He appears suddenly and without warning, a towering harbinger of kitschy despair. As the final weeks of November slip away, he rises, looming over the puny humans that rush past him, and bearing the full onslaught of holiday marketing in his mighty wake.
Behold, Creepy Plastic Santa!
Actually, I suspect that he’s composed of fiberglass, but Creepy Fiberglass Santa just doesn’t have the same ring to it. Plastic is, for some reason, more menacing than fiberglass. And as you can see, Creepy Plastic Santa is nothing, if not menacing.
He appears yearly on a street corner several blocks from my home. Day after day I drive past the spot and there is nothing there, just an empty patch of ground and a streetlamp. For just shy of eleven months out of the year, I catch myself casting a glance at that spot as I drive past. Almost always there follows a sigh of relief, but in the days leading up to and immediately following Thanksgiving, a certain tension begins to fill the air. Still that corner is empty.
And again the next day.
And the next.
However watchful I am, somehow he always catches me unawares. As I’m driving along, some fellow driver will suddenly change lanes in front of me, or abruptly slow down for no obvious reason. Cursing, I navigate past potential collision only to see him there before me, his black gloved hand upraised as if ready to crash down on some unsuspecting motorist.
“Errrgh!” (car weaves momentarily)
Come to think of it, maybe that explains the erratic behavior of my fellow drivers.
We all know that he is going to show up, but it is still quite unsettling when he does.
He is not alone.
As the calendar page turns to December and the red-clad golem takes his place on the corner, these horrid things seem to appear everywhere.
What is it about these gnashing goblins that makes people want to display them in their homes?
Yes, I know. I’ve seen several performances of the Nutcracker Suite over the years and while the dancing and the music are always wonderful, the story is absolute rubbish! Any little girl who falls in love with this garish toothy monster needs some serious psychiatric counseling.
Welcome to the Holiday Season!
This is the time of year when everyone is expected to celebrate, but certain folks are less than satisfied with how their neighbors choose to do so.
“Please don’t call my holiday a holiday,” they fervently proclaim, “it’s Christmas!”
These are the folks who have declared that there is a “War on Christmas” and that the goal of all right thinking individuals should be to put Jesus back into a holiday that was largely borrowed from ancient pagans in the first place.
Oh how they bemoan the commercial aspects of the holiday, pointing out that the fervent materialism displayed by people who literally trample each other in their quest for Holiday Door Busters, is totally contrary to the spirit of their holiday.
Many are those who will claim that Christmas is a spiritual time to be shared with family and friends, even as they do their utmost to burn out the local electrical grid with animated light displays which are undoubtedly visible to the naked eye from low Earth orbit.
Well, my friends, I am truly sorry but I think the time has come for a major change.
A certain group of people have had almost undisputed control over how the Winter Solstice holiday is celebrated for the better part of 1,500 years. And what, I ask you, do we have to show for it?
No! You do not get to bitch about commercialism and excess and secularization when you have been the ones with your hands on the steering wheel for as long as anyone can remember. It’s time to hand over the keys and let someone else drive for a bit.
I beg you, my more devout Christian friends, to gaze into the agonized eyes of Creepy Plastic Santa and tell me if you truly think you have been worthy guardians of this sacred time in the turning of the year. Pagans were not in charge when that monstrosity was cast, nor atheists, nor any of the other groups you so often like to blame for the worlds failings. Christmas is what you have made of it.
Creepy Plastic Santa is your legacy.