[Hey! A rabbit trail! Not only is Santa omniscient (He sees you when you're sleeping, he knows when you're awake...), he's also prescient! How else would he know how many of which toys he should be making?]
Anyway...back to the main road.... Sure, Santa spends his summers making toys for good little girls and boys, but who can make toys 24/7?! So what does Santa do on his days off? He shops at Wal~Mart! "Pshaw!" you say? I was there, I tell you! I saw it with my own two eyes!
OK, here's what happened.... I was in Wal~Mart the other day, buying a few groceries, checking out the clearance racks, "same old-same old", when I heard it. Two identical little voices said in stereo, "Mommy, look!" Since my name is Mommy, I instinctively looked.
There, in the cereal aisle, was a cart laden with two matching preschool boys. Eyes wide open, mouths agape, index fingers clearly pointing. As I turned to follow the aim of the little pointers, I heard their voices again—"Mommy, look! It's Santa Claus!"
At the same moment, my gaze arrived at the fingers' target. Pushing his cart past the corn flakes was an older looking man—jeans and red plaid flannel shirt, gray stocking cap on his head, full white beard hiding his chin, and what could be termed the appropriate body type. He smiled sheepishly, as if this wasn't the first time he'd heard it. The mom shushed her boys with some vague comment and all the players in the scene moved on.
Intrigued, I followed "Santa" through the store, waiting to see if it happened again. A couple aisles over, I saw my friend, Judy. We made the usual chit-chat, but I was bursting to tell someone what I'd just witnessed.
"Judy, I just saw the cutest thing! Two little guys thought he," I flicked my eyes toward the Man in Red, "was Santa!"
We giggled together, and just as she started to say, "Oh, how funny," her little boy piped up, "Look, Mommy! There's Santa!" Judy and I grinned at each other and went our separate ways. I continued to follow the Man in Red as he finished his shopping and went through the checkout. I can tell you that "Santa" likes Red Baron pizza and Classic Coke, but there's also somebody at the North Pole who eats stir-fry and drinks Gatorade!
When asked about his identity, the Man in Red claimed that his name was "Lloyd", and that he was (get this!) a schoolteacher! But as you know, all the Big Shots have an alter ego—just look at Clark Kent and Peter Parker. Come to think of it, a teacher's calendar might work pretty well for Santa! He'd have summers off to spend in the workshop, and a two week break at Christmas to take care of last minute details before delivery.
I wonder if, now that he's been identified, he'll have to move on, like the Witness Protection Program? If he does, maybe come spring he should consider trimming his beard down to a goatee. Then, he could think about trying a more plausible secret identity—like...say...