Santa Icon Interior collage

Jana Zimmer

Santa Icon Interior collage

Santa’s Toothpicks and Plaster

The Angry Poodle’s description of the “jihad” on Santa Claus reminded me of the facts that actually led to his relocation to Oxnard. In the end it wasn’t about whether he was a worthy example of California roadside vernacular architecture or whether he was a sign or a statue. It was because he was a danger to himself and others.

When the county building official came and looked inside, he saw that this multi-ton icon was held together with toothpicks and plaster and posed an imminent threat of crashing down into Santa’s Candy Kitchen and killing Mrs. Claus and any number of elves and children. He was relocated to Oxnard because he was welcome there, and, sadly, not one of his legion of fans in Santa Barbara was able to give him a home.

I made a tribute to the “heart” of Santa — the photo that is part of the collage above was taken on the day the building inspector condemned him.

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