The Night Feed
, Posted on 12/23/2013 by
Okay. It’s time to get real here. Elf on the Shelf is the stupidest thing I’ve ever seen or heard of.
This was not a tradition while I was growing up. (That said, I come from a family that doesn’t have any Christmas traditions other than drinking too much and… drinking too much, so.) In fact, I had never even heard of this dumb thing until about a year ago. Apparently it’s a “Christmas tradition” that was created in 2005, which is already dumb. You can’t just make something up and then call it a tradition. You have to do it for a long time and then someone else calls it a tradition. So first off, the creators of the Elf on the Shelf don’t even know how traditions work.
Secondly, the entire idea is just stupid. Santa is supposed to be all-knowing. He sees you when you’re sleeping and knows when you’re awake, right? So why does he have to send a twelve-inch tall elf to your house to spy on you? And the fact that this is being used as behavior modification for kids – “Clean your room, the elf on the shelf is watching!” – really? Like, if Santa isn’t enough motivation for your kids to get their acts together for the month of December, this stupid elf certainly won’t be.
Also, parents hate it. Seriously, this article from the Colorado Springs Gazette pretty much sums it up:
"The elf is the bane of my December," said [Meagan B. Murphy]. "Her name is Arielle. She wears a Target-exclusive sparkly tutu that cost like 15 bucks. She has two. I can barely remember to brush my teeth, let alone hide her nightly or do an outfit change."
Come on, parents. You don’t have to do this. May I suggest switching it out for one of my family’s vaunted traditions, like “Eating all the chocolate in the advent calendar on December 3rd” or “Forgetting to put up the tree until the 23rd of December and then just going out and buying a shrub to stick in one corner of the living room until March”? I assure you, they’re much more low-energy.
Liz / @lizbelsky