10 Reasons Your Mall Santa Hates You

With Christmas fast approaching, we recently contacted several mall Santas to ask them what we can do to make their holiday more enjoyable. Here are some of the things we heard back from a few not-so-jolly St. Nicks:

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1. Screaming Toddlers: We know you've waited in a long line for the privilege of visiting Santa Claus, but unless you enjoy torturing your kids, don't place that screaming child on our knees. He or she is just going to cry louder when placed in a stranger's lap. Yes, we know it can make for "adorable" photos, but seriously. At least provide us some earplugs first.

2. Keep It Brief: We live in a consumer society. We get that. But the next kid who recites to Santa the entire Toys R' Us catalog, is going to get a lump of coal in his or her stocking. Parents should instruct their kids to provide us with two or three requests, tops.

3. Don't Ask, Don't Tell: Some mall Santas are virtual Chia pets, able to grow an Abominable Snowman's beard in a matter of months. Others of us are not as fortunate. Still, the same rule applies. Regardless of what's happening elsewhere in the world, at the local mall authenticity of Santa's beard remains a "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" matter.

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Example of a "Naughty Clause" exception.
4. The Naughty Clause: One of the great things about being Santa is that all kinds of people want to sit on your lap. This is especially true with women, who seem to really enjoy telling Santa why they've been more naughty than nice this year. These confessions can really roast our chestnuts. But, ladies, unless you resemble Scarlett Johansson, we don't need to hear all the intimate details.

5. No Food (and Wash Your Hands): Do you know how much a Santa suit costs? Well, they aren't cheap and it's not like we Santas have a closet full of them back in the North Pole. So please, no food while on St. Nick's lap. And if your kid has just finished eating a candy cane, wash off those sticky little fingers. Getting peppermint bits out of a fake beard is difficult enough. Getting it out of real whiskers is downright painful.

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