Hey man, great work this year. You really look ruddier and jollier than ever, and I appreciate that you got me those pajamas even though there's a menorah in our apartment.
I wanted to talk to you about my little friend, Meredith. She's either eight or 18, I can't really tell any more. That's why I'm writing. She's in third grade, and I see her struggling with her belief this year more than ever. All of her older cousins are busy rolling their eyes or playing with their Wiis, and Meredith last night was once again tracking your flight online down from the North Pole. She is so earnest in her devotion to you.
I also see a fragility in her belief in herself. I worry about her clothes and her food and the way she tells me she doesn't like to eat and then goes upstairs to change her clothes into another spaghetti-thin outfit. I am in no place to judge her; I'm just hoping you can give me some advice on how to talk to her. Third grade seems to be when I learned cursive, how to call someone a grotty jerkhead, and also started searching for something, someone to believe in.
Thank you for reading all the letters sent to you, Santa. Thank you for listening to all the whispered pleas of children young and old, good and bad. Thank you for flying over the entire world in one night with a bag full of toys that somehow fits down chimneys in Uganda and New Jersey.
I know Meredith will move on to other people and ideas to believe in. I just want her to have a little more time with you. I want her to have someone rotund and boisterous, who essentially works two days out of the year, to play with and admire. I have prayed for the past 25 years and though I've often been misguided in my intentions, I never regret believing in a jolly, full-bellied father figure.
Please, Santa, give my friend Meredith and all children some time with sugar plum fairies, candy canes, and a moment of hope as they look up into the night sky.
Happy 2009, everyone!