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  • Gianna Porco

The "Magical" Visit to See Santa Claus

The holidays are known for being the most wonderful time of the year. What doesn’t make it into the seasonal songs is that the holidays also bring some of the most stressful and expensive times of the year. Many parents who bring their children to see Santa Claus at the mall are subjected to one of the extravagant examples of the priciness of the holiday season. Imagine you are a parent at this time: you bring your child to an over-crowded mall to see Santa. This should be a magical time for you, but especially for your child, who gets to see the man who brings all the joy and gifts on Christmas morning. Who truly is working the magic? That is irrelevant…

You finally find the center of the mall where there are herds of people and crying babies- how festive! You start waiting in line, and you keep waiting and waiting. You are standing behind this giant smelly man, who, if his hair was white, could be Santa. Your child is whining to get off the line, “How much longer?” “Are we there yet?” You yourself are getting antsy. Then, your child runs out of the line, and you have to make sure your spot in line is held, because even if you have a spouse, he or she is likely just as delusional as you are right now, so he or she likely forgot to reserve your place in line. 

You secure your child, after he or she screamed about how he or she wanted to go into the store. Then you reassure them you will go later (which is most likely a lie, but you will do anything to quiet them). You're back in line; now, it is time to wait some more. Just as you are approaching the front of the line (finally) your child asks to use the bathroom. “You have got to be kidding me,” you mumble. After quietly scolding your kid to just hold it in because he or she can wait a few moments longer since you have had the urge to go for the last half hour, but refused to get out of line. This may seem like an unreasonable request for a small child, who barely knows how to go to the bathroom properly, let alone control when they need to use it.

Anyway, you hope no attention was drawn to you after getting angry at a three-year-old. Honestly though, at this point, who cares? Every other parent has yelled at his or her child at some point while waiting in this never-ending line, so why can’t you show a little frustration yourself? Then, just as you feel yourself beginning to calm down: your child is not crying, and does not have to pee anymore, and is listening to you for once. 

Then you get hit with the bill. Figures! Of course, you can’t get annoyed with the people behind the counter, who are dressed up as elves, you just have to swallow your shock, and grit a smile through your teeth and hand over your credit card.

You plop your kid on the old man’s lap. At least this year his beard is actually intact, which makes him less creepy (he kinda looks real for once). Then, you wait for the tears to start. If you're lucky, your child is in too much shock to cry and happens to smile. Click! That's it. All the waiting, whining, crying, peeing, running, and spending was just for a picture and maybe a five-second conversation with Santa about what your child wants for Christmas. Keep in mind that you have to note down these wishes to yourself or your precious little baby will throw a fit on Christmas morning, which is the last thing you need. 

The “experience” that caused so much angst, in truth, lasted all of ten seconds. Then, it is the next victims’ turn to have their savings drained. Visiting Santa resembles the activity in his “workshop,” except you are the toys being jostled and thrown about through his machines.  

Now that you are done, RUN! Your kid still needs to use the bathroom, and so do you!


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