Here is a tongue-in-cheek podcast reflecting on one aspect of our Western Christmas tradition that sometimes seems a little creepy. I'm referring to that Santa guy who intrudes into our homes at night, often leaving a big, sooty carbon footprint when he enters via the chimney.

This guy keeps a list about my behavior, monitors me constantly so he knows when I've been bad or good, and even watches when I'm sleeping.  Creeps me out, but for politicians, what's not too like? They all want to be Santa Claus. I think it's time for a less Santa-like government and a little more personal privacy--but that's just me and my Christmas wish for all of you.

On a much more positive and serious note, check out Orson Scott Card's thoughtful take on the significance of the birth that is at the heart of Christmas in his essay, "Christmas Is About a Baby" at

Merry Christmas from Shanghai, where Christmas is a very big deal. You'll actually hear more Christmas music here and see the word Christmas, not just Xmas, more than I ever saw in the States. Come see for yourself--it's a remarkable country and a great place to live.

Sorry about the silly podcast. Mostly testing out the system for sharing podcasts via Blogger. Let me know if you run into any technical glitches. Later on, I'll try some more serious commentary. 

By the way, anyone have an explanation for why Santa in China often seems to be playing the sax? I just don't get it.

The photo above was taken in the New Garden Hotel in Ningbo, China, where Christmas is going full swing. At least the commercial aspects of it, with some deeper aspects leaking through here and there.
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