Be thankful for the turkeys in your life: Part 2

A couple weeks back or more, I posted a lesson on being thankful for the turkeys in your life. This is chapter two, the final bit of the story.

Picking up where I left off, Maria, the grocery clerk, was beginning to thaw after being bent out of shape for me showing up at Emily’s place for Thanksgiving instead of hers. I had asked her how I could make it up to her, but after grumbling that all men were impossible, she rang up my purchase and gave me the silent treatment. I paid, thanked her, and turned to leave.

“I’ve thought about how you can make it up to me,” Maria announced.

I was surprised and turned back with curiosity.

“Yup, I need someone to play Santa Claus at Saint Anthony’s Holiday Pageant. You can do it.”

She had to be kidding. “You want ME to play Santa? Seriously?”

“Why not?” She asked.

“Do I look like Santa to you? You really think I’m that old?” This was starting to feel a lot more like payback or punishment. I don’t even have a gut on me — or white hair.

Maria must’ve read my mind, but was right down to business. “We’ll fix you up with some pillows and spun glass for the hair and beard and make your cheeks all rosy,” she chuckled.

“Spun glass? Do they even still make that?” I asked. “I’m not putting that on my face or head…it’s fiberglass and asbestos!”

Then she got all huffy again. “Why am I NOT surprised? I KNEW I couldn’t count on you. Not even for a puny charitable event for little kids. So much for your Christmas spirit. No ho-ho-ho in that body, just the Grinch!”

Now I felt like a dolt. So I said I’d think about it…to which she straightened up tall and snapped back, “No, you don’t get to think about it…either you’re in or you’re out. There are plenty of good-natured men who’d happily say yes, but I thought you wanted to make something up to me.”

So…after all was said and done…Maria got her way. I found a fake Santa beard and padded belly on Amazon, and discovered I could play the part credibly. Surprised myself.

On top of apparently passing as Santa to the children, I met some fun people which made the evening all the more enjoyable. When you get to talking, you discover everyone likes Santa and wants to be helpful to him. I might play the role next year, too.

In the end, this experience reminded me of something my grandfather taught me when I was in my teens. He said: Don’t expect to count on people for anything until they know they can always count on you.

Happy Holidays to you all. I hope Ol’ Saint Nick is good to you and can count on you being good to others in 2024!

Well Street

Wow, Maria sets the bar pretty high when it comes to making amends. My hat's off to you for your willingness to be Santa. In your situation, many would opt for her continued cold shoulder instead.

I've heard it's good for one's health and self-esteem if they routinely surprise themselves. Who knew you had the acting chops?

Thank you for sharing. In my opinion, this should keep you in Maria's good graces permanently.


I do believe that life is constantly giving us new opportunities to achieve, excel, or learn something new. Sometimes, it takes a personality like Maria's to hold our feet to the fire. God works in mysterious ways, and despite Maria's ways, heaven can use such heavy-handedness to give you a nudge. Happy to hear you enjoyed yourself enough to consider a repeat next year.

Thank you for this entertaining post. Happy Holidays back at you!


You were definitely the adult in this situation, and there are many happy children because of your generosity. Keep on being an example of kindness and open-heartedness. Merry Christmas!