|Reindeer Games - A Letter from Santa|
One of the saddest stories at Christmas is how Rudolph, the red-nosed reindeer, wasn't allowed to join in all the reindeer games. Rudolph became a hero, but we never actually found out what sort of games are reindeer games. What kinds of games are they?"
Well, Peter, there are reindeer games, and then there are The Reindeer Games. It's the difference between playing softball in the park with your buddies, and participating in the Olympics. Anyone can play reindeer games any time they want (even if you're not really a reindeer). But it takes a special sort of deer to have the drive to be in the Reindeer Games.
Again like the Olympics, there are a number of categories in the Reindeer Games, but here are some of the most popular:
LONG JUMP - Since our reindeer can actually fly, you can imagine the distances we get on this one.
100 COUNTRY DASH - Each year, our computers randomly generate a list of 100 countries, and the reindeer see who can get to all of them first. This year's list of countries included Micronesia, Gabon, Luxembourg and Fort McMurdo in Antarctica (not technically a country, but thrown in for the challenge). I personally like this event, because the reindeer often come back with souvineers for Santa!
SLEIGH PULLS - This one, of course, makes good sense, since that's what the reindeer are actually going to be doing, come Christmas Eve. This is a team event, with 2-deer, 4-deer, and the standard 8-deer setup.
SWIMSUIT COMPETITION - Ha! Santa's just pulling your leg with this one. However, we DO have:
TALENT SHOW - Believe me, you haven't lived until you see an all-reindeer version of "King Lear." It just chokes me up every time.
CHIMNEY SLALOM - One of the biggest problems we have on Christmas is zipping between all those brick chimneys out there. Each year, we set up a new, randomized course, and the deer flit through it. It's breathtaking. We also ruin a lot of perfectly good chimneys.
FIGURE SKATING - Reindeer. Ice Skates. You wouldn't think that it'd work. But it does!
LONG-DISTANCE PACKAGE DELIVERY - This is a mixed event, with reindeer and elves. The elf gets in a single-deer sleigh filled with toys, and the idea is to see how many toys they can hurl down a chimney from the highest possible altitude. This takes delicate coordination between the elf and the deer: the elf's got have dead-on aim, and the deer has to keep the sleigh high and steady. The highest compliment that you can get in this game is when you get a toy straight down the chimney without hitting the brick: "Nothin' But Log."
SANTA "COMPLIMENTING" - The idea here is to make fun of Santa while making it sound like you're actually complimenting him. I don't know how this one got started.
KARAOKE - The only problem here is that the only thing the reindeer want to sing is ABBA.
Well, that's it Peter. You now know all about The Reindeer Games. Keep being a good boy and I will visit your home on Christmas eve after you have gone to bed.