Here is another piece for the Christmas themed pieces we are writing this year.
We added a few Christmas pieces that we wrote last year to the Christmas page, even though we didn’t start the themed pieces until this year.
Here are those pieces if you want to read more about Christmas.
That is about it.
Thanks for reading.
Santa Claus Is A Cowboy - Op-Ed Piece
It is that time of the calendar year again. Christmas time, or if you are one of those sensitive people who gets offended by that. It is the holiday season. You know the drill. Get multiple presents for the family members you like, and then think about what you are doing about the ones you tolerate. Put up the tree and have a memory of each ornament you displayed. (this one takes a lot longer than it probably should) Get your village pieces setup. You put the ice rink on the right side. The large buildings on the left side, but not all the way to the left; that is for the smaller pieces. And then decide where you are going to fit another piece this year. You put the nativity scene under the tree. You confuse the shepherd with Joseph again and wonder where you put the angel that comes with the set. As you put down the three wise men, you then offer some advice that the Bible never mentions three of them. It could have been more. And then you play that Mariah Carey song non-stop. After the millionth time of hearing it, you listen to other Christmas songs, like that one from Wham (or one of the hundred covers of the song) and other Christmas classics songs. You then watch a Christmas movie. Maybe you go Hallmark here, or perhaps the Grinch is more your thing. You can even try to get away with playing Die Hard and see how the room reacts. Oh, and you try not to forget to say something nice about Jesus Christ, you know the guy that this event is for. So you go to church or say a few prayers for someone. Don’t let the consumerism of the holiday consume you. Ha, you see what I did there. Puns aside, you know the holiday pretty well. We all do.
Christmas has a laundry list of things that people like about it. So much that it makes you wonder why Kwanza and Hanukah show up. No offense to those holidays, but they don’t hold a candle, or whatever they use during Kwanza, to Christmas. Nothing really does. Maybe Halloween. Maybe. (We actually wrote a few pieces about Halloween earlier this year, if for some strange reason you want to read about that right now.)
Moving on, though, Christmas has its own set of characters that many authors would be really proud to create.
Rudolph, the reindeer who, after being bullied, helps his boss out of fear of further embarrassment.
Santa, the fat guy who deliver presents and doesn’t think that three hoes is too much,
Frosty the Snowman, who has a very charming song that convinces the kids that he can talk. I like Frosty, so I am not going to bash him here.
The Grinch, who is dumb enough to think that by stealing presents, he can stop Christmas. That is not how it works. You can’t erase the number five. You can’t delete love. And you can’t stop Christmas from coming.
Oh, and that other guy who started this whole thing. You know Jesus, which is another post altogether, and I don’t want to get into that right now, so I will lump him and his story, which has its own set of characters with the Christmas characters I already mentioned. Yeah, Christmas is a hotbed for character creation.
One character of the crew shines above the rest. No, not Jesus. I said I wasn’t going to include him on this, so I am staying clear of that. This character is so popular that we have to make up reasons for what he is doing on Christmas. We all think he is real to a certain age. We lie to our kids about this guy even existing. You know the man. Santa Claus. The amount of names that Santa goes by is more than covers to that Wham song. The dude goes by a lot of titles. And no, I am not listing them here. We all love him. He gives us presents. He has a catchy song. He is always jolly. Oh, and he is also a cowboy. Did I mention that?
Oh yeah, Santa Claus is the most popular cowboy who ever lived, or didn’t live, depending on how old you are.
Don’t believe me?
Let’s go through this silly idea I thought of while humming that Wham song.
What does a cowboy use to get around? Is it a car? Is it a spaceship? No. It is a horse. Sometimes cowboys even have their own trusted horse that has a particular loyalty to them. That is the horse they use to flee the cops and jump on the trains. A cowboy needs his horse. Are you even a cowboy if you don’t have a horse?
What is Santa’s choice of transportation? His reindeer. He uses all of them to deliver gifts to the kids of the world. He even chose his favorite reindeer, Rudolph, because of a time that Rudolph bailed him out. Santa needs his reindeer to complete his task on Christmas night. Without them, he doesn’t have much. Why does Santa have reindeer? Probably because there are no horses in the North Pole.
You know a cowboy when you see one. He has on his boots, his cowboy hat, and some sort of vest. It is distinct and his alone.
Today if you wear that outfit, someone will go up to you and call you a cowboy, even if you aren’t one.
The same goes for Santa. His red outfit is very well known. The Grinch even dressed up as him, and the people in the town thought he was Santa! Yeah, because if you dress in a red suit and hat with a white beard, you are then viewed as being Santa, even though you aren’t.
Don’t stay for too long
Cowboys don’t stay in town for too long. They come in, get what they need, and leave. Whether it is to get information on the bad guy they are hunting or the woman they are chasing. Cowboys don’t want to mingle with the townspeople. They aren’t there to chat about their days. They are gone before you know they are there.
Santa comes into town on one night and then leaves. He doesn’t knock on your door and sit you all down and ask how everyone is doing. He isn’t there to discuss with you about stuff. He is there to drop off the presents and high tail out of there. Santa’s most famous song is about him coming to town, not him talking with the kids or hanging with Frosty.
Like their alone time
Cowboys like their home base, which is normally nothing more than a campfire and a tent away from others. As much as we all think of cowboys as gun-slingers jumping trains and keeping their masks on, they also like to be by themselves, at a campfire. When a cowboy isn’t completing whatever task he is after, he is always seen by himself. We appreciate this side of the rough and tough cowboy. It gives him a certain soul that we wouldn’t see without it.
Santa has a workshop in the North Pole, which is not the easiest place to get to. Although it may appear as if Santa is a people person, he is always seen working by himself. He checks his list alone. He delivers the gifts alone. When he is not on his run around the world, Santa is not in his workshop as much as in his office of his workshop, away from everyone.
Like to drink
Cowboys drink too much alcohol. They are alcoholics, although they don’t admit it. They only seem to stop off at a speakeasy to get a cold one and then gain more intel. They don’t seem too worried about this problem either. They wear it as almost a badge of honor like they are supposed to be able to drink a lot. What is a cowboy supposed to do, drink a healthy beverage that won’t ruin his life?
Santa has an addiction to milk and cookies. I don’t know if there is a term for that. Before he leaves every house, he eats some of the baked goods and drinks the calcium filled beverage. We have gotten to the point where kids leave the snacks out for the guy because we know he likes them. He doesn’t seem all that worried about it either. Almost like he is proud to eat more cookies and milk in one night than anyone should eat in their lifetime. Does he ever think that maybe he should cut back from the cookies and milk? No. Why would he?
Cowboys are known to be on the run from the sheriff. They can never seem to be on the good side of the law. They are wanted for the crimes that they committed. Dead or alive, the cowboy is not a friend of the community.
Santa, although he is a friend, is as much of a criminal as a cowboy. He breaks into your house. He trespasses on your property. He just doesn’t get caught by anyone.
He is a better crook than the cowboy ever was.
Help on their terms
Cowboys want to be good people. At least, the ones that I am thinking of do. They aren’t out for themselves. They aren’t bad guys. They do want to shoot the villain when it matters. They want to save the day. But it is on their terms. They aren’t going to help the sheriff if they don’t think it is beneficial to them. They aren’t going to be nice about being good.
Santa helps the world by spreading joy and happiness with the gifts he brings. He decides who gets them. He delivers them. He is the judge and jury here. He is going to help everybody but on his terms. He isn’t coming down here in the middle of July to fight a court case or stop the spread of a virus. That isn’t his problem, and he wants none of it. Santa will help us, but as he sees fit.
We like them because they are unique
Both of these characters have a special place in our hearts. We like them for their uniqueness and their distinct way they go about themselves. They are crooks, but they aren’t evil. They are good but don’t play by the rules. They are loners but like to help others. They have addictions but don’t want to solve them. They like giving back to the town, but they don’t want a part of the town.
We see a lot of ourselves in both Santa and a cowboy. That is why, after all these years, we recognize them on the street and are happy to see them. Not because they are great or noble, but they are complicated. And despite their own struggles, both characters find it in their hearts to help the world they live in. And we admire that because we are doing that in our lives. Whether you are hustling through your family members to get them gifts or trying to find the angel for your nativity scene. You don’t do it because you have to. You can stop wrapping presents. You can turn off the Christmas music. You don’t have to run to the store to get another present. But you do because, like Santa and a cowboy, you are trying to help the world. We like these characters because they are examples that even though we may have our own complications in our lives, we can still be the hero; we can still help others.
Santa Claus is a cowboy. 2020 really has been a weird year.
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