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'just pretend you're Santa.'

Since 1955 NORAD has been tracking Santa Claus on his annual trek around the world delivering presents (previously), but do you know why and how a grim, uber serious military organisation like NORAD, at the height of the Cold War started doing this? It turns out it's all because Sears used the wrong phone number in a Christmas advert and the officer on duty at NORAD had the presence of mind to play along.
posted by MartinWisse on Dec 25, 2013 - 24 comments

Who wouldn't go?

Special Santa! Special Santa! Special Santas!
posted by ThePinkSuperhero on Dec 23, 2013 - 27 comments

Photoshop can make you into an ideal image, for the holidays

"Ad agencies go to disturbing lengths to create the perfect image. Guess we're no different." Victors&Spoils takes the "regular woman to ad-agency image" video (info) a (seasonal) step further.
posted by filthy light thief on Dec 18, 2013 - 6 comments

The Quest for the Mantle of Wonder Woman

I carefully analyzed the situation.  Wonder Woman’s powers were magical.  If I wanted to get magical powers, I would need to go on a quest to a magical being and get them.  It would be dangerous.  I would have to prove my worth and my sincerity.  I would be tested, but I was ready.  And I knew exactly which magical being to approach.  It was less than two months to Christmas.  I would go see Santa Claus.
posted by bac on Dec 24, 2012 - 19 comments

Jul!

Jul!, a creative and delightfully disturbing animated advent calendar (some images possibly NSFW). Via.
posted by The Ardship of Cambry on Dec 14, 2012 - 5 comments

EPIC RAP BATTLES OF HISTORY! ...RHAOMI! ...VERSUS... RHYTHM! ...BEGIN!!!

Since it debuted on the blue in '11 // Epic Rap Battles of History preppin' // to score itself more than a billion views // and become TopDog of the pack YouTube
Made by NicePeter and EpicLloyd // (two improv comics by Maker employed) // The series pits icons of legend renowned // in a slick-wit freestyle rap throwdown
With snappier writing, and better FX // online celebs (and Google Ad checks) // The Epic Rap crew's halfway done with the brew // that is Epic Rap Battles of History Part Deux
The midseason's close? It comes out today. // In one corner: Santa Claus, fresh from his sleigh
And his prophet o' doom? "He ain't Mayan," ERBoH sez.
It's Snoop Dogg -- Snoop Lion -- as mothafuckin' Moses
[WHO WON?][WHO'S NEXT?][more inside]
posted by Rhaomi on Dec 10, 2012 - 27 comments

"I would soon learn that the laughter of the Son of God was no ordinary thing."

Christmas is a time for traditions. For some, it's all about stringing up lights on a Christmas tree and wrapping up presents to put beneath it. For others, it's spending singing carols door to door to spread holiday cheer. And for still others, it's a time to beat a log with a stick until it poops out candy. If you're not familiar with that last one, don't worry: ComicsAlliance favorites Benito Cereno and Anthony Clark have stepped up to explain it all in an original comic featuring an Untold Tale of St. Nicholas! [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Dec 24, 2011 - 4 comments

Justin Bieber is on DEF JAM?? But isn't that Slayer's label?

A perfect storm of terrible, two sharks trying to jump each other - Justin Bieber's steampunk version of 'Santa Claus is Coming to Town'.
posted by FatherDagon on Dec 6, 2011 - 115 comments

In Step With The Times

"...authorities would try to find the culprits and would seek to clean up the monument, but it was unlikely to happen right away."
posted by griphus on Jun 19, 2011 - 27 comments

Puss 'N Boots

Cat videos, we've all seen them. They are in fact the lingua franca of the internet. But none of them, believe me, can quite prepare you for the pure psychedelic strangeness that is Puss 'N Boots. From the wonder world of K. Gordon Murray, the same man who gave us Santa Claus And His Helpers.
posted by puny human on Apr 24, 2011 - 30 comments

They see you when you're sleeping

This Christmas Eve spare a thought for the Chrildren of Iceland, who will be suffering a traumatising visit from Kertasníkir, or "Candle Beggar", the thirteenth and final of the strange and somewhat sinister Icelandic Santas, or Yule lads, who are the childre of the ogress Gryla. Most of them don't seem to care if you've been bad or good - mainly they want to steal your food and wreck stuff. [more inside]
posted by Artw on Dec 24, 2010 - 27 comments

You Better Watch Out, You Better Not Cry

The recently released motion picture Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale is based on two short films by director Jalmari Helander: Rare Exports Inc. (2003) [previously] and Rare Exports: Official Safety Instructions (2005). (NSFW due to naked Santa)
posted by Knappster on Dec 24, 2010 - 5 comments

Can I have a Turing Test for Christmas?

Just in time for the holidays, Santabot. But can Santa pass the Turing Test, (previously)?* From the same guy who brought us God Chat (also previously). *Short answer: Nope.
posted by misha on Dec 22, 2010 - 23 comments

"Ladies and gentlemen, for the first time in 150+ movies, Rifftrax has nothing to say."

Rifftrax's new holiday release (preview highlight clips) tackles one of the most notorious bad movies of recent years, the infamous Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny, filmed at a struggling Flordia amusement park and produced by a porno director. More on the movie: Agony Booth, Invasion of the B Movies, WFMU's Out Of Context Cinema. (Unfortunate note: the full version is $10, but includes the movie itself.) (Side link: The park SatICB was filmed at, Pirates World, went out of business when Disney World opened up. The locations seen in the movie are all condos now. Before it closed they were known to host rock concerts, archive.org hosts a video of the Grateful Dead playing Pirates World) [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Dec 22, 2010 - 18 comments

Everyone knows Santa isn't real

As households across the world quietly deploy presents from St. Nick, Kate Beaton, author of the charming historical webcomic Hark, a Vagrant! (previ ously) remembers the tradition in a bittersweet light. In spite of venerable op-eds (and their animated offspring), such pain moves some to question whether parents should teach their children to believe in Santa Claus at all.
posted by Rhaomi on Dec 24, 2009 - 25 comments

Christmas at the BFI

Christmas in the London Blitz, 1940; Making Christmas Crackers, 1910; Santa Claus, 1898; Christmas is coming, 1951: short films from the British Film Institute's wonderful Youtube Channel (including excellent playlists), which you can also explore through Google Earth using the kmz file found here.
posted by Rumple on Dec 24, 2008 - 4 comments

Santa Claus is Coming to Town...

Since 1955 NORAD (North American Aerospace Defense Command) has been tracking Santa's Christmas trek around the globe by way of radar, satellites, fighter jets and now Santa Cams. In addition to tracking via Google Maps, you can also follow his journey in 3D via Google Earth. Also, be sure to check the Santa Cams which capture video of the places he's already visited on his trip. [more inside]
posted by ericb on Dec 24, 2008 - 27 comments

Walk Like a Russian (oh whey oh)

This year alone, over 20,000 Russian Orthodox pilgrims followed an icon of St. Nicholas from Kirov to Velikoretskoye on foot. The 180km-long pilgrimage through the Russian countryside dates back to the 14th century. Sergey Kozmin's photos. Some extra info here.
posted by ersatz on Aug 15, 2008 - 6 comments

External Delivery the Future

Parentists, the dogmatic believers that parents alone are the source of Christmas presents, may have new reason to believe, with the scientific approach of External Delivery. Of course, some skeptics have opined that External Delivery is just Santa Clausism with a pseudoscientific veneer. Other commentators are more forgiving, and point out the great strides that ED has made in the study of Yuleogy.
posted by CrunchyFrog on Dec 28, 2007 - 29 comments

A reading of "In the Late December," by Greg van Eekhout

"In the Late December" (MP3 link), by Greg van Eekhout, is a Nebula award-nominated story about Santa Claus and the end of the universe, and is Escape Pod #138. (By the way, this is a very dark story -- there's no sex or violence but this probably isn't suitable for kids, where "kids" is defined as a stereotypical aggregate of child-like characteristics. Yours may be different.)
posted by JHarris on Dec 25, 2007 - 14 comments

I want a pony, I want a pony ...

Secret lives: Santa Claus Steady Mobbin' - I fear this will lead to no good.
posted by madamjujujive on Dec 22, 2007 - 12 comments

From the land of the original Father Christmas

Rare Exports, Inc. They deliver the impeccable, well-mannered, and extremely rare original Finnish Father Christmases to nearly 150 countries every Christmas. Exclusively. [YouTube, NSFW.] [more inside]
posted by homunculus on Nov 15, 2007 - 15 comments

ho ho ho beard

Santa'd: Flickr's new holiday Easter egg.
posted by brundlefly on Dec 13, 2006 - 36 comments

Zombie Claus

Zombie Claus to strike SE Michigan! You have your Zombie in my Claus. No, you have your Claus in my Xombie. Behold two great memes that taste great together, even better than finding a Zombie in your coffee. So how do you kill a Zombie Claus? Candy cane through the heart?
So Little Jimmy what do you want for Christmas? BRAAAIINS!!!
[via Laughing Squid]

posted by MiltonRandKalman on Dec 12, 2005 - 6 comments

Supported by Mother

Vote Chris Christmas Rodriguez for Santa. [MI]
posted by bluedaniel on Dec 6, 2005 - 7 comments

When Santas Attack!

Santas Gone Wild Imagine a flashmob. Now imagine a flashmob that is nothing but Santas. Once a year, for 10 years now, a bunch of crazies dress up like Santa Claus, frolic around major cities (like NYC, good text summary of what SantaCon is all about to be found here) and cause merry mischief.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero on Dec 7, 2004 - 20 comments

From Finland, the land of the original

Rare Exports, Inc. They deliver the extremely rare original Finnish product to nearly 150 countries every Christmas, exclusively. It's a big download (the small version is 35.5 MB) but that's nothing compared to the patience these hunters must have to catch their prey. [NSFW, via MonkeyFilter.]
posted by homunculus on Dec 26, 2003 - 9 comments

Santa Claus, super shaman

Psychedelic Santa Claus. "Modern Christmas traditions are based on ancient mushroom-using shamans." [Via J-Walk blog.]
posted by homunculus on Dec 22, 2003 - 15 comments

Can you FLY Santa??

Santa and the X-Games. Help two poor elves sling Santa Claus all the way to Mordor.
posted by bargle on Dec 13, 2003 - 12 comments

Sober Santa

Sober Santa. Too much politics today, not enough Christmas fun. Here's a drunk Santa game from b3ta. Pretty tough once you get going.
posted by Stan Chin on Dec 12, 2003 - 12 comments

and you thought all Mrs. Claus did was bake cookies and iron that red outfit?

Mr. and Mr. Claus -- Harvey Fierstein, fabulous star of Hairspray and three-time Tony winner, is planning an homage to that happy couple--the Clauses--in tomorrow's Thanksgiving Parade. His NYT op-ed (reg.reqd) today says it all: In the end all I can say is this: If I really was Santa's life partner, you can believe that he would ask and I would tell about who has been naughty or nice on this issue. Still, as we approach the holiday season I'd like to imagine that fear and bigotry will not prevail in this land. Maybe this holiday season we can toss out some of the intolerance that nests in our hearts and make room for more love and acceptance.
posted by amberglow on Nov 26, 2003 - 34 comments

Santa is REAL!

Yes, Boston, there really is a Santa Claus. After a spate of posts lately, a Boston-area graffiti tagger reassures the city of the jolly old elf's existence. The Phoenix wonders why.
posted by pxe2000 on Dec 16, 2002 - 19 comments

substitute ruins Christmas for kindergartners

"No, Virginia Hayley, there isn't a Santa Claus" A substitute teacher in Florida was reading aloud to her class of Kindergartners when the subject unexpectedly turned to the existence of Santa Claus. Rather than perpetuate a myth, "Mrs. P" chose to come clean with the gathered five year olds, and explained that there was no Santa, and that all presents "come from mom and dad." Well, next thing you know, kids are crying, parents are protesting, and the teacher feels awful. In an effort to "make up for the teacher's lapse," the school district decides to send in a "Santa" to visit the class in order to "set the record straight": "Today's visiting Santa, with a natural, full white beard, should convince even a classroom full of skeptics, said district spokesman Englehart. 'He's the real deal.'" Great! Well, except for the fact that he's not. (via obscurestore)
posted by pardonyou? on Dec 13, 2002 - 123 comments

Santa Lives

Santa Claus, elusive jolly old elf, has finally been located by someone curious enough (in both senses of the word) to use FedEx to track him down. (The page I linked to here only tells half the story; click that link down on the left to get FedEx's tracking page.)
posted by wanderingmind on Dec 6, 2002 - 20 comments

SANTAS GONE MAD!!! First: Santa Shoots Woman! Then: Child Santa Booted From Mall! And then:Harrods' Santa Bares Botto in the Grotto! Finally: Santa Falls Foul of Anti-Terrorism Laws! Happy Holidays everyone! Jeesh.
posted by adrober on Dec 18, 2001 - 8 comments

Santarchy!

Santarchy!
posted by plinth on Dec 12, 2001 - 12 comments

Santa Claus updates his Christmas policy

Santa Claus updates his Christmas policy and also prepares to release an explicit remix album. Can ol' Saint Nick possibly knock all of the boy bands off the charts?
posted by kingmissile on Dec 10, 2001 - 2 comments

Santa Claus is Coming to Town, and the US Military is watching him.

Santa Claus is Coming to Town, and the US Military is watching him. It's NORAD's annual "Santa Tracking" PR campaign, reporting that Father Xmas appears to be flight testing his reindeer earlier this year (a prudent move, if you've seen "Olive, the Other Reindeer", my new favorite Holiday TV trifle). No Grinch sightings, however (he's gotten enough publicity, thank you). Now, the only unanswered question is: Will W.'s proposed Missile Defense System (TM) pose a risk to the Clausman? (And are Rogue Countries (TM) making missiles shaped like sleighs?)
posted by wendell on Dec 21, 2000 - 2 comments

The Dutch foreign ministry tells you all about Sinterklaas,

The Dutch foreign ministry tells you all about Sinterklaas, the Dutch predecessor of Santa Claus (see also Tsja).
posted by tsja on Dec 5, 2000 - 0 comments

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