Dear Mom,

Greetings from the North Pole!  Today is the eighth day of my visit with Santa Claus, and despite what the old songs may say, all is not as joyous as it seems here.

Every day, I am forced to bathe in reindeer urine.  Santa says this helps "scare the evil spirits away."  He will then swat at the air for 5 minutes, mumbling to himself.  I think all the seclusion gets to him sometimes.

Santa's diet is very poor.  I am afraid he has an eating disorder.  I learned that he stays around 225 for most of the year, and in November, he begins eating nothing but bacon fat and pancakes.  He also drinks maple syrup mixed with weight gain powder, around a gallon a day.  His running joke is that he's "Carb-ho-ho-ho-loading;" I tell him his heart is going to "expl-ho-ho-ho-de."

Sometimes, I walk in on Santa in a room by himself, crying for no reason at all, pulling individual hairs out of his beard.  When I ask him what's wrong, he just repeats, over and over "the naughties, the naughties, the naughties…"  I've learned to avoid him when he gets like that.

On the plus side, the elves have taught me how to hunt for puffins.  You know them as penguins!  We saw the penguin from that movie "Happy Feet" the other day.  I ran it down and pulled its head off with my bare hands, as is the tradition in the puffin hunt!  I have become very strong since visiting here.

Well, I need to get back to the workshop; today, I'm inspecting the conditions of the elves on the floor.  I've heard horror stories of foremen forcing the floor elves to defecate where they stand instead of going to the bathroom.  On the bright side, elves actually poop candy canes, so tasty butt treats for everyone!

Also, please be warned: if Santa sees you when you're sleeping, he is probably "stroking his beard."  I've been awakened to that several times over my time here.  When caught, he will just say "Oh, little elf, I must have been sleepwalking!  Go back to sleep!"

I will be home, hopefully, very soon.

Love,
Your Son,
That's Not Phil,

Matthew