This year, as I waited an untold amount of time (okay it was maybe twenty minutes) to meet this year’s mall Santa for a photo only a mother could love, my son’s excitement grew exponentially. He couldn’t contain himself as we approached, his eyes grew round and glossy just as mine do when I’m approaching a fine bottle of whiskey or a handsome bearded man, and he began jumping about. As I’m hoping and praying that he doesn’t ask for something embarrassing, like wifi for the forest or to save the whales, he completely blindsides me with his Christmas wish. Now when I was six I desperately remember wanting a My Sized Barbie (don’t judge me), who was neither my size nor my shape. So here I am thinking my son is going to ask for nerf guns with untold ammunition or action figures, something simple, and age appropriate. My son, in pure adolescent sophistication, asked santa innocently for a drone.
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For those of you who don’t know, a drone is a flying remote controlled object sure to make my neighbors and all local wildlife life’s a living hell. I made desperate eye contact with Santa hoping to all the reindeer that he’d pull something out of his ass that would express the sentiment that my son would not be receiving a drone this year. I mean this six year old has to be reminded to put on underwear in the morning, giving him the autonomy to fly an object put a fear in me that only other mothers can understand. I foresee a neighborhood apocalypse with my son at it’s head. Santa, knowing he’d never experience the heart attack I will as this drone kills a neighbor’s cat, told my son that drones are the ‘hot thing this year’ and he’s received many wishes for drones and he’d add it to his list.
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My heart dropped to the pit of my stomach. In my son’s eyes Santa just promised him a drone for Christmas. As we leave, my son is skipping, heart bursting with Christmas joy, I follow behind him, feet dragging, hoping to the wine gods there’s still a bottle on the kitchen counter. I start making a list of excuses for Santa to not drop off this drone down our chimney. I begin researching drone. I discover that the high end options are still thousands of dollars and require registration from the Federal Aviation Administration, my heart elates and fills with joy; I’ve found my loophole. But then I realize I had my Amazon sorting preference on highest to lowest, and my heart bursts. After fixing the sorting category I unfortunately discover not all drones are thousands of dollars, with beautiful age restrictions and aviation requirements. Oh no! I can now purchase a drone with no restrictions for less than thirty dollars for a six year old. This drone thankfully only has a range of 30 meters, flies for a mere 20 minutes and takes a little over 45 minutes to charge.
So I ration it out, explain Santa’s not real and that Mommy buys all the presents, or get him a drone? Guess who has a drone en route for christmas from Santa? My offspring. Will I regret this purchase decision? Probably. But how much damage can one six year old do with a flying object in twenty minutes and with a range of 30 meters? I suppose I will have this answer by the afternoon of Christmas, and hopefully I won’t owe a neighbor a new window or a new cat. I have sent up all the prayers to save the squirrels and birds. I’m blaming Santa, and hoping my neighbors understand. Who knows, maybe this will be the Christmas gift he looks back on with joy and glee. If not, well there’s always next year… Here’s to hoping he doesn’t discover remote control tanks next year.