Thursday, November 5, 2009

Santa Claus

By Ashley Lister

I believe in Santa Claus. It’s not a popular belief in my age demographic. Now I’m past 40, I’m in a group who don’t ordinarily hold this unorthodox belief. Usually, those of us who do have this belief, are considered lunatics by the rest of society. Non-believers regularly claim ‘he doesn’t exist’ or ‘Santa Claus is just a fabrication to please tiny minds.’

And yet, I still believe in Santa Claus.

Admittedly, you might tell me that Santa Claus is a fictitious creation and my belief is misplaced. Well, I’ve heard the same argument lodged against religious believers and their faiths, and none of those people appear to be troubled by this type of argument. Christians are told by atheists that God doesn’t exist: and Christians shrug this off as the atheists’ misguided opinions.

God exists for Christians and proof of his existence is visible everyday in the miracle of life.

Santa Claus exists for me and proof of his existence is visible every Christmas in the miracle of presents.

Every year, specifically at Christmas, people get presents. I’m not willing to accept that this happens just because everyone decides to buy someone else a present. As a race, we humans aren’t that organised. Currently I’m struggling to find someone as a guest blogger for next week’s column, and I’m a writer and blogger with a wide circle of friends. If I can’t manage that much (and I’m usually a pretty efficient specimen of humanity) then how can we expect so many people throughout the world to remember to buy and wrap gifts en masse to celebrate December 25th?

After all, which is more likely: everyone in the world remembers to buy presents for each other? Or there really is a Santa Claus? I think we all know the answer to that one.

You can tell me, “We just do that,” but, personally, I think Santa deserves his fair share of the credit.

You might also point out that not everyone in the world gets presents.

Some people have argued that this is proof that Santa doesn’t exist. However, I have to remind those people, Santa has two lists: one labelled nice and the other labelled naughty. Please bear in mind, I’m not saying that everyone who doesn’t get a present is naughty. I’m just suggesting that their name might have found its way onto the less favoured of Santa’s lists.

(If you’re reading this, and you didn’t receive a present from Santa last Christmas, you have to ask yourself if your conscience is clear. If you really believe you were nice rather naughty, perhaps you should get in touch with his administrative quarter at the North Pole. I expect there might have been an admin cock-up. Santa’s not infallible – he’s Santa Claus, not the Pope).

So I believe in Santa. He’s a larger than life figure and, if you’re going to believe in someone, it ought to be someone who is larger than life. He dresses in the traditional Coca-Cola colours, which I think make him look debonair. And he’s got the cool facial hair thing going on. Admittedly, Mrs Santa might suffer from ‘Velcro effect.’ But I’ve never heard her complain on any of the shows where she’s seen with Santa.

Most important of all though, and the reason why I truly believe in Santa, is because he bestows gifts on those who’ve been nice and he steadfastly ignores those who have been naughty.

It’s the main reason I like him. He rewards good behaviour but he doesn’t punish miscreants. Instead he simply ignores them – as though he knows that all bad behaviour is nothing more than attention seeking.

I’m a firm believer in rewarding good behaviour. Good behaviour should be encouraged in humans but it’s rarely rewarded and seldom even acknowledged. Society (in general) seems to treat good behaviour as the minimum-expected norm. Work hard all day; treat your fellow workers with respect; and you can guarantee that some bastard will give you more work to do, complain that you didn’t do the last lot fast enough, and your co-workers will spread rumours that you’re ‘too nice to be trusted.’

Only Santa gives out annual rewards to the good and the virtuous. He’s rewarded me every year for the past 40+ years, and I expect he will continue to reward me as long as I remain a good boy. This is why I believe in him, and why I will always believe him.

(Next Week: Why I think the Easter Bunny steals all the f***ing eggs and eats them himself).


  1. I really love your theory about Santa rewarding good behaviour and ignoring bad. Parents learned this one a long time ago.

    But seeing Easter Bunny and f***ing in the same sentence, well, that's just wrong. No wonder you don't get any eggs.


  2. What's a rabbit doing with those eggs anyway? Rabbits and currants, now they go together, but rabbits and eggs..?

    Thanks for reading & responding,


  3. Now, see, I always thought I got lots of presents because I was so very good... at being naughty!

    Maybe that guy whose lap I sat on wasn't really santa after all...

  4. Shanna,

    If you're good at being naughty, this suggests you get your name on both lists and reap all the rewards.

    Glad to hear you're still sitting on festive laps ;-)

    Thanks for reading & responding,


  5. Hi Ashley! So will you be starting a new age religion soon? Santology?

    You have most of what you'll need, at least Santa rewards the good and ignores the naughty, though in our circles the naughty receive gifts anyway, mostly from Victorias Secret.


  6. Dear Ashley,

    I congratulate you on presenting a convincing logical argument. One can hardly help be persuaded.

    I definitely agree with you about the need to "reward" or at least recognize good behavior. People complain all the time -- I make it a point to try and officially recognize people who are helpful, competent, or virtuous.

    As for the Easter Bunny... well, I'm going to stay out of that one!


  7. Garce,

    I believe Santa dose occasionally provide small gifts from Victoria's Secret although he doesn't endorse them officially because of his contract with Coca-Cola.

    When the Coca-Cola contract has expired, I can imagine Santa won't pursue Victoria's Secret as a main sponsor. Whilst I suspecte he would look quite dashing, dressed himself in the latest VS ensemble to do his annual delivery, I suspect most parents would be reluctant for an overweight bearded man in feminine lingerie to visit their children's bedroom.


    Thanks for reading & responding,


  8. Lisabet,

    Given the evidence for his existence, I can't imagine how anyone could convincingly argue against him.

    And, more seriously, I think people all over the world should be congratulated for doing a good job. It's so seldom acknowledged it really is one of the greatest social crimes in the world.

    Thanks for reading & responding,