THE VAULT

The Santa Cause
December 25, 2006 by Julius Serpentine

It's XXX-mas up in here, my fine bitches!

Today is Christmas, yet Slantmouth is still hard at work, unlike the United States Postal Service. They may work through rain, sleet and snow, but the birth of some man more than two thousand years ago leaves them weak in the knees, and not in a good way. Yet Slantmouth, like an unstoppable juggernaut, moves forward undeterred.

In the spirit of the holiday season we decided to bring you a very special interview with Father Christmas himself. No, not Jesus. We are talking about Santa Claus. The big man up North has had a difficult year and Slantmouth exclusively brings you Santa in his own words.

Slantmouth: It’s been a difficult year on the North Pole.

Santa Claus: No kidding. I don’t even know where to begin. I haven’t really had much of a chance to talk about it with anyone. The only people up here are the elves and my wife.

The thing with elves is that you really can’t talk to them. Their brains are actually proportional to their bodies. It’s not like dealing with tiny adults with pointy ears and squeaky voices. It’s like dealing with a bunch of tiny retards. Or kids.

That’s why all of these elves are doing manual labor. You wouldn’t want these little guys teaching your kids math or playing basketball or anything.

On the other hand, my wife, she’s got the mental capacity to listen. She’s just not very good at it. I love her and all, but I try to keep my distance. Usually when we talk it just means more stuff I have to do. I’m busy enough managing all of these little idiots.

S: Now that you finally have an opportunity to get some things off your chest, why don’t you tell us about Rudolph?

SC: Ah. I loved that red-nosed bastard. I really did. It still pains me to think about it.

I don’t know how he managed to get rabies, but it happened. I didn’t even know reindeer could get it. Maybe he was just hanging around the wrong kind of doe. A cheap, skanky doe.

Anyway, after he was infected he went on a rampage. I had to…I had to…put him down.

S: Why not have an elf do it?

SC: It’s just something I needed to do. I guess I felt responsible. I’ve been letting too much illicit behavior slide around here. Outside of work, the elves are out of freakin’ control most of time. There’s constant partying and drinking. Senseless, unimaginable excess.

I guess that’s the kind of thing that happens when you have a bunch of brainless automatons with a lot of free time on their hands. All they can really think about is the next girl, the next meal, or the next pointy little shoe. They don’t know when to just stop.

It’s like feeding goldfish. If you’re not careful they’ll keep eating themselves into a watery grave. I lose a lot of goldfish and elves that way.

S: You clearly have some negative feelings towards elves. How do you keep working with them?

SC: They’re cheap. I have to watch the bottom line. It’s even cheaper than outsourcing. Like I said, these guys are mostly dumb as a box of gingerbread cookies. You can pay them relatively low wages and they’ll stay happy.

I could hire some illegal immigrants but even I have ethical standards. Without me, what would these elves do? We’d problem find them dead by the dozen in gutters everywhere. The streets would run red with tiny, crimson-dyed pants. I don’t even want to think about the smell.

The only elves that have ever really made it on their own were the team of cookie and milk tasters that used to travel with me while I delivered gifts. I love pretty much any snack food. If I see it I have to eat it. I can’t help myself. But Santa Claus has many enemies. I can’t just start chomping on any cookies. They could be poisoned.

So, I had this team of elves who would taste every cookie and glass of milk before I got to it. If an elf dropped dead, well then I knew something was up. I lost quite a few good elves that way, but elves are a dime a dozen. Unfortunately, we were usually in such a rush to deliver the next set of gifts we would just dump the body in the yard.

I secretly hoped that it would send a message to whoever tried to poison old Santa.

S: What kind of message?

SC: You know, don’t mess with Santa or he’ll dump your lifeless, milk and cookie engorged corpse on some random guy’s lawn. Kind of like that horse’s head thing in the mob. If that didn’t work then hopefully at least they would feel guilty that they killed an innocent elf. Dead elves are worth a few heartstrings.

It backfired one time, though. I guess as rigor mortis set in on one of the elves, some guy who tried to poison me got the idea for the garden gnome. The jerk is a millionaire now.

Not only that, but the elves that survived became real experts on cookies. Some cookie company hired them out from under me and put them all in a factory that looked like a tree. They were using my elves as a gimmick!

After that I didn’t trust the elves enough to taste cookies for me again. I just take my chances. I’ve had my stomach pumped a few times but nothing too serious. My wife thinks I’m crazy, but what does she know?

S: Speaking of the dangers of your yearly deliveries, what about your back ailment?

SC: Yeah. I threw out my back carrying gifts last year.

It seems like every year kids want more and more stuff. Whatever you gave them before just isn’t enough. They need more and more, like they’re never satisfied. My old back just couldn’t handle it.

I started taking painkillers. Really strong stuff. Next thing you know, I was hooked. I was popping them like M&M’s. Had to spend a few weeks in rehab, which really set us behind schedule in the workshop. The minute I was gone these stupid elves started going nuts.

They stopped working and just partied all the time. When I came back everything was a mess. They need to be ruled with an iron fist and all I want to do is eat some damn cookies.

S: Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule, Santa.

SC: No problem. This is way cheaper than therapy and I don’t mind the company. I guess, it gets lonely on top… of the Earth.

Slantmouth hopes that Santa has a better year. As he gets older it is only going to get more difficult. Hopefully, his elves will put down their bottles long enough to pick up the slack. If someone does not step in it is only a matter of time before we find Santa Claus face down in someone’s yard, drained of whatever joy he had left to give.

Happy Holidays!

~Julius Serpentine