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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Festive father of Christmas, Santa Claus, dies aged 1,242

Bianca Oppedisano
An obituary for Santa Claus. Illustration by Bianca Oppedisano / Mass Media Staff.

It is with a heavy heart that I write these words. On Wednesday, Nov. 29 at approximately 8:13 p.m EST, a global transmission was sent out from the world’s northernmost broadcasting station. Kris Kringle, known professionally as Santa Claus, has passed away at the ripe age of 1,242. According to North Pole ambassador, Tingle Trundlepot, “Santa died peacefully in his sleep surrounded by friends and family.” 

This news may come as a shock to those who have always viewed Santa as the unmistakable and immortal face of Christmas, but to the residents of the North Pole, they knew it was only a matter of time. Unbeknownst to the outside world, Santa has quietly struggled with health complications for years. Due to overindulgence in sugary sweets around the holiday season—something he jokingly referred to as an “occupational hazard”—Kringle was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in 1863, but was unable to receive treatment until the invention of insulin in 1921. 

Despite the insistence from Mrs. Claus to adopt healthier eating habits, Santa remained steadfast in his passion for Christmas cookies and stayed a creature of habit through the years. Sadly, he developed pancreatic cancer and despite the best efforts of the most medically advanced society in the world, the North Pole elf doctors were unable to improve his condition. Santa had always been a fighter, but it was cancer that caused him to hang up the towel. 

In the coming weeks, a funeral service is expected to be held, but in the meantime, many have wondered what Santa’s death could mean come Dec. 25. Is Christmas canceled? When asked by multiple world leaders, Trundlepot replied vaguely, giving no real indication as to whether or not toys will be delivered this year. 

Unsurprisingly, this uncertainty has riled up the capitalist business owners who have threatened to declare war on the North Pole should they not fulfill their contractual obligations of promoting and delivering their products to unsuspecting children. Although the North Pole represents something of an impenetrable fortress, outclassing the militaries of every other global nation tenfold, the elves hardly stand a chance against the combined military assets of corporate giants such as Walmart, Target, Macy’s and Amazon. This fear has in turn prompted a search for the next Santa, but in terms of who can fill the boots, things get a bit complicated.   

While the entirety of Santa’s estate is to go to his wife, Mrs. Claus, she will be unable to take up the mantle of her late husband. Unlike the movies, Santa’s magic didn’t stem from people’s belief in him or his iconic red hat; his supernatural abilities such as matter creation and time manipulation were due to his blood, something that—thankfully—Mrs. Claus does not possess. Luckily, however, Santa is survived by many children, 3,479 children to be exact. This also happens to be the total population of elves currently living in the North Pole. Coincidence? I think not. 

The biology behind it may be fuzzy, but every single Christmas elf is the offspring of Kringle himself from his previous marriage to Morgabeth, the Light Elf Queen of Alfheim. This makes the trusty toy tinkerers something of a hybrid between archaic traditional elves and gods. Disappointingly, though, despite the blood connection, the elves do not contain the necessary power to pilot the sleigh due to their light elf DNA which, despite the name, is rooted in dark mana. And for those wondering why the elves are half-god, that would be because Santa’s true lineage was that of the Aesir. Kris Kringle was one of the last Norse gods.    

The son of Baldr—who was ironically killed by mistletoe—and Nanna, young Kris grew up in the golden realm of Asgard atop Yggdrasill’s highest branch. He had only one brother, Forseti, but some believed that there could have been another born from a secret affair between Baldr and a Midgard woman. Although, these were most likely rumors spread in yet another sad attempt to slander Baldr’s good name by the trickster Loki, whose trail of misdeeds stretches longer than Jormungandr. Following Ragnarok, the death of his family and multiple sessions with a career counselor, Kris turned over a new leaf as the Catholic Church’s father of Christmas.

Since then, few have given any merit to the idea that Santa possessed a hidden brother, assuming that if he did, he would have perished with the rest of the Kringle bloodline when Fenrir devoured the sun. However, this is bad news for Christmas enthusiasts, as this mystery brother, should he exist, would be the only one capable of carrying on Santa’s jolly legacy. 

Now, as the world grieves the loss of a true holiday hero, people brace for the worst: a year without a Santa Claus. However, if you attend UMass Boston, vigils or ceremonies in honor of Father Christmas will have to wait, as there is currently a ban on all things related to Santa as prompted by Chancellor Marcelo Suárez-Orozco. According to an anonymous mole on the inside, our chancellor has reacted strangely to the news of Kringle’s death, barricading himself in his office and refusing to come out. After much insistence from his public relations team, he published a statement in response to Santa’s demise which simply read, “Good riddance!”

About the Contributors
Joe DiPersio, Humor Editor
Bianca Oppedisano, Illustrator