Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Santa Potty Mouth

I just heard something... curious... on the radio. There was a program on where listeners can call in and make complaints about whatever, and one woman told how her seven year old daughter had gone to sit on Santa's lap at the mall and asked him for a present for Christmas.

Before I tell you what Santa told the little girl, a teeny bit of background. Malls here are a big deal, people get dressed up to go to the mall, and far from finding bargains, everything there is generally much more expensive than in other places. They also stage these elaborate events to bring people in, like this extremely elaborate and absurdly premature Christmas tableau complete with the white bearded fat guy.

So Santa says to the little girl: "I'm sorry, I can't give you anything this year because I'm fudido. Go get something at the camelô." Translation: fudido means 'fucked,' but it's also slang for 'broke,' which is presumably what he meant. A camelô is someone who participates in the 'informal economy,' ie they sell pirated dvd's or really cheap plastic toys on the street. Although many many presents are bought this way, it doesn't quite have the romance of Santa's Workshop. He also told her not to tell her mommy what he said.

A couple things are weird about this story:

  1. The first one is obvious

  2. Even though the woman was indignant that Santa had said this to her little girl, who could have been "traumatized" by the experience, neither she nor the host had any problem saying fudido live on the radio- they must have said it twenty times. God forbid any seven year old kids might be listening! Or the Brazilian equivalent of the FCC!

  3. The third is I know exactly who this Santa Claus guy is. There aren't many people in Salvador who fit the Jolly Old Phenotype, at least not with a real beard. This same guy does Santa at the mall near our house, and I've got pictures of the kids sitting on his lap. Plus I just happened to see him at the mall in question on Saturday- maybe I witnessed him scandalizing this young child!


Pedra said...

Vilma and I were in Shopping Barra last weekend and saw the big Xmas display, complete with these giant singing dolls. I pointed out that it was ridiculous how the dolls sang that Papai Noel goes to the house of every child, rich and poor. They repeated this over and over. I´m sorry, but talk about giving false hope to kids. But then again I´m a big old cynic when it comes to Xmas.

AkuTyger said...

Oo oo, who's the santa?

markuza said...

Pedra- they used to have an electronic sax-playing Santa there that gyrated pretty wildly- Lucas used to be terrified of him.

AkuTyger- this was the santa at Shopping Barra- I've seen him at Shopping Lapa and my guess is he's got other gigs. Relatively short, yellowish white beard, red suit...