The One Where We Quarantined: A Very COVID Christmas

a stocking full or cleaning supplies

COVID appropriate Chritsmas stocking / Photographer: Sofia Fleming

The coronavirus pandemic has caused changes across the globe, and the North Pole is no exception. Despite the cancellation of many other holidays, Santa and Mrs. Claus refuse to call off Christmas. “Think of the poor children. They need Christmas cheer more than ever,” said Mrs. Claus during a press conference on the issue. The Clauses assured their listeners that while production will continue, they will do everything they can to keep all North Pole inhabitants healthy and safe.

Following the recommended guidelines, elves are encouraged to take their projects home, as long as they properly sanitize all outgoing toys. Those working on toy production assembly lines are required to stand at least six feet apart and wear clean gloves at all times. Mrs. Claus has been working nonstop to make handmade masks for each and every North Pole employee. “Our tall ears make mask-wearing very easy, and Mrs. Claus uses very festive fabrics. We have weekly fashion shows, and take pride in matching our masks with our curly-toed shoes and pointy hats,” said one elf when questioned about the public’s opinion on these new protocols.

In lieu of current events, Santa has decided to adjust his regular gift-giving procedure. Ever the environmentalist, he has been trying to find a good replacement for lumps of coal for decades, and 2020 has given him the perfect opportunity. This year, bad children will receive only empty toilet paper rolls and foully scented hand sanitizer. For good children, he will gift free zoom subscriptions and blue-light glasses.

Even humans have swayed from their normal gift requests. The tin can telephone, a present not requested in decades, has made a remarkable comeback. An unforeseen increase in requests for zorb balls and walkie-talkies have elves working overtime. To keep their spirits up, assembly line elves have taken to singing classic carols such as “All I Want For Christmas is a Vaccine”, “I Saw Mommy Zooming Santa Claus”, “There’s No Place Like Home For The Foreseeable Future”, and “The 14 Pre-Symptomatic Days of Infection”. A special task force has been assigned to finding a vaccine for the virus, but has been unsuccessful so far. “We have tried everything! Crushed candy cane, maple ‘cough’ syrup, purple sprinkles, even the orange bits on the bottom of candy corn. Nothing works,” said Jolly McJingles, icicle wound specialist and leader of the COVID task force. Despite their inexperience, McJingles is optimistic his team will find a cure before next Christmas.

As the main event approaches, Santa and his team are making the final preparations for his annual flight. Due to multiple reports of Rudolf having a slight cough and a suspiciously red nose, he is in quarantine and sadly will not be able to lead the other reindeer. To replace this loss, a state of the art GPS system has been added to Santa’s sleigh. Mrs. Claus has also knitted four dozen new pairs of gloves for Santa so he can switch should any become too dirty. Despite all the precautions the North Pole is taking, it is recommended that humans take some extra care in their preparation for Christmas Eve as well. The Clauses ask you to please leave any living room windows all the way open for optimal airflow, and to not enter the room for three hours before or after midnight. Santa also regretfully asks that you only provide sealed store-bought cookies and unopened cartons of milk. If you want to leave the reindeer a treat as well, packaged baby carrots are the best option. Instead of mailing your Christmas list to the North Pole, Santa requests that you call him at (951) 262-3062 or email him at

In the midst of this year’s turmoil, Santa, Mrs. Claus, and all the North Pole staff hope that this Christmas season will bring the world some much needed holiday cheer. And so, in the words of Santa himself, “Merry Christmas!”

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