Thursday, December 26, 2013

Christmas Day

Merry Christmas ya'all!

Here's what Shortcake got:
That's a lovely journal from her friend, a poster from her brother and a bag from Macy's (as a thank you for the season).

Shortcake recorded this as a Christmas wish to her friends and family.  If you would prefer a professional version, here's Cee Lo Green's version or Kelly Clarkson's

Shortcake slept in.  She refused to set an alarm, so she woke up when she was ready to.  Then she watched tv, went to dinner with a friend, went home and watched more tv and went to bed early.  It was a well deserved rest day. 

To close out the season, here's some extra tidbits.

Santa sent Shortcake this David Sedaris essay.  It's hilarious. Another friend sent this song to Shortcake.  It's his favorite Christmas song.  It's kinda great.  Here's some short bits featuring Christmas characters - it's from the tumblr Fairy Tales for Twenty-Somethings, which is one of Shortcake's favorite things on the internet.

Until next season!  Shortcake is going to take another nap now.

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve was a looooooooong day.  Filled with magic, but still.  Shortcake was up at 4:30am, working at 6am, off work at 6:45pm, and home at 12:30am after a lovely Christmas Eve dinner in Brooklyn with friends.  Shortcake is, perhaps, getting too old to be awake for 20 hours straight.

It was another super busy day, and, again, we were short-staffed.  It was another day where Shortcake sat down for about 45 minutes total.  Kwanzaa Hut was up and running all day, which was very exciting.  Shortcake took two NYPD officers on a tour of Santaland.  They met Santa, then they stayed at the exit, helping us close the line promptly at 4pm. 

A child gave Santa a picture. 
Shortcake liked it so much, she asked Santa if she could have it.  He said yes.  It's modern art on a post it.

General Krampus was around, scheduling the elf troops.

Shortcake may have stolen his helmet.

It was so busy that Shortcake walked into one of Santa's visits.  She thought he was alone, so she stepped in, clapped her hands, saw the family, turned around and walked right back out.  Santa laughed and laughed at her.

Pip went up to get a family from the gatekeeper, and Teddy Bear came up behind him, said his name, and ushered them away.  Teddy Bear stole that family right out from under Pip and didn't even realize it.  Shortcake laughed and laughed.

At the end of the day, the elves were a bit tired.

Shortcake escorted Santa on his last walk, up to the roof to the sleigh, and he flew back to the North Pole to start his trip around the world.

In Praise of Elves

It may be called Santaland, but elves make it run.  We cannot function without good elves.  A good elf makes your life better, and your job easy, and everything goes smoothly.  An elf that could use some constructive criticism slows everything down and ruins your life.  There's a part of Shortcake's job where she relies heavily upon the elves.  It's like playing Tetris.  Except that Shortcake isn't the one playing Tetris (which, by the way, she's quite good at).  Shortcake is telling the elves how to play Tetris.  And some of them get it, and know exactly how to position the pieces.  And some of them don't, and she's left saying "No, put the long piece over there.  Over there!"  Sigh.  "No, it's fine.  We can live with that.  No, turn the zigzag piece.  Turn it!  NOW!  Oh, there it went.  Okay, fine.  We'll fix it later."  It's mildly frustrating.  And all Shortcake can do it position the elves as best as possible, and hope they figure it out.

We had a bumper crop of new elves this year - definitely the best year since Shortcake started.  And so, Shortcake presents to you a photo gallery of lovely elves.

Let's start with Waffles.


Waffles and Shortcake were still working out how to do a proper elfie.

 Teddy Bear, Gingerbread and Squeak with Santa.

 A Sprout and Shortcake elfie.

 The Gruesome Twosome with Shortcake (Sprinkles & Spritz)
(Seriously, Santaland cannot run without these two.)

 Shortcake & Squeak (still working on the elfie technique)

Clearly, Shortcake has not mastered the elfie, as she and Pip are quite fuzzy.

Trinket, Pip and Sprout with Santa

Santa in the news

Hey parents, maybe you want to read this, and look at all the videos, before you let your kids read it.  Use your own judgment.  Consider yourself warned.

Remember when Shortcake told you about the reporter who came in to visit Santa?

Well, the story broke.  Here's the blog where it's originally found.  According to everyone at Santaland, the best part of the video is Shortcake's face at the end.  In this Buzzfeed article, Shortcake is highlighted as an "official looking woman."  Who knew Shortcake was "official looking?"  She doesn't even wear a suit!

Then CNN picked up the story.

Needless to say, Santaland was even busier than usual on Christmas Eve.  Or rather, we were the same amount of busy, with an added twist that Kwanzaa Hut was in action all day.

So, how does Shortcake feel about all this?  Well, she's happy people are coming to see Santa.  And she's a little cranky that news organizations seem to be turning it into a segregation thing.  And that the reporters are ruining the magic.  It's hard enough to do what we do at Macy's, without ruining Christmas, and Santa Claus is the one person adults can come to without any religious affiliation and ask for help.  Santaland turns into a secular confessional, and it is very special.  Shortcake wishes the reporters would respect that.

Christmas Eve Eve

Christmas Eve Eve started very early.  Shortcake had to be at Macy's at 6am, so Santa could start seeing people at 7am.  The line exploded around 9:28am - right on time.  But we were short-staffed, so when the line exploded, it exploded.  We went up to a four hour wait, then got it back down to a 3 hour wait where it stayed until Shortcake left. 

We were so busy that elves were going five or six hours without a break.  Dewdrop left her house in tears because it had been five hours, and she felt faint and needed to eat.  Shortcake sent her back to scheduling, and had the Santa elf cover Photo.  Shortcake herself forgot to eat.  Santa and Spatula kept checking on her to make sure she drank water and ate.  If Shortcake had a break, she'd sit down for five minutes, then remember to take a bite, then get up and go back to work.  It got so bad that the next day, Santa brought Shortcake a water bottle. 

The most mortifying thing happened in the morning - Shortcake forgot Santa.  He sat for 30 minutes, waiting for Shortcake to come get him.  She's never done that before.  The worst part was, he was only remembered because Sprinkles went looking for Spritz who was with Santa.  Spatula said the look on Shortcake's face when she realized was priceless.  Shortcake was horrified at herself and apologized profusely to Santa.  Luckily, he understood, but, oh, Shortcake was disappointed in herself.

When some relief arrived, ie, more people showed up to give the early morning people breaks, Shortcake did leaps down the hallway and through the Santa room.  Leaps.  That's how excited she was.

Good stuff happened on Christmas Eve Eve too.  Shortcake's friends Lori & Drew came to visit Santa.  Drew was making a Christmas video for his family.  It's rather charming - check it out.  Krampus made bourbon balls; Santa and Spatula tried to convince Shortcake the bourbon balls were like her mushrooms to Mario.  You know, the power food that makes Mario super strong.  Shortcake had one.  And it was quite strong.

At Shortcake's other job, it Secret Santa reveal day.  She got pens (purple!) and a book about running (which is excellent, and Shortcake highly recommends it). 

It was Cider's last day.  When he arrived, Shortcake ran across the room and hugged him.  She finally knew what working the weekends were like.  Shortcake cannot praise Cider enough - they're like the power team of strawbosses.  If Shortcake could be teamed with Cider all the time, they could probably take over the world.  But alas.  The season, and their partnership, was over.  Until next year. 

Shortcake has not forgotten Genie.  She's the third leg of the strawboss triumvirate.  Shortcake didn't get a picture with her before she left, but Genie left a lovely Christmas card for Shortcake wishing her a Merry Christmas.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Red Friday

Shortcake decided that since the Friday before Christmas could not be Black Friday, since that is the Friday after Thanksgiving, she would call it Red Friday.  Which is more Christmasy.  And has "Game of Thrones" overtones that amuse her.

It wasn't as busy as it could have been.  The village was rocking it the whole day, so the line only went into Parade Hallway once or twice.  And then came back out.  Which is awesome.  In order to make that happen, Shortcake had to run like the village like we usually run it on Saturdays and Sundays.  Which she's never done before.  And she did it well.  Be proud of her.  One of the managers gave her an "efficiency" pin.

There is an emergency exit in the village which has an alarm.  It has never been opened in Shortcake's experience.  Until today.  A child pushed it open.  And an alarm went off.  An extremely loud, persistent, never ending alarm.  It went for at least 5 minutes, until a manager was able to get the key to turn it off.  And afterwards there was applause and glee in the Village.

It was Peppercorn and Shortcake's last day together. 
And here's Shortcake and Santa:

Hot Mess Thursday

Santaland was a hot mess Thursday morning.  HOT.  MESS.

Santa had an event, and there were school groups, and Shortcake can't quite describe everything that went wrong, but she definitely never stopped moving.  (Shortcake should really wear a pedometer one of these days to figure out how far she walks in a normal shift.)  We were short on elves, so we had one elf doing two people's jobs all over the village.

Santa tripped on his way to an event.  He stepped on a broom, and it rolled underneath his foot.  He lost his balance and started to fall into some coatracks, but luckily, Spritz was there and she caught him on his harness.  Santa's fine now, and Shortcake gave Spritz a "safety" button.

Shortcake was going in to visit Santa, so she went through the backdoor, said  "Hi" and Pip screamed and jumped back.  It was hilarious.  Okay, the story loses a little in the telling, but Santa about fell off his chair from laughing.

Perhaps you have heard about Megyn Kelly claiming Santa is white.  The gist is that Ms. Kelly claimed, on air, on Fox News, that Santa is white.  This sent the internet into a tizzy.  And so a reporter from the Daily News tried to get an answer from Macy's.  Macy's PR just kept saying "We have one Santa."  And the boss' boss gave Shortcake a heads up that a reporter might be coming in to see Santa and ask him weird questions.  And then it actually happened.  There was an adult couple, man and woman, who asked to see Santa, so Shortcake brought them to him.  The woman sat on Santa's lap, and the man knelt in the middle of the house (in front of Santa's camera) filming.  The woman asked questions like "Is there a white Santa or a black Santa?"  Santa replied "There's just me.  I am Santa."  The woman asked "I had to say I wanted to see special Santa to see you."  Santa replied "That's because you're special."  The woman asked "How long have you been here?"  Santa said "Since 1862."  By this point, Shortcake was suspicious and called for a manager, who interrupted the visit.  Thank goodness the boss gave Shortcake the heads up, and thank goodness Shortcake was hovering during that visit.  She doesn't usually hover.  Santa handled it like a champ. 

At the end of the day, Trinket gave Shortcake an Elfin Awesomeness Recognition Systems (E.A.R.S).

Shortcake received it for "being a veritable tour de force all the time!  Stupendousasticifferous!"

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Special Wednesday

For future reference, Shortcake does not like lima beans.  Do not ever let her buy frozen vegetables with lima beans ever again.

Wednesday was filled with special visits.  One guy went through elaborate preparations to propose to his lady friend.  This involved giving a letter to Santa to give to the lady friend, and Shortcake had to be the go between.  Some uncouth people wanted Shortcake to open and read the letter, but she refused because that's an invasion of privacy.  And Shortcake was mocked for not being able to describe the man proposing - she's a Watson, not a Sherlock, people.

Shortcake managed a school group that showed up with 70 people, and they all wanted individual photos.  The woman in charge was actually very accommodating and nice, but still.  70 people.  Individual photos.  That's a HUGE logistical problem for Santaland.  So Shortcake took it upon herself to make it work.  And Santa, Sprout, Trinket and Whimsy were rockstars and got everyone through, fairly painlessly.  There was one little boy who did not want to take a photo with Santa.  Shortcake tried to coax him, and then Trinket tried.  He did not like Trinket.  Sprout tried.  That didn't work, so we gave up.  But, in general, the school group went well.

Shortcake's friends Kalere and Marissa came to visit Santa.  It was Marissa's first time visiting Santa EVER.

You may not know this, but Shortcake loves Terrence Mann.  He is a performer on Broadway.  She has loved him since she heard him as the original Beast in Beauty and the Beast.  On Broadway.  He was also the original Broadway "Javert" in Les Miserables.  He was also the original "Rum Tug Tugger" in Cats.  On Broadway.  The original "Chauvelin" in The Scarlet Pimpernel.  She's watched the movie Critters because he was in it.  She watched Mrs. Santa Clause where he played the villain opposite Angela Lansbury.  On a Life To Do List Shortcake wrote in college, there is an item "stage manage for Terrence Mann."  Shortcake is a fan, okay, people?

Anyway.  Since Shortcake has been in New York, she's seen him perform in two Broadway shows.  And then Santa goes and says "He was the best part of the JCS revival."  Shortcake stopped.  "What?"  Santa said, "He was in Jesus Christ Superstar. Guess who he was?" And then Shortcake threw her clipboard to the ground, exclaimed "What do you mean HE WAS IN JCS?  I WOULD HAVE SEEN IT IF I HAD KNOWN." and threw her headset off and stormed away.  Santa about fell over laughing. We should have taken a video.  Shortcake came back, immediately, of course, but she enjoyed her brief moment of going rogue.

And the best part of the day...  drumroll please...  SIRS IAN MCKELLEN AND SIR PATRICK STEWART VISITED SANTA.

Their picture is A-DORABLE.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Snowy Tuesday

It snowed today!  It was very pretty, even if Shortcake did almost slip on the ice under the snow because she was wearing sneakers instead of snow boots.  But then it turned to rain by the end of the day.  And the snow melted.  Sadness.

Anyway, the snow and the rain kept the crowds away, so we had a relatively calm day.  Santa had a German Catholic bishop visit him.  The bishop brought him a German chocolate St. Nicholas treat.  It made Santa's day.

Genie made an advent calendar for Santa and the strawbosses and wig girls.  Every day someone different opens a present, and it's a trivia question and a chocolate treat.  It was Shortcake's day, and she got a truffle.
The managers were shortstaffed this morning, ie Krampus was alone, so Shortcake helped out.  She manned the scheduling desk with her ukulele.
She worked really hard.
Then she opened up Crossroads while Spatula helped her out by strawbossing for a half hour.  Working Crossroads was dusting off rusty skills - Shortcake hasn't been there for three years.  It wasn't quite as easy as hopping back on a bicycle, but she did it.  Shortcake gave Spatula a Elfish Appreciation Recognition Slip for her help.  Spatula got one earlier in the day for helping find Santa's pants.  He had misplaced them, and while Shortcake was prepared to have a pantsless Santa, however cold he would have been, Spatula averted disaster.  Pants were found, the line went back before stroller alley, and everything was good.

Closing Monday

Shortcake only closes three times this entire season.  Usually, she opens.  "Opening" means she's there when Santaland opens at 9am.  Or 8am.  Or 7am.  "Closing" means she's there when Santaland closes.  She's done it two Mondays, and she'll do it on Christmas Eve.  Yesterday was the last Monday.  It was a fairly chill night.  Shortcake spent some time playing her ukulele.

Gingersnap finished the Artoo Detoo hat and mittens she made.

There was one woman who was very unhappy.  She said some people cut in front of her in line, and she had waited in front of the house to see Shortcake before she saw Santa.  So Shortcake talked to her, tried to understand the problem, then suggested the woman visit Santa with her four year old boy, since they were the next in line.  Meanwhile, Shortcake went to get a number for the woman to call to lodge a complaint.  After Shortcake came back with a post-it, the woman was waiting, and yelled at Shortcake again.  Shortcake tried to understand where the problem happened, but the woman wasn't making much sense, and the poor little boy was just embarrassed.  He asked her to stop.  Shortcake asked him if he got to see Santa, and he told her he wanted Batman, and he gave Shortcake a high 5.  Shortcake sent him and the woman on their way.  Later, she heard one of the managers talk about a woman who complained that she was discriminated against in line because she was Hispanic, that 7 people cut in front of her, and Shortcake was appalled to find out it was the same woman!  She just wanted a free photo and thought if she complained loudly enough, Macy's would give her one.  The saddest thing was that the boy had to witness it. 

At the end of the night Gingersnap and Shortcake cleaned Santa's room - this is Shortcake vacuuming with the dustbuster.

Friday, December 13, 2013

Friday the 13th

It was a busy, busy day.  Santaland was shortstaffed, and we had a 2 1/2 hour wait at 11am.  We were on the sales floor in Petites.  It was a little hectic.  And it was still hot in the Village, so Santa was, again, a sweaty, sweaty man.

Ever wonder what a Strawboss does during the day?  She walks in circles.  Sometimes she sits down.  But mostly, she walks in circles.  Sometimes, like yesterday, she turns in a circle until she's dizzy, then walks in a circle in the other direction.  One day, Shortcake should wear a pedometer, so she can see exactly how much she actually walks.

Interesting story about these three new elves: Trinket, Sprout and Toffee.  They're all male, new, about the same, and kinda look the same.  So Shortcake keeps trying to combine their names into one: Trout.  And today, Toffee became Trollop. Inexplicably, that's what came out of Shortcake's mouth.  That is not an appropriate elf name, if a hilarious one.

Shortcake's gonna take the weekend off before that giant snowstorm hits New York City.  Stay tuned!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Venn Diagram Lists

Pippin down!  Pippin down!

It's the second week of the season, and the elves are tired.  As seen above.

BUT, exciting developments in Santaland!  Peppercorn got an apron!  This is her very own apron - she doesn't need to borrow from Gingersnap or Spatula anymore.  Mrs. Clause approves.
Gus the reindeer got to take a break from the maze.  He and Shortcake took a selfie while he was in the scheduling office.  Shortcake loved coming into the office to pet him.
It was another super hot day in Santaland, so Shortcake gave Santa ice in his water.  Also, this poor child slid out of his stroller.  His mom was not paying attention and Toffee, whom Shortcake enjoys calling Trout, was too far away to save the little boy.  And the boy just went limp, raised his arms, and slid down and out of the stroller.  It was hilarious until the boy hit his head on the floor.  Then it was mortifying.

Shortcake, to distract Santa from the heat, showed him this awesome wish list from two girls:
It's a Venn diagram!  These two girls, presumably sisters, wrote out, in a Venn Diagram what each wants and what they both want.  With page numbers!  For easy reference!  (To some unnamed catalog)  Brilliant children!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Fruit and Cheese Day!

 The fruit and cheese.  There was more cheese than fruit.  We had cheddar and stilton with apricot (Spatula described it as "a picnic in my mouth,") and cheddar chocolate and blue cheese.  Shortcake brought clementines and bananas for the fruit.  Santa brought special coffee, and the donuts (below).  'Cause it's not Santaland without donuts.

Fruit & Cheese Day was so successful, Santa wanted to do it again next week.  Maybe on Dec. 18th.

It was also very hot in the village.  There's a cold front sweeping the nation (one of the few days Shortcake was glad to be in New York and not Chicago - -11 degrees Fahrenheit before wind chill is COLD), so the high in New York was 25 degrees.  But Macy's can't turn on the air conditioner blowers unless the outside temperature is above 28 degrees.  So the Village was a sweltering sauna.  Poor Santa.  He was so sweaty and thirsty all day. Shortcake made a point to check on him often.

There's one thing Santa does that drives Shortcake nuts.  Sometimes, when she's moving him from one room to another, he'll slam the door behind her.  He thinks it's funny.  Shortcake is not amused.  Santa finds this even funnier.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013


Shortcake and her friends visited Santa on Tuesday.  Pictures of the visit with Santa will be posted later, as her friends took the photo.  Poor planning on Shortcake's part.  But Santa was great, and Shortcake asked for teleportation and self discipline.

Then she and her friends got some pretzels and walked down 5th Avenue to look at window holiday displays. Macy's, Lord & Taylor and Van Cleef & Apfels are always favorites.  They also stopped at Bryant Park and Rockefeller Center, and ended at the Plaza, eating dinner.  It's the third year Shortcake has done this, and it's a nice tradition.

Here's the garlands on the ground floor inside Macy's.

 The lions at the New York Public Library were in the holiday spirit.

Saks Fifth Avenue's projection star display on the building.
Saks Fifth Avenue had a subway car in one of their windows.  And an ad that only New Yorkers will recognize.
 This window is dedicated to Al Hirschfeld.  Shortcake was able to identify five of these New Yorkers without a hint.

The Swarovski star over Fifth Avenue near 58th St.

Slow Tuesday - Sprout's Birthday!

Tuesday was a slow day.  It was snowing outside, so not many people came to see Santa.  Because it was slow, Shortcake was able to spend some time practicing her ukulele.

The morning was a little crazy because some of the lights were out in the Village.  Some things had to be moved around to deal with it, but we got the lights back for the afternoon.  Santa also had a TV event for the show "What Would You Do?"  Shortcake's never heard of it, but, hopefully, she'll get a heads up before it airs, and she'll tell you when to watch.

It was Sprout's birthday.  The elves all sang to him in front of the train:

And this is Teddy Bear and Shortcake taking a selfie.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

St. Nicholas Day!

Friday was St. Nicholas Day!  For those of you who weren't raised Catholic, or have no idea who St. Nicholas was, here's a handy Wikipedia article.  To sum up: St. Nick is a Catholic saint; his feast day is December 6, and he's the precursor to Santa Claus.

Also, St. Nick Day is in Shortcake's Top 5 holidays ever.

St. Nick was very generous this year.  Here's all the books he got Shortcake:


She read Alice in tumblr-Land and Fortunately, the Milk in one day.  The Hunger Games was so she could have a matching set (she already had Catching Fire and Mockingjay in hardback).  She's currently reading Running Like a Girl (because Shortcake is female and a runner), and next up will be Mark Twain's Christmas.  And the ornament in the middle is her ornament this year.

St. Nick brought treats for Santa at Macy's too - coffee and chocolate and clementines and nuts.  (Traditional treats)  And Santa brought donuts.
The best present St. Nick brought Shortcake was... wait for it... a UKULELE!
Shortcake has been wanting one because she wants to learn to play it.  She used to play the oboe, but those are expensive, require reeds, and are not easily pulled out around a campfire in post apocalyptic society.  Ukuleles are light, easy to carry while running from zombies, and, if Shortcake gets good at it, will earn her a valued place in post apocalyptic society.  And then she won't get eaten.  By zombies.  These are Shortcake's major concerns.  Also, getting sat on by a very large person and falling through fire escape stairs.

Anyway.  We were busy all day, partly because Macy's declared it national Believe Day (Shortcake thinks someone was raised Catholic and looked at a calendar), and because New Jersey and Connecticut didn't have school.  We thought Monday would be busy because it's the day after the Feast of the Immaculate Conception (Catholic kids got lucky this year - a holy day of obligation fell on a Sunday, so they don't have to go twice in one week), and we figured schools would take Monday off.  Apparently, schools took Friday off.  So we were slammed.

Before the kids showed up, Shortcake, Krampus and Lucky had a dance party in the house.  Santa had a delayed reaction, but then he also participated.  St. Nick Day dance parties=awesome.

And then the day turned sour.  SOMEONE - probably an elf, probably from last Sunday, left their coffee under Santa's present.  Shortcake keeps Santa's water under his present, so she was not expecting a 5 day old cup of cold coffee to be there, and then she spilled it.  All over her arm and the floor.  While a family was coming in to visit.  So she ran to get paper towels and cleaned it up.  If that elf is ever discovered...  Naughty list.  For sure.

AND THEN.  Shortcake was attacked by a door.  The door ran over her foot.  She was wearing her sparkly shoes in honor of St. Nick Day, so she was not protected. 
Okay, so she didn't bleed, but there is a huge bruise.  Shortcake was wounded in the line of duty.

But she got a ukulele, so all in all the day turned out okay.
Santa was excited about the ukulele too.


Thursday was also not a very exciting day.  Which is nice early in the season.  If it's exciting early in the season, then it's gonna be crazy on December 23, and we already know it's going to be crazy on December 23.

This is Shortcake's favorite letter to Santa this season:
It's a scroll!  Here's how long it is:
Mostly, the kid wanted Angry Birds games and some Star Wars toys with Jenga and a Furby thrown in.  Who knew Furbies were still a thing?  (Furbys?  How do you pluralize Furby?)

Here's one child's list, and her father's comments about it.  Hilarious.

And this link is just for the adults.  It's a clip from the Daily Show, so don't say you weren't warned.

Wednesday December 5

Wednesday was a fairly slow day.  We started with a bang though - this group of 40 people thought they had an 8:30am appointment to see Santa.  They did not.  Santa doesn't start seeing people until 9am.  But they were all here, so we closed down the maze to everyone, had Santa join them in the maze, took a photo with all forty of them, and then Santa went back on his way.  We had to take the photo in the maze because 40 people will not fit in a house.

Jim, one of the Macy's managers, brought his son in to see Santa. His son is a cutie-pie.
This is Shortcake with the red phone.  It doesn't ring very often, but when it does, Shortcake likes to pretend it's President Obama calling for Santa.  Usually, Santa can't take the call right away 'cause he's busy.  So Shortcake just reassures the president that, yes, we did Malia and Sasha's Christmas lists.

ALSO, a correction.  Spatula's teddy bear is named Frederick Walter Francis II.