maldaen wrote:Let's not forget the misappropriation of Norse winter solstice myths that turned Odin into Santa Claus.
I heard an interesting programme on the radio years ago about how the Santa Claus image / story developed. He was apparently a bit sinister in his pre-Coca Cola days, and as well as delivering presents to good children, he delivered switches to beat the bad ones with.
The programme argued that in parts of Scandinavia and Greenland where they have reindeer they also have fly agaric mushrooms (the classic fairy tale ones - red cap with white patches), which the reindeer sometimes eat. Fly agarics are poisonous and hallucinogenic, and one of the most common 'trips' experienced by those misguided enough to try one is to imagine that you are flying.
So you've got a guy dressed in red and white who flies around with a bunch of reindeer laughing his ass off all the time, who has such a distorted sense of time that he thinks he can visit all the kiddies in the world in one night. Sounds like drugs to me...