Omar’s Diary Christmas Day 2014


Well, all the sleeps are over and Christmas Day here started in Ringwood, Hampshire, in a blaze of winter sunshine that would gladden any heart with festive spirit.

The servants took their time today doing things like feeding me and the chavs, themselves including man servant’s father. incidentally, he has taken over the bed I normally sleep on. For this it will take a couple of more days before I make him fully welcome and honour him with sleeping with him at night. Sorry, I digressed there. Anyway, just as I thought it was time to open presents the servants and servants father went out for a couple of hours.  I think I overheard them say something about an eleven thirty service.  This could not be for a car as they were dressed very smartly, it does not take three people to check a car in for a service and garages do not open on Christmas Day.

When they returned they said they had been to a lovely church service, whatever that is.

Present time at last! And what did I get? Not the yellow banana I had longed for, craved for and generally lusted after but a brown cigar shaped thing.  Out of politeness I hid my disappointment. This is quite easy as us felines have little or no facial expression of emotions.  My disappointment was overcome when I discovered that this brown thing was stuffed with catnip and jolly good stuff it was too.  I was, as they say on the street, ‘off my head’. in seconds.

My servants made a slight error in not getting me a banana but it is ok as the brown thing does the job.  I just hope this error does not become a Christmas tradition.

Unlike a very slight error in an newspaper in Oklahoma in 1955.  The local department store , Sears, placed an advertisement in the paper asking children to phone in and check where Santa Claus was. Sears said that they must be sure to dial the right number.  The number published had at least one digit wrong.

Colonel Harry Shoupe (1917 – 2009) was in charge of the air defence system in a bunker in rural Oklahoma.  America was on standby at the height of the Cold War looking out for incoming missiles. The Colonel took the first call from a young boy.  Once he realised it was not a practical joker and other colleagues were getting the same enquiries they kept answering the children’s phone calls.

The tradition started by an error has continued and developed to its level of sophistication. Today we can see radar images of Santa making his deliveries across the world.  There are even Reindeer Cams showing a reindeer’s eye view of their travels on Christmas Eve around cities and across the countryside.

All thanks to a printing error and a Colonel with a sense of humour in a bunker in America’s mid West.

colonel santa

Colonel Harry Shoupe (1917 – 2009) – Santa Colonel


About alangrenville

I live in southern Britain near the fabulous New Forest. While studying for a BSc in International Studies I have developed a strong belief in 'NIBAW' or 'nothing is black and white'. Hence my favourite saying "Too often we...enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought" (John F Kennedy).
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