'Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse... the children were nestled all snug in their beds, while visions of sugarplums danced through their heads...
'Twas the night before Christmas and in the Louch house, Captain Chaos was stirring and much louder than a mouse... the child was not snuggled all warm in his bed, though visions of Legos were dancing in his head...
Preparing for Santa's visit tonight took some serious effort -- the sort that only a seven-year-old can swing.
"I cleared a space on the table for milk and cookies on the round table. Do you have the cookie plate? Can I leave him a chocolate bar? I'll unwrap it for him. I'm the first kid to leave him a candy bar. Should I put his name on it so he knows it's for him? How many cookies should we leave him?
"Can I leave my ferris wheel on for him to see? I bet he'll leave a note because it's so neat. Will he step on my Legos? Should we move them? I'll pour the milk for him. Here, Mom, put the cookies here. Is two enough? Should we put some of the chocolate chip out too? And we need a carrot for each reindeer! Do we have eight carrots? Rudolph doesn't need one because everyone leaves him one. I'll move my Legos so Santa doesn't step on them. Fuzz won't eat the cookies, will she? She doesn't eat chocolate.
"Hey, mom, does Santa make all the toys?"
"Does Santa make all of the toys. You know, like Hex Bugs and electronics and stuff?"
"No. He hires out to companies in China and Japan and Taiwan. It's called division of labor. They help him out with the electronics."
At this point, however, my husband the chimed in to correct me. "It's outsourcing."
"What's that, dad?"
I shot the big guy an amused look. Show off! Thought you were so smart. Now you're doomed. You got yourself into this, you get yourself out of this.
For the next ten minutes, my child grilled his dad on "outsourcing" and why Santa used those companies and not his elves and how he picked those particular companies and why just electronics and if the people who made the electronics got to visit the North Pole. The husband had to do some fancy footwork to make it all make total sense in terms of Christmas magic, in terms of the North Pole, and in terms of a seven-year-old's absolute belief in jolly old St. Nick.
Finally, his interrogation wrapped up, Chaos looked at his dad and made one final announcement. "I know Santa makes the stuffed animals himself because that's just sewing."
I looked at the husband as I answered for both of us. "Absolutely."
This time, the big guy opted to leave it at that.