Letter to the Editor


Inuit Intelligencer

100 Ice cube Way

Longyearbyen, Norway 28804 Dec. 10, 2013

Dear Editor,

I read with some interest your probing article on the rising problem with baby seal droppings and am writing to say that I agree with you: cuteness doesn’t give them the right to just ignore common decency and leave their business wherever they feel like it. If a creature’s looks were a reason to excuse basic hygiene considerations we’d be opening the door to Miley Cyrus dropping her trousers every five seconds all over the planet. Oh wait—she already does that.

Why I’m really writing is I hope to bring to your readership more awareness to the plight of a segment of the Arctic Circle population that is over-worked, under-paid, and is forced to work in inexcusable conditions. That’s right: the Reindeer.

I know thereof where I speak because my name is Donner and I’m one of the handful of indentured servants of the CEO of Christmas, Inc.—Mr. Santa B. Claus. My fellow reindeer and I have endeavored to contact OSHA and the AFL-CIO about our complaints but as you know, the caribou faction organized a horrible campaign of misinformation against us last year and as such we don’t currently enjoy union representation.

That doesn’t change the fact that my brother reindeer and I have to endure 364 days of nothing but rat-a-tat-tat. That’s right, “I owe my soul to the company store” Remember that? Tennessee Ernie Ford. Sixteen Tons. “I owe my soul to the company store”. The elves are going rat-a-tat day and night because they have to pay off what they owe Mr. Claus, or rather what they owe him through his subsidiary, Kris Kringle Enterprises. We reindeer have exceptional hearing and I can’t tell you what hearing that slamming of hammers on wooden toys does to your well-being after hearing it day and night. Every day and night. Ever wonder why elves have pointy ears? It’s deflection. They’ve evolved their ears to drive those horrible sounds up-and-away and God bless ‘em. If I could have done that, perhaps I wouldn’t be writing you this letter.

Much has been said about the fact that we reindeers (and Mr. Claus) only work one day a year but not much consideration is given to how hard we work on that day. Let me tell you, flying all around the world is no walk in the park. Because of time considerations, we don’t even get the standard coffee breaks like other workers. You have to use the little reindeer’s room? Tough luck, buddy. We also don’t have insurance. I took a tumble off of a steepled house once that laid me up for weeks. I have recently looked into the provisions of Obamacare and that doesn’t look too promising—apparently even a Vet is beyond the reach of most reindeer. Hoof-and mouth disease is rampant.

I hope you publish this because I know most of your readers are unaware of the fact that we deer subsist on milk and cookies—stale milk and cookies, all year round. You think that bag of goodies comes back to the North Pole empty? Think again. Mr. Claus is so tight that he won’t even spring for reindeer kibble. He just piles up the milk and cookies from each house and doles them out day-by-day. If we happen to get lucky and get a good strudel from some house in Germany, Claus keeps it for himself. Another problem is his sobriety. 364 days a year it’s eggnog, eggnog, eggnog. You think those jolly, rosy cheeks are from one night out in the cold air? Just look at the man—there’s a lot of calories in eggnog!

We reindeer are further hampered by the fact that the major nations of the world can’t agree on who owns the Arctic Circle. Can we complain to the Danes? No. Can we complain to Canada? Forget about it—they’re too busy trying to decide if they’re speaking in English or French. You ever order hash browns at a diner in Canada? You get something called “Pomme Frites”—which are just French fries…excuse me, FREEDOM fries. I wish I could say that Russia has been more communicative about our reindeer rights but apparently their one outhouse has backed up and their one plumber is “sick with the flu”. Yeah, right. Sick with the “Vodka” flu!

Anyhow, another Christmas is bearing down on us and the thought of having to have my nose pressed into Blitzen’s butt for 24 hours is severely depressing. Please inform your readers that they can make a difference—support your local Eskimo representative, the one that champions not just caribou rights, but ALL quadruped rights, and for God’s sake, mix in a little pizza with those milk and cookies…Okay?

No anchovies, please.

A concerned reader,


#1 North Pole Place

Arctic Circle, Top-of-the-world Ma! “Top-of the-world.”


An Essay by Daryl Buckner

Darylbuckner copyright© 2013

All rights reserved

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