Even when I was a believer, God had virtually no place in my Christmas. Each December 25, I suffered through Catholic mass, feeling each second crawl by. I had things to do, presents to open, Christmas movies to rewatch, sisters to fight with, extended family to see, food to eat and eat and eat. I might have considered the Catholic implications of the holiday while in church, but only in the way that you consider the car in front of you that's moving too slowly.
Ho ho, it seems we're spending this Christmastime deciding what color skin Santa Claus is allowed to have. Gather 'round the Yule log on your smart phones, younglings, and watch the old bigots on the permanent Naughty List try to invent another make-believe crisis of complexion. What race is Santa Claus? Well, if they really want to know then let's go ahead and tell them: Santa Claus is a magical human of African descent.
There are lots of wonderful things about spending a week in my hometown, Brattleboro, Vt. Here we have a stocked kitchen, two dogs, a fireplace, and the maple syrup flows from the sink faucets. And as of this morning, there is lots of snow. So much snow that the local newspaper, the Brattleboro Reformer—which is wonderful but like any local newspaper has a history of making unfortunate typos—led with it on page one.
Every child eventually experiences that crushing day when he or she realizes that Santa Claus, that totally implausible overweight gift-giver, is (SPOILER) not real. For those of us who thrive on cynicism, it's almost difficult to remember a time when we could be so joyfully naive—it took us a few years to realize that everything is horrible. Here, we've gathered our stories of the day our innocence died. Please share your own in the comments.