Each Christmas, I take stock in two important matters: whether boys and girls have been naughty or nice, and my own moral compass. Sure, I fulfill wishes, deliver gifts and embody the Christmas spirit—those are givens. How can I change with the times? Improve workshop satisfaction? Become a better Santa?
What I found this year, with the help of an Independent Board of Little Helpers, was not jolly. I’m a first-rate misogynist. My huge belt buckle, fluffy beard, domineering physical presence and clambering through what is essentially a brick phallus are all male chauvinist gestures. I am sorry. I believe men and women deserve equal good cheer.
Therefore, I declare this year the first #XXmas. The hashtag so we may unite; the X’s stand for female chromosomes, heavy drinking, and kisses. #XXmas celebrates Christ and Mary. “Little Drummer Boy” and “Wee Trumpeter Girl.” Finally including Three Wise Women in the manger, without whom frankincense and myrrh would have been, at best, socks and frozen steaks.
Gender equality begins with each of us. I’m changing my ways, along with outmoded North Pole business practices. I also have a few suggestions to host your own #XXmas. As you will see, the female spirit rights many traditional, yet insidious, Christmas wrongs.
First to go was my laugh. I wish someone had told me “ho” was derogatory. It wasn’t a problem in the ‘40s and ‘50s. It is now. After hiring a vocal coach, I now chortle a steady “ha, ha, ha.” I hope my new laugh doesn’t sound spooky. Seeing it emblazoned on cards and wrapping paper alongside my cherubic face does take some getting used to, but it’s better than the male-centric “he, he, he.”
Also, Mrs. Claus and I will sleigh ride together, side-by-side, for the first time.
I always felt Jessica had the chops for that intense evening. I mistakenly assumed she enjoyed staying Poleside, tidying the workshop, baking pies and ladling spiked nog to our spent workforce. Never once did I ask if she wanted to ride along. #XXmas is about helping women succeed. Despite my hypertension and obesity-related arrhythmia, I wanted all the glory. All the milk and cookies. The chance to kiss a few sexy mommies on a night of ego-driven work and debauch. No more.
Parents, inform your children: Jessica and I won’t be shooting down your household’s sooty phallus. We’ll stride arm-in-arm through a glowing portal, a modern, yonic opening we can devise anywhere in the home.
Driving our sleigh will be eight female reindeer. Same as always. Their gender has been the subject of some debate. Last I checked, they’re all does. My ambiguous names begged for confusion: Comet, Blitzen, Donner? Though Dancer, Prancer and Vixen are decidedly feminine, by the time the Red Nosed One entered our lives, I aimed to trick the others. Rudolph’s as girly as reindeer get. I figured the Germanic name would help on the playing fields. It only screwed with her gender identity. Rudolph will now ride by the name she chose, Beyoncé.
As far as breaking the workshop’s gingerbread ceiling, I can’t pinpoint elfish sex types. In the communal showers, it’s all a blur of hairless bumps. One thousand fingerling potatoes. I have no idea what’s going on down there. On the floor, I treat each elf equally, the brutal shifts resulting in top-notch toys. Whenever an elf became impregnated, which happened with surprising regularity, she would be demoted to the Wrap Station. This has changed. I am happy to report my workshop has subsidized three-hour maternity leave. If three hours doesn’t seem like a lot, elf babies grow like crushed straw wrappers in water. The parents appreciate the bonding time, and after a light snack, the whole family is back to work.
Jess and I have many gender-neutral gifts to load onto our sleigh, so before wrapping up, here’s how you can host a merry #XXmas:
- Let the men decorate, bake and wrap presents. Let the ladies become intoxicated and nap.
- Demand more women become mall Santas. Is it necessary for kids to tug a real beard? At the end of a long line, I know I’d want to perch on a female Santa—a Santa who actually smells good.
- Knock the old silk hat and pipe off Frosty, which are sexist props. Elevate Frosty as #XXmas’s gender-neutral mascot.
- Purchase “Wee Trumpeter Girl” on iTunes, sung by both Beyoncés.
I hope everyone, male and female, bisexual and asexual, elf and pregnant elf, genderless and gender-full, has a very merry #XXmas.
Ha, ha, ha!