On Magic, Blogs, and Sealing-Wax

This morning (late last night?) Szent Miklos, known variously as Sinterklaas and sometimes even Santa Claus, brought stuff to fill the shoes of our family, placed on the hearth around our fireplace in anticipation of the visit of Santa, his horse Piet, and Black Peter, also known as Krampusz. If we were good, we got candy. If we were bad, we got sticks. All of us were very good, apparently, as Santa left us not only belgian chocolate but also tickets to the Las Vegas Bowl.

Christmas is magic, truly, but I wonder if there is anything fundamentally different about Christmas giving and other giving. Isn’t all giving magic? All our children love and still believe in Santa Claus (our oldest child, Alexander, is almost 15 and is far from a stupid kid, but even he was totally bamboozled by the bowl tickets, which haven’t been available now for almost a month), and we like it that way, but Santa Claus is not the highlight of Christmas in this house. He’s sort of like a mysterious uncle that adds an element of magic to the proceedings. You never know what he’s going to bring. Cost seems to be no object, though the gifts are rarely very expensive. Santa Claus is magic.

As mentioned in an article last week in the Lehi Free Press, I aspire to be Santa Claus. Not the jolly fat man in the red suit, necessarily, unless that’s required, but the fellow in Miracle on 34th Street. Here’s the quintessential: the little dutch kid (or, in the remake, the deaf child) comes to sit on his lap, and the mother says to Santa, “she’s Dutch, she just wanted to sit on your lap”, and Kris Kringle looks indulgently at the mother then turns his entire attention on the child and proceeds to have a conversation with her in fluent Dutch. What power that man had to make people happy! Is there something more wonderful that I’m unaware of? What if I could do that, too? Is this not the greatest of magics?

[Editor's Note: The greatest magic was performed by this Man, whom I truly aspire to be, but one rarely discusses that sort of thing in public, and almost never in the newspaper.]

It’s a long, long way from where I am to where Kris Kringle is. He seems to have unlimited resources; mine are meager. He is always jolly and has time for children; I am often grumpy and too busy to direct all my attention on little ones. But he wants to make people happy, and I do, too. I want to do magic. At Christmas, I can almost see how I could. The veil, so to speak, is a little thinner. There’s less of a gap between my workaday self and the me I want to be. Is it so for you, too?

This blog is almost 30 months old, now, which makes it one of the longest-running regularly-posted blogs on the web. I want to take a second and thank you for reading. It means a great deal to me – and is still a surprise – that you would take time to read what I have to write. I wish you’d comment, as well, if you wish to, even if what you have to say is not “polite”. You aren’t guests here; you’re participants. If I say something foolish, you can call me on it and I swear I will not be offended. If I can’t defend my positions, why have them at all?

Yesterday I went to a craft store to buy some sealing wax and a wax seal. The store had a tiny selection, ridiculously priced, and nothing in the letter J. I went home, Googled “wax seal” and immediately found a website that had hundreds of seals and a gigantic selection of waxes, all at roughly half the price of the craft store’s. Magic, I tell you. Or as near magic as makes no nevermind. And don’t ask me what the seal and the wax are for. It’s a surprise.

One Response to “On Magic, Blogs, and Sealing-Wax”

  • Holly Hanberg says:

    “Or as near magic as makes no nevermind”

    That’s very Mal Reynoldsian phrasing.

    See, I can make people happy too.

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