Your local Santa Claus over at the mall, icon of the holiday shopping season, acts jolly and cheerful, but deep down he may be struggling to maintain his sanity. Auntie Anne’s, the pretzel company, just interviewed a bunch of Santas, and they don’t sound well. Reuters reports: “Santas get sneezed upon up to ten times a day, fend off children pulling their beards and mop up after children who frequently wet their laps. … A third of all Santas reported having been wet on by a child, the survey said. Nearly 90 percent of Santas said children pull their beard every day to see if it’s real, and nearly half said children try to pull their glasses off every day as well.” More than 300 members of the Amalgamated Order of Real Bearded Santas were interviewed for the survey. The group’s leader says, “There is more to [playing Santa] than just sitting in a chair. There is more to it than just a red suit.” It could be worse, however. In Switzerland, they’ve banned Santas from having kids sit on their laps entirely, over concerns about pedophilia. And that’s our bit of holiday cheer for the day.
—Posted by Tim Nudd