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  My Wife and Times

Daniel Will Harris

The Sandoval Signpost (Web edition) is pleased as punch (diet punch that is) to bring you the humor and insightful human observations of Daniel Will Harris, author of My Wife and Times. —Ed].


Do you know Santa?

Asks an eight-year old...

By Daniel Will Harris

Two little brown eyes stared at me as I stood in line at the supermarket. She stared for a long time. Little girls have a habit of doing this, until they turn 12, at which point I seem to become either hideous or invisible or both.

Finally, the little girl marched up to me and asked, "Do you know Santa Claus?"

My first thought was, "Yes, of course," and that's what I said.

She took this opportunity to ask what was clearly a burning question, "Does he have pretzels?"

Once again, fast on my feet, I replied, "Yes, many types. The elves like the little mini ones. Santa likes the big soft ones. And the reindeer prefer pretzel sticks."

She smiled as if she'd been waiting her entire life to get someone to answer this question (I mean, you can't even find it on Wikipedia, so it's not exactly common knowledge).

Flush with that success, she asked "Does Santa eat cereal?"

Since I've been taking acting classes (and getting leads in feature films, more on that in the next SchmoozeLetter), I silently created an instant backstory that I was one of Santa's old school friends who visited him every couple of years at the North Pole when global warming was getting too much for me.

I thought about breakfast with St. Nick and announced, "Sometimes. Sometimes he has eggs, or waffles."

The little girl nodded as if to say, "how interesting."

She probed further, "Does he cover his cereal with chocolate?"

I thought back to my childhood with Santa, as well as my actual childhood and never once recalled wanting to put chocolate on my cereal, though I did eat chocolate cereal called Coco Puffs. My honest reply, "Not that I can remember."

Seeing as how I was clearly a font of knowledge, she continued on with questions that seem to have plagued her.

"Does he wear underpants?" she asked, as if she was concerned about this for some reason, perhaps something to do with itchy woolen trousers.

I had, frankly, never thought about Santa's undergarments, so I could only venture a guess (as if my previous answers had been solid fact gleaned from first-hand experience) "I am not sure as I've never asked, but I think so."

Now she ventured further into into private matters, "Does he use the potty? Mommy said everybody does."

Once again, I'd never even thought of the Jolly Old Elf on the john. Nor had I seen it addressed in any classic Coca-cola ad which basically invented the current image of Santa. But, since Santa is, of course, a real person (if elves count as people, and I'm sure Hermione Granger would have something to say about that), then my only possible answer was, "Yes, everyone does, though I have not personally witnessed Santa on the potty."

I added the last part just to make it more plausible, and because I didn't want her to think it was socially acceptable to watch your friends do their business.

She tilted her head and asked, "Is he your brother?"

I shook my head, "No, though this is a common misconception, and understandable given our physical similarities."

This was met with a look that clearly said, "Huh?"

I tried again, "No, but people sometimes think we look like brothers."

Her questions came faster, "What does he smell like?"

No brainer—"Cookies, of course."

"That's what I thought." (That's why it was a no-brainer)

My cell phone rang. She eyed me up and down, "Can you call him right now on your cell phone so I can say Hi?"

"No, the cell phone doesn't work at the north pole. But I'll say hi when I see him."

Her mouth dropped open, and after a few frozen seconds, she whispered, "Really?!?"

"Really," I said, truthfully, because I will say "hi" from her the very next time I see him. It's not the kind of thing I'd forget, even under those circumstances.

With that final thrill she was fresh out of questions. Except one:

"Do you like donuts?" she asked—of me, personally.

"Yes, I do, but I prefer brownies," I replied honestly, because I really do prefer brownies as any sane person should. Less grease, more chocolate, no contest. And don't just take it from me, Santa prefers brownies, too.

She looked bored. Despite being only one degree away from the jolly elf, I was clearly no Santa.

"Bye," she said, turning her interest to chocolate breakfast cereal I know Santa would enjoy because I remember eating it the last time I was at the north pole.

So if you ask me if I believe in Santa, I can only answer "yes," because he's a friend of mine. And hopefully yours.


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My Wife and Times Cover
If you would like to read more fabulous stories, you need Daniel Will Harris’s My Wife and Times. The 148 page book contains stories that are conveniently short, perfect for bedtime reading, or between airport friskings. Price: $15 postpaid and is available for purchase online at or on





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