Skip to comments.Suds for Santa: Historically, St. Nick has been linked to drink
Posted on 12/21/2009 10:33:51 PM PST by pissant
WHAT WOULD Santa drink?
Listen, kids, contrary to the tales Mom and Dad told you, Father Christmas did not get that round belly and red nose from gulping down glasses of skim milk. Not to destroy your innocent visions of sugar plums and candy canes, but when it comes to treats on a long winter's night, if it's all the same to you, Santa Claus would rather have a beer.
Sacrilege, you say? The very symbol of childhood innocence guzzling alcohol? What's next, Frosty the Snowman doing Jell-O shots?
In fact, from the very beginning, Santa Claus was a man of drink.
His alter ego is Nicholas of Myra, a fourth-century Turkish do-gooder who was venerated as St. Nicholas, the ancient patron of assorted riffraff, including prostitutes, lawyers and, yes, brewers.
St. Nick eventually morphed into Santa Claus, the fat, jolly, pipe-smoking elf popularized by Clement Moore's "A Visit from St. Nicholas." Shortly after Thomas Nast illustrated Santa's image for Harpers Weekly in 1863, advertisers began using him to shill everything, from shoes to cigars to, yes, suds.
In 1900, one magazine advertisement proclaimed, "Wherever children look for Santa Claus, Schlitz beer is known as the standard." Around the same time, Consumers Brewing assured drinkers in newspaper ads that, while "Santa Claus himself is reluctant to give away our beer . . . we have plenty to go 'round."
And so it went, from the Clydesdales pulling a sleigh full of Budweiser to Spuds Mackenzie dressed in a red Santa suit.
Not surprisingly, nannies and prohibitionists condemned those who suggested that Santa (a legal adult) had a taste for intoxicants.
In the 1930s, following the Prohibition, the Women's Christian Temperance Union campaigned to outlaw the use of his red-suited image in booze ads.
(Excerpt) Read more at philly.com ...
There were no Turks in Anatolia until the eleventh century AD.
He’s a beer writer, so we have to cut him a bit of slack.
My favorite Santa Claus story happened a the Council of Nicea. Jolly old St. Nick encountered heresiarch Arius in the halls — and beat the cr@p out of him. Physically assaulted the man. A true shepherd who loved his flock — and had a vigorous response to the human predators who would destroy them.
Alton Brown’s Good Eats Eggnog:
That’s certainly one way to solve complex issues of Christology. It would certainly make the fundamentalist/Catholic/Orthodox/Mormon flame wars on FR more entertaining if we could dress them all up as Santa Claus and force them to fight.
It's reminiscent of the infamous "Jesus vs. Santa" thing form Spike and Mike's Twisted Film Festical. A bloody fight to the near death, IIRC.
I, in turn, hope to instill a love of dark beer into my sons as well.
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