Thought Catalog

An Open Letter To Black Santa: Give ‘Em Hell

Posted: 25 Dec 2016 09:00 AM PST

Dear Black Santa,

As a little black girl from the South, all I ever saw was white, rosy-cheeked Santa Clauses plastered on Christmas posters and gluttonously eating all the milk and cookies on those propagandized holiday commercials. I never saw him for more than what he was – fiction.

He was another white fictional character sent to save the day, bring holiday cheer, and give to the poor little children. Someone reminiscent of white Jesus, or Batman.

I didn't grow up in a household that pushed the whole Santa narrative, and I wasn't tormented with the "naughty or nice list." Perhaps my parents did not like the idea of a white man being seen as a superior being or something. My presents always said from Mom, Dad, Auntie, Grandma and so forth. As far as I knew, my presents were not the result of some jolly, corpulent, white man shimmying down a chimney but, I digress.

You see, I've decided to believe in you Black Santa, not because you too are being used as a promotional tool in one of the biggest capitalist holidays, but because of what you represent.

You are a racist’s worst nightmare, a catalyst for white fragility, and best of all my brotha!

You are not a European interpretation of what Samaritanism is. You are unorthodox, nonconformist, seated on a throne in the Mall of America. The biggest mall in America – you know, that place that prides itself on diversity, yet doesn't celebrate it? Yeah, that America.

What a tenacious feat. I hope you revel in it. Put white out through the conventional narrative of black men. Be unapologetic. Pay no attention to those who don't see the beauty in you, to those who teach their children to not color outside of the lines that society has drawn from them.

And I know you're just being Santa, but to me and all those who look like me, you are doing so much more. It's funny because as a child, Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer was my favorite fictional hero! I'd like to think he was a metaphor for marginalized people. He was the best part of my Christmas stories. I'd like to think he'd be honored to lead your sleigh. Be merry Black Santa, be merry! And most importantly, stay black! TC mark

50 Intimate Questions To Ask Your Forever Person This Christmas

Posted: 25 Dec 2016 08:00 AM PST

Unsplash, Roberto Nickson
Unsplash, Roberto Nickson

1. Who is your favorite person to buy presents for?

2. Have you ever gotten stuck working on Christmas?

3. What kind of food did you leave for Santa when you were little?

4. When you hate a present, are you honest or do you pretend to love it?

5. Which ornament has the most significance to you?

6. Did you have a real tree or a fake tree when you were little?

7. When did you find out the truth about Santa?

8. Do you usually buy your pets presents for Christmas?

9. Have you ever seen the tree in Rockefeller Center?

10. When we have our own place, will you want to decorate it with lights or leave it bare?

11. Do you prefer giving gifts or getting gifts?

12. Do you prefer gingerbread cookies or sugar cookies?

13. Have you ever gone caroling?

14. What’s your favorite holiday song?

15. What was the most thoughtful present you’ve picked out for an old girlfriend?

16. Do you usually put a star or an angel on top of the tree?

17. What was the best gift you’ve ever gotten from your parents?

18. What’s your favorite flavor of candy cane?

19. Would you ever send out holiday cards with our pictures on them?

20. Do you own an ugly Christmas sweater?

21. Do you open your presents on Christmas or Christmas Eve?

22. Have you ever kissed someone under mistletoe?

23. Do you go to church for midnight mass?

24. Would you prefer for it to snow on Christmas or to stay sunny?

25. Which family tradition do you want to pass down to our children?

26. Have you ever had your picture taken with a mall Santa?

27. Do you suck at wrapping presents?

28. Do you like getting gifts or feel awkward about it?

29. Have you ever re-gifted something someone gave you?

30. Have you ever gotten drunk during a Santa crawl?

31. Do you consider yourself a Grinch?

32. Which holiday song annoys you the most?

33. Does your family drink alcohol on Christmas?

34. Have you ever built a gingerbread house before?

35. What was the worst present you’ve ever gotten?

36. Do you do your holiday shopping online or visit the actual store?

37. How much was the most expensive present you’ve ever bought?

38. What was the cheapest present you’ve ever bought?

39. Do you like surprises or do you prefer to pick out what you’re getting?

40. When you were a kid, did you help your parents decorate the tree?

41. What does your family usually eat for Christmas dinner?

42. When was the last time you built a snowman?

43. What’s your favorite holiday movie?

44. Was Christmas your favorite holiday as a kid?

45. Which relative are you most excited to see on Christmas day?

46. Does your pet have a stocking?

47. Would you ever celebrate Christmas someplace warm, like Hawaii?

48. What time do you wake up on Christmas morning?

49. Do you like the taste of eggnog?

50. Are you excited to spend the holidays with me? TC mark

How Not To Gain A Thousand Pounds During The Holidays

Posted: 25 Dec 2016 07:00 AM PST


As you may have discovered, there is no possible way to maintain a normal diet in December. Egg nog, panettone and tourtière will obliterate your standards faster than you can say “bah, humbug.” It’s bad news. It’s delicious, succulent, sweet bad news. With the apex of Yuletide festivities slowly dwindling away, we must retain some shred of self-reliability and take note of what not-to do next year. People generally don’t want to buy bigger pants during Boxing Week sales. Despite how hopeless it may seem at times, there are actually ways to avoid embarking on a completely indulgent holiday death binge. Here’s how!


And then run back again! Running is great way to prevent pillars of plaque from seething into your heart and ending your life. Post-digestive loafing around seems to be the norm for many North Americans celebrating the holidays. Your body could benefit from nothing less than a jolt of acceleration- sweat, contraction, vasodilatation, it’s necessary! If you are a lazy piece of shit and cannot feel motivated / cannot convince yourself that exercise isn’t totally boring, try finding an external source of inspiration. For example, get high and pretend that cops are chasing you until you actually believe it. Or aim for a “runner’s high,” which feels like an orgasm except amplified drastically throughout your entire body. Even if you can’t run for a long time or at all, at least try something that stimulates your metabolism. Your life basically depends on it.


Everyone always tells you to eat kale because it gives you super-immunity and makes your finger nails shiny and cures cancer or some shit, but the real reason you should be eating food, any food, is so that you can process it and excrete it out of your ass, essentially. During the holidays, remind yourself that fibrous foods slide through your intestines with ease and grace and so inevitably, the collateral damage on your bloated, disgusting viscera will be nilch. A few examples of fibrous foods- in case you live in a cave- are: chick peas, black beans, lentils, broccoli, brussel sprouts, avocados, and pears. Obviously drink lots of water to keep things moving as well. It’s all about listening to your inner self- your deepest, darkest self- literally. This kind of conscientiousness is sort of like bulimia, except you aren’t eroding the enamel off your teeth and/or burning up your trachea. On top of that you get to keep the vitamins and nutrients that your food has to offer you, AND you aren’t intrinsically defined by shame. It’s win/win situation.


Sugar is fucking addictive. That’s not a hyperbole, it’s the truth. If you find yourself headed to the cookie table for the fifth time in a row, stop yourself and think again. Now slowly reach into your pocket. Pull out the gum pack. Take out a piece and throw into your face hole. It’s an emergency flavor simulator that satisfies your taste buds and simultaneously cleans your teeth. Adult gum though, not children gum. Keep a pack in your pocket forever and you’ll always have something to distract you from mouth-watering temptations. What are the ingredients in gum? Carcinogens, probably, but it’s totally worth it. Nothing else has the capacity to save one from so many bad, body-altering decisions, except maybe willpower.


Beer and wine and soda, of course, is loaded with sugar, which turns to fat when you don’t do anything with all that energy. It’s fascinatingly difficult for Westerners to use up all the glucose that they’re forcing into their gullets. In any case, it’s very unlikely that your will be at an equilibrium during the holidays, unless you simply lower your Caloric consumption. Sometimes the easiest way to do that is to cut down on sugar in beverages. It’s totally unnecessary and so easy to get carried away with. Large capuccinos or several glasses of wine are just too sneaky. Lemon and club soda is a great alternative to sugary drinks. Its fun and bubbly and acidic. Fruity balsamic vinegar- believe it or not- is also a great low-sugar alternative for mixed drinks. Vinegar also stimulates the digestive system! That’s multi-tasking!


Tiny things are cuter anyway. If your plate weighs more than three pounds in your hand, it’s probably not going to feel too awesome in fifteen minutes when it’s sledging down your insides. You don’t have to be pretentious or draw attention to yourself either. You just have look at the food that you want to eat, imagine realistically digesting it in the future, and take your time ENJOYING IT. What feels ~comfortable~? Tour the flavors of the holidays in a sensible way– not a fast-food dining chain kind of way. Just because you enjoy turkey and there is a lot of it sitting around, doesn’t mean you have to consume more than a palm-sized portion durning dinner. It’s perfectly neat and cute and flavorful. It fits in your bowels. It’s good.

If you can’t handle any of these tips then maybe consider talking to someone else who can help you!? Weight gain and loss is a touchy subject because the media distorts information to make their audiences feel vulnerable, or something of the sort, but remember that you are in charge of your own body and you know what feels good. Not even the CEO of McDonald’s knows what makes you, personally, wholly, feel good. If overeating and shoving copious amounts of sugar into your body is something you truly want to do then you’re following your own tumultuous path and that’s fine. If shitting a brick made out of bread and meat and cookies feels good then you probably shouldn’t be reading this. For the rest of us: good luck and stay ~in tune~. TC mark

A Playlist For People Who Only Like Really Depressing Christmas Music

Posted: 25 Dec 2016 06:00 AM PST

Ieva Urenceva
Ieva Urenceva

Depressing music is objectively the best kind of Christmas music. People who are listening to upbeat pop star covers of classics need to get with the program. This is a playlist for people who understand my truth. (Note that not all songs are intended to be depressing but anything can be depressing if you try hard enough).

Joni Mitchell — River

Joni Mitchell is my #1 sad girl. If a guy doesn’t like Joni Mitchell I know opening up to him is going to be a big fat waste of time. You have to get her or you have to find another lunch table to sit at.

Blue Christmas — Johnny Cash

This is our anthem. This is our reason for the season. Who doesn’t want to lay in a sad pile on their couch staring at their Christmas tree in the dark and thinking about the person who’s most definitely not listening to Mariah Carey’s All I Want For Christmas Is You and thinking about you.

Believe in Me — fun.

A nice hit about how empty it feels to buy stuff for people because you’re supposed to buy stuff for people.

It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year — Martina Sorbara

Listen to this as you’re driving around in the dark and there are pretty lights and happy people outside your windows — but you’re feeling lonely and vaguely like nothing matters anyway.

O Holy Night — David Crowder Band

This is just the original hymn, but it’s always sounded very bleak to me despite it’s intended joyful tone. There’s something about it getting dark at 4:30pm every day and then listening to/singing a song about even more night that really takes me to that dark place inside.

All That I Want — The Weepies

This is a song about wanting someone and being alone, which is what all good Christmas music is about.

O Come, O Come Emmanuel — David Crowder Band

Another banger from your church hymnal covered by a depressing hipster worship band.

Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas — Joshua Hyslop

Oh man, what a passive-aggressive wonder this song is. There’s nothing better to sulk to when you’re really stressing out about someone you’ve already told your friends you’re totally over.

Silent Night — Alexi Murdoch

A great song to get existentially restless to.

Silver Bells — Liam Titcomb

Play this on your way home from a Christmas party where you spent hours in the direct company of other human beings while actually feeling more alone than if you’d just stayed home.

Sleigh Bells — Relient K

A good rule of thumb for Christmas music is that when you hear the line Come on it’s lovely weather for a sleigh ride together with you it needs to be painfully obvious that the line is wistful, not concretely suggestive. TC mark

15 Christmas Movies Streaming On Netflix Right Now To Get You In The Holiday Spirit

Posted: 25 Dec 2016 05:00 AM PST

Christmas with the kranks

Christmas with the Kranks
Christmas with the Kranks

A classic Christmas family disaster that will have you laughing the entire time, while showing you just how important family is.

A very murray christmas

A Very Murray Christmas
A Very Murray Christmas

This is not your typical Christmas movie, but it does have an interesting spin. It’s hilarious and filled with a great cast of Hollywood stars like Miley Cyrus, Amy Poehler, Chris Rock and George Clooney.

beethoven’s Christmas adventure

Beethoven’s Christmas Adventure

Beethoven is an oversized, loving, slobbery Saint Bernard who helps save Christmas. Grab your pooch and cuddle up.

The spirit of christmas

The Spirit of Christmas
The Spirit of Christmas

It’s a light-hearted Christmas movie with a little bit of mystery involved. If you’re like me and all about a happy ending in Christmas movies, this one is for you.

Happy christmas

Happy Christmas
Happy Christmas

Anna Kendrick is (of course) hilarious in this Christmas comedy. This is one of those movies you can totally relate to and say “this is me.” This movie makes you feel like you’re actually part of the characters lives. Oh, and Jude is absolutely adorable.

12 Dogs days till christmas

12 Dogs Days Till Christmas
12 Dogs Days Till Christmas

This movie is adorable and good for the whole family. There is a lot of determination, love and pups in this heartfelt Christmas movie. Being a dog lover is a must to get the most of this holiday favorite.

Christmas in the smokies

Christmas in the Smokies
Christmas in the Smokies

This movie has the classic plot line of returning home for the holidays to rekindle an old flame, but of course, with a twist. It’s another light-hearted movie with small town family values and shows the importance of home.

the santa clause

The Santa Clause
The Santa Clause

This 1994 classic is a must watch every year and if you haven’t seen it yet, drop what you’re doing, lift up the rock you’ve been living under and turn on Netflix. Now.

Just friends

Just Friends
Just Friends

Home for the holidays Chris (Ryan Reynolds) still eagerly tries to win the heart of his high school best friend whom he’s still in love with. This cute and festive movie will make you laugh and relate to coming home to the family for the holidays.

the Legend of frosty the snowman

The Legend of Frosty the Snowman
The Legend of Frosty the Snowman

Now this isn’t the original Frosty the Snowman that I grew up with, so I’m sure most of you are in the same boat, but it still brings back the nostalgia from childhood if you no longer have the original VHS copy or a VCR to play it.

snow day

Snow Day
Snow Day

Another classic to bring back the nostalgia of all the fun and excitement you used to feel when you woke up to the news of a snow day as a kid.

12 dates of christmas

12 Dates of Christmas
12 Dates of Christmas

Watch this one when you wish you could get your love life back on track, just be glad you don’t have to live through the same Christmas Eve date over and over again.



If you’re still selfish around the holiday time this is a good one for you!

Mariah carey’s merriest christmas

Mariah Carey's Merriest Christmas
Mariah Carey’s Merriest Christmas

It’s fun, festive and merry – what more could you ask for?


White Christmas
White Christmas

This movie is a true Christmas classic that has been bringing joy to people since 1954. It’s a kind of movie you wish would never end filled with beautiful dancing, costumes and songs that will have this movie bumped to the top of your list every year. TC mark