I remember the chill in the house when my brothers and I woke up one Christmas morning. We rushed to open our presents. We always had to take turns, which was the greatest injustice of all kiddom, but my parents wanted the joy of opening gifts to last and last.
When paper littered the floor and every present was undone, we surveyed our piles of loot. My brothers racked up all kinds of toys, including an incredible Castle Grayskull, which everyone knows is a fortress of mystery and power for He-Man and his foes.
I got a fancy doll and a bunch of books. I cried with jealousy. Santa failed me.
What a little jerk I was.
Thankfully my parents didn't kick me out of the family right then and there, and thankfully my brothers begrudgingly let my Barbies visit Castle Grayskull.
I remembered the controversy of the year I like to call â€œA Very He-Man Christmasâ€ while reading children's letters to Santa this week. The letters were collected in Santa's Official Mailbox, which is next to the SandRidge Energy Christmas tree downtown.
What do kids this year want â€” Castle Grayskull, fancy dolls, books?
They want animals.
More than half the letters to Santa requested Zhu Zhu pets. One little girl uses subliminal messaging to ask for hers: â€œDear Santa, have I been good? I want zhuzhu pat I have been good. Love you Santaâ€
Another big one is Pillow Pets, which are pillows with a stuffed animal face that you can fold in half. I thought they were hokey, but apparently they're the greatest thing since Tickle Me Elmo. â€œMake it a lady bug,â€ one girl wrote. Whoever came up with them is a genius. A genius who loves napping and getting rich.
Only a few kids asked for real pets. One girl neatly printed her only two requests:
Dear Santa, I have been a very good Girl this year. I want a german shepherd for Chrismas. I also want a piano.
One child requested another kind of animal. This is one of my favorite letters:
Dear Santa, Can you please bring me a shark and a baby doll and a stroller and a pillow and a camera?
This kid has plans to film a horror movie. I know it. It sounds much better than â€œJaws.â€
One girl wrote this:
Dear Santa, I would like a for Real Dog it is on the TV with a leash.
There's a dog leashed to her television. Santa also will bring animal welfare down the chimney when he goes to her house.
I wondered if all of these children will get their wishes fulfilled. Probably many will get the stuffed animals or toys they requested. The child who asked for the shark might be disappointed. But maybe Santa will make up for it by leaving a Castle Grayskull under the tree.
Editor's note: Carrie left the letters' spelling, punctuation and grammar as is. Read her second column with more children's letters to Santa in the Saturday edition of The Oklahoman.
Santa's Official Mailbox is open for letter delivery throughout the holidays in downtown Oklahoma City. Deliveries are accepted any time at the mailbox, which is next to the SandRidge Christmas tree at Robinson Avenue and Couch Drive. The mailbox was hand-painted by Fred Self of Fred's Signs. The mailbox debuted Nov. 26 at the Mayor's Tree Lighting Ceremony and is part of the Downtown in December holiday celebration.