On the first day of Christmas, I learned for myself

How to completely avoid that Elf on a Shelf.


Don’t get me wrong. I completely LOVE the websites devoted to all sorts of unadulterated debauchery that people create with him. The ADULT sites with him being tied up, lifted to his death by Vader, passed out drunk while at the strip club; I get that.

My former in-laws purchased the red and white abomination a few years ago and proceeded to immediately turn it into a weapon of threat manipulation. The problem is that the owner of said elf-creature has the “power” to create any threats they want. “If you don’t finish everything on your plate, the elf goes away!” “If you don’t clean up everything in five minutes, the elf goes away”. I don’t truly see how you need a $20 stuffed toy to deflect your military-like threats onto. Seriously. I’m hoping that most people don’t use the elf like that, but the first year they had the stupid thing, I already hated it and wished they hadn’t done it.

getting coal

For decades, parents had the threat of giving their children coal instead of presents. This led to candy that looks like coal, stuffed into little bags, or fake coal in little drawstring bags that everyone would howl with laughter when the child opened it along with throngs of other wildly expensive gifts. Tossing aside the coal, one only had to be careful not to crack the new HDTV or gaming console and that would be it.


Let’s not forget the joy of terrifying our children with the notion that a jolly old fat man was lurking around, knowing when they were sleeping, awake, bad, good etc. Next thing you know, they are looking around every corner with delusional paranoia and they are in therapy. Well, maybe not that drastic, but when you think about it that way, it kind of unnerves you.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Christmas. Well, except the bitter cold, long lines, nasty people, little parking, going broke, panicking over what to buy, planning dinner for ungrateful people who will complain no matter what you serve, basically the JOY of it all. However, when it comes to using Santa, elves, reindeer, lists and every other sort of manipulation, I think this may be the last time I ever utter the words (starting as early as September, behavior warranting it), “You know, Santa is really starting to keep track of your behavior this time of year; better step up your game!”


While I believe that Grumpy kitty there is hilarious and his jokes about disliking and hating everything are amusing, that is not me. I love the looks on my children’s faces when they are unwrapping their gifts and the excitement they feel leading up to Christmas morning. I love their happiness and enjoying a day of fun and family that only comes once a year. However, for now, there will be no elf sitting on my shelf, no man in red on a sled or grinch on a bench or any other thing that they can come up with. In the meantime, I will continue to walk past that creepy box staring at me that doesn’t tempt me in the least.

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