At Home & Living
A Chat with Santa, 2011
After eons on the job, Santa says there’s still a thrill each holiday season when chatting with kids about their Christmas wishes. The jolliest of elves dishes on hygiene, the preferred fuel for carbon-neutral transportation, his likes in music and snacks, and how to make the cut for the nice list.
Santa rep “Santa John” will be the star of the Macy’s Holiday Parade in downtown Seattle the day after Thanksgiving. After that, you can find him at Macy’s throughout December until Christmas Eve.
SC: What’s your favorite thing about meeting kids and hearing their wish list?
Santa: The excitement and look on their faces when they’re sitting on your knee.
SC: How has the gig changed over the years?
Santa: Kids today want more expensive gifts. Eight year olds wanting cell phones, iPods and Wiis compared to toy cars or Barbie dolls.
SC: Looking back, can you recall a particularly memorable gift request?
Santa: I can remember a 7-year-old girl asking for a real horse, and she lived in the city. Mom and Dad were standing off to the side shaking their heads, "No!" I suggested "My Little Pony," and asked if she would prefer a pink or blue one. She settled on the pink one. Mom and dad certainly showed a sigh of relief.
SC: How do you keep your red suit and snow-white beard looking so sharp?
Santa: When I take my suit off, it’s never dropped on the floor; I always properly hang up the pants and jacket on my special suit hanger. I use a wire cat brush to comb the white fur around the collar and sleeves. My beard is snow-white because I'm old. I make sure I wash and brush my beard and hair everyday and keep it neatly trimmed.
SC: Any suggestions for moms and dads before bringing the kids to see you?
Santa: Make sure the kids have a good night’s sleep before their visit. Come early, not when they would normally take a nap. Have something they like to play with to keep them entertained. Bring a snack for them while they wait in line, and make sure that snack isn't messy. I would suggest something like goldfish crackers!
SC: Do you have a favorite and least favorite Christmas carol?
Santa: I love all Christmas carols and when I hear them they put me in the spirit of Christmas. My favorite would have to be “Jingle Bells” and “Here Comes Santa Claus,” mainly because all the kids know the words to those songs.
SC: What are the elves focused on making this year?
Santa: The elves seem to think that Legos and (Nintendo’s) DS games are going to be the main items the boys are going to be requesting. They told me that the American Girl Doll will be the hot item the girls are asking for. The teenagers are going to be asking for iPhones.
SC: How many girl and boy reindeer are there, and how can they fly?
Santa: There is only one girl reindeer and that is Vixen. All the rest are boy reindeers. They are fed a magic mixture of corn and oats that only grows near the North Pole.
SC: What do you prefer to find as a Santa snack by the chimney, and what are the favorite nibbles for Rudolph and the gang?
Santa: My favorite snacks are cookies all kind, but my very favorite is Christmas cookies and a glass of milk. I like to dunk my cookies in the milk. The reindeer like cookies, carrots, celery or lettuce.
SC: Do you ever do consultant work in the off season with the Postal Service or Amazon on how to achieve on-time accurate deliveries?
Santa: I have an elf who works at the Post Office and put all his efforts on making sure Christmas gifts are given top priority.
SC: Any advice to kids a little unsure of whether they're ranking as naughty instead of nice?
Santa: It's never too late to get on the good side with Santa. Just remember to mind Mom and Dad, always brush your teeth, make your bed and keep your room tidy and toys put away, do all your homework, say please and thank-you and always be nice to everyone; but most importantly, have fun all year long.
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