Fri, Sep. 06, 2002...,
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our "plan for victory" "very Feaverish, or Feaveresque"...,
according to Barkley Rosser,
came in with his current form as drawn by Thomas Nast in the late nineteenth century, based on the early nineteenth century poem, "Twas the Night Before Christmas." Nast originally drew him in 1863 during the Civil War and showed him in a flag-striped overcoat delivering goodies to Union troops. He kept on drawing and refining the image for the next 40 years, making the coat plain after the war was over.
The bit left out is that the color of his coat was determined by a US corporation relatively recently for an advertising campaign, the Coca-Cola company to be precise in 1931. Nast drew in black and white, but previously his coat had been pictured as many different colors. In 1931, with the Depression deepening and Coke concerned about low winter sales, they got an ad campaign going showing Santa driking a coke. As their color was red, they put him in his red suit and black boots, and so he has remained since.
The original St. Nicholas was a thin and unpleasant man who went around shutting down parties and all kinds of things in third century Turkey. The bit about him giving gifts came from him giving some virgins money so they would not have to go into prostitution.
And Max suggests:
Personally I have no problem with government sponsorship of Christmas displays, as long as the authorities comply with equivalent requests from any other religionist.
We have to devise a proper display for agnostic/atheist position. Maybe a statue of George Carlin.
I would normally go for nailing the bill of rights to the doors of the town hall, but a statue of George Carlin would probably be more patriotic.
:: posted by buermann @ 2005-12-05 13:16:50 CST |