and landed, to white, whiter even than the cotton beard that was by now wildly askew.
Shaken and shaky he was helped out of the helicopter. As he stood trembling and queasy, sack on back, almost completely disoriented and trying to get his bearings, he saw in the distance approaching him at speed, a phalanx of parents, screaming wildly, children in tow. He tried to run, seeking refuge in the helicopter that had already departed, wisely as it turned out. Within seconds he was engulfed by the mob, his sack wrung from his weak hands, emptied and looted. His beard was also pulled roughly from his face and sundry adults, assisted by their infants, were starting on his clothing. Fortunately, the police arrived and were able to save him from further indignity. The sack was never found nor his beard.
Another unique incident also happened one Christmas. There was a perfect man who met a perfect woman. After a perfect courtship, they had a perfect wedding. Their life together was, of course, perfect. One snowy, stormy Christmas Eve, this perfect couple was driving their perfect car along a winding road, when they noticed someone at the side of the roadside in distress. Being the perfect couple, they stopped to help. There stood Santa Claus with a huge bundle of toys. Not wanting to disappoint any children on the eve of Christmas, the perfect couple loaded Santa and his toys into their vehicle. Soon they were driving along delivering the toys. Unfortunately, the driving conditions deteriorated and the perfect couple and Santa Claus had an accident.
Only one of them survived the accident. Who was the survivor? There are two related options. The first answer is that only the perfect woman survived. She's the only one that really existed in the first place. Everyone knows there is no Santa Claus and there is no such thing as a perfect man. On the other hand, if there is no perfect man and no Santa Claus, the perfect woman must have been driving. This explains why there was a car accident.
That same Christmas, in a busy bar on Baxter's Road in Barbados, a reindeer walked in the door, went up to the bar and ordered a rum and coke. Without appearing at all surprised, the bartender mixed and poured the drink, set it in front of the reindeer, and accepted the twenty-dollar bill from the reindeer's hoof. As he handed the reindeer some coins in change, he said, "You know, I think you're the first reindeer I've ever seen in here." The reindeer looked hard at his change and said, "Let me tell you something, buddy. At these prices, I'm the last reindeer you'll ever see in here."
Other very weird things are happening. Someone tried to cross a snowman with a vampire and got frostbite. Someone else tried to cross an archer with a gift wrapper and got Ribbon Hood. A toy company hired a psychiatrist to help them design their new toys and he came up with a neurotic doll that, by the time you get it, is already wound up. Then there was this little girl who wanted to buy her grandmother a handkerchief for Christmas but changed her mind. She said, "I could not work out what size her nose was!" And finally there was the strange case of the dyslexic devil-worshiper. He sold his soul to Santa.
* Tony Deyal was last seen asking Santa for a luscious blonde for Christmas. He was quite surprised to hear his loved one promise that he was going to get it.
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