Five things that I find creepy about the most wonderful time of the year.
The Five Creepiest Things About Christmas
As an aspiring horror writer, I’m always on the lookout for the strange, the unexplained, and the just plain creepy in everything. Though I love the Christmas season, the most wonderful time of the year doesn’t get a pass in that regard. In fact, as it walks through the creep-o-meter, alarms are blaring and red lights are flashing. It looks as though I’m going to have to ask this holiday to step out of line and empty its pockets...
“Baby, It’s Cold Outside.” A delightful melody and references to winter weather help mask the creepy-factor of this timeless holiday standard. If one listens carefully to the lyrics, however, this song is about sexual aggression. The female vocal goes so far as to inquire “say, what’s in this drink?”
Krampus. No matter how you feel about the most recent movie on the subject, the idea that Saint Nick employs a host of demons to punish “bad” children is an old and chilling one. Many cultures still hold “Krampus-runs” before Christmas. In some folklore, the demons carry baskets on their backs, the easier to transport naughty children to Hell. Yikes.
Department Store Santas. Hey, let’s take little Johnny/Betsy and sit them on the lap of a complete stranger. I’m sure the faceless holding company that owns the mall carefully investigates the background of all it’s seasonal, part-time employees...right?
Santa As Defender of the Status-Quo. Christmas, at least the Saint Nicholas Folklore, isn’t about goodwill on Earth, or peace to all God’s children. It is about judgment. Of course, what is “nice” and what is “naughty” in a given society is defined by cultural norms and by those in power. As such, one can’t help but wonder: if Santa were real, would great men the likes of Copernicus, Galileo, and even Christ himself, have made the “nice” list? They were all three outcasts who acted against the established orthodoxy. My guess is they would likely have had Krampuses (Krampi?) sicked on them…
Dead Mommies (“Christmas Shoes”) This utterly ridiculous and obviously contrived attempt to pluck at our heartstrings may be the worst Christmas “song” of our generation, if not of all-time. One can imagine four or five soulless fat-cats sitting around a goliath mahogany table discussing what, exactly, people with hearts and souls care about. “Children,” one grumbles and they all harrumph. “When a pet dies, like Old Yeller…” says another, and they all nod enthusiastically. “Or better yet,” says Satan himself, “What if the child’s mother is dying?” Cue the chorus of children singing about Jesus, and gentlemen, let’s take this one to the bank.
So, there we have it. The five creepiest things about the Christmas Season! The good news, of course, is that there are infinitely more things about it that are heart-warming and life-affirming. Here’s wishing you none of the creepy, and all of the very best! Merry Christmas!!