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Considering how anxious I always was about meeting Santa every year, I find it strange how most of the photos that I had taken with him, showed me with a bright red face, crying and screaming with my arms outstretched towards my mother like to say…


Every Christmas season, my mother would allow me to take a day off from school and we would go into the city for an afternoon of shopping at all the big department stores. The afternoon also consisted of treating me to a delicious turkey club sandwich lunch, and then walking over to John Wannamaker’s to see the light show, and finally to Strawbridge’s to meet Santa.

Strawbridge’s department store had this really cool thing called “Dickens Village” where you could walk through a little village, in which all the townspeople were electronic and would moved like robots. It was kind of creepy though, because their bodies would move and their eyes would blink, as if they had just smoked a joint.

And as you would eventually get to the end of the village, Santa Claus would be sitting there in a big throne with one of his elves standing next to him.

One by one, all the children would walk up a wooden ramp and then stand behind a red satin rope to wait.

And even as I’m writing this, I can still remember how my heart would POUND in my chest and my mouth would dry out, anticipating the fear.

When it was my turn, the scary-looking elf would take my hand and guide me to Santa.

(OMG…this was the moment!)

And as he lifted me onto his lap, I would see my mother standing in front of the platform; smiling and waving at me like to say….

… “Go, Boy!”

Santa would first ask me my name and then what I wanted for Christmas.

I would always be calm to begin with, but then on my third or fourth toy request…my lips would start to quiver, my eyes began to water and the panic started. This is when I would turn to my mother, stretch out my arms, wiggle my fingers…and SCREAM.

Where upon, I would push myself off Santa’s lap, sliding down his legs onto the floor and then ran straight for the off ramp. And by the time I got to my mother, I was a basket case.

And if I had been an adult, I would have said to her….

…. “I’ve had enough of this Santa SHIT…let’s go!”


  1. Sure because you knew that HE knew about the light bulb stealing and popping. LOL

  2. ~laughs~ That's funny.

    Maybe you should give it one more try. Take yourself back to the department store, talk yourself into confident mode and make the trek back up to Santa's lap.

    (Just make sure you bring your mother along with you - just in case)

  3. The thing that really chaps my ass about this it all the parents who are laughing at the whole situation.

    "He he he, look at little (insert name) isn't he/she adorable?" as they scream their little lungs out.

    Makes me want to take that parent straight to the zoo and put them in the lion cage and say, "Oh it'll be OK, just tell him about the lunch you just had. He's not going to hurt you. . . Oh honey quick, get the camera, I want to get a picture of this so I can humiliate him for the next twenty or thirty years with it.

    Ah yes, good times!

  4. Really? Seeing Santa was one of my fav things! That candy cane he gives out tastes way better than any other candy cane in the universe.

  5. We recently took all five grandchildren on the Santa Special, a steam train where Santa comes down the train giving gifts to all the children. The boys were all OK but Gracie huddled in a corner and refused to look at Santa! She did however like the present he gave her. I can understand why some kids are scared though - Santa must look huge to a small child.

    I don't think Santa is allowed to sit children on his lap anymore do you?

  6. Morning Deranged Princes

    Oh, that's FUNNY...I DO need to try that!

    I actually called my mother last night as I was finishing this post, just to ask her the details of certain things....and the two of us ended up laughing like little giddy kids!!!

    tee, hee!

    Always so nice talking with ya, DP!

    Thanks for dropping by today!


  7. Howdy JEFF!!!


    You've been missed!

    YES...and I TOTALLY hear ya about this. I can laugh about it now, but back then it felt tramatic! When I was searching for the last photo on this post, I can't tell you how MANY showed kids crying.

    But what's strange about that I kept WANTING to go back to see him?!?!?

    I think the thing that scared me about Santa...was how BIG he seemed to me. And something about that BEARD always frightened me.

    I actually had a good friend who was Santa for a few years and LOVED doing it. He said that some kids cried, and then others enjoyed meeting him. I guess it just depends on the child.

    Thanks SO MUCH for dropping by today, bud!

    Hope you and your family are enjoying the holiday season!

    Have a great day!

    Later gator!

  8. Hiya Annndi!

    Ahhhhh, yes...I totally forgot about the CANDY CANE he gave the kids!!!!

    And you're right...the ones that I ate (when not screaming) DID taste like the most magical candy canes ever made!

    I happen to really like candy canes too!

    Oh boy...maybe if you I had been friends when we were kids, you could have walked me up to see Santa and we could of sat on his lap together. I probably would have felt braver having my TWIN there!


    GREAT seeing ya, Anndi!

    Thanks for stopping by!

    Merry Wednesday!

  9. Aloha Debi!

    Even though it was YEARS later when I actually did the light bulb stealing and popping, you're right...I think my fear was a prememition of what was to come!!!!



    Thanks for stopping by Deb!

    Say hello to all the "penquins" for me!!

    Have a great Wednesday!

  10. Morning Akelamalu!

    OMG...that train sounds GREAT!

    What a COOL idea!!

    Boy...Grace and I sound like two peas in a pod!!!

    And I think you're right. I shared with Jeff, that it was the SIZE of Santa that frightened me. And also that BEARD!!

    I'm not really sure about kids sitting on Santa's lap here in the States, but I'll have to take notice to that when he comes to our store.

    Thanks for sharing your Santa story, dear lady!

    Enjoyed it!

    And HAPPY HOLIDAYS to you!!

  11. Yes, that's it! Santa has psychic capabilities ;)

  12. hi ronnie,
    I am sorry I am so vacant lately...and I hate christmas so am avoiding things like memories...these are funny, I love your stories and can see you being a real terror as a litte guy....keep on being merry for me!

    kisses....both kinds ;)

  13. Oh I was such a lucky child. Thank you G-d for this one.

    I'da probably socked the jolly ol' elf.

    Nope, I was never tortured to this degree as a child.
    I'm surprise at how well you've turned out, sir!
    Well, not really....
    But I now gain deeper knowledge of the trauma's endured to get to where you are today.

    You POOR thing! ;-)

  14. Ahh
    this warms my heart.
    I took the boy a couple times to see the
    big Guy in red.
    The little gal never managed to make it.
    and now I think i know why.
    I didn't want her traumatized for life!
    Laughing and trying to figure out why you love this holiday so????

  15. Hellooooo again Deb!!

    Yes...and I think I remember seeing him on Dione Warwick's Psychic Network Hotline!!!


    Which reminds of me.... year I asked him for one of those Magic 8 Balls. Do you remember those??? They were so much fun! I've seen them in stores now and they no longer have the liquid stuff inside them. They've turned DIGITAL!!!


    Thanks for stopping by again, Deb!

    Hope you had a wonderful day!

  16. Hi Linda!!!!

    Hey, no worries my friend. It's GREAT seeing you anytime you stop by!

    OMG...I WAS a terror! TOTALLY!

    My mom and I sometimes talk on the phone and remember all the terror I got into as a child. She and I are very close, so we can LAUGH about it now!

    I went through a period in my life when I didn't care for Christmas much, myself. So I can totally understand your feelings. I honestly don't know how I stay cheery during the holidays, being in RETAIL. It can really get maddening at times, but I still LOVE it!

    Thanks so much for stopping by today, Linda!

    ALWAYS wonderful seeing you!

    Have a great evening!

  17. Hiya Dear Mel!

    Oh mean you NEVER sat on Santa'a lap???

    It's funny, because even today when I see all the little ones sitting on his lap at the store, I'm always reminded of how I felt for the first time. It's both exciting and SCARY!!!

    I should probably try doing it again as an adult, just to see how I react.


    And who knew years ago that BLOGS would come into being, and that I'd have a place to share all the TRAUMA!!!! It's like THERAPY!


    ALWAYS so wonderful sharing with you, Mel!

    Thanks for stopping by!

    And HAPPY HOLIDAYS to you!

  18. Howdy Lady Sorrow!

    I know...

    ....I often wonder that myself!?!?!?


    I honesly think it was because of the wonderful WAY my parents celebrated this holiday every year, which has instilled (regardless of being traumatized by Santa), such warm and fond memories in my heart.

    My parents were/are like kids themselves, so they wanted us to experience the MAGIC!

    I feel so blessed in having them as my mother and father, because they celebrated EVERY holiday like this.

    Hey, and you having lived in Philly for awhile...did you ever see the light show at Wannamaker's? I still watch it every year! However it's NOTHING as grand as it use to be!

    Thanks so much for stopping by for a little Christmas cheer!

    tee, hee!

    Hope you had a great day, dear lady!

  19. This was precious...what great memories with your Mother!!

    You sound much like my son. The big news at dinner was if he didn't get into trouble that day! He was the kid that told the other kids that the guy in red was BS.
    Need I say more??? :O

    The picture just tops off a great Vent!


  20. Good Morning Dear Gypsy-Heart!

    Great seeing ya!

    That's funny, because I think my parents held their breath at the beginning of every school year, because they wondered...

    ...."Ok, how much trouble is "he" going to get into this year???"

    They always anticipated a "note" or "telelphone call" from the Sister Superior.

    I was an angel...with HORNS!!!


    Thanks for dropping by today, my Florida friend!

    Hope you and your family are enjoying a wonderful holiday season!!

    "Jingles bells...jingle bells..."


  21. Ronnie: hahaha. Youkill me...and you have just described my child the prince.
    Oh...normally he is the calm collected and ready to go at anything...except the guy in the red suit and white beard.
    and I would push him (unknowingly) with You want a really good Christmas present, don't you? You better tell Santa. hehehe.

    How was I to know...You see ronnie, as a child I never went to the mall to see Santa. So I really never experienced the fear. And when I did go to the mall...I already knew he was jjust a guy with a fake white beard in a red suit.

    Boo hoo... hehehe.

    I laughed hard reading this...I am so like your mother. And what's worse we did it for several years. ha!

    Ciao sweetie...hehehe, hey i usually sit back and laugh at the elves...funny.

  22. Hola Miss Jones!

    I always think about the guys who play Santa each year and having to deal with all the screaming and crying kids who sit on their lap?!?!?


    No wonder he only comes out of his house ONCE a year!!

    I can't remember how old I was when I finally figured out about Santa, but I think it actually affected my parents harder than it did me!!

    My folks would even wait until Christmas Eve to put up the Christmas tree, so not only did they have to set up all the toys, but they also had to bring in the tree and decorate it too!!

    I always wondered why they ALWAYS looked so tired on Christmas morning!?!?


    Thanks for stopping by, my friend!

    And for sharing some HO! HO! HO!

    Hope you had a wonderful day!

    Ciao bella!

  23. I can't remember by reaction to Santa but my kids always looked like they were sitting on Freddy Krueger's lap!

    Jeff, those humiliation shots are definitely keepers. They are so worth it when your kids are teenagers. Seriously.

  24. Freddy Krueger!!!!

    HOLY SHIT Lady Nitebyrd...that was HYSTERICAL!

    And let me tell me, that's about what it felt like too!


    Yea, and I guess those humiliating shots ARE keepers to show your teenagers...

    ...I never thought of that!

    That's BRILLIANT!

    Thanks for stopping by, Sis!

    Always a highlight!

  25. This was a great story, it made me laugh because every picture my children had with Santa looked very similar to yours. I'm sure it's a common picture with most children at one time or another. It's a love/hate relationship for the first few years ;) I got here via Blogcatalog and I'll be sure to visit again.

  26. Greetings Around the Way Girl!


    Thank you so much for stopping by and taking the time to share a comment!

    It's so nice meeting new bloggers!

    Don't you just love Blogcatalog?

    So glad you found a giggle though this post! I couldn't resist sharing it this time of the year!

    Please stop by anytime.

    The door is always open!

    Wishing you and your family a Happy Holiday!