So That’s What The Twinkle In His Eye Is About

, , , , | Right | December 18, 2020

I work in a large chain home improvement store. We have a regular customer who is an older man with long gray and white hair with a matching beard. He also wears wire-rimmed glasses and is the image of a certain spritely old elf who is very prominently featured in December. I think he enjoys the resemblance to his “twin.”

In mid-December, I am checking out a young mom who has two young children with her: a little girl about four and a little boy about two or so.

San— I mean [Regular] comes up and gets in line behind them. He is even dressed for the season in a red and green flannel shirt with white suspenders. All is going normally until the little girl turns around and sees the regular.

Her eyes get huge and her mouth drops open. Suddenly, she pounds her brother and says in a very loud whisper:

Little Girl: “[Little Boy], [Little Boy], look. Look who it is.”

The little guy turns around and has the same reaction.

The little girl looks at the regular customer.

Little Girl: “Santa, what are you doing here?”

Regular: “I’m undercover. I get all these letters from kids who all tell me how good they are. But I don’t know. Seems like there’s a lot of mischief in the world if all these kids are so good. So I go around and spy and make sure they’ve been as good as they say they are. You’ve been good, haven’t you? I’d hate to think you’ve been bad, not minding your mommy, or being mean to your brother.”

The poor little girl is looking scared, saying yes, but her body language indicating maybe not. The kids’ mom is cracking up and I’m trying not to.

Regular: “Well, young lady, just know that old Santa is keeping a lookout, okay?”

The little girl leaves with her mommy, looking equal parts scared and happy.

Just then Mrs. [Regular] comes up and sees the kids leaving.

Mrs. Regular: *In a thoroughly exasperated tone* “[Regular], are you doing it again, scaring little kids like that? You’re the one who shouldn’t be getting any presents under the tree.”

I might have cleaned up her language a little. Or a lot.

And with that, she gives him a whack to the back of his head.

[Regular] looks at me and gives me an evil grin.

Regular: “But it’s so much fun.”

And it was.

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