Good News! Beloved, Fired Santa Triumphs

Hi ifshnnnykz
Readers! Remember Santa John, the guy we were talking about here yesterday, fired for an “inappropriate” joke or two he told some ADULTS? Here’s the update, from a San Fran gal named Kathlin:

I wanted to share some good news in reference to this story!  It was on the news last evening that there was some real surprise and outrage in the community regarding this incident.  “Santa John” has now been hired by a restaurant called “Lefty O’Douls” which is a tourist attraction right near “Macy’s”.  And, get this…he has been hired at “TWICE HIS SALARY.”   Apparently, he was also living in a sketchy area while he did his Santa stint.  He now has a room at the Westin St. Francis.  So, it does take a village to right a wrong!   If you are in San Francisco, please stop by and see “Santa John” at “Leftys” as it is on the cable car line.

P.S. And here’s the story (it’s great!)  from the San Fran Chronicle.

42 Responses to Good News! Beloved, Fired Santa Triumphs

  1. Katy-Anne December 9, 2010 at 3:49 am #

    So now if he gets fired from here for whatever the rest of the story was at Macy’s, maybe then people will recognize there really is more to the story. Because that certainly wasn’t all there was to it, but made for a nice story to be “outraged” about.

  2. EricS December 9, 2010 at 4:08 am #

    You really are out to get this guy aren’t you Katy-Anne. You can’t just be happy for the guy getting a job just before Christmas. Heart of coal you got there missy. So here’s a question for you, what if there wasn’t more to the story except Macy caving in to a couples complaint? Will you put your lynch rope away? Or will you petition to get him fired from Lefty’s because your so certain there is foul play afoot? lol Tell you what, why don’t you do some research, contact Macy’s, SFGate, even the old couple and find out exactly what happened before condemning this guy. You must have had some Santa Claus issues as kid didn’t you?

    As for the article, I’m glad to hear there is a happy ending. And I hope Macy’s feels their loss, as they see the line up build at Lefty’s instead of their store.

  3. Katy-Anne December 9, 2010 at 4:10 am #

    No Santa issues here. Thankfully my parents chose not to tell me lies about him. Unfortunately told me other lies but I wasn’t subjected to that one.

    No, I don’t have it in for him. But I do know Macy’s a professional company who would not have fired someone on one complaint. It’s called common sense and the ability to be sued. It’s amazing how people with sour grapes can make stuff up and make themselves appear innocent. There is definitely more to the original story.

  4. Rebecca December 9, 2010 at 4:19 am #

    This is great! I love love love Lefty’s! What a wonderful outcome to the story…

  5. Jess December 9, 2010 at 4:33 am #

    Fabulous! Glad it ha worked ou for him. Thanks for sharing.

  6. EricS December 9, 2010 at 4:45 am #

    “No, I don’t have it in for him. But I do know Macy’s a professional company who would not have fired someone on one complaint. It’s called common sense and the ability to be sued. ”

    I’ve known lesser companies to use scape goats to keep from being sued. Macy’s wouldn’t have a second thought about firing ONE person, to keep things running smoothly this time of year. And unfortunately, when has big businesses ever used common sense? If they did, he’d still be working there. IF there was more to the story, it would have been severe enough to make it on the news. Less have appeared in the media. So if your so certain that there is more to the story, please, enlighten us. don’t just make unsubstantiated claims. You’d be no better than fearful, paranoid, illogical heli parents.

    No, it’s a classic case of Christmas boom, don’t want any bad press, and chances are the old couple had some pull. That’s far more reasonable an explanation than your conspiracy theory. So until you can prove that there IS more to the story, defaming this man just makes you the “crazy lady with Santa issues”. That, or the “crazy lady, that believes there is a pedophile or pervert lurking in every corner”. lol

  7. sue December 9, 2010 at 4:52 am #

    katy-anne… too bad your parents didn’t tell you about the story of santa. maybe your imagination would have developed enough so you could imagine why a store would fire one seasonal employee due to one complaint. it does happen quite’s called the real world of retail and business. or maybe you never had to work there or you would know in business management common sense is not that common.

  8. tana December 9, 2010 at 5:05 am #

    good for the folks at lefty’s! i never believed in santa- although he faithfully left gifts every year. we all SAID we believed (even though our parents knew we did not) b/c there’s nothing wrong with some healthy pretending and family fun. i’m absolutely truthful to my son about fiction vs. non-fiction characters now (he’s 5) & he also has a delightful time pretending that santa is real.

  9. Michelle December 9, 2010 at 5:11 am #

    Katy-Anne, are you kidding? All it takes is a slight news search to hear people being fired, suspended, whatever based on a single complaint from a third party. Feels like I’m reading about stuff like that all the time.

  10. Jules December 9, 2010 at 5:33 am #

    Now THAT’S the spirit of the season!

  11. KarenW December 9, 2010 at 5:44 am #

    Katy-Anne, were you by any chance molested by a department store Santa as a child? Or, forgive me, am I jumping to wild conclusions? It must be contagious.

    I’m with everyone else – why would there be “more to the story” that the press would be unwilling to tell us? It’s not like them to leave out juicy details.

  12. dmd December 9, 2010 at 5:46 am #

    Totally smart move on the restaurant’s side. Talk about free publicity! Anyone in the area will want to stop by to see Santa John.

    As for there being “more to the story,” in these days, I can easily see a company – especially a big, visible, public company firing someone at the hint of scandal. Heck, that’s part of the story of “Miracle on 34th Street.” Could be that some uptight managers might’ve always wanted him gone and used this as an excuse. Could be he’s always had a little off color side, but that’s become taboo these days.

    I once worked for a boss who loved to make suggestive comments – but it was honestly all in good fun. He was actually devoted to his wife. I always worried he would hire the wrong person and they would hear the wrong off-color thing and would slap a lawsuit on him. I’m not promoting sexual harrassment, but I do think we have gotten too sensitive and have often lost the ability to laugh.

  13. Randy S. December 9, 2010 at 5:51 am #

    First, Lenore has a God-hater troll, and now she has a Santa-hater troll.

  14. Matt L. December 9, 2010 at 6:14 am #

    I’m sure this was not the only reason for Macy’s firing, I doubt this guy was willing to play the political game with his employers so there may have been a tense relationship there and this was the straw. I doubt, however that there is truly more salaciousness out there or the press would likely have heard from other employees. There are always people interested in talking to the press.

    The spirit of Santa lives on!

  15. Larry Harrison December 9, 2010 at 7:00 am #

    I am glad to hear of this, and I agree with dmd–people are now way too sensitive. In fact, where it regards sexual harassment, if it were up to me the accuser would be required to first tell the alleged harasser that their behavior is unwelcome first, or otherwise any complaints made won’t be accepted. If you’re “uncomfortable,” tough–grow a backbone and stand up for yourself, quit expecting the nanny human resources department to do it for you.

    Sometimes the jokester (sp?) really doesn’t know that a particular individual is going to be so easily offended, and when plenty of others around them aren’t so sensitive and joke along, it’s only natural that the person will participate; it’s ridiculous to expect that they have to act like a stone wall with everyone they encounter, even the ones who seem to play along with it, just because of the off-chance that one shows up who makes a big deal out of nothing. Let the one who is offended speak up, and then the jokester can curtail said activities around that person so they aren’t intimidated.


  16. John Deever December 9, 2010 at 7:07 am #

    Thank you for this update!! Does this sorta prove your theory that many, many, many people are quite sane?

  17. Staceyjw December 9, 2010 at 7:45 am #

    Katy Ann, and anyone that thinks there has to be more to the story- I worked at Macys NYC as an elf, one that helps move the Santaland line along. I never made it to opening day though. I got fired during the extensive, 2 week training (!) for doodling on my notes during training! Yes, really. I was yelled at during “class”, then during break told that doodling showed I “wasn’t taking the role seriously! People comes from miles away to see this so being an elf is very important work”.I know, saying Merry Xmas, keep moving, Santa is to your left” is such a tough job….But anyways, It was not suppose to be just a crappy, just over minimum wage job you do with a smile, it was a BIG DEAL! Most of their hires were out of work actors/actresses acting like this was their big break, so a 19yr old college kid who doodled was just not deemed serious enough. I didn’t argue or anything, I figured it was probably for the best, plus I could hardly keep from laughing in the bosses face at the absurdity.

    So, no, there DOESN’T have to be more to the story.

    As for lying to kids about Santa- guess what? Adults DO lie! Even parents! As an atheist, I think Santa is a great way to teach a lesson in skepticism. I will tell them about Santa, and let them enjoy it as long as possible. When they learn its not true, we will discuss how other things without proof are believed by many, but may not be real (God? Allah? Zues?). I WANT my kid to think for himself, and not blindly trust people just because they are older. So learning that parents and adults lie is instructive and positive. I am not a sugarcoating type either, and appreciate straight forwardness most, but not everyone is like this.

    And the “War on xmas”- this is just a manufactured controversy by Fox news talking heads and a few fundies that need to tell the world how they are so persecuted by being forced to hear generic greetings (oh noes!).

    But in some places, xtians cannot stand to let anything other than their beliefs be displayed, and they fight to make sure no one else is represented, causing all the “war” nonsense! This is usually regarding public displays of xtianity, now that non believers have asked to be included too.

    Churches have some of the best land (TAX FREE), in the most prominent places in any given town. Let them put up the nativity, that is the proper place for it. But if they insist on having it in front of the courthouse (or similar), then they have to allow others to display too. Public property is for everyone, its not there to promote one religion over others, or none.To see how wrong it is to privilage one religion, imagine if the town square was decorated for a muslim holiday only? People would riot! Why is OK if its xtian? Majority doesn’t make it acceptable.

    Did you know that 20% of Americans now have NO religious belief? This is more Americans than Jews, Hindus, Muslims combined. But when we ask to be included, all hell breaks loose with the pundits (normal people could care less). Saying “Happy holidays” just shows people realize that this 20% exists. Its not a conspiracy to end xtianity, which is ridiculous, as they are the majority and have all the power!

    The good thing is that 99.9% of people DON’T care how they are greeted, and don’t care if there are multiple holidays displays.Its a FAKE WAR! BTW, HOLIDAY can be ANY or ALL holidays, so it makes most sense to use this as a generic greeting.

    I’m an atheist and I love xmas and any holiday I get to spend eating w family and friends.I celebrate them ALL.

    And I’m glad he got a better job. Good for that restaurant, they sure knew how to ride the wave of publicity and make it work for them! If we bought gifts, we would boycott Macys, but we do donations for all except little kids.

  18. Nicola December 9, 2010 at 8:18 am #

    That is awesome. I wrote Macy’s today and admonished them. Of course they wrote back and said they couldn’t discuss it since it was an HR issue. *eye roll* Whatever. I just hope they’re being bombarded with people disgusted by their stupidity.

  19. Larry Harrison December 9, 2010 at 8:33 am #

    Staceyjw You have the right to your beliefs & that’s fine, but the great majority of people in the country celebrate Christmas (and with the Jesus perspective too) and I have no interest in compelling a retailer to say anything other than “Merry Christmas” and let it be at that. When the 20% start griping about being “excluded,” frankly–oh well. If you love Christmas as you say, then take the Merry Christmas greeting and quit griping. No one’s being persecuted here, except Santa’s that dare to tell a joke that 1 person out of apparently hundreds took offense to.

    If I know what a person believes personally, then by all means I’ll tailor my greeting to them. If, for example, I were to have the awesome pleasure of meeting Lenore Skenazy and it was during the month of December, I’d say “Happy Hanukkah” because I know she’s Jewish and I respect her. However, if I saw her in person and didn’t know her and simply thought she bore an uncanny resemblance to Lisa Loeb (singer of “Stay–I Missed You” in 1994), I’d say “Merry Christmas,” because that’s the most likely scenario.

    If someone says “Happy Holidays” to me for no particular reason, fine–but if I think they’re saying it just because they’re worried I’m going to break out like Madalyn Murray O’Hair and be a raging maniac about a slight that doesn’t even exist, then yes I will correct them–in a gentle, non-harsh way.


  20. pentamom December 9, 2010 at 8:41 am #

    Larry, well said about the Happy Holidays vs. Merry Christmas thing. If you know a person, you respect what you know about them and wish them accordingly. If you don’t know them, it’s not disrespectful to wish them what you consider a friendly wish.

  21. Uly December 9, 2010 at 10:43 am #

    On the other hand, pentamom, it’s also polite not to assume things about somebody.

    So let’s put it this way:

    Happy Holidays is a polite way to be sure you don’t accidentally put your foot in your mouth when talking to somebody. Anybody throwing a hissy fit over hearing it – and some do – needs to grow the heck up.

    However, anything more specific is at worst thoughtless. It’s still (probably) well-intentioned. Anybody throwing a hissy fit over it needs to grew the heck up.

    With that said, the person throwing a hissy fit may have just had a long drawn-out discussion about their religion, one where they felt unjustly attacked on all ends. This might actually just be that last straw that broke the camel’s back. So although they need to calm down, there’s no point in telling them to stop being annoying. Best thing to do is just apologize (yes, even if you’re not in the wrong) and make a mental note to use the other phrase next time you see them.

  22. oncefallendotcom December 9, 2010 at 11:09 am #

    Bah humbug! The funny thing about the CHRISTmas vs the Xmas vs Happy “Holidays” is that it is asinine.

    Xmas– the X is the Greek cross turned to form an X (a “saltire”), thus by saying Xmas you’re just saying Christmas in shorthand.

    Holidays– Does anybody realize when they say the word Holiday they are just saying a word derived from the term “Holy Day?” In Catholic tradition, there are six “Holy Days of Obligation” in addition to Sunday Attendance. It is funny that people chose “Happy Holidays” to try to remove the Christian element from Christmas, but it fails.

    There. Argument settled.

    How did an agnostic come to settle such an argument?

    By the way, Katty-Anne should be receiving her annual supply of switches and coal in a couple of weeks.

  23. KarenW December 9, 2010 at 11:11 am #

    Staceyjw – I can really argue with anything you said – I’m a Christian who firmly believes in separation of church and state. But I really need to know this: why did you mention Jews, Hindus and Muslims and felt no need to mockingly misspell their names?

  24. KarenW December 9, 2010 at 11:12 am #

    Typo – make that CAN”T really argue.

  25. Staceyjw December 9, 2010 at 11:31 am #

    “If you love Christmas as you say, then take the Merry Christmas greeting and quit griping.”

    Funny, I never said I minded hearing “Merry Christmas”, I also say it quite a bit myself. Don’t put words in my mouth. I also pointed out that 99.9% of people DO NOT CARE. Its a fake controversy!

    Sure 70% of xtians makes them the majority, but 100% of ALL people are included in HAPPY HOLIDAYS!. It makes it a smart choice for dealing with the general public.
    What about saying this is SO bothersome to you?

    One more time- I DO NOT CARE IF YOU SAY MERRY XMAS OR WHAT THE F***EVER you want! You can say happy Eid, or Blessed day, Praise Jesus, Love Lord FSM- or whatever if you want, I could care less! But don’t go around complaining that “Happy Holidays” is offensive!

  26. Staceyjw December 9, 2010 at 11:33 am #

    Karen- What was mocking? Typing the word xmas? Didn’t know that was offensive, I use it as shorthand.

  27. Larry Harrison December 9, 2010 at 11:53 am #

    “Happy Holidays” is fine in & of itself, one of Gene Autry’s old Christmas records–yes, records–begins “happy holidays folks wherever you may be.”

    That, in & of itself, is fine.

    What is NOT fine in when clerks at stores etc are instructed that they are to say “Happy Holidays” because of a few people who complained that “Merry Christmas” was offensive to them because they don’t celebrate Christmas. So, in such instances, the change was made not for innocent reasons, but because of a bunch of whiners taking offense where there had never been any.

    Done that way, it is another example of political correctness, much as Santa being fired was, and that is why people take offense, because they are under the impression that “Happy Holidays” is being proffered in an attempt to placate the excessively-easily offended whiners who made hay out of nothing.

    Yes, “Happy Holidays” supposedly covers all 100%, but 70-80% wasn’t good enough? No one complained about it before, and I don’t think it’s because they were “oppressed” or “not allowed to express their dissent” or whatever. It’s simply a matter that people are now being taught to create offenses in their heads where none existed rather than ceasing from being so petty–again, much like the people who complained about Santa.

    I think it was just fine as it was, and the remaining 20% or whatever should’ve been fine with it and stopped their griping, because they had nothing whatsoever to gripe about.


  28. Uly December 9, 2010 at 12:15 pm #

    Stacey, X as a shorthand for “Christ” is not necessarily mocking. It’s been used by Christians for much of the history of Christianity, after all. That doesn’t mean it can’t be used as a way to say you don’t think much of ’em, but it doesn’t have to be.

    Of course, if the person you’re talking to doesn’t like it, it’s impolite to keep using it when talking to them, that seems clear.

  29. Uly December 9, 2010 at 12:24 pm #

    What is NOT fine in when clerks at stores etc are instructed that they are to say “Happy Holidays” because of a few people who complained that “Merry Christmas” was offensive to them because they don’t celebrate Christmas. So, in such instances, the change was made not for innocent reasons, but because of a bunch of whiners taking offense where there had never been any.

    Do you have any proof that this has actually happened? Happened frequently, that is? Sounds like something cooked up by the “War on Christmas!!!” folks – they don’t like hearing “Happy Holidays” because it makes them think they’re losing influence, so they make up reasons that people would say it only because they’re forced to.

    Done that way, it is another example of political correctness

    Aha, I get it now. Good manners is being “politically correct”, because excluding people and being careless with your words is the normal way of doing things.

    No one complained about it before, and I don’t think it’s because they were “oppressed” or “not allowed to express their dissent” or whatever.

    Or because they didn’t think it would come to much, or because it can be uncomfortable to be known as The Only Whatever in a small community where you’re all alone, or because they did and you simply didn’t hear about it before.

    It’s simply a matter that people are now being taught to create offenses in their heads where none existed

    Well, as I said before, for some people Merry Christmas may just be the last straw. Maybe after 10 days of Christmas music and Christmas decorations and Christmas kettles and “He’s the reason for the season!” and your shows being pre-empted by Christmas movies, after a whole *year* of “Are you saved? Doncha know that if you don’t think like we do you’re gonna go to Hell?” one person hears one too many “Merry Christmas!” remarks and snaps. And sure, you feel silly after, and stupid, but it’s a stressful enough time of year even when you do belong and do fit in with everybody else. Not enough sun, and too much snow, and the music, the omnipresent music, and… ugh. It can be enough to turn even the most reasonable atheist/Buddhist/Jew/Pagan/Other into a Grinch.

  30. Larry Harrison December 9, 2010 at 12:34 pm #

    Uly Do you have any proof it’s NOT happening? I’ve seen it in the news many times & heard people who work for certain retailers verify it, and based on what I’ve seen with many other things yes I’d say it’s happening.

    Yes, we here talk about how the news exagerrates things, so maybe it’s not happening as OFTEN as it seems, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t happening any at all.

    “Good manners?” Oh please. When people whine about petty things that mean nothing and demand apologies for slights that were never delivered but merely imagined, I do call it political correctness. I’m tired of it. It isn’t about being “careless,” it’s about the whiners picking apart everything they hear because they practically look for something to gripe about & demand an apology from, with something that was never about them.

    A good example is a Taco Bell commercial which was aired depicting how hot the tacos were by having a visual of fire coming from the tacos. Guess what–people who had been burn victims called & complained. Good grief! By the same token, I had myself a few years earlier been the victim of a bad burn that left me unemployed for a month while my burns healed, but I didn’t take offense and call Taco Bell’s 1-800 number and whine about it. Some people just fine offense where there isn’t any, and frankly I’m sick and tired of them and applaud those that don’t pander to their whining.

    As for the person snapping due to the exposure? Yes, there is too much Christmas music blared in the stores to be sure, but that doesn’t make it right to be a jerk and snap at someone who says “Merry Christmas” and meant nothing but the most sincere form of niceness in doing so. Again–flipping out over a slight that was never there to start with.


  31. Uly December 9, 2010 at 12:56 pm #

    I didn’t say it was right to be a jerk. However, Larry, we could all afford to be a little more charitable in our consideration of other people’s thoughts and feelings.

  32. timkenwest December 9, 2010 at 1:16 pm #

    this is one of my favourite sites to read on the whole entire world wide web, mainly because of the intelligent, thoughtful comments by all of my fellow intelligent, thoughtful free-rangers (that’s you!), but guys, come on, it’s getting a bit mean-spirited around here lately.

  33. sue December 9, 2010 at 8:40 pm #

    tolerance means exactly that..not if i am offended by something it should be eliminated. this is traditionly in this country and this culture a season celebrating christmas. i understand and accept people of other beliefs or none at all don’t celebrate but toerance mean that they accept other people do. tolerance is not demanding you change whether or not you wish someone a merry christmas. it is accepting it in the spirit in which it is given. tolerance is that if someone greets me with a greeting related to their holiday or season i accept it in the spirit in which that is given. i don’t snap at them that i’m not jewish, muslim hindu or etc. if they have decoration up in celebration, i do not demand they remove them,i accept why they are there even when i dissagree with them. this country has due to “politily correct never ever offend ANYBODY even if it offends your beliefs just ignore them because everyone else’s beliefs are more important than yours” thinking. this is why instead of a melting pot of enjoying and rejoicing in all culture and getting along we have basically ghettos[in the most basic definition] of different cultures demanding that theirs be recongized above all others and putting down everything else.

  34. Laura V. December 9, 2010 at 9:09 pm #

    re: the santa discussion — macy’s can hire another santa; the wrongly-fired santa has found other employment. in this small instance, the market seems to have corrected itself (with a little help from public ridicule to keep macy’s honest).

    re: the appropriateness of season’s greetings – there are many things i’d die on the side of a hill for. this is not one of them.

  35. Dragonwolf December 9, 2010 at 11:42 pm #

    Larry, have you ever worked retail during the holiday season? If you have, then you know that the “Christmas” season spans far more holidays than just Christmas. Hannukka, Kawanzaa, Thanksgiving, New Year’s, Ramadan, and if you want to get into the real minorities, Yule/Jul, Saturnalia, or the more obscure Christian ones, St Stephen’s Day, Watch Night, Holy Innocents’ Day, Advent, All Saint’s Day, St Nicolas’ Day. The list goes on, even for Christians. For retail workers, the holiday season starts ramping up in August.

    oncefallendotcom – What names do you use for the days of the week? If you use the ones everyone else uses, you do know they’re named for Norse gods, right?

    And, for a bit of a lighter note, I provide everyone with a fun song (that I’m sure anyone who’s worked retail will really appreciate):
    The Christmas Can-Can!

  36. good news daily December 10, 2010 at 12:28 am #

    People now are tired of receiving bad news from television, newspaper and internet. For a change they want to receive good news. I’m happy to have known someone who writes good news daily such as these. Keep up the good work.

  37. Jules December 10, 2010 at 1:53 am #

    Normally I don’t like to feed the trolls, but I can’t help but wonder how many sizes Katy-Anne’s heart might grow this Christmas. Because right now, it’s two sizes too small…

  38. Sky December 10, 2010 at 3:03 am #

    The Christmas season spans Ramadan? Really? Because I didn’t see a whole lot of Christmas decoration in the mall this past August. They usually start promoting Christmas right after Halloween. Alas, poor Thanksgiving.

  39. Dragonwolf December 10, 2010 at 3:17 am #

    Sky – For one, as I mentioned, when you work retail, you see the holiday shopping season as getting started in August, since there is some ramp-up time required so that the store can get into Christmas mode once back-to-school winds down. (For those who don’t work retail, you can see this ramp-up by the August hiring faires, where they start hiring their seasonal people.)

    Also, Ramadan goes by the lunar calendar (as opposed to the “normal” calendar, which is solar), so it shifts in relation to solar-based holidays, so while it’s not always during Oct/Nov/Dec, it can and does fall into those months fairly regularly. It’s akin to how Easter shifts around in relation to the months.

  40. Gina December 10, 2010 at 9:44 am #

    What’s with the overuse of the quotation marks?

  41. Uly December 10, 2010 at 12:00 pm #

    The Muslim calendar is not only a lunar calendar, just to continue, but unlike most lunar calendars it never has a “leap month” to recalibrate it with the solar calendar.

    In relation to the solar calendar, Ramadan moves backwards about ten or eleven days every year.

  42. SushiQ December 11, 2010 at 12:40 am #

    Hooray Santa John!