Dec 24, 2010

Merry Christmas and happy holidays

From the New York Sun (via the Newseum):

"DEAR EDITOR: I am 8 years old.
"Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.
"Papa says, 'If you see it in THE SUN it's so.'
"Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?


VIRGINIA, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except [what] they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no VIRGINIAS. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

You may tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, VIRGINIA, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.


Anonymous said...

Dear Santa,

I'm writing to you early this year, hoping that you'll have a little mercy on me.
Here's why.

I work at one of the LANG papers, and well, no one listens to anyone in the newsroom. The theme around the room is "I don't make enough money to care." I understand what they mean. It's kind of true. We've got furloughs coming, we don't get to keep our vacation days, and I'm pretty sure the higher ups are trying to figure out how to take something else away.

Don't get me wrong, I love what I do. I stay for the stories, the people I meet, the experiences.
But there are some things I wish would change. Here's my wish list:

1) I want the headlines to have something to do with the story, both online and in print. An example of a bad headline: 2010, The Year that was, was and will be.

2) I would like the photos to match the story, not just fit the page.

3) It would be great if editors listened rather than yawned, talked about wanting drugs, or played with plastic toys on his/her desk while I'm pitching a story.

4) I wish our paper looked better.

5) I wish people would care again.

6) If you could turn back time, I wish I had been good at math and the sciences in school.

Thanks for listening Santa.
Someone who used to be naughty but is trying really hard to be nice.

Anonymous said...

Dear naughty, but trying to be nice,

It doesn't matter what you want.

Lang management...aint that a laugh.