Santa on Trial

Santa Claus is well known in this cold season, but as high school students we know the real truth. How was the myth of Santa ruined for people?

Seniors McKenna Keyes and Kamryn Blackburn try on Mr. Fuller's still life costumes!

Seniors McKenna Keyes and Kamryn Blackburn try on Mr. Fuller's still life costumes!

McKenna 'Rebel' Keyes, Journalist, Photographer

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The tale of Santa Claus has been told to children for centuries.  Almost every child learns of the generous man in his sleigh with magical flying reindeer who gives gifts to good boys and girls . Though most readers are adults and high schoolers who no longer believe the folktale of Santa, a history of Santa Clause is real. According to Saint Nicholas: Discovering the truth about Santa Claus, St. Nicholas was actually a real person. He was born in Patara around the year 300 AD and moved to current day Turkey where he was elected Bishop of the town. Back then women had to have a dowry (things to offer to her to-be husband), unfortunately some women had nothing to offer so they could not wed. St. Nicholas wished to help these girls, so in the night he would throw bunches of gold into houses to be used as dowries. St. Nicholas never expected anything in return, and he just gave for the joy of giving. His story has been passed down and his name altered to be ‘Santa Claus’ to where he is still remembered today.

So although this account about St. Nick may not have ruined Christmas for you, here are some anecdotes about how the mascot of Christmas was ruined for others.

Now, most people have typical stories like “my mother just told me” but, what are some hilariously sad ways that Santa was proven false to young kids?

Mrs. Perkins, the ASL teacher here at Cottonwood, entertained her classes by describing her exposure to the truth, “My parents are both deaf and they didn’t realize that wrapping paper made noise. So I would just sit on the staircase and spy on them, since they couldn’t hear me either.”

Veronkia Rimer, a senior at Cottonwood said, “Grandma got mad at me and told me Santa wasn’t real.”

Josh Parker, a freshman, admitted “I woke up at three in the morning and ended up walking downstairs. I saw my mom wrapping presents and contemplated life at the shocking truth.”

“My mom just gave it to me all at once one day,” Nicole Long laughed. ” Santa, the Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy, the whole nine yards.”

“I found all the Christmas letters to Santa in my trash,” Elena Nava, a junior said. “I never truly believed anyway.”

Reaching out to social media also bore fruit and other funny stories. Gawker.com was full of reader stories explaining how Santa Claus was ruined for them.

The first victim, Emma Carmichael, shared her unfortunate yet funny tale of woe, “By the time I was in the fifth grade, I really wanted to continue believing in Santa, even though most of my friends had let the magic die by then. My teacher at the time, a wonderful woman named Mrs. Kurty, was facing a growing faction of cynical 11-year-olds. She sat us down that December and had us debate whether or not Santa was real. ” ‘If Santa is real,’ I said at some point during the discussion, ‘then why do kids who have more money get more presents?’ The room went silent and there were lots of grave nods. It was Deep. It was A Moment. Soon after that I remember demanding my father tell me the truth, and then sobbing. My younger brother Joe was more creative about it. He looked in the title page for The Polar Express (greatest kids’ Christmas book ever, on the record) at about age 9 and saw ‘Santa Claus — Fiction.’ The Library of Congress is evil.”

McKenna Keyes, the Editor-In-Chief at Colt Roundup, tries on Mr Fuller's still life outfit

McKenna Keyes
McKenna Keyes, the Editor-In-Chief at Colt Roundup, tries on Mr Fuller’s still life outfit

Other sources share their stories on the end of a Buzzfeed article about Santa.

Tawnie Ashley recollected her fateful day, “Our family tradition has always been heading over to my grandparents house on Christmas Eve for Santa to visit. One year, when my sister and I were about five and six we were fighting in the backseat of the car on the way over… we wouldn’t stop… at one point my mother just turned around and yelled, ‘SANTA IS DEAD!’ and we showed up to Christmas Eve in tears. My Grandmother still hasn’t forgiven her for ruining Christmas for us.”

Jake DiPrima shared a story about how his father’s cookie gluttony not only landed his family in the hospital but exposed the actuality of Santa.  “When I was eight I baked cookies with my sister for Santa. We made all different kinds, some had nuts, and some didn’t. Apparently my old man is allergic to nuts. We had Christmas in the hospital. Merry Christmas, Dad.”

An anonymous person commented, “The Today Show ruined Santa for me. They did a story about what post offices do to all the letters to Santa ’cause apparently they don’t go to the North Pole. Thanks a lot Matt Lauer.”

Joel Anderson submitted his tale of woe saying, “When I was eight, on Christmas Eve in 1986, I was reading the front page of the Houston Chronicle and saw a headline that read ‘How Long Should You Let Your Children Believe in Santa?’ I asked my father if he’d been lying to me and he smirked and the jig was up.”

In a similar fashion as Emma and Joel from an earlier statements, Roberto Addoms admitted, “I think I was about five or six. We had just moved to San Diego where none of the houses have fireplaces. I asked my dad how Santa would be able to deliver our presents if we didn’t have a chimney. I apparently didn’t believe his answer and proceeded to grill him CSI-style until he broke down and told me Santa doesn’t exist-Pop never could face an interrogation from a kindergartner.”

Lastly Alexandria Holder claims, “At 4:30 in the morning on Christmas my mother came into my room and woke me up with some bells in her hands. She told me, ‘Wake up and ring these outside so your sister can hear Santa come’. Of course, it took a few minutes for me to realize, but my dreams were crushed and I sat outside crying and ringing the bells. Thanks mom.”

In spite of all these Santa anecdotes- we’re going to continue telling the stories of the fat man in a sleigh, and giving gifts to all the boys and girls who listen to their parents. So though the tale is spoiled for these people, let the magic live on! Merry 2016 Christmas to all! And to all, a good laugh.

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