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The Santa Claus Problem

Last weekend, ‘Santa Claus’ made an appearance in downtown Cambridge.  Rada gleefully met him and related all her wish lists for Christmas. A few days ago ‘Santa’ made another appearance at the local mall. We noticed that this Santa looked really different from the other one.

What am I supposed to say about that? How do I interpret this seemingly illogical chain of events to an 8 year old who still believes?

And then there is the problem of the chimney, or lack thereof. Fortunately, I may have solved that one last year with a long talk about how he can get in through the windows, or keyhole (which is a little creepy, actually).

But now this year, there is the additional problem of when Christmas happens. Because several relatives are leaving at 6 am on Christmas morning, it has been decided that Christmas will be moved ahead a day. So ‘Christmas’ will be on Dec 24th. And ‘Christmas Eve’ will be on Dec 23rd. I’m not sure whether to try and explain this all somehow, or more conveniently, just ‘lose’ a day between now and then.

{ 4 } Comments

  1. Mary | December 19, 2008 at 9:09 am | Permalink

    Okay, I’ll take a shot at this one…

    The Santa’s that we see at malls, etc., are actually Santa’s helpers ’cause, you see, he can’t be everywhere and must spend his time at the North Pole preparing for the big day.

    Now, Xmas on the 24th??? Uhm… Santa needs to get a head start because they’re predicting a snow storm on Xmas Eve and he certainly wouldn’t want to disappoint any of the children that have been soooo good all year.

    How’s that???

  2. Stacy | December 22, 2008 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

    I agree with Mary on #1. That’s what my parents always told us and we bought it (even though my family is Jewish and we didn’t celebrate Xmas). It wasn’t until “Santa” visited a friend of the family’s house and handed me a present with the same wrapping paper that I saw in my parents’ room that I started to figure it all out. I was probably around 7 years old.

  3. Stacy | December 22, 2008 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

    Oh, and for #2, I think some cultures do the present opening on Xmas Eve anyway. Not sure if that’s what your plan was though.

  4. Molly | December 23, 2008 at 11:39 am | Permalink

    Mary & Stacy,

    These are great suggestions. thank you!