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Frequent flyer Santa spills his Christmas secrets

Jultomten. Julenissen. Julemanden. Joulupukki. Santa. Whatever you call him, one thing remains true: Santa is a jolly old guy who spreads a lot of joy.

Santa, we've got a few questions for you. We thought we'd start naughty and get nicer. 

What's the worst part of the job? 
Even though I’m over 400 years old I can still remember having to clean out the reindeer’s stalls when I was a kid. I hated it then and I hate it now, so I make the elves do it. 

This is Santa Claus

Age: Over 400 years old
Hometown: Secret house above the Arctic Circle
Family: Wife, elves, lots of pets
Career: Lifelong toy and gift maker, works year round, travels incognito. Started learning his trade by mucking out the reindeer stalls. 

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Are milk and cookies still your favourite? 
I like scotch and soda almost as much as I like milk and cookies. I never eat reindeer.

Being santa is a constant job. How do you balance your work and life?
People think I work 365 days a year, but I actually do take vacations. One year, Mrs. Claus convinced me to take one of those round-the-world trips. She loved it, but to me it felt like work.  

I never leave home without my favorite music loaded up on my phone. Right now I’m really into Miley Cyrus. I like her spirit.

Santa. Illustration by Graham Samuels

Is Mrs. Claus a fan of the facial hair?
Mrs. Claus thinks my beard makes me look like a hipster, but I tell her that while fashion comes and goes, Santa’s signature look never goes out of style.

Does your sleigh really work in all kinds of climates and has anybody ever caught you in action?
One time my reindeer got stuck in the sand on an Australian beach. That’s when I started arriving by jet ski, which the Aussies love. Personally I’m not quite so keen on it: my suit gets wet and that’s a drag, in more ways than one.

One time I snuck into one of those Santa conventions. They told me I didn’t look or sound authentic enough.

What are the biggest perks and challenges of the job?
You would not believe how many EuroBonus points I collect every year. More than anyone I know, to be honest.

No matter how many times I do this, I still sometimes get lost. One year, I tried GPS but nearly ended up in Boston Harbor.

I started wearing a seatbelt after a pretty rough landing a few years ago. Some presents fell out of my bulging sack – but it was mostly socks so no one really cared.

The classic question: what’s your favourite Christmas song?
My favorite Christmas song is that one where the dogs bark “Jingle Bells.”  It really freaks the reindeer out, which is always good for a laugh. 

What should we make sure to avoid in order to stay on your good side?
There are a lot of rumors about Santa, like I’m not real or I say “ho ho ho” all the time. OK, I do say “ho ho ho” too much – but I am definitely real, so please stop pulling my beard just to check.

One thing that will get you on my bad list is taking my parking space. I’ve got a lot of delivery times to meet, and not everyone lives in a house with a drive. 

What are you most proud of?
I am an aviation pioneer. Long before SAS was putting planes in the air I was flying high with my reindeer.  And I’m always on time.

What presents do you find under your own tree at Christmas?
My wife says I’m too hard to buy for at Christmas and I think the same about her, so we do like most long-time marrieds: we buy something for the house. Last year, it was an outdoor motion detector.

And, what is it about Rudolph that makes him so special?
The truth is that Rudolph is my lead reindeer because I’m always downwind – and Rudolph doesn’t always watch what he eats.

Do you celebrate with anyone in particular after your hard work is done? 
I never had children and now I’m too old, but I do have elves and they’re a great help, especially for checking up on children and seeing how SAS is flying.

Any new years resolutions?
Even though I’m in better shape than most people think, every January, I promise myself that this will be the year I lose weight. It’s around this time I start playing more rounds of snow golf.

And last but not least, is there any chance you can give us a hint of where you live?
We live in a secret house in a secret forest, and only the elves know where it is.  One time, though, some guy got lost hiking and knocked on the door. Mrs. Claus invited him in for tea and I had to pretend to be an elf for hours.  It took months for my knees to recover.

Last edited: December 13, 2018

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