“I don’t know what to do” said Santa to Nurgle as they sat looking at the Elf rotation planner. “I’m pleased that the elves and Minions are working together and production is well underway, but I’m concerned that THE present hasn’t really shown itself. Perhaps we won’t get caught out this year. I still remember the challenge we had making enough Rubik’s cube, Cabbage Patch Dolls and Furbies.”
“Do you think we could stand a few elves down – you know, shelf them.”
“I think you mean ‘bench’ them – Elf on a Shelf is a whole other thing, and I’ve got Lorjak and Warwick making them.”
It was at that point that there was a very loud “SQUEEE!!” heard outside. “IT’S HERE!!” the voice cried out. Santa and Nurgle would have spilled their tea if they had any, but they quickly rushed out to see what it was. Santa got to the door and stopped; Nurgle however shouted “yippee” and continued running forward.
Santa felt a tug on his jacket and saw Stuart looking very confused. Stuart pointed at the elves gathering around … a tree?
“What’s happening?” asked Shawn.
“Oh, it’s an annual tradition” replied Santa.
They watched as the elves pulled the tree from the sledge and rolled it onto the snow. Rather than try to pull it upright, they either jumped on it, or rubbed themselves against it, or tore branches from the tree and started to beat each other with them.
Shawn, Santa and the Minions watched in helpless fascination at the scene of confusion, chaos and sheer happiness.
“Please” said Shawn “please explain what is happening – they’re usually so sensible!”
Santa cleared his throat.
“As you probably know, the elves work all year round in the toy shop – and they don’t spend much time outside – with the thick coats they choose to wear the sun makes them feel uncomfortable. Anyway, after one visitor tour a few years back someone left a Christmas edition of a fashion magazine near the toy shop. The elves were naturally curious and within an instance they had read the thing from cover to cover, had absorbed all the picture – and it took me ages to stop them from plucking their eyebrows and wearing mascara, or rather putting charcoal on their faces – but there was one article that they found particularly interesting.”
“You see, they mostly speak German and the magazine was English. The article was on getting a year round summer bronze through a spray salon – and they mistook the article, and assumed that by generally doing… that… they would bring some colour to their cheeks. I haven’t the heart to stop them as they seem to have a lot of fun. I’ve still got the article – I did wonder if I would ever need to explain this to someone else.”
Santa pulled out a crumpled piece of paper and passed it to Shawn. Shawn unwrapped it and saw the headline…
“Oh, Tanning Baum…”
Author’s note 1: Tannenbaum is German for fir tree. There is also a classic Christmas song called “Oh Tannenbaum”
Author’s note 2: I am so sorry that I spent nearly 500 words on what is (I will agree) a very simple, silly joke – but that’s the challenge of writing this, I don’t really have the time I might usually spend to come up with better alternatives, so it’s a case of that’s the story, let’s write!
Today’s advent presents:
From Lego we have THAT tree. A nice little build, but I don’t believe that it’s anything new. But it’s Christmas and expected.
From Minions we have the sled. It’s nice enough – but for me highlights the quality difference in quality control as I could not get one of the parts to fit properly. But the handles are neat and I suspect something that I may be able to make use of in other builds.