Yesterday, my brother and his wife visited me at work at lunch. We went out to eat at a small Japanese/sushi place nearby, and enjoyed ourselves. On the way out, I snagged a fortune cookie, expecting one of those generic "Cool stuff will happen to you in the future" fortunes that you get in cookies. I joked to my brother as I opened it, "Hmm, it says 'Help, help, I'm trapped in a fortune cookie machine, someone get me AAAAAAH!'" But the fortune that I got was arguably even funnier:
"If it seems as though the fates have it in for you today, they probably do."
As fortunes go, that one is a keeper. I thumbtacked it up in my cubicle at work.
So, on All Things Considered a few days ago, they did a story
. They opened with this very coy disclaimer about how the story they were about to feature had "graphic" content, and if you have any little kids you shouldn't let them listen. Then they went on to play interviews with high schoolers about how they found out Santa Claus wasn't real.
Well, this afternoon on NPR, they did their weekly letter column read
, and one of the letters was a woman complaining:
"My very evil friends, I was in our basement changing laundry when that story aired, within earshot of my 3 and 5 year old sons. Reality comes soon enough for kids; why would you even think to air a segment that interferes with the potential magic they can still experience?"
There was just so much wrong with this that I had to write NPR my own letter in response. I doubt they'll read it on the air, but at least I feel better for getting it off my chest.
( Grinchiness behind cut. )
I can't really remember my own experience with getting Santa Claus debunked. I think this is partly because my parents were honest with me, not so much claiming he was a real person as that he "represented the spirit of Christmas," but I think it's largely because I had a good grounding in telling fantasy from reality (and also that I noticed that the tags on the presents ostensibly from Santa were in my parents' handwriting, even though they were written backward with glue and sparkles on the cards).
Speaking of Santa, after work today I headed down all the way across town to look for gifts for my assigned Secret Santa cow-orker. The questionnaire she'd filled out said she collected pint glasses, and was also a fan of the St. Louis Cardinals. I had hoped to find a John Deere pint glass at Surplus City (they have John Deere everything else, after all), then I could write on the tag "from a Deere friend." But they didn't; they did have a Nascar pint glass, though, and I snagged it; it was $4. I didn't feel quite right leaving it at that cheap a gift, however, so I nipped down to the $5 Store half a block away and asked if they had any Cardinals merchandise. The lady at the cash register just pointed behind me to a display of St. Louis Cardinals mini-duffel bags. Score! (And when I glanced around the rest of the store, I found the DVD of the movie A Mighty Wind,
which I'd been meaning to snag for myself for quite some time, in their movie bin. Double score!)
I snagged a fancy gift bag for $1 at the $1 shop next door, then drove all the way back across town to my place of work, to get the gift-giving out of the way—and then I realized, I had no idea how exactly I was supposed to present the gift to my victim; the email setting up the Secret Santa thing wasn't clear on that. So I put it in a cabinet of my desk and resolved to ask about it tomorrow. At least the gift is already there and ready.