the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

The Miracle of Kew Garden Hills – The Final Chapter


(from The Miracle of Kew Garden Hills – Chapter Two) 

Nick took my mother’s other hand.

“Your mother and I are friends… ” he said.

“Very good friends…” added my mother.

It suddenly became real to me.   This was Santa Claus.  And Santa Claus was a horny older guy leering at my mother’s figure!

“Mom?”  I gasped.  ”Are you doing it with Santa Claus?!!”

“What kind of question is that to ask your mother?!” she answered.  “And I’m a adult.”

“But I’m shocked,” I stammered.

Nick laughed his “Ho Ho Ho.”

“How can someone who writes about his penis all the time be such a prude?” he joked.

“But, Mom?” I cried incredulously.  “What about Dad?  It’s only been 15 months since he passed away.”

“Your father would be the FIRST person to want me to date again.  Being over 65 is young today!” 

I began feeling dizzy.   My mother gave me her kindly smile.

“Think about every Christmas since you were a child.  What did your father do at Queens General Hospital?”

“He would dress as Santa and visit the children’s wing.”

“He was the funniest-looking Santa ever,” Nick added. “He was so skinny… and those Woody Allen glasses!  But he was the best!”

“So who better to take on as a lover…” said my mother, “than the REAL Santa Claus?!  Your father would be impressed!”

I turned towards Nick, still defiant.

“And what about you, Nick?  Aren’t you still married?”

“Technically, I am still married to Mrs. Claus.  But we are, uh, separated.  Although we still live near each other in the North Pole, and love each other, we can still date, but… it’s all very complicated.  I’m not sure if you can understand…”

“Oh, I can.  I can…”  I replied.

My mother took me by my arm and led me to the living room couch.  It was in perfect condition for an old couch because of the plastic that covered it for 30 years.

“Mom, are you sure you know what you are doing?” I asked.

“Is there anything wrong with Nick bringing some “joy” into my life?” she said.

I shook my head, confused.

“I don’t understand.  How did you and Santa… uh, Nick… meet?”

“At Shirley’s house.  It seems that Nick is quite a whiz at Mah-Jongg and came over for a game.”

Nick sat down across from us.

“My mother, Miriam Clausiwitz, god rest her soul, played Mah-Jongg every Tuesday when I was growing up in the Bronx.  I  can still hear the click of the tiles and the chattering of the women.  I even taught the elves how to play!  Oh, you should see some of their competitive tournaments!”

“My head is spinning” I said.

My mother gave me a hug.

“All is good, Neil.  The world is good, despite your bad experiences on the plane and the cab ride over here.  People ARE good.  We just forget to look at the positive side sometimes.  I don’t know if it will work out between Nick and I, but I’ve learned so much from him.”

“And I’ve learned so much from your mother.” said Nick.  “She’s a wonderful woman.  And so full of energy!   Be inspired by her, Neil.  It’s up to you and other wonderful bloggers to spread the joy throughout the blogosphere.” 

“You mean the Holiday Concert?  The Blogger Christmahanukwanzaakah Holiday Concert?”

“Yes, Neil!  The Holiday Concert on your blodge” said my mother, beaming with pride.

“It would be a mitzvah!” echoed Nick.

I could hear MUSIC coming from upstairs, but it wasn’t coming from the apartment upstairs.  The music was surrounding us.  It felt spiritual. 

“That music?” I said as I looked for the source.  “It sound so familiar.  It sounds like the soundtrack from “Gunga Din” my father’s favorite movie.”

“It is your father… !” said Nick. “From the beyond! 

My mother listened carefully, as if she understood. 

“I think Artie wants to say that he loves the Holiday concert idea.   It could be a Holiday tradition, just like when he used to dress up like Santa Claus at the hospital every year!”

Suddenly, I heard my father’s voice calling out to me.

“Go ahead, Neil.” he said.  “Make the announcement about the concert already!”

“And what about Mom and Santa Claus?  What should I do” I asked my father.  “Doesn’t it make you upset?  Doesn’t it make you jealous?”

“Nah.  If Elaine passed away first, you don’t think I would be shtupping other women by now?  Besides, what’s there to be jealous of?   Have you seen the tiny size of Santa Claus’ c**k?!”

“You are too funny, Dad.  I love you.”

“Go and put up the sign-up sheet,” he instructed me.  “The Holiday Season is upon us.  Let everyone “Be of Good Cheer!”

ANNOUNCING THE FIRST ANNUAL BLOGGER Christmahanukwanzaakah HOLIDAY CONCERT — December 20, 2006

(sign-up sheet coming later)



    You are a Holiday inspiration to us all!

  2. Leezer

    I love the story – ahem – recounting of your Father’s comments about Santa’s c**k left me with a visual I’d rather forget. But I am looking forward to the concert, and I will be signing up for some secular Bing Crosby music – a capela, of course.

  3. Neil

    I was surprised that my father said that. Frankly, I found it a little rude because I would never make fun of another man like that, especially someone who is respected in the community as much as Santa Claus. And there’s really no reason for Santa to feel insecure about things. I even told him that him carrying around that “bag of toys” on dates was calling too much attention to his performance anxiety, and was nothing more than a security blanket. His constant smoking of that smelly pipe is a bigger turn-off to women than anything else.

  4. Two Roads

    Neil, looks like you are creating your own You Tube. Do you have a name for this new endeavor?

  5. Becky

    I even told him that him carrying around that “bag of toys” on dates was calling too much attention to his performance anxiety, and was nothing more than a security blanket.

    OMG! That totally explains something I didn’t understand last Saturday night. Thanks! 😉

    My Thursday plans have fallen through, Neilochka, so I’m all yours. Going to start recording as soon as I’ve had a bite to eat.

  6. Jennifer

    I think I would be totally down with my mother dating Santa Claus in her old age. However, if my father starts dating elves? I’ll have serious issues.

    So, for this concert, you’re wanting, say, Madonna singing ‘Santa Baby’ (seemed appropriate) or original songs sung by actual bloggers recorded for all the world to cover their ears to (speaking for my own vocal lack of talent only)? I can play jingle bells on my cellphone keypad. Does that count?

  7. Mist 1

    I don’t have to get anything cut off for the blodge mitzvah, do I?

  8. Neil

    Jennifer — No it has to be a blogger doing the performing. That means even if you get your rock star husband to actually do the singing, you still need to play the tambourine in the background for the recording to be legit.

    And I’m thinking it might just be easier for everyone to post their recording right on their own site, rather than sending it to me — unless of course, they don’t want to. I will link to everyone who wants to participate.

  9. Erin

    I’m soooo ready…. Tim and I do a Holiday Album every year where we do all the music and singing. My version of Santa Baby is coming right up!

  10. Francesca (Stuntmother)

    My head is swimming with images of red and white underwear and aging women with perky elf hats and santa chuckling ho ho holy tree skirts, Batman.

    If I can figure out how to record something, I will join in.

    Not least because your NaBloPoHo comment nearly knocked me off my chair. Yeah baby. Once an hour. Because we’re not all obsessed enough yet.

  11. Pearl

    What?! Nobody picked up on Santa’s mom’s name, Miriam Clausiwitz? Nu, so that makes Santa a MOT. (member of the tribe)

    So is your Santa — um, I mean your mom’s Santa — the one from this poem?

  12. Caitlinator

    Dear Neil,

    I’m hearing something about a blogger holiday concert on your blog. I am assuming I need some technology I do not possess in order to participate. It’s too bad, really, as I am actually a quite accomplished musician (few people actually know this). But… if you could send Nick my way with the appropriate technology, I would love to participate in your holiday suaree. You know… since you have an “IN…”

  13. Neil

    The technology is very simple. You plug a cheapo microphone into the back of the computer. Windows even has a free recording software to use. If you don’t know how to cut it down afterwards (to take out pauses) I can do it for you. Don’t let technology keep you away!

  14. steppingoverthejunk

    you need to write a screenplay for Lifetime movie channel…(not ABCFamily)

  15. Churlita

    I’ve never wanted to think of Santa having a penis at all, let alone a small one. I now have a new Christmas image to carry with me all season. Thanks, Neil.

  16. Neil

    But he has a great personality.

  17. Dagny

    Sounds kind of like how my friends and I imagined Santa in high school. Of course, ours also wore a red fur Speedo.

  18. Michelle

    “I saw mommy kissing Santa Claus
    underneath the mistletoe last night…”

    Oh and I really didn’t need to know that little detail about Santa. It actually surprised me, because I always assumed sizes ran parallel. Small man = small c**k! Big = big, etc… lol

  19. 2nd Pearl Past the Post

    You, are an original one-and-only Neil.

  20. Heather B.

    I have every intention of breaking out the clarinet for this here project.

  21. Neil

    Michelle — a myth.

  22. sl

    My elderly mother who’s married to a shorter man told me that when God gives out penises, he hangs them on a rope and the men need to reach and get it. Therefore, the short men get much longer ones, God being so loving and accomodating and all…

  23. Michelle

    This is what I envisioned when you described your mother’s rendition of God’s penis giving. This is a Filipino cultural game, where treats are hung from a bamboo frame. When I played as a child, I never lucked out, because 1) I was short and 2) the frame was raised and lowered systematically. The things I could’ve grabbed when it was lowered, was already taken by the taller kids.

    Now that I think about it, this free-for-all grab game is quite sadistic. Parents basically dangled all these treats in front of us and must have taken pleasure in our futile attempts in trying to reach the unreachable.

    Long story short, I don’t understand how the short man would get the longer one… when the tall man can reach it without jumping? I’m boggled.

  24. Two Roads

    Ladies, men are biased. They all believe they have long ones and no man is going to tell you his is smaller than someone elses. So the myth is men can determine their own size. Not a chance. LOL

  25. Neil

    Uh, shouldn’t this discussion be focused on the Holiday Season?

  26. wendy

    Oprah had this doctor on…and he said that for every 25 pounds a man loses, he gains one inch to his penis…So if Santa went on a diet….

  27. Two Roads

    Neil, we are talking about the holiday season. What better present to receive than sex? Between now and the end of the year is when most people the most sex they have had all year long. All in the name of giving and receiving. In the spirit of all this giving and receiving, you have brought up an important discussion regarding a man’s penis size. Go with the flow…

  28. Neil

    Wendy — I’m no doctor. I only go to one for a checkup. But that is complete nonsense.

    Two Roads — Is that really true about the most sex during the Holiday Season? Because of the snow and cold weather and the huddling by the fireplace? Just my luck — living in Los Angeles…

    What is the blogging community like in Minnesota?

  29. Two Roads

    power outages

  30. Jakob

    It’s weird, though, that Santa says his wife lives on the North Pole. In my part of the world, everyone knows that The Yule Man lives in Greenland!

    The new Bond is the best! Ever!!

    I’m either pregnant, or I can’t stomach all that lovely Christmas beer. Both options are horrible, and at least one of them seems very unlikely.

    Why is it so difficult to gather the documents you need, when you have an appointment with your bank?

    I’m buying a digital piano today, a Casio, thank you, Japan, for loosing WW2!

  31. Corten

    I have every intention of breaking out the clarinet for this here project.

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