Waiting for Santa - How One Kid Literally Tries to Capture the Spirit of Xmas

Filed under: In The News

Since he was a wee thing, one of my sons has always been a little more into conspiracy/supernatural/natural mysteries than the average bear. His dream family vacation would be to head up to Big Foot country, then take a cruise on Loch Ness, and end with some time camping in Roswell under the stars and alien spacecrafts.

While I'm also intrigued at the possibilities of the unknown, (UFOs? Sure, why not?! There's a whole lotta space up there and it seems a little egotistical {and a bit depressing} to assume we're the only intelligent life in the entire universe. Some days I feel like the only intelligent life form driving on the road and that's a lonely time.) as are many people, it's not quite at the same intensity level as my son.

We became aware that our son was Not Quite Like The Other Kids around the age of seven. When other children were pestering their parents whether or not it was time to set out the milk and cookies for Santa, our kid was also relentlessly hounding us about the Big Guy's arrival. However, his queries weren't in anticipation of a sackful of toys. Our little Christmas angel wanted to know how much time he had left to complete his Santa Trap.

For some inexplicable reason, Shelby felt that capturing Santa during his delivery of free toys to the household was a brilliant idea. He'd be famous at school-the kid who finally caught Santa! (Apparently the ramifications of being the reason a whole lot of toys were not distributed didn't occur to the kid.)

Around mid-day on Christmas Eve, the contents of our garage were slowly distributed throughout the house. Ropes, bungee cords, chains, bike locks, and plastic tubing were tied to door handles and chair-backs. Broom handles were positioned for maximum trippage factor, and baby monitors positioned in the best locations to capture the slightest of reindeer rustlings.

Yet year after year Santa managed to escape detection. If giant pyramids of empty tin cans were placed in front of the doors and the fireplace, he got around them. Lasso traps were set carefully on the floor, jingle bells draped on doorknobs, bubble wrap hidden under mats where fat feet might trod, but still no Santa.

Perhaps it was because of the advance warnings Shelby thoughtfully mailed the guy in red every year. While some kids sent wish lists to the North Pole, Shelby mailed friendly missives like, "This year, I'll get you!" or "I've got a whole new plan this time and my friends are ready too!" Or maybe Santa remained safe because in spite of the elaborate schemes and traps, once Shelby dozed off, he slept like the dead. Neither the ringing of the bell when his mother tripped on a rope on her way up the stairs, the astounding clatter of 12 metal coffee cans crashing on the dresser in his room, or the accidental detonation of the smoke detector could wake up that child. One year Santa even took down all the ropes from the trap and used them to (Loosely! Oh, so very loosely!) tie the kid in his bed without waking him up.

It's been years since there's been a Santa trap in our house. Our other kids have been content to set out cookies and reindeer treats and ask "Is Santa almost here yet?" every fifteen minutes. Having a creative child is great, but there's also something to be said for being able to wait for Santa without fear that someone will need a tetanus booster.


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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.