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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The chancellor saves Christmas

Bianca Oppedisano
Chancellor Marcelo Suárez-Orozco dresses as Santa and flies a sleigh. Illustration by Bianca Oppedisano / Mass Media Staff.

‘Tis the season to be jolly, fa, la, la, la, etc. It’s been one week since Santa Claus ho-ed his last ho, ho, ho and the question as to whether or not Christmas will happen this year is still anybody’s guess. On top of this tragic loss, UMass Boston is still in the midst of Chancellor Marcelo Suárez-Orozco’s much-maligned “Santa Ban” which makes any mention or reference to the red-clad toy maker practically illegal. Currently facing a level of criticism new even to him, Chancellor Suárez-Orozco released a cryptic statement to quell the collective frustrations of the masses. It was a simple declaration:

“I’m going to save Christmas.” 

His bizarre message was unsurprisingly met with doubt, as people wondered how exactly he intended to save Christmas. To put his money where his mouth is, the chancellor has finally confessed the truth as to why he had been so adamantly anti-Santa: He’s his brother. While this may appear to be a silly, baseless claim, a little digging within Healey Library’s forbidden section has unearthed a century-old birth certificate written on tattered parchment. The name on the medieval document reads, “Chancellor Marcello Suárez-Orozco-Kringle.” 

Due to Santa’s Norse god roots—as the grandson of Odin, himself—this makes the chancellor half-god. While the brothers had different mothers, they shared a similar sense of religious obligation which is why they kept their connection a secret. They feared that upon discovering their Norse god heritage, their new employer, the Catholic church, would burn them at the stake for heresy. Considering this, Suárez-Orozco-Kringle’s bitterness toward his older brother stems from the allegation that Santa had stolen the greatest idea he ever had and used it to get in the good graces of the pope, landing the job of Father Christmas. 

“He sees you when you’re sleeping? He knows when you’re awake? How do you think he managed that, huh?” As the chancellor spoke, his voice trembled with fury. He could hardly contain his anger while dredging up his dark past. 

 “He grows up as an Asgardian prince while I scrape the barnacles off of Viking longships. Then he has the gall to show up at my doorstep whining about Ragnarok this and Ragnarok that. My whole family died, boo-hoo! I’m nice enough to point him in the direction of our lord and savior, Jesus Christ, and what does he do? He steals the schematics of the world-class surveillance system I spent years designing to present to the pope as his own! Now his pagan a— is the motherf—ing saint of Christmas. He gets to spy on children all over the world while I’m left with this measly peninsula. He won’t be missed.”

The chancellor admitted to having installed his surveillance tech across campus buildings including classrooms, dormitories and even the Harbor Point apartments. It’s the same discrete technology that allowed Santa to know whether kids had been naughty or nice, but the chancellor claims that he’s using it to ensure that students remain “productive.” That being said, this admission has led many to feel uncomfortable knowing that their privacy has been completely breached. To justify his actions, Suárez-Orozco-Kringle pointed back to his divine bloodline.

“They say there’s two types of people in the world. You have the dreamers and you have the doers. That’s not true. In my experience, you have the doers and you have the people who like to watch while they do it. Now, I come from a long tradition of people who like to watch. Santa was guilty of it, I’m guilty of it and our grandfather? Oh, boy! Don’t even get me started on that guy. They called him the All-father for a reason. The guy saw all of everything—which was ironic considering he only had one eye.”    

This explanation did little to ease people’s discomfort, but ignoring this, the chancellor seeks to use his extended powers of sight to deliver presents to the student body, thus fulfilling his promise of saving Christmas. However, seeing as all-seeing isn’t the same as all-knowing, the chancellor still needs to figure out the kind of gifts people want, and if you’ve walked by his Quinn office as of late, you may have already seen his method of doing so. 

Everybody knows that Suárez-Orozco-Kringle is a busy man whose time can’t afford to be wasted by having students sit on his lap to tell him what they want for Christmas. Because of this, the chancellor has paid an outside company upwards of $5 million to create a life-like replica of his lap. Although, unlike a real lap, it isn’t possible to sit on this one. Instead, you’ll simply write your desired gift on a piece of paper and insert it into the provided slot which happens to be around the groin area. 

Others within the administration have voiced their concerns that the chancellor had been conned into paying for a realistic replica of his lap that, in actuality, appears to be nothing more than the hollowed-out, plastic lower half of a flea market mannequin wearing a crusty pair of men’s trousers. Despite this, Suárez-Orozco-Kringle remains adamant that cutting the Labor Studies department in order to front his lap money was well worth it. However, upon emptying some of the notes out of the bottom butt flap, the chancellor came to a horrifying conclusion: The Christmas wishes of the students were completely unreasonable. 

From cutbacks on tuition costs and reduced parking fares to not having to pay a $200 graduation fee for a diploma that’s already been paid for, the demands of these students were, quite frankly, too fantastical for the chancellor to genuinely entertain in good faith. But, like his deceased brother, Suárez-Orozco-Kringle is no stranger to last-minute change-ups and he wants to ensure the UMass Boston community that he still intends on delivering gifts. 

You can lock your dormitory doors all you want; before the semester ends, the chancellor intends to use his campus-wide master key to leave a special present underneath everybody’s pillow. That’s not really how Santa works, but I guess ol’ Saint Marcello plans to forge his own path. Already, some students have reported feelings of nostalgic glee waking up in the early morning to unwrap their $10 “reimbursement” checks that need to be repaid within two weeks with a 5.05 percent interest rate. 

“I know 10 bucks might seem a little crazy, but Jesus is only born once a year,” replied the chancellor when questioned about his choice of gift. “I mean, I think we could all stand to be a little more generous and find it in our hearts to give back to the less fortunate. Just know that the next time you pay to park at Bayside, it’s covered with $1 to spare, thanks to me. As for the West Garage? Well, I ain’t a charity!” 

Now, as classes wrap up and yet another finals week comes and goes, the true spirit of the holidays has perhaps never been clearer. It’s not about fancy light shows, weirdly outdated claymation movies, bad music or stoking the fires of the capitalist machine to keep it running as smoothly as a 4D-experience Jordan’s Furniture showing of “The Polar Express.” It’s about getting on our knees and saying a big ol’ hallelujah to the two most important bearded men of all time: Jesus Christ and Santa Claus. And you know what they both have in common? They’re both dead. 

So, instead of wasting your breath talking to ghosts this December, why don’t you put your hands together and say a prayer to the man who kept the spark—and himself—alive. The man who saved Christmas. The ever-humble, ever-magnificent Chancellor Marcello Suárez-Orozco-Kringle.   

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