Sunday, December 17, 2006
ANY WAY YOU SLICE IT, SANTA LEARNS A LESSON
The year our younger daughter was three, she had already figured out the relationship of cause and effect. As we drove past a local coffee shop that we had patronized on occasion, I said to Bill, "Well, I'll be darned, the Copper Penny has closed." Without missing a beat, from the back seat, our moppet food critic said, "No wonder! They put pickles in their tuna fish." Cause. Effect.
Our destination that day was the girls' first up-close visit to Santa Claus. Oh, what fun! The line was long. The kids were bright-eyed and expectant, music and laughter filled the background with merriment. Santa was miked, so each child's wish was amplified to the waiting crowd. The line inched forward.
Britton was next. She cautiously approached Santa. Sat on his lap (do they still do that?). Santa began his spiel, mindful of his mandate to SELL toys, games, dolls!
"What would you like Santa to bring you?" he inquired.
"I want an egg slicer," Britton responded, matter-of-factly. She had eaten at various dining establishments that offered the ubiquitous sliced eggs fanned out on its salads. She did not want her ova "ovo easy." Nope. Sliced was a winner with her.
"An egg slicer, well ho ho ho, do you want a doll like this one?" Santa asked, as he reached over and picked up Dressy Bessy for all to see.
"No. I want an egg slicer."
"How about these Legos?"
"No. Just an egg slicer. I want an egg slicer."
"I'll bet you'd like that red tricycle, wouldn't you?"
"No. I... WANT... AN... EGG... SLICER." Losing patience.
Santa tried again. Then the line of 3-8 year olds began hooting with impatience. "SHE WANTS AN EGG SLICER!" "SANTA, CAN'T YOU HEAR?" "SHE TOLD YOU WHAT SHE WANTS!" "SANTA! STOP IT!"
Not to be deterred by the restless crowd, Santa made another attempt to turn Britton into a consumer, "Do you want Santa to bring you a Barbie Doll?"
At that point, she jumped off his lap and announced, "I want to talk to a Santa who listens!"
The line dispersed as kids yanked their mother's hands. "I don't want to see that Santa." "Let's go see a different Santa."
That Santa learned a lesson of cause and effect.
Britton did get her egg slicer. In fact, this year she is remodeling her kitchen and we're giving her a brand new egg slicer for Christmas to mark the occasion.