Photo Credit: Yellow Dog Productions/Lifesize/Getty Images
When you send your second grader off to school in the morning, you hope she’ll be safe and well-treated and that maybe someone will teach her a thing or two about fractions and possibly introduce her to onomatopoeia. What you don’t hope is that her dingbat teacher will completely destroy the house of holiday lies you’ve been lovingly building for her since the day she was born.
Oh, she’s had questions these past few years -- tough ones. But you’ve managed to deflect them with an onslaught of ever more cunning and convincing untruths. And when she wondered aloud how come Santa’s handwriting looks so much like daddy’s, you didn’t let even a trace of your true panic show. (But seriously, can we talk about why it is that the harder you try to disguise your handwriting, the more it looks exactly and unmistakably like your handwriting?)
You made it through another year unscathed, and then one day -- if she attends George W. Miller Elementary School in Nanuet, NY -- her teacher decides to announce during a geography lesson on the North Pole that Santa isn’t real and her Christmas presents actually come from Target and ergo, her parents are lying sacks of coal. (Tomorrow’s lesson: How Babies Are Really Made! With Photos! In Glorious, Eye-Opening Detail!) See how the parents responded here:
This wasn’t the Santa’s first brush with being outed this season. Just last week, a Fox News anchor urged parents to pull the plug on the whole Santa-charade already. “That’s why they have these high expectations,” host Robin Robinson chided. “They know you can’t afford it so what do they do? Just ask some man in a red suit. There is no Santa.” (Note to Robinson: Actually, when there is a Santa, you’ve got someone else to blame when the iPad and the Wii don’t magically appear under the tree. “Santa does the best he can do,” we smart parents console.) Decide for yourself here:
Robinson -- as well as the teacher responsible for Santagate, Leatrice Ann Eng -- apparently felt really bad about robbing children everywhere of their precious innocence (or else nearly lost their jobs) because both launched backpedaling campaigns almost immediately. Robinson took to the air to apologize to angry viewers; Eng reportedly called each family in the class and asked for forgiveness. And to be fair, in Eng’s case the sobbing that must have ensued when she dropped this dream-shattering little bomb was probably punishment enough. Still, I’m guessing the collection plate for the class Christmas gift isn’t exactly overflowing.