How I Found Out Santa Wasn’t Real

Trigger warning: This article contains content regarding the existence of Santa Claus. This content may cause feelings of betrayal or loss of innocence.

When the beard comes off and the true identity of Santa Claus is revealed, Christmas loses some of its magic. Children usually find out that Santa is a myth around the age of eight, according to a 1980 study performed by Eastern Michigan University researchers.

Here, six Chapman students tell us how they found out the hard truth of Santa Claus.


Santa Quits Through a Letter

Every year Santa would write Davis Anderson, sophomore strategic and corporate communication major, and her sisters letters congratulating them on their accomplishments. Anderson loved getting these letters. She distinctly remembers one year anxiously peeling open Santas letter to read: “Dear Davis, I hate to break it to you, but I’m not real.”  She was crushed.

Anderson still celebrates the holidays despite a crushing childhood memory. Photo by Julianna Franco.


“The Talk” Takes A Turn

Marissa Dunn, junior strategic corporate communication major, was about 11 years old when she got the ‘girl talk.’ Her mother explained that Dunn’s body would be going through a variety of changes soon. It was nice at first, until the mother started to explain the menstrual cycle and what would happen every month.  Dunn burst into tears. Reality seemed so cruel. “Is Santa even real?!” she blurted out.

Sorry, kid.

“I felt I actually became a woman,” in that moment.

Dunn is now able to smile about the devastating day she “became a women.” Photo courtesy of Marissa Dunn.


Investigation Backfires

Santa didn’t add up for Trey Makishima, sophomore TV writing and production major, and his sister. The two started their search by cross referencing wrapping paper and gift tags they had around the house with what Santa had brought. They compared Santa’s penmanship to that of their parents and relatives They brought the evidence of their investigation to their parents – proof that the fat man was a fraud.

Great, said mom and dad: Since you don’t believe in him anymore he won’t bring you anymore gifts.

Makishima decided the truth hurt too much: He faked renewed belief in Santa for the next three years.

Makishima is made into a decorated Christmas ‘Trey’ – ‘tree.’ Pictured: Avery Girion, sophomore, Trey Makishima, sophomore, Graham Byrne sophomore. Photo courtesy of Trey Makishima.


Early Santa Delivery?

Javari Hunt, sophomore public relations and advertising major, was eight years old when she snuck into her mother’s room to check out a pair of high heels she knew would be under her mother’s bed.

Next to to the heels she saw a wrapped present in the shape of a Bratz doll box. What a coincidence! That’s exactly what she had asked for from Santa! And the tag read “From Santa!” But the handwriting on the tag looked just like as her mom’s. Santa must have dropped off her gif early and in a rush and “my mom did him a favor and wrote his name on the tag,” she rationalized.

Christmas morning she opened the same present she spotted under the bed, and her mom looked at her with a big smile. “He dropped that off, fresh this morning, while you were sleeping,” her mother said. It was then she knew the truth.  

Hunt thinks back to how strong her trust in her mother was, before the Santa lie. Photo Courtesy of Javari Hunt.


Grandma Goes Hardcore

Ali Whu, sophomore strategic corporate communication major, was eight years old when her aunt asked her grandma where she bought the play kitchen that Whu loved so much. Grandma explained that Whu’s mom had bought it for her.

“No, Santa bought it for me,” corrected Whu.

Her grandma then looked at her dead in the eye and said, “Well now you know Santa isn’t real.”

Whu remembers the good days before she was exposed to the truth of Santa. Photo courtesy of Ali Whu.


The Text That Changed It All

Cassidy Kaufmann, freshman business administration major, is Jewish. She didn’t realize the significance of Santa until she ruined it for a friend.

“Santa isn’t real,” Kaufmann sent.

Her friend was heartbroken. Kaufmann stole away the magic of Christmas in a matter of seconds. Though they are still friends, Kaufmann knows she is responsible for stealing her friends innocence.

Kaufmann poses with a cookie, although she never put any out for Santa. Photo by Julianna Franco.


 

How to Deflect Annoying Questions at the Thanksgiving Table

Thanksgiving is right around the corner. Turkey, mashed potatoes, and unavoidable, annoying, intrusive questions from our relatives are only weeks away! We already know our families ask the same questions every year at the Thanksgiving table (let’s have a little conversational creativity, people!). But this year? We’ve got the answers. Prepare yours in advance!

1. So do you have a boyfriend/girlfriend yet?

Once again, I’m single. Very single. But the other day when I went to Starbucks the barista asked me for my name, so that’s promising.

 

2. How is school going?

Well, I have about four mental breakdowns a day. Coffee is pretty much keeping me alive. I have $6.27 in my bank account. I get about three hours of sleep every night and I just failed a midterm. But other than that, I’m doing well.  

 

3. Have you decided on a major?

I actually just declared! I’m specializing in the social interactions of homo sapiens with an emphasis on alcohol consumption.

4. What do you plan to do after graduation?

I really wish I could tell you but I don’t even know which pie I’m going to eat first tonight.

 

5. So you really don’t eat meat anymore?

I already explained 20 times that I’ve been a vegan since last year. Yes, I am still getting protein Grandma. Aren’t you glad I’m not telling you how that turkey died?

 

6. How do you like living with roommates?

Oh I absolutely love not having any privacy at all. On the days where I’m able to sleep in, my roommate sets about seven alarms and lets them all go off on full blast.

 

7. What do you do in your spare time while you’re at school?

The only spare time I have is to procrastinate, so typically I spend it stressing about everything I have to do, everything I’m not doing, or texting people making sure they haven’t started either.

 

8. Are you working out?

When I snooze my alarm five times I usually have to speed walk to class, so I think that counts. And I thought about going to the gym the other day. These things all start with intention.

 

9 Things You Never Knew About Disneyland

Many Chapman students love spending time at “the happiest place on Earth,” with some even considering themselves experts on all things Disney. Test your Disney knowledge with these nine lesser-known facts that you can whip out during your next trivia night.

1. The Bench That Started it All

Do you ever wonder where it all started? The bench that Walt Disney sat on when he came up with the ambitious idea of Disneyland is still in the park today. The bench from Griffith Park is on display in the Opera House lobby. 

2. The Haunted Mansion’s Fallen Bust

Photo courtesy of HarshLight on Flickr

If you’ve ever been on the Haunted Mansion ride you’ll probably recognize these singing busts. The face projected on the fallen bust is Thurl Ravenscroft, the famous voice of Tony the Tiger. Although it may not be obvious, next time you ride The Haunted Mansion look closely for the singing busts because “They’re Gr-r-reat!”

3. Flight Restriction

One thing you won’t see at Disneyland is airplanes, as the park received a flight restriction in 2003. No aircrafts are allowed to fly below 3,000 feet or within three miles of the theme park. 

4. The Everlasting Light In Walt’s Apartment


One of the first things people see as they walk into Disneyland is the fire station. The apartment above the fire station was built when Walt realized he needed a place to stay while working in the park. If you look closely, you’ll see a lamp peeking out of the window. The lamp is always shining to represent the ever-present spirit of Walt Disney. 

5. Tomorrowland Plants

Disneyland is known for their delicious and overpriced food, but Disney’s menu goes a bit further than advertised. If you’re looking for a cheaper option than a $4 churro, all of the plants in the futuristic world of Tomorrowland are edible.  

6. The Time Capsule

There are two time capsules within the Disney parks that serve as a reminder of Disney’s humble beginnings and the hopes for the future. One time capsule is buried in front of the famous Sleeping Beauty castle, and the other in California Adventure on Buena Vista Street at the entrance of the park. 

7. The Lilly Belle Car

An iconic part of Disneyland’s railroad is the car named after Walt Disney’s wife, Lillian Disney, the “Lilly Belle.” It’s hard to catch a ride on the Lily Belle because it is only available to the public for one ride each day. 

8. A Winnie the Pooh Secret

The Winnie the Pooh ride was built where the Country Bear Jamboree once was. Fortunately, three characters from the Jamboree are still keeping their history alive. You can spot them if you turn around in your cart right before you enter the Hunny Heaven room on the ride.

9. The Little Man of Disneyland

Photos by Julianna Franco unless otherwise noted.

Although many trees are in Adventureland, the tree in front of the Indiana Jones ride entrance is special. If you look closely this tree is the home of Patrick Begorra, The Little Man of Disneyland. Patrick is a leprechaun from the Disney Little Golden Book “The Man of Disneyland”.