Letters From Santa
This is my second year participating in BGG Secret Santa. Last year, it was quite amusing to read some of the taunts people received from their Santa. Has anyone gotten any good taunts this year? Please feel free to post them, as it's fun to see just how creative/evil/funny/clever our fellow Secret Santas can be!
My Secret Santa/Hannukah Harry/Kwanzaa Kweli is a devious fellow with evil inclinations--I love it!
Now I understand your interesting wishlist.
From your interests, I see why you would like to have:
CASH AND GUNS, Lord of the Fries, Tom Clancy's Politika,
Scene It? – TV, Monopoly - NASCAR, and Monkey Auto Races.
Hard to pick from such good games….
I got the gift, and then this amazing follow-up email:
+++++++ FASTEST PRESENT TO PLAYING EVER!
It is extremely satisfying when a present is really welcomed and used, not just relegated to a dusty shelf. But Tommynomad must win the prize for putting a game to use.
From being just a twinkle in Santa’s eye, to ordering, wrapping, pickup (by Tommy), to his apartment, to opening, to the game table was less than 24 hours; a record!
From my perspective it unfolded like this (via minute-by-minute emails):
1. Ask the local New Zealand FLGS owner to prepare Stone Age for pickup,
2. She wraps it (with a note) and calls Tommy (like a good elf),
3. He quickly rides his bike there (doesn’t believe in car ownership),
4. Before I (Santa) can type up my question asking if he will wait to open it, I see his Thank You on this thread.
5. Then looking at his profile, I see that he has already recorded a play; no two plays!
6. The next day, he even has yet another play; glad he likes Stone Age as much as I do.
Glad Stone Age was at the top of his wishlist; it gets better with each play, as long you realize it all about the cards (not simply a race for farming, tool technology, reproducing, hut building, etc.) I imagine Tommy’s look on opening it was something like this:
So it looks like my Chanukah Harry and I set some kind of record: how cool is that?
North Star Games designs party games that don't suck! Play them with your non-gamer friends over the holidays.
First there was Hearts, then there was Spades, and now we bring you Clubs. The suit of clubs finally gets some respect!
I guess this is a taunt. A cryptic sort of taunt. If nothing else, it made me look up herpetologist on Dictionary.com. (no I'm not going to tell you. Look it up yourself!)
Ho ho hey hi, there Dominic,
This is Timothy the elf. Well, elf, yeah, but what I really want to be is a herpetologist. Did you know that even though lizards are cold blooded they can be quite warm-hearted and donate to charities every year?
Oh, right. Sorry, Rudolph wants to use the computer, so I'll just quickly get to the point.
I've checked your list. You've been nice. So, I checked with our world wide distribution centers and the best place we can ship your Christmas present from is Noble Knight in Californ i a .
Watch your mailbox. I predict their slow non-sled system will get the box to you in 2 weeks or less.
Timothy the one day herpetologist.
And a few days later, I recevied this letter...
Hey hidey ho there Dominic,
Rudolph can't stop laughing at me. I didn't get the joke till today. It seems that Santa's moved Noble Knight Games to Wisconsin from California ages ago -- I guess he thought they'd feel more like the North Pole there.
What do I know? So your present should arrive to the great M D by yesterday. Good news for you. A bit weird for me. Sorry for the slip up. Sometimes I'm as smart as an iguana, but lately I'm as dumb as a gecko. Heh, really! A gecko as a spokesman for Geico! What a silly idea!
Back to the Naughty and Nice list. I'm up to the F's. I know Santa takes all the credit for the original paper list, but since we've gone digital, the database takes all us elves almost all of November to update the info before the big guy can select and click.
Yeah, yeah, Dancer wants to play Halo.
Enjoy your holidays with the family and all,
... and guess what! My doorbell rang this morning, and a little elf left me a BIG package! :-)
Thanks Santa for the tantalizing trail of clues:
1. "shipped to this address"
2. references to my/our fave CCG
3. reference to a 'similarity in microbadges'
4. a Geekbuddy in common
-->The clues were puzzling enough that the first/obvious guess for each wasn't it, but each clue was logically put together and rewarded some basic Geek-tective work.
I missed the taunting last year (I got a late 'mini-taunt'), but I REALLY enjoyed a good full-blown taunt. The games are merely a bonus
oops: Edited the original post
No, you're not tangamonkey, but you're the greatest
30° 12′ 38″ N, 95° 45′ 2″ W
You can't rob Peter, Paul and Mary to pay yourself.
Here's the message I got.
Long ranks of soldiers, laden and bedecked
For battle, as a hundred times before,
Await the sunrise as their lords inspect
The forces they will shortly lead to war.
From Eleusina, Athens, Marathon,
For leagues these numbers marched as one to here;
As those dark cities watch for distant dawn,
Their soldiers wait without noblesse or fear.
But in this clash no drop of blood will spill
As cards, not arrows, rain down from the sky;
No lives are lost as leaders test their skill,
And beaten soldiers rest, but never die.
They rest e'en now, in boxes numbered four.
Thou hast thy clues; what games will reach thy door?
And I think I know what it is. If I'm right, I'll probably faint from excitement. But whatever it is, I know my Santa is generous and kind.
Update: Well, my first guess was incorrect. So my SS sent this:
Thy guess, though keen, is slightly off the mark,
Though now 'tis I who feel as though I missed
My aim. My arrows, aimèd in the dark,
Instead struck targets higher on thy list.
So while I hope thy gifts will bring thee joy,
There is no need excitedly to faint;
Though I am loath thy pleasure to destroy,
I'll tell thee this much - C&C it ain't.
Through cryptic clues and subtleties of phrase,
My letter all but gave to thee the names;
And so, 'til they arrive in some few days,
I charge again - identify thy games!
Though no prize waits for naming every one,
I hope you'll find the puzzle to be fun.
Santa, your poesy is as sharp
As a Spear that Shakes
My excitement is not abated
It seems the ground quakes.
Is it the FedEx truck
Bringing joy to my door?
Or my nerves as I wait?
God, give me patience, I implore!
But I can be patient,
A Battle Line I will draw,
As I wait in my Citadel,
With my Alchemist, my Queen, and all.
Santa, my guess may or may not be true,
As your clues I unlock.
But, I know one thing's for sure:
YOU... REALLY... ROCK!
Board Game: Infinity
[Average Rating:5.50 Unranked]
Here's what I was sent via Geekmail:
Santa's been busy doing some homework. You kind of have to when some good "Little
" boy already has over 600 games in his collection. I mean, how is an old fogey like me supposed to live up to that kind of pressure? To find the perfect gift, the perfect game - it's stressful! I'd love to at least make it to see next Christmas without that kind of pressure, or to the next and the next, and to all Christmases "Beyond Infinity
"! I'm sweatin' here up North! I just can't take it!
Jason, this just may be the task that breaks Santa's sleigh - Santa is really considering a career change. Maybe Janeane Garofolo
was right; a movie trailer announcer sounds MUCH more entertaining.
Santa, for now
PS: I HAVE been shopping...
Then after posting on another thread how much I loved this feature, I got this follow-up, cryptic and thoroughly be-frazzling note:
muuhaaaah ha ha ha!
I mean, HO HO HO! Glad to see you liked the message.
But I've been doing a lot of thinking in the past few days. At my age, I can't take this so seriously. It's kind of like that guy said, in that song, for that show: "I should really just relax
". You should know a little
bit about that, afterall...don't the Best Brains
live in Eden Prairie? (I should know a little about that too....)
On that note, this is me, Big McLargeHuge (aka: Santa) signing off for now. You can reply you know, it does get lonely out here, somewhere in time and space
PS: You could learn a lot from your #3 episode.
Santa - pudgy old codger with a big heart? Or new age cyber-stalker? I can't decide!
If your orange juice doesn't burn on the way down, then you need more vodka!
A parcel is on its way to you! I hope you enjoy your present. Note, the item(s) inside are not gift-wrapped, so if you want to save the surprise until Christmas, I recommend not opening the box.
Interestingly, you and I share something in common that no one else on BGG does. A hint may be in the package, if all goes well. Shoot me a GeekMail (the real me, not this account) containing our secret connection, if you make it!
H0H 0H0! o>
Not sure if I can send Santa a GM if I don't know who they are but I am assuming our "common link" might be racing You never know
I am excited to say the least.
Hey there polk.
I've looked through your wishlist, and through your games collection, and there are two games that seem to be missing that I'm sure you would just love. So Santa will be delivering them to you very soon.
My Secret Santa sent me this, wasn't sure what the numbers meant at first (I read it just after waking up, was a bit slow) but about an hour later out of the blue it hit me. They were numbers corresponding to games in the BGG archive, so I looked them up & what did I find? Monopoly & The Game of Life! I must have been a very bad boy this year indeed.
Board Game: Snowblind
[Average Rating:6.31 Unranked]
My Santa is FAST. I haven't even had time to start Cyberstalking my target, and I get this:
Santa here, now that the lake effect snow has started to fall (somewhat familiar with that myself). You seem a very busy gamer indeed! A wide and varied collection, a huge wishlist, a gaming family, a regular gaming group, and convention organizer to boot (and that's a lot of hard work)! I am impressed.
Such gaming diligence should be rewarded. But what to choose, what to choose, so many options. Well, I imagine I can come up with something, the gaming elves will have just the thing I'm sure.
Hmm, that looks good, yes, that should do fine! And just like that, the elves have their instructions, now to just let them get to work packing and shipping. With luck, you should be receiving a package shortly.
Your Secret Santa
Well, despite the snow I made it home from work just fine tonight. And now I get to start shopping internationally for my target. I'm going to have fun this year!
I got a cryptic message with a bit of Nietzschean ethics thrown in:
Subject: According to the List...
..you've been both naughty and nice this year.
As moral ambiguity is a common feature of the human condition, you shall not be denied a gift. To be honest, the naughty/nice dichotomy was created to coerce impressionable children into unquestioning obedience. Evidence has repeatedly shown that appealing to base desires is an effective method for influencing behavior.
But enough about theories of social conditioning from the North Pole; just do your best to show love for the people around you. And if you feel up to it, extend that sentiment as far as possible to as many people as you can.
That is all this Santa will ask of you.
ps Still sees when you are asleep. And knows when you are awake. The Santa does.
Being more of a Foucauldian myself, I find the whole reference to moral ambiguity moot, but amusing nontheless...
My avatar is from the chilren's game Monster Mash
My santa is really playing the game "à fond"!
Here are the messages he sent me:
Subject: The North Pole
Tis the Season!
General Post: The North Pole Reindeer have been assigned to take care of all boardgame geek orders!
The reindeers have gladly accepted this assignment and you should be receiving further communications as processing continues.
The reindeer will offer you the utmost care and service for your Christmas needs. Forward any questions to the North Pole.
Fa La La,
Secret Santa Center
This message may be monitored for quality assurance.
Just wanted to let you know you're on the list.
You and hundreds of others!
Santa's an ass!
He just woke me up to say we have been assigned to work on a large order of boardgames...can't a raindeer get a descent drink around here!
Anyway, what I'm trying to say...
This is supposed to be a job for the elves...but NOooooo they're to busy to process...what the....
On the 25th all the elves do around here is sit around drinking eggnog and hot cocoa...you think they do any work!?!
While we're freaking flying around...flying all night!!!
Anyway, I'm looking out for you.
I don't know why...you're still on the naughty list!
You better shape up....
Santa's a softy...but I'm not delivering anything I don't have too!
Subject: The North Pole
Tis the season,
The Secret Santa Security Center would like to offer a formal apology for any less than Christmas messages sent, and any poor reindeer behavior. Any verbal abuse or threats made to you or your person are being handled with the greatest of care here at the North Pole. We would like to assure you that your Christmas will be merry and full of cheer! Please send any questions or comments to the North Pole!
Fa La La,
Secret Santa Center
This message may be monitored for quality assurance.
Subject: Holiday Cheer
Just dropping you a quick line to say your order is on the rush rush! Here at the North Pole we don’t like to delay! All of the other reindeer and I have been checking your wishlist and see many fine selections. Vixen and I have play tested a few of the games you have selected and are ready to make our recommendations to the big guy!
Subject: Xmas Love Machine
Hey Choubi...man...you know what?
I is gonna get you the game you want! You know what I mean...man!
That’s right baby, you is gonna have one helluva good Xmas...baby!
You and your honey’s gonna be able to play all night!
Boardgames ain’t no geek thang...no they is the ticket to love...L.O.V.E...you know it!
Be patient, be patient...I’ll get too it!
You know good things come to those who wait...ha HA!
I love my santa already!
Not a lot of clues though... I wonder who you are Cupid, Blitzen, Comet...
Board Game: Arkham Horror
[Average Rating:7.32 Overall Rank:237]
[Average Rating:7.32 Unranked]
ZOMG, he has me scared to open my mailbox!!
It was the Yuletide, that men call Christmas though they know in their hearts it is older than Bethlehem and Babylon, older than Memphis and mankind.
Ah, Will. If only you knew what horrors would be unleashed when you signed up for the 2008 Secret Santa. The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. Consider what we know of this 'Santa'. Older than memory, never dying, he makes his abode in the frozen wastes of the farthest North. "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn." - did you really think R'lyeh was in the Pacific? Look a little further north...Santa may not be the benevolent gift-giver we think he is...
Your part to play in these horrors will arrive soon, provided the package is not intercepted by the Elder Gods. Just remember - Do not open until Christmas - Prying curiosity means death.
Best S'antah letter evar!
As a matter of fact, I AM the boss of you.
My Santa has told me that my game has to travel "roughly 4500 miles." A bit of tinkering with Google Earth suggests that my present might be coming from any of:
...or, for that matter, Hawaii. (Guinea-Bissau and Mauritania are also options, but I can't find any BGG users from either, so we'll leave them off the list for the moment.) However, given that the title of Santa's email was "Greetings from a land of gaming," I think the most likely point of origin is Germany.
Not that that tells me anything at all...but hey, that's why they call it a taunt, right? Regardless, thank you Santa for making such a long journey for li'l ol' me!
Here's what I got in my Mailbox:
Hey, TMJJS --
As soon as I received your name as my target, I immediately perused your wish list. Oh my, such a list! Stupendous, humongous, over-whelming, too much, too much!! I couldn’t comprehend it all -- brain lock!!! I had to tear myself away from the enormity of it all. How could I possibly select a game from such a list? It was impossible.
I thought about it for a while and decided maybe I should just select a random game from an online store and send it to you. But, then, I thought that I probably would duplicate a game you already own, and that list is so large that I didn’t want to hurt my brain further by studying it.
Finally, a brainstorm! To be sure I don’t duplicate a game you already have, I’ll send you a game I invented (but haven’t published). What a great idea! And, since it has no components -- just rules -- I can send it for 42 cents in shipping costs. Oh, yes, this is brilliant. I know you will be most pleased with your gift, which will be on its way to you very soon.
Aren’t you thrilled with this decision? I’m so happy for you! Merry Christmas!!!
Your BGG Secret Santa
I am contacting you in regard to an mysterious oversight found in our
Warehouse. Apparently we have found 2 packages awaiting delivery to your exact location. We really don't have any time to determine whether this is a mistake or not so it looks like good and bad little boys and girls get presents this year! They should be arriving this week and we hope you have a very MERRY CHRISTMAS!!
I will confess that it took me 3 read throughs to finally catch the Mississippi tease.
100 Years of Coast Guard Aviation!
Thoughtful and funny...
Merry Christmas Andy!
I have looked over your list for christmas this year, and it looks like you have some nice things on it! But I was wondering if maybe you left some things off that would be a bit more practical, you know, some waterproof underwear or maybe some rubber ducky floats for the kiddo. I know lets just skip the games all together and I will get some nice things for your dogs!
Ok, well maybe one game for you, since you only own 23. I mean really.
MERRY CHRISTMAS ANDY!!!
The big man wanted me to touch base with ya 'bout your gift. We're all busy doing lots 'o research to determine the bestest gift to get ya this Christmas. Well gotta go, time is a wastin'
Flin, Head of Research & Development
My Santa appears to come from New York.... or at least the elf that I have been assigned does.
Mine is a sadistic, and I'm having a ball!
Today you'll get my reply, Santa!
I sat outside your porch yesterday night. No cachaça.
All the games I had planned for you... And now you deceive me.
Our relationship is off to a rocky start.
Let me put on those glasses, now, where's your wish list... Let's see:
My ass is green, but I don't let it worry me.
So my Santa has been quick off the mark with this rather cryptic concoction:
now i don't hope you're expecting a nice santa thhis year!
this santa will bang you out of your chair, that i'll promise
of course i've seen your whishlist
have you ever looked at mine????
maybe, if you're still "alive" at christmas...
i will admitt you're a good gamer and give you a little present... maybe
har har har haaaar
You know, add a splash of colour and it could be GROGnads...
Yeah it's here! Really it's right here.
I'm still trying to translate mine. Babelfish seems to be having trouble too!
Twas the night before Christmas an' all t'ru de house,
Dey don't a ting pass Not even a mouse.
De chirren been nezzle good snug on de flo',
An' Mama pass de pepper t'ru de crack on de do'.
De Mama in de fireplace done roas' up de ham,
Sit up de gumbo an' make de bake yam.
Den out on de by-you dey got such a clatter,
Make soun' like old Boudreau done fall off his ladder.
I run like a rabbit to got to de do',
Trip over de dorg an' fall on de flo'.
As I look out de do'in de light o' de moon,
I t'ink, "Mahn, you crazy or got ol' too soon."
Cux dere on de by-you w'en I stretch ma'neck stiff,
Dere's eight alligator a pullin' de skiff.
An' a little fat drover wit' a long pole-ing stick,
I know r'at away got to be ole St.Nick.
Mo' fas'er an' fas'er de' gator dey came
He whistle an' holler an' call dem by name:
"Ha, Gaston! Ha, Tiboy! Ha, Pierre an' Alcee'!
Gee, Ninette! Gee, Suzette! Celeste an'Renee'!
To de top o' de porch to de top o' de wall,
Make crawl, alligator, an' be sho' you don' fall."
Like Tante Flo's cat t'ru de treetop he fly,
W'en de big ole houn' dorg come a run hisse's by.
Like dat up de porch dem ole 'gator clim!
Wit' de skiff full o' toy an' St. Nicklus behin'.
Den on top de porch roof it soun' like de hail,
W'en all dem big gator, done sot down dey tail.
Den down de chimney I yell wit' a bam,
An' St.Nicklus fall an' sit on de yam.
"Sacre!" he axclaim, "Ma pant got a hole
I done sot ma'se'f on dem red hot coal."
He got on his foots an' jump like de cat
Out to de flo' where he lan' wit' a SPLAT!
He was dress in musk-rat from his head to his foot,
An' his clothes is all dirty wit' ashes an' soot.
A sack full o' playt'ing he t'row on his back,
He look like a burglar an' dass fo' a fack.
His eyes how dey shine his dimple, how merry!
Maybe he been drink de wine from de blackberry.
His cheek was like a rose his nose a cherry,
On secon' t'ought maybe he lap up de sherry.
Wit' snow-white chin whisker an' quiverin' belly,
He shook w'en he laugh like de stromberry jelly!
But a wink in his eye an' a shook o' his head,
Make my confi-dence dat I don't got to be scared.
He don' do no talkin' gone strit to hi work,
Put a playt'ing in sock an' den turn wit' a jerk.
He put bot' his han' dere on top o' his head,
Cas' an eye on de chimney an' den he done said:
"Wit' all o' dat fire an' dem burnin' hot flame,
Me I ain' goin' back by de way dat I came."
So he run out de do' an, he clim' to de roof,
He ain' no fool, him for to make one more goof.
He jump in his skiff an' crack his big whip,
De' gator move down, An don' make one slip.
An' I hear him shout loud as a splashin' he go,
"Merry Christmas to all 'til I saw you some mo'!"
To my dearest kyrasantae,
No need to worry, no not one bit!
Santa is here and didn't forget!
I hope you've been a good girl this year,
Because Santa is here to spread some cheer!
So sit back relax and pull up a chair,
And warm yourself by the fire, just don't singe your hair!
Santa is just waiting for his check to come,
To buy you a gift that's better than gum!
So if you think, "Why isn't it here?"
Just you wait my quaint little dear!
So go have fun at work and play,
And remember to spread the cheer everyday!
(PS- I am watching!)
Uhoh, Santa's on a budget crunch!
My Santa started things off pretty innocuously:
Santa is very busy this year, checking lists and checking them twice.
It's a crazy time here at the North Pole. I hope you've been a good boy. So since the elves are busy making some games, have you made sure your list is up to date?
here's to hoping you've been good (coal is worth a lot in these economic times, you know).
Hope you are in the holiday spirit.
But quickly, things took a turn for the sinister...
I am very sorry to have to tell you this but Santa ain't goin' nowhere this year. We have been able to hack our way into his computer system and we will derail all the gifts this season. All the old man had for protection was a couple of snowmen keeping watch.
HA! We got them quickly. What? You don't believe me?
Fine, I'll send proof. Just hope you don't get sick over it.
Next stage is getting past those dumb reindeer that is blocking the front door to the North Pole main house. A little bit of candy should take care of that and then...we get the big man himself and WE get to keep all the games for ourselves. He he he. Merry Christmas!
I'll sign this as the Uber Santa. I kinda like that.
(Continued in Comments)
I was lucky enough to get a little heads up from Santa. Looking forward to more hints.
Lucky we both live near the North Pole. I have kept an eye on you this year and understand you are deserving of more than one gift.
Hint #1: Although you and Santa (me) live in Canada, your gifts are from other countries.....
Talk to you soon,
Woe is me! I have received no taunting from Santa. Is it too much to ask for? Even just a little note about how much coal I am going to get this year?
On the other hand, I did speak with an elf on the inside, and got him to send a letter out for me!
Santa found your name on the nice list, and says good things come in threes. Your presents will be leaving the north pole this week.
This sounds like I will have 3 presents, but it could be referring to the fact that I rated every game on my list a '3'. Maybe Santa just enjoyed my list...
That's Karl on the left. Eternity on the right.
I love Melissa, but don't tell her. It's a secret if she can find this. Shhhhh....
My Santa is going postal and keeps threatening the elves!
I'm really happy with the service so far! Really I am! Please don't sack anyone!
PS. I wouldn't be surprised if we get a work action against that despot!