At some point in my childhood I faced the decision of whether to believe in Santa Claus, even in the face of a growing body evidence to the contrary. I chose to believe.

That belief may have been simple, as in “Of course there is. Mommy said so and besides look at what he brought me last year.”

That belief may have been altruistic, as in “Whether or not there is an actual person who carries toys to good children throughout the world, the spirit of giving that it represents is real enough.” This is roughly akin to the “Yes, Virginia,” story.

It was none of the above. My decision was far more rational, being based on the premise that, if I suspended my belief in Santa Claus, there would surely be no more presents from the jolly old elf. If, instead, I continued to believe, there was yet some hope that St. Nick would still visit come Christmas eve.

I still believe.

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