I love Christmas. Always have. Ever since I found out the tubby guy in the red suit did NOT give me those presents once a year, I’ve been on a high. Let’s face it, Santa’s a little weird. Definitely someone my doctor would want to talk to about his weight. Further, what’s with the white trim, fella? Everybody knows when you’re a short zaftig person, the last thing you need is white fur running horizontally around your belly. I mean, come on. Talk about no clue.
When it’s all said and done, I really like it that my mom, a single, struggling mother of two, always managed to put something under that tree year after year. True, often it was a pair of much needed shoes, socks, or underwear. Occasionally, though, it was the gift of gold - new skates, a book, and once, when I turned fourteen, a portable typewriter. My childhood, you see, took place during the Punic Wars, when a computer or iPad was just a gleam in a yet-to-be-born entrepreneurial eye.
I remember opening up that typewriter like it was yesterday. The goldest of gold. Small enough to haul around with you wherever you went. The very thing for a fledgling, young writer. Ah, the prose, the poetry, the stories that typewriter helped me write! I wish I had it now; it was pure magic.
I believe the act of giving is Christmas. It’s all of us when we’re at our best. We don’t need those we love to sit on our knee and rattle off a wish list. We know their heart’s desires, just as they know ours. If we can make those desires a reality, we will. Christmas is love, hope, and the giving of ourselves.
So yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. And he’s you.
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Persephone Cole and the Christmas Killings Conundrum
In late December, 1942, Persephone (Percy) Cole, one of Manhattan's first female PIs, has been hired to find out who killed a Santa Land elf and left the body in the storefront window of a swank 5th Avenue jewelry store. Was it the spoiled heiress whose big buck handbag was found on the scene? Or was it the rat who broke out of the big house to settle a score? Shortly after, the corpse of the Christmas Angel is discovered stuffed in Mrs. Santa's workshop. Will Santa Claus be next? With a penchant for Marlene Dietrich suits, pistachio nuts and fedora hats, this working mother finds diamonds to the left of her, diamonds to the right, and skullduggery aplenty. Armed with her noodle and a WW I German Mauser, Percy is determined to solve these crimes or it just might be the 'kiss off' for Christmas.