It’s Not Weird, It’s Christmas!

I’ll tell you something my family does on special occasions like birthdays and anniversaries: I get the kids all dressed up and we go to the grocery store or mall and I find a stranger, a man, anywhere from middle-aged to elderly, and I force my kids to sit on his lap and chit-chat and I commemorate it with a photo. Sure, there are times, especially with the little ones, that they freak the fuck out. I mean, they are screaming and crying and pleading with me but I plop them on that strangers lap and just tell the man to hold on tight while I get my camera ready. Sure, as they struggle to free themselves from this perfect stranger’s grips, they are hysterical and obviously completely traumatized but, oh my gawd, how fucking cute is it to watch? I’m already picturing where I’m going to display it once I blow it up to an 8×10 and get a frame.

That would be weird; bordering on batshit crazy. It could all be remedied with one simple detail: a costume. The rules of “stranger danger” no longer apply, as long as the stranger is wearing red PJs and a beard (real or fake) or a bunny costume, depending on the season. No one thinks twice about the strange man  inviting children to sit on his lap and whisper their secrets. When our babies scream, bloody freaking murder,  we think nothing about this total and complete stranger restraining them on  his lap. You’ll see parents in line pointing, cocking their heads adoringly, because nothing is cuter than witnessing a small child that is in fear for his very safety and life. You have got to immortalize that moment. rhan1494l.jpg

 

Before you take your children and leave, Safe Stranger, gives them a candy cane and a coloring book. You sternly tell your child to say “thank you” for the gifts and go on your merry way. The next day, Little Johnny asks the man in line at the checkout if he has any candy and you promptly jump his ass and stress the dangers of talking to and taking candy from strangers all the way home.

10 thoughts on “It’s Not Weird, It’s Christmas!

  1. Yes-THANK YOU!! People look at me weird when I tell them that this encourages children to take candy from strangers, despite the 364 days spent warning them of ‘stranger danger’. The same people are quick to judge me for not having ‘more childhood memories’ pictures; because I don’t have any photos of my children, terrified and crying, sitting on a strange, older mans’ lap!

  2. Yep the old double standard like one of your previous posts about its OK if a boy punches a girl that means he likes her…mmmm this is why my kids have never sat on “Santa’s” knee ,never had their photo taken with him and never will Very thought provoking stuff as usual Thank you

  3. My husband use to play Santa at our yearly Christmas parties. I always wondered why our own grandchildren, nieces, nephews didn’t notice how “Santa” smelled just like Grandpa/Uncle Earl-you know, that distinctive cigar smell. I could paper the walls with photos of screaming babies! Oh well.

    • I love that smell. My friend’s father plays Santa at their party every year. He gets called Santa year round, though. The white hair and long white beard are his so they all know it is him, just wearing a Christmas-y shirt with his overalls. For a while, my oldest thought her friends were so lucky because Santa was their grandfather.

  4. Thank you for writing this. I have never let my children sit on “Santa’s” lap because it creeps me out. I have always wondered why I seem to be the only one to see it this way. When my children were small and still believed, they saw him in the mall and said “It’s Santa!’ to which I replied, “That is not the real Santa. Do you really think the real Santa has the time to be hanging out at the mall this close to Christmas? He is at the North Pole. I do not know who this man is.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s